23rd > September > 2011 Archive
No, I don’t mean “non-magnetic”: if you wrap a magnet in cotton, you can still detect the magnet outside. “Anti-magnetic” means you can put a magnet inside and not detect it from the outside, and similarly, from the inside, you can’t detect outside magnetic fields.
The University of Sydney and technical publisher Elsevier are holding the first official competitive hackathon for students and professional software developers.
“Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurtling down the highway,” Andrew Tanenbaum wrote in 1996, when most people used dial-up networks and Australians couldn’t yet get ADSL.
Apple has been sued by the Taiwanese fabless semiconductor-design firm VIA Technologies for – what else? – patent infringement.
The news that Meg Whitman has taken over the top job at HP has left some in the industry scratching their heads. Sure, she was a reasonably safe pair of hands at eBay (besides splashing out billions on Skype for reasons best known to herself), but as a replacement for Leo Apotheker, she’s unlikely to be a success. That’s because HP has an identity problem. There’s no status quo to manage.
ReviewReview Hey, tablet geeks out there, do you remember what you hated most about Samsung’s original 7in Galaxy Tab? The grainy display, the glitchy software, the lack of memory, the poorly located buttons that you kept pressing by mistake?
Researchers at Cambridge University have managed to bat an electron back and forth along a wire in a high-tech game of ping-pong that could help out with quantum computing.
Arqiva, holders of a virtual monopoly on UK broadcast infrastructure, has been asked to provide indicative pricing in case anyone fancies launching some TV channels at 600MHz.
Online DVD and CD seller Play.com has been flogged to Japanese web conglomerate Rakuten for £25m in cash.
Most Brits think it's easy to find a .uk address for their websites, but almost half admit to having settled on a domain that was not their first choice, according to a new survey.
Oracle is looking for around $1.16bn in damages from Google over the Java patent throwdown, and not the $2.2bn the Chocolate Factory has been whinging about.
AnalysisAnalysis The legal activity around Android continues to mount, with the chief antagonists - Samsung and Apple - increasing their lawsuit tally to 21. And another may follow soon, as Samsung threatens to sue to block sales of the iPhone 5 as soon as it launches, at least in its home country of Korea.
One bright student has decided to merge his love of videogames with the task of laundry, creating a hybrid machine that puts a new spin on household chores.
Accessory of the WeekAccessory of the Week DAB radio: always a contentious topic given its cost and varying fidelity. But a DAB radio accessory for iOS devices and for £55 too? You might as well skip the rest of this waffle and head for the comments now. Go on, you know you want to.
Hard disk drives are getting a caching flash wrapper if OCZ has its way. Watch out for this SSD supplier's Synapse caching flasher.
Episode 14Episode 14 "I'm just here to do the audit," a weedy bloke says, poking his head nervously into Mission Control.
Good news for Mac users: LaCie has at long last made its Thunderbolt-connected Little Big Disk external hard drive available to buy.
Lady Gaga has lost her fight over the domain name LadyGaga.org after an arbitration panel ruled that a punter was well within her rights to use it for a fan site.
Microsoft's R&D department has drawn up plans for a slider phone with swappable accessories, a concept previously attempted elsewhere that failed to become a success commercially.
Something odd is happening in East London. Last November David Cameron launched "Tech City UK", a bid to extend the nontrepreneurial hub of Silicon Roundabout into the éléphant blanc of the Olympic zone at Stratford. (See Nathan Barleys to fill Olympic chasm). But newcomers to the area might find themselves disoriented.
Antivirus scanner firm Avast has acquired mobile phone theft protection and recovery company ITAgents. Financial terms of the deal, announced on Thursday, were not disclosed.
Intel has denied a claim that it will change the name of its low-power Atom processor when the next version of the chip, codenamed 'Cedar Trail', ships later this year.
Oracle's UK server sales continued to slide downwards in the second quarter despite a recovery across the market that was exploited by most of its rivals.
Microsoft has hit back at concerns that secure boot technology in UEFI firmware could lock out Linux from Windows 8 PCs, saying that consumers will be free to run whatever they want on their PCs.
ReviewReview It’s a funny old sport, F1: an ever changing maelstrom of rule adjustments and technology upgrades, ensuring any given season is entirely disparate from the next. Imagine if FIFA suddenly deemed that football’s throw-ins were to become kick-ins, before adjusting the rule once more the next. That’s precisely the issue facing F1 teams where, by way of example, changes from last season to this include the introduction of the Pirelli tyre, the option of deploying the drag-reducing DRS rear wing adjuster, the reintroduction of the KERS boost, and the end of the adjustable front wing.
The IT support chaps and chapesses among you doubtless have a few entertaining war stories regarding preposterous causes of system outages, and we'd like to offer you this fine Friday the tale of the cantankerous crapper and the company server.
Red Hat is taking on VMware with five enterprise heavyweights through a vendor-neutral virtualisation community project based on its RHEV-M stack.
Three years ago I caught a glimpse of a new social network built around music. You could follow people, chat with them, and enjoy the same music stream in real time. There were many other clever things about it, such as a very slick integration of music news. But the killer feature, one that made it unique, was that you could also drop songs you liked into a little box, and keep permanently. This was genuine P2P file sharing. There were no strings attached - no DRM, no expiry, no locker (your stash was your hard drive) and no additional fees for this feature.
Call it the fanboy effect, call it the superior user experience the device offers, but research shows that iPhone owners are much more likely to stick with Apple than are folk who've bought handsets from other companies.
Analyst Peter Misek has been crawling through piles of patents to guess who owns LTE, with the surprise result that most of it belongs to LG Electronics.
Graphics card manufacturer Nvidia claims that, come 2014, more money will be spent on PC games than on games for consoles.
Social media types who enjoy measuring their "popularity" in the social media arena are in for a shock.
The first batch of Acer notebooks sent by rail is set to arrive in Europe in the next two weeks, and the rail-freighting trend may soon be adopted across the PC industry.
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment Japan is celebrating the latest Star Wars release - the compete saga on Blu-ray Disc - with a funky campaign on Tokyo's train network, turning the handrails on trains into lightsabres.
Wily Wyse is offering software and a service that turns your desktop computer into a networked storage system for Apple's hand-held gadgets.
Samsung is seeking a sales ban on all 3G iPhones and some iPads in the Netherlands as the South Korean giant's bitter war with Apple rumbles on.
A missing moon rock has been found gathering dust in a box of Bill Clinton's papers from his time as the governor of Arkansas.
A second, and final, Ubuntu Oneiric Ocelot beta has been served up, favoring portable computing and slipping an old virtualization face back into the pack.
Apple staff have been told to cancel all leave for the first two weeks in October – which would appear to confirm industry talk that the arrival of the iPhone 5 is imminent.
Mac malware creators are adopting Windows malware camouflage trickery in a bid to trick users into running their malicious creations.
The iPhone 5 rumor mill continues to churn, with today's tidbit being a report that a flaw in Wintek-produced touchscreen displays will put a crimp in shipments of the not-yet-acknowledged Cupertinian superphone.
Hackers trying to cheat the Xbox Live game network have stooped to a new low: sending hoax emergency distress calls to police with the goal of drawing an armed response to the homes of Microsoft employees. According to The Sammamish Patch news service, Eric Neustadter, operations manager for Xbox Live, was the latest Xbox enforcer to receive an emergency response from armed police. The report, and a follow-up article in The Seattle Post-Intelligencer said similar SWAT attacks have hit other Microsoft employees as well.
With the current brouhaha over Oracle’s commercial extensions to MySQL, you might expect the competition to be making a play for disgruntled users. Instead, Ingres – which previously pursued this strategy – has decided to re-brand itself and focus on lightweight applications.
The first and last men to walk upon the moon have testified at a Congressional hearing that NASA is a national disgrace.
In the summer of 2008, at an artificial intelligence confab deep in Silicon Valley, Yahoo! senior research scientist Deepak Agarwal revealed that the web giant was using automated algorithms to select news stories on its famous front page. These algorithms, he said, had boosted click-through-rates by 25 to 30 per cent, driving millions of additional dollars in ad revenue.
With just a few hours until researchers unveiled an attack they say decrypts sensitive web traffic protected by the ubiquitous secure sockets layer protocol, cryptographers described a simple way website operators can insulate themselves against the exploit. The recommendations published Friday by two-factor authentication service PhoneFactor, suggest websites use the RC4 cipher to encrypt SSL traffic instead of newer, and ironically cryptographically stronger, algorithms such as AES. Google webservers are already configured to favor RC4, according to this analysis tool from security firm Qualys. A Google spokesman says the company has used those settings "for years." In stark contrast, eBay's PayPal payment service favors AES, making the site at least theoretically vulnerable to BEAST, the attack tool scheduled to be demonstrated Friday evening at the Ekoparty security conference in Buenos Aires. Short for Browser Exploit Against SSL/TLS, its creators say it targets a long-documented vulnerability in some encryption algorithms that cryptographers previously believed wasn't practical to exploit.
California governor Jerry Brown and Amazon have settled their long-running dispute over the state’s urge to charge the etailer sales tax.
The US Federal Communications Commission's open-internet rules have been published by the Federal Register, and they're set to go into effect on November 20 of this year.