22nd > November > 2012 Archive
Facebook proposes killing off user voting on policy changes
Facebook is proposing to end its practice of allowing users to vote on corporate policy changes, after a three year experiment in digital democracy.
.WTF? Governments object to .sucks, .army and .airforce
The world's governments have had their say about new generic top level domains (gTLDs), lodging more than 200 objections laid to proposed new names.
Patent suit targets Formlabs and Kickstarter
As the world turns increasingly into one in which nobody can do anything without being sued by someone, 3D Systems is suing Formlabs and Kickstarter over alleged patent infringement covering 3D printing.
CERN rushes to install new anti-matter hunter
CERN scientists are on an instrument sprint to prep a new anti-matter detector, ALPHA-2, ahead of the facility’s upgrade shutdown in December.
One week left before US faces clamp down on piracy
As Americans settle in for the Thanksgiving weekend of food and family, filesharing traffic traditionally shows a modest rise. But those downloading content may look back on this holiday as the last golden weekend of piracy if the major ISPs have anything to do with it.
Human Rights Watch proposes new laws of robotics
Human Rights Watch (HRW) has issued a document titled Losing Humanity: The Case against Killer Robots that argues development of autonomous weapons must be stopped because it represents a threat to human rights.
Pakistan bans 'immoral' late night mobe deals
Pakistan's Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has banned mobile packages offering cheap late night calls after deeming that they go against the country’s “values”.
Toshiba boffins build nuke-proof 'bot
Boffins at Japanese electronics giant Toshiba have unveiled a new four-legged robotic invention designed to root around in areas too dangerous for humans, such as Tokyo Electric Power’s stricken Fukushima No.1 nuclear plant.
BRITISH BIGFOOT ON LOOSE in Tunbridge Wells
A paranormal investigator is probing a sighting in Tunbridge Wells of the legendary "Kentish Apeman" - a hirsute 8ft-tall creature with "red demonic eyes".
Asus eyes China and Japan for private cloud growth
Taiwanese hardware giant Asus has confirmed it’s eyeing expansion for its burgeoning enterprise cloud services business to China and Japan in 2013.
Cloud upstart Nirvanix bins another round of US sales bods
Cloud storage biz Nirvanix has laid off some US sales staff as new veep Tina Gravel sweeps through the organisation.
Public sector 2 YEARS behind biz on cloud adoption - suppliers
Public sector adoption of the cloud is some two years behind the private sector and suppliers, as well as government, need to up their game to raise awareness.
Apple DID buy social video network - check out this BONKERS lawsuit
We know that start-up culture isn't all free pizza, statement fish tanks and beanbag snuggling, but an explosive court case in Santa Clara, California, has intimated there might be a darker side to Silicon Valley workplaces than we usually see. The court filing also confirmed Apple's rumoured purchase of the start-up, it has emerged.
Taito's Double Dragon
Antique Code ShowIt was the summer of 1989 in a not-so-sunny Prestatyn Pontins, so the majority of our holiday's evenings were spent in the resort's arcade hall. Being my first foray into the seedy underbelly of cutting-edge - well, for 1987, when the game debuted, at least - videogames, one of the first arcades I ever played was the side-scrolling brawler, Double Dragon.
Springtime for Red Hat, springtime for Salesforce ...
Open ... and ShutIt has been the best of times for the technology industry, with technology stocks at a 12-year high. But it's about to be the worst of times, at least according to stock market trends.
Why did Comet fail? Hint: It wasn't just the credit insurers
Comet's fiscal light was burning less brightly well before OpCapita entered its orbit, but the venture capitalist's involvement snuffed it out entirely.
McAfee takes time off blogging to concentrate on being chased by police
Followers of on-the-run cybersecurity baron John McAfee will be sorry to hear that he won't be updating his blog for the next few days. The billionaire inventor of McAfee antivirus software told friend Chad Essley this morning that "something had happened" and that he needed to move to another location.
London Underground platform Wi-Fi set to cost £2 daily for many
Virgin's underground Wi-Fi network, which stretches to platforms at 72 London Tube stations, will start charging from January: but customers on the right network will continue to get a free ride.
Mighty 4 Terabyte whopper crashes down on the desktop
WD has released a 4TB desktop drive, an extension of its Caviar desktop range, now branded the WD Black.
Raspberry Pi seller calls for hack match contestants
UK-based hardware hackers have just over a week to apply for Hackday, a tournament tuned to the Raspberry Pi micro-motherboard.
Microsoft's Surface bait-and-switch won't make people buy Windows 8
Open... and ShutMicrosoft had better hope departing board member Reed Hastings is wrong about Windows.
Extreme teleworking: A Reg hack reports from the internet's frontier
"You lucky, lucky bastard," was how a fellow Reg hack responded to my announcement back in 2004 that I was upping sticks and establishing a Vulture Central outpost in rural Spain, far from the rain-lashed shores of Blighty.
Fanbois: The Next Generation. YOUR CHILDREN belong to Apple now
One in two members of the next generation are Apple fans, a study by Nielson has revealed, showing that almost half of under-12s questioned want an iPad in the next six months.
Judge to Apple: You WILL tell Samsung what you got from HTC
A US judge has told Apple it had better cough up its whole unredacted licensing agreement with HTC in the fruity firm's case against Samsung, a move that could help the Korean company fight a potential sales ban in the country.
Can supermodel Heidi Klum save Windows 8? Not so fast
FeatureThis year's MTV European Music Awards had everything: slinky supermodel presenter Heidi Klum, swathes of preposterous pop stars, and, er, an enormous Windows 8-powered video wall.
Microsoft said to be building Apple TV adversary
Microsoft has an Apple TV-style set-top box in its labs, it has been claimed. The gadget it said to be an inexpensive Windows 8-based unit designed to provide access to Xbox Live entertainment services and run casual games rather than major releases.
Plan to let you phone people up from within Facebook
Orange customers in France will soon be able to tap on a Facebook contact to give them a call, and even set up conferences, without sharing phone numbers with anyone.
Asus VivoBook S200 11.6in touchscreen notebook review
A few months ago I tried a preview of Windows 8 on my 11.6in HP Pavilion and frankly it made about as much sense as a vegetarian bacon sandwich. Why? Because, without a touch screen the Windows 8 Metro Modern UI lacks a crucial ingredient. Armed with only a keyboard and mouse, facing a wall of tiles just gets in the way.
Team Venus disappears at computer sports smackdown
SC12Video It was an exciting start to the real-time, non-stop 48-hour cluster challenge, in which the teams of undergrads design and assemble a small cluster and race to demonstrate the greatest sustained performance across a series of applications.
Boffins: Jurassic avians were more like Angry birds than modern ones
Bone-bothering boffins say that early birds were actually fairly rubbish at flying, so much so that they couldn't get airborne unless they jumped off from a high point or otherwise gained a helping push.
Legal wigs to sort out rules on internet defamation, contempt
In the wake of Lord McAlpine's lawyers threatening to sue thousands of Twitter users for libelling his name with false allegations of child abuse, as well as the multiple issues surrounding tweets that may be in contempt, the Attorney General has clarified that the same legal framework applies on the internet that applies offline.
BBC Newsnightmare: Opera chief brought in as new DG
The BBC has brought in its one-time head of news to succeed George Entwistle as the Corporation's new director-general, after the previous incumbent lasted just 54 days in the job.
RIM shares jump as analyst decides it isn't as dead as he thought
Analyst Peter Misek has told investors he thinks RIM could yet pull out of its nosedive, predicting a 20-30 per cent chance of BlackBerry 10 gaining significant market share.
Nickers nab Assassin's Creed cache in Benelux blag
Thieves made away with a lorryload of Assassin's Creed 3 copies bound for the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg this week.
Italians deploy fearsome SPY MANNEQUINS to win Fashion Wars
Don't think you can escape personalised adverts by switching the computer off. Luxury shops have started to use seeing-eye mannequins that harvest data about customers in the real world and - yes - target ads so they can sell more.
Firefox and Opera squish big buffer overflow bugs
It's time to update alternative browser software again, with new releases of Firefox and Opera out this week. Firefox 17, released Tuesday, features improved support for social networking functions, such as Facebook Messenger, as well as new features to prevent blacklisted extensions from running without user permission. Support for Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard), a five-year-old version of Apple's desktop operating system, has been dropped.
'Brit Bill Gates' Lynch: Only Mad Leo Apotheker understood Autonomy
The origins of Autonomy's declining fortunes can be traced back to the moment HP axed its former hapless CEO Leo Apotheker, claims Mike Lynch, the founder of the Brit software firm.
Apple chief Cook is highest paid CEO in America
Apple CEO Tim Cook has hit the executive-compensation trifecta, having slotted in at number one in CNBC's "Highest Paid CEOs" list.
Lawrence 'Empire Strikes Back' Kasdan to pen future Star Wars script
Disney's plans to dramatically expand the Star Wars franchise may concern stringent Jedi enthusiasts, but the fact that it has now signed up Lawrence Kasdan - co-writer of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, not to mention Raiders of the Lost Ark - to script one of its forthcoming films, will surely be music to fans' ears.
NASA's Mars rovers feel effects of TITANIC DUST STORM
A huge Martian dust storm tracked from orbit by NASA has affected both Curiosity and Opportunity, the agency's active rovers on the planet's surface.
NoSQL's CAP theorem busters: We don't drop ACID
CAP theorem* holds no fear for six engineers building FoundationDB, the industry’s latest NoSQL candidate. The difference? It adheres to the principles of ACID** found in relational, which previous NoSQLers have tried to replace.
APPLE reveals complete updated blueprints of SPACESHIP JOBS
PicsHours after it was revealed that the completion of Apple's planned office doughnut would be delayed until at least 2016, the Cupertino city council posted revised plans for the eco-Stalinist structure, first sketched by Steve Jobs and now widely known as the "Spaceship".
eBay: It's safe to buy busted lava lamps and bug-infested rugs again
eBay has resolved a cross-site scripting bug on its website that independent experts warned posed a significant risk of fraud to users of the auction site. The XSS flaw meant that, once logged into a seller account on eBay, an attacker could insert an XSS exploit code into a listing of an item for sale.
Data cops seek 'urgent clarification' on new Facebook advertiser plans
Facebook never fails to whip up a frenzy about privacy each time it proposes changes to its personal-content advertising platform. This time around users are slowly starting to complain about the risk to security posed by the company's plans to help "improve the quality of ads."
Thanksgiving in orbit: Irradiated turkey, yam-and-marshmallow mix
Irradiated smoked turkey and thermo-stabilized yams are on the menu for astronaut Thanksgiving on the International Space Station today. American commander Kevin Ford and his two Russian crewmates Evgeny Tarelkin and Oleg Novitskiy will tuck into a special bag of food prepared for the holiday, and get the day off from normal duties.
Plan your BLACK FRIDAY CHARGE: Google shop maps go desktop
Google Maps' indoor offerings - floor plans, often of shops or other public spaces, until now browsable on Android devices only - are now browsable in browsers too, so one can plan a day out down to the smallest detail.
FCC plans to make Twitter, mobile networks disaster proof
The Federal Communications Commission is to have a series of talks around the US to figure out how to stop mobile network outages during natural disasters.
Team Taiwan: We're ready to win this thing
SC12Video I’ve covered Taiwan’s National Tsing Hua University (NTHU) Student Cluster Competition team for three years now. And every time I talk to them they’re personable, friendly, and modest.
No iMacs on Black Friday, Grey Thursday or even Cyber Monday
Most consumers in the US will by now be stuffed with piles of turkey and lashings of booze, but retailers are banking on people's hunger and thirst for deals returning on Black Friday,
ACCC calls for liberalised copyright in Oz
Australia’s Competition and Consumer Commission is siding with citizens over copyright holders – at least a little bit.
Sandy 'Mary Celeste' Island undiscovered - again
It’s the story of a tiny little Coral Sea island that’s gone all around the world: a group of scientists on expedition visit the spot where the island is marked on the maritime charts, only to find it doesn’t exist.
Google avoids tax with ‘Double Irish Dutch Sandwich’
Australia has become the latest nation to decide it wants tech companies to pay more tax, after David Bradbury, Assistant Treasurer and Minister Assisting for Deregulation, declared Google uses a “Double Irish Dutch Sandwich” to pay as little tax as possible on its Australian operations.