23rd > November > 2011 Archive
Microsoft to offer dual upgrade path for Windows 8
Microsoft will change its upgrade procedures when it introduces Windows 8, offering a simple system for home users and a more technical option for IT staff.
FBI: No evidence of water system hack destroying pump
Federal officials said there's no evidence to support a report that hackers destroyed a pump used by an Illinois-based water utility after gaining unauthorized access to the computer system it used to operate its machinery.
Inside the BBC's R&D Labs
Whatever your views on its programming, it is hard to deny that the BBC’s research labs have produced some pretty clever things over the years. Teletext, RDS and Nicam stereo are just some of the more well known ones, but the R&D Lab is also responsible for much of the work on the DVB-T2 standard that makes Freeview HD possible, as well as research on topics like resolution and screen size that Reg Hardware has looked at before.
Storage minnow Infortrend is growing up... fast
What is it with Infortrend? We can't carry on placing it as a minor league player when it adds auto-tiering just weeks after adding SSD support.
Plans for wave-pay Tube tickets don't convince pols
Many passengers are concerned about the data security and safety aspect of Transport for London's (TfL's) plans to introduce contactless ticketing, and the project may not deliver the financial savings expected, the London assembly's transport committee has concluded.
UK has no idea if it's selling spyware to evil regimes
The UK government says it isn't exercising any control over the sale of surveillance software nor stopping it from finding its way into the hands of repressive regimes.
Elon Musk's SpaceX seeks 'private sector Cape Canaveral'
Private rocket company SpaceX is looking around for new launch sites to take care of all the commercial customer demand it's getting.
Hero dev writes the CODE that COULD SAVE THE WORLD
An asteroid collision with Earth could now be less likely thanks to a software developer who created a computer program capable of tracking NEOs (Near Earth Objects).
Fragged, fragged and thrice fragged! 20 years of id Software’s Doom
Antique Code Showid Software’s Doom – the definitive first-person shooter – is 20 years old today.
Chromebooks: the flop of 2011?
Google's Chromebook initiative appears to be a damp squib. Launched in May 2011, Chromebook sales are unlikely to exceed 30,000 units, despite backing from Acer and Samsung.
Yes! Perhaps! It's the Lady Gaga Thanksgiving Special!
Lady Gaga plans to spend her Thanksgiving blowing glitter over children, dipping a bird in oil and performing a duet with a very old man.
'Hands off our books, content miners! Those aren't cheap'
Allowing people to use computers to 'mine' vast banks of copyrighted material would damage the economy, the UK Publishers Association has said. It wants to block an exception to copyright law for the practice.
It's ALIVE! Broken Russian Mars probe finally answers calls
The Martian probe Phobos-Grunt, lost in space for the last 14 days, has finally responded to Earth's signals.
IBM pumps up the volumes for data pool party
IBM has a new release of its SVC software coming out to widen the distance between cluster nodes, improve HA and provide better Tivoli integration. This strengthens the V7000 too, as it shares the same SVC binary code.
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's Apple's 3D recognition patent
Apple secured a patent yesterday on software to create and identify 3D models of faces, animals, aircraft, military vehicles and tumours in one of the more unusual tech patents to be awarded in recent months. This came to light after the US Patent and Trademark Office published a series of newly awarded patents.
Fear and slow loading: Eclipse celebrates 10 unsettling years
In November 2001, IBM made its Java tools IDE and platform, developed for WebSphere Application Studio, available under an open source licence. It was the beginning of Eclipse, which now claims 65 per cent of the Java IDE market. But why was Eclipse founded and what has been its impact over a decade?
HP firesale wafts TouchPad to top of tablet chart
HP was the top selling tablet vendor in the US - ignoring Apple, of course - through to the end of October, and it's all thanks to the TouchPad firesale.
Genetically modified mutants 'safe for release' into the wild
Remorseless German boffins say that the time may now be ripe for scientists to begin release of "transgenic individuals into populations". Concerns that this might result in those populations being completely replaced by the superior lab-developed individuals can be addressed, they say, by the use of cunningly selected mutants.
Chinese £200 iPhone killer unwraps for Xmas
Next month will see the launch of a handset which outperforms the iPhone, at £200, from a man who admits he's been waiting for Steve Jobs to die.
Microsoft renovates Xbox Live dashboard
Microsoft has officially announced a significant overhaul of the Xbox Live dashboard, introducing a host of new content as well as voice control and gesture features for the Kinect peripheral.
McKinnon's mum wins human rights gong
Gary McKinnon's mum has secured a human rights award for her campaign to reform extradition laws.
Secret HP dossier on ex-CEO Hurd's antics to stay sealed
HP doesn't have to hand over a secret investigation's report on former chief executive Mark Hurd's sexual activities, or lack thereof, a US Supreme Court ruled.
'Apple's iPhone 4S ate our SIM cards'
The "phone" bit of the new iPhone 4S has stopped working properly for some users who are experiencing repeated SIM card failures, according to customer help forums on the Apple website.
Asus Eee Pad Slider SL101
ReviewI first laid hands on the Asus Eee Pad Slider back in March and now, after eight long months, it has finally made it onto the shelves of Blighty’s gadget wallahs. Has it been worth the wait though?
Councils 'fessed up to just 55 of 1,035 data loss shockers
The scale of data-handling gaffes at local authorities has been revealed by a new report that uncovered 1,035 incidents where confidential information about British citizens was lost.
Streamline Computing goes titsup
Small resellers continue to drop like flies, with Warwick-based Streamline Computing the latest to cease trading and enter liquidation proceedings.
Man nearly faints with relief as cops drop chopper charge
Ohio police have dropped charges against a man they claimed had induced panic amongst the citizenry of Akron by brandishing a large red chopper in a bar.
Dragonriders of Pern author Anne McCaffrey dies
ObituaryAuthor of the Dragonrider series of books, Anne McCaffrey, died on Monday aged 85, having authored a huge number of books that straddled the border between science fiction and fantasy.
Hubble snaps mystery green death nebula in NGC 1846
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has captured an image of the death of a star in a nearby dwarf galaxy.
Apple stalks execs in the cloud
Apple is said to be shopping for senior industry execs with cloud experience as it faces up to the possibility that consumers might not want their content tied solely to its hardware platforms.
Steve Jobs had 'personal moral failures', was no role model
After Britain's Chief Rabbi criticised the consumerism of the late Great High Priest of Apple, a professor of applied ethics at Hofstra University has joined the crew of Jobs-knockers, saying that we shouldn't venerate the Apple CEO because of his well-documented bad behaviour.
Erotica 2011 stands firm against rise of the sex machines
NSFWIt may not have been overtaken by machines just yet, but reports of the demise of Erotica may be just a bit premature.
Radiation TERROR on Scottish beach! Except it's quite safe
A Scottish beach has been cordoned off as a "contaminated land" by environmental-protection authorities following discovery of "radioactive particles" there, thought to result from Ministry of Defence activities in the past. Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown has seen fit to write to the Defence secretary, urging the MoD to act. Surely this is a very serious business?
Stripper name game exposes sensitive privates on Tumblr
An online game that invites surfers to disclose potentially sensitive information has returned in a slightly different guise, two years after its first appearance.
Google gives up on saving world from cheap coal energy
Google has announced that it's abandoning its plans to save the planet by making renewable energy cheaper than coal.
Murdoch junior QUITS board of Sun publisher
James Murdoch has sensationally resigned from News Group Newspapers' board of directors, thereby seemingly turning his back on News International's remaining British publications: The Sun, The Times and the Sunday Times.
Red Hat serves up red-hot Ceylon sauce
Red Hat has broadened access to Ceylon, its JVM-based programming language intended to overcome the limitations of Java.
Adventures in mineral oil cooling
Let’s say that you and your pals need to build a high performance cluster to run a number of HPC apps. It has to be fast. Damned fast. Fast enough to beat the very best student-built systems from seven other universities.
Saints Row: The Third
ReviewYou shouldn't laugh at Saints Row: The Third. I mean, what's funny about bludgeoning an old lady to death with a three-foot-long purple dildo? Or kidnapping a gimp-wearing BDSM fetishist and forcing him to to pull your chariot in gladiatorial Pony Play?
Sony delays 3D PlayStation telly in Europe
Sony's 3D PlayStation telly has been delayed in Europe, with a release date now expected some time in 2012.
Gov IT boss is latest senior Cabinet Office bigwig to quit
The Cabinet Office is a second senior man down just one month after the department published an ambitious action plan detailing deadlines for when it hopes to implement the IT strategy it announced in March this year.
Sony demos Augmented Reality on PS Vita
Sony showed off the PlayStation Vita's Augmented Reality features last night, and announced the full line-up of launch titles.
Ethernet reaches for the hyper-scale cloud
What if the largest Ethernet networks we see today are just precursors, initial steps on the path to what's been called hyper-scale cloud networking?
Climategate 2.0: Fresh trove of embarrassing emails
AnalysisThere was always an element of tragedy in the first “Climategate” emails, as scientists were under pressure to tell a story that the physical evidence couldn’t support – and that the scientists were reluctant to acknowledge in public. The new email archive, already dubbed “Climategate 2.0”, is much larger than the first, and provides an abundance of context for those earlier changes.
RIP mice and keyboards: Kinect for PCs incoming
Microsoft’s XBox Kinect is getting in your face in 2012 with a "near mode" for close-up interaction – and is getting hardware-ready for Windows PCs.
WD cleared to gobble Hitachi GST
The EU has said Western Digital can buy the Hitachi GST disk drive business but only if it sells off some 3.5-inch drive production capacity to an EU-approved buyer.
Titan = supersized science
SC11We spent some time at the Oak Ridge booth at SC11 in Seattle talking with Jack Wells. He’s looking forward to the newest addition to the Oak Ridge supercomputer family, the Titan.
Pro-game MP rewrites Modern Warfare censure motion
The House of Commons has changed its opinion that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 mimics the London bombings, amending an Early Day Motion that proposed the BBFC take further precautions when allowing a game to be sold.
Samsung pledges Galaxy Nexus audio glitch fix
Samsung has developed a fix for the spontaneous volume reduction bug that has hit early buyers of its Galaxy Nexus Android 4.0 smartphone.
Boffin's wall of bees shields farms from stampeding elephants
A British researcher who studied elephants' fear of being stung by bees has been given a gong for developing a fence of beehives to reduce clashes between humans and the mighty mammals.
ISS 'nauts need not fear head-on space junk smashup
Crew on the International Space Station will no longer have to hide from a possible collision with some space debris, after NASA flight controllers decided it posed no threat to the station.
OpenStack is overstretched
OpinionI'm back again at my daily job after a week travelling between San Francisco and Silicon Valley. It's clear that the hot topics there are cloud and flash storage; in fact the first meeting I had last week in Silicon Valley was with OpenStack.
Huge PDP-11 in a lorry: How I drove computers into schools
This Old BoxComputers in classrooms are so common today, we may forget this was once inconceivably difficult. Computers were very expensive and so large they needed a huge truck to transport them. Nearly 35 years ago, I worked on an ambitious but ill-fated project to bring a minicomputer to rural Iowa schools, a classroom on wheels.
Groupon stock dives below IPO value as Black Friday nears
Groupon's shares are now trading at around $17.50, $3 less than its IPO price of $20, after tumbling 28 per cent in the last day and a bit.
GiffGaff blames O2 gaffe for mobile outage
GiffGaff is failing in its mission to be "the people's network" after denying connectivity to a significant number of people over the last couple of days – but apparently it's all O2's fault.
BT Engage IT's big cheese shown the door
The chief operating officer at BT Engage IT has been handed his pink slip as part of the planned redundancies at the reseller giant, The Reg understands.
US quakes before MENACING TURKEYS, snow globes
Americans have been advised to head for the bunkers as Department of Homeland Security quakes before the latest threat existential threat to the union: Thanksgiving.
Google machine-guns unpopular social products
Identity-hoarder Google has killed various social products that failed to capture the interweb's hive brain in the way it clearly thinks Google+ has done.
First bite as Apple fishes for iPad games subscriptions
The first subscription game service for the iPad has been approved by Apple, allowing iPad owners to pay $7 a month for access to games from Big Fish.
Apple telly may sport Sharp screen tech
Does it really matter if Sharp is, as one analyst claims, re-equipping one of its LCD production lines to punch out Apple-branded tellies?
Netflix shares fall on profit warning
Netflix shares dropped 5.4 per cent in New York trading yesterday after the movie rental firm announced it had raised $400m from existing investors, but warned that it might not do too well next year.
ScaleMP takes self in hand, pumps its offering even bigger
With server nodes getting more cores and fatter main memories, you might be thinking that the need for larger symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) servers, whether they are physical, like the ones sold by the major system makers, or virtual, like those created using the vSMP hypervisor and interconnect from ScaleMP, would be diminishing in popularity. Not so.
Nokia Siemens Networks chucks 17,000 people overboard
Ailing telco kit manufacturer Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) is to slash 17,000 jobs worldwide by the end of 2013 as it eyes up an IPO.
iPhone 4S is for failures who work in coffee shops - Samsung
Not content with the trans-continental patent lawsuits, Samsung have struck another blow at Apple. This time somewhere it might hurt - its branding.
Apple one-day-only sale plans for Macs, iPads leaked to web
Apple plans to offer modest discounts on Macs, iPads, and iPods for one day only on Friday, according to the 9to5Mac website, which said a trusted tipster leaked the details of its day-after-Thanksgiving sales.
Yahoo! Microsoft! merger! back! on! after! NDA! signed!
A merger between Microsoft and Yahoo! could be back on the cards, after Redmond reportedly signed a non-disclosure agreement as a prelude to serious talks about their future together.
China overtakes US as world’s biggest smartphone market
The number of smartphones sold in China has outpaced that in the US for the first time, according to analyst house Strategy Analytics.
Rooting Kindle Fire bricks videos
Kindle Fire users may have to damp their enthusiasm for rooting their devices: unless they’re prepared to chase up some other fixes and put up with some inconvenience, rooting the device kills video access.
Vocus buys capacity on Asian cable
Deep pocketed, dark fibre, data centre operator Vocus Communications is investing in international cable capacity and establishing a Point of Presence (PoP) in Singapore.
Amcom buys L7 for $AU15m
Amcom Telecommunications has taken over Perth based IT integrator L7 Solutions for $AU15 million.
Gordon the supercomputer is intense about data
SC11According to San Diego Supercomputing Center chief Mike Norman, his brainchild 'Gordon' is the world’s first data intensive supercomputer.
Browser plugin brings strong crypto to Google webmail