18th > November > 2013 Archive

NASA ASRG design detail

Budget decay kills NASA plutonium drive project

Budget cuts have forced NASA to mothball its Advanced Stirling Radioisotope Generator (ASRG), a power plant designed to help the agency run projects to the outer planets.
Is Project Loon a Joke

Hey! You! Get outta my cloud says Google with balloon broadband patent

Google has filed a patent application to make sure nobody else crowds the skies with high-altitude balloons carrying wireless broadband kit.

Boffins warn LIMPWARE takes the pleasure out of cloud

Computer science boffins from the USA have come up with a lovely term to describe under-performing hardware: “Limpware”.
Simon Sharwood, 18 Nov 2013
Turnbull with Switkowski in Blacktown

Yet another business advisor told Labor NBN was a dud: reports

Another shot has been fired in an election campaign that has so far continued more than sixty days beyond the conclusion of the ballot, with Australia's new communications minister Malcolm Turnbull calling on the former government to publish a report it received in 2010.
Sydney Opera House Hackathon logo

Sydney Opera House to devs: build our app for peanuts, wear patent pain

Sydney Opera House has announced it will stage a “hackathon” to find its next app, with the winner to receive $AUD4,000 in prize money and a big fat contract asking them to hand over all code developed during the event. Even losers could be asked to hand over their code.
Simon Sharwood, 18 Nov 2013
Lake Vida in Antarctica

Deep beneath MELTING ANTARCTIC ice: A huge active VOLCANO

Pity poor Antarctica: already shedding its land (but not its sea) ice, it's now been found to conceal a volcano of some considerable size beneath its frosty coating.
New humpback dolphin species

TOXIC DOLPHIN SANDWICH on the menu, say hacktivists

Entities using the name and iconography of Anonymous (EUTNAIOA) and claiming to come from the USA have threatened a series of online attacks against the Japanese government in protest at the continued practice of dolphin hunting in the small town of Taiji.
Phil Muncaster, 18 Nov 2013

NORKS breaks ground on new high-tech industrial park

North Korea has finally begun building a new industrial complex designed to encourage investment from hi-tech companies hailing from across the border.
Phil Muncaster, 18 Nov 2013

New York Times hackers linked to Japan Ichitaro attacks

Security experts have uncovered attacks exploiting a zero day vulnerability in Japan’s most popular word processing software, bearing all the hallmarks of a Chinese group blamed for last year's New York Times hack.
Phil Muncaster, 18 Nov 2013

We go joyriding in the Google Maps-killer's ROBO-CAR

Nokia's HERE wants to leapfrog Google's Street View with an ambitious street scanning based on 3D and "big data".
Andrew Orlowski, 18 Nov 2013
The buttons on a mobile phone glow in the dark

Gov mulls making it easier for ICO to squash marketing pests

The legal test that the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) must meet before it can justify serving fines on businesses that send unsolicited marketing communications could be lowered, a Government representative has said.
OUT-LAW.COM, 18 Nov 2013
The Master

What a plot of nonsense: Ten Master master plan FAILS

Doctor Who @ 50 “I am the Master, and you will obey me.”
Tony Smith, 18 Nov 2013
Call of Duty: Ghosts

HAUNTED HOWITZERS, it’s Call of Duty Ghosts

Game Theory It’s a final stand for the current generation of console hardware as we go on patrol with the latest release in the increasingly tired Call of Duty series, Ghosts, but have a much more entertaining time with A Link Between Worlds in the latest Zelda game, and get to grips with the Big Bad Wolf in Fables: The Wolf Among Us.
Mike Plant, 18 Nov 2013

Sony scoffs at the Microsoft EX-BOX: A MILLION PS4s sell in ONE day

Sony shifted one million Playstation 4s in the first day they went on sale in North America.
Jasper Hamill, 18 Nov 2013
The TR1200DT-7 treadmill desk

SuperStride Me: Reg hack spends week working at 'treadmill desk'

Part 1 I turned 45 this year, a psychological milestone that rammed home the fact I'm not in great physical shape.
Simon Sharwood, 18 Nov 2013

CEO of bloated outsourcing firm Capita quits after 26 years

Fat cat chief exec Paul Pinder is to quit after 26 years at outsourcing giant Capita to head up small, private equity-backed businesses.
Paul Kunert, 18 Nov 2013
BT Openreach van

BT Openreach boss QUITS to quench ambitious thirst

BT's Openreach boss Liv Garfield has quit the one-time national telco just two months after Gavin Patterson took over as CEO of the company.
Kelly Fiveash, 18 Nov 2013
Old Father Time

XtremIO in SSD brickup ballsup: 'We have seen over 150 ... so far'

An EMC exec has admitted that the SSDs inside the company's flagship XtremIO all-flash arrays have a high failure rate after installation.
Chris Mellor, 18 Nov 2013
Orange Credit Card

Infosec bods scorn card-swiping Coin over security fears

All-in-one digital payments start-up Coin has issued a robust defence of its technology following criticism from an infosec firm.
John Leyden, 18 Nov 2013

Google, Microsoft to drop child sex abuse from basic web search

Google and Microsoft have bent to political pressure in the UK – by agreeing to tweak their search engines to not only make it a little harder for sickos to find child abuse images online, but to also prevent regulatory intervention.
Kelly Fiveash, 18 Nov 2013
Roughly 150kg of gold

CA follows the Riverbed, hopes to find cloudy Amazon mainframe gold

In a smart bit of niche identification and gap-filling, stuffy old CA Technologies is getting mainframe backup data to Amazon's cloud by going through Riverbed.
Chris Mellor, 18 Nov 2013
Sony Xperia Z1

Getting it right on the second attempt: Sony Xperia Z1

Review The Xperia Z has had a surprisingly short stint as the top dog of Sony’s smartphone range and has now been unceremoniously ousted by the Xperia Z1.
Alun Taylor, 18 Nov 2013
MAVEN sits on the launch pad the night before blastoff

NASA probecraft to FLY the SKIES of MARS - IF it can make its launch window

MAVEN, NASA's latest mission to Mars, is sitting on the launchpad in Florida's Cape Canaveral all ready to go – although there's just a 60 per cent chance of good weather for liftoff today.

Arm-wave bye BYE! Apple grabs Kinect flail-sensor maker for $345m

Apple has reportedly snapped up the Israeli firm responsible for the motion-sensing chip and hardware used in Microsoft's Kinect device.
Jasper Hamill, 18 Nov 2013

TrueCrypt audit project founder: 'We've set our sights high'

Interview A TrueCrypt audit project has uncovered a well of technical support with its plans to publicly audit the widely used disk and file encryption utility for the first time.
John Leyden, 18 Nov 2013
Boris Johnson

London businesses to signal UNSWERVING LOYALTY to capital with .london domain

Thousands of Blighty businesses have apparently expressed an interest in getting their mitts on .london domains after ICANN gave the new domain name the go-ahead.
A group shot of the tasting team

The ULTIMATE cuppa showdown: And the winner is...

Cue the traditional fanfare of trumpets and thunderous drumroll as we reveal today the winner of our ultimate cuppa showdown.
Lester Haines, 18 Nov 2013

Redcentric wolfs down InTechnology MS, becomes swing-bellied midmarket fatso

Redcentric has devoured InTechnology Managed Services in a reverse takeover* valued at £65m that creates a relative midmarket channel powerhouse.
Paul Kunert, 18 Nov 2013

Salesforce forces Force sales-force sales: Or tries to anyway

Salesforce is rebooting its mobile strategy, reportedly killing existing versions of its mobile CRM software-as-a-service in exchange for an Android and iOS love-in.
Gavin Clarke, 18 Nov 2013

Amazon, Facebook, Google give Cisco's switches the COLD shoulder

Analysis Networking giant Cisco lost around $10bn in market value last week as investors sold out in response to weak earnings and poor growth projections. Worse yet, some of its biggest customers – from Amazon and Google to social network giant Facebook – are implementing technologies that will allow them to reduce their dependence on the networking giant.
Jack Clark, 18 Nov 2013
Qualcomm Toq

TOQ of the TOWN: A second screen for the second screen. Third screen?

Qualcomm’s Toq smartwatch – something of a vanity project for the company’s display division – will go on sale on 2 December direct from the mobile processor giant’s website.
Tony Smith, 18 Nov 2013

IBM and Nvidia: We'll build your data center like a SUPERCOMPUTER

SC13 IBM and Nvidia have announced a partnership to "bring supercomputer performance to the corporate data center," in the words of Nvidia's accelerated computing honcho Ian Buck, with systems based on Nvidia Tesla GPUs and IBM Power8 CPUs, and to accelerate IBM enterprise software using Nvidia GPUs.
Rik Myslewski, 18 Nov 2013

Top500: 'Sky River 2' still rules as graphics tech leaves HPC applecart largely untouched

SC13 The Top500 ranking of the world's fastest supercomputers has been released, and the list of the top five systems could very well be simply a Xerox copy of the previous list, which came out back in summer.
Rik Myslewski, 18 Nov 2013
Twitter for Mac Old

#ALERT! There'll be EMERGENCIES on TWITTER for UK, Ireland

Twitter has brought its emergency alert system to the UK and Ireland after it kicked off in the US, Japan and South Korea in September.

GCHQ tracks diplomats' hotel bookings to plant bugs, say leaked docs

The latest Snowden leaks have revealed that Australia spies on the heads of state of its neighbours while the UK monitors luxury hotel bookings made by foreign diplomats, among other unsurprising revelations.
John Leyden, 18 Nov 2013
Sonos Play:1

Sonos and I: How home media playback just gets SO FRUSTRATING

Going through the installation of a couple of Sonos Play:1 speakers in a cottage lacking any form of Hi-Fi or video storage/playing devices got me thinking about just much existing Hi-Fi, TV and DVD systems suck - big time.
Chris Mellor, 18 Nov 2013

Rip-'n'-replace box maker gets $58m to make data centre poison cubes

Do-it-all converged server-storage-networking upstart SimpliVity has raised $58m in a C-round.
Chris Mellor, 18 Nov 2013

Underage teens' Facebook posts are still FACE ACHE ads ... bitch

Facebook is making it clearer than ever to its users that their social media mutterings will continue to be crammed with ads.
Kelly Fiveash, 18 Nov 2013
Apple Store Scottsdale

iSpy with my little eye: Apple wants to track your every move

Apple is planning to use a hidden feature of its iPhone software to track customers as they wander around its stores, according to reports.
Jasper Hamill, 18 Nov 2013

Nothing to SNIA at: Not dissing storage specs now, are ya?

Storagebod At Storage Networking World in Europe – the big one when it comes to conferences for storage pros – I had a chance to sit down with David Dale of Storage Networking Industry Association, who told me that companies that have never been interested in standards are suddenly becoming interested in standards.
StorageBod, 18 Nov 2013
Roadster charging. Credit: Tesla

JESUS battery HEALS itself - might make electric cars more practical

Stanford researchers say they have cracked a key problem holding back lithium-ion batteries: which might make the next generation of phones, e-cars and other battery powered equipment a whole lot better.
Lewis Page, 18 Nov 2013

Nvidia, AMD tout 12GB GPUs for supers ... But ONE question remains

SC13 The battle of the big-memory GPU cards targeted at HPC and the data center is now well underway, with AMD having unveiled its FirePro S10000 12GB Edition card, and Nvidia announcing its 12GB Tesla K40 GPU accelerator card today.
Rik Myslewski, 18 Nov 2013

The ZOD FILES: Climate documents from 2007 'must stay SECRET'

The UK's Met Office has refused to release historic climate discussions dating from before 2007, even though such scientific discussions are required to be “open and transparent”.
Andrew Orlowski, 18 Nov 2013
Amateur astronomer Waldemar Skorupa recorded this image from Kahler Asten, in Germany, on November 16, 2013. Credit: Waldemar Skorupa (Kahler Asten, Germany), via spaceweather.com

LOOK UP! Comet ISON could EXPLODE in our skies – astronomers

Comet ISON could break up into itty-bitty pieces long before it gets closer to the Sun, selfishly denying us all the opportunity to see it shine brightly in the night sky.

FBI sends memo to US.gov sysadmins: You've been hacked... for the past YEAR

Hacktivists allegedly affiliated with Anonymous have been covertly breaking into US government systems and pilfering sensitive information for nearly a year, the FBI warned last week.
John Leyden, 18 Nov 2013

BLAST OFF! NASA's MAVEN Mars probe ROARS into orbit

Updated NASA's Mars probe MAVEN has successfully sneaked through its weather window and launched from Cape Canaveral at 13.28pm ET on Monday, before heavy weather could roll in and delay the launch.
Iain Thomson, 18 Nov 2013
Playstation Move

PlayStation 4 BLUE LIGHT OF DEATH blamed on power cords, TV sets, butterflies in China

Sony has, er, narrowed down the mysterious Blue Light of Death issues plaguing some of its new PlayStation 4 consoles to possible issues with the hardware, software or firmware.
Shaun Nichols, 18 Nov 2013
Hey presto! 3,400 likes in 45 minutes

Malcolm Turnbull's website makes funny Facebook fan numbers

Australia's communications minister Malcolm Turnbull has once again outlined how everyone - his predecessors, the press, people who disagree with him - have messed up Australia's national broadband network.
Simon Sharwood, 18 Nov 2013

Barclays Online OFFLINE: UK bank site, mobile app go titsup for the evening

Barclays' online banking service in the UK appears to have fallen over on Monday evening, leaving fuming customers unable to access their accounts.
Chris Williams, 18 Nov 2013

Right, that's IT: We'll encrypt INTERNAL traffic to thwart NSA - Yahoo

Yahoo! is going to start encrypting its intra-data-center traffic and will offer a similar service as an option to webmail users next year, CEO Marissa Meyer has pledged.
Iain Thomson, 18 Nov 2013

vBulletin.com's password database hack gives forum admins the jitters

Forumware giant vBulletin.com has admitted that it's been turned over by hackers who made off with customer user IDs and encrypted passwords.
John Leyden, 18 Nov 2013

Salesforce gobbles cloud database upstart Cloudconnect

Cloud integration service Cloudconnect has been acquired by Salesforce to help the company lash databases together with cloud services.
Jack Clark, 18 Nov 2013
Photo of Apple iPhone 5C in a range of colors

iPHONE 5c FACTORY SHUTDOWN: Foxconn 'halts' mobe rebrand op

Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn is shutting down production of the iPhone 5c in one of its factories in order to shift production to the higher-end iPhone 5s, sources claim.
Neil McAllister, 18 Nov 2013