13th > December > 2013 Archive

Electronic devices dangerous to flight safety

Thought of in-flight mobile calls fills you with dread? Never fear, US Dept of Transport is here

The US Department of Transportation is considering banning people from making mid-flight cellphone calls – all while the US Federal Communications Commission mulls approving in-flight mobile jabbering.
Shaun Nichols, 13 Dec 2013
Angry woman on mobile

US mobile telcos: All right, ALL RIGHT, FCC! We'll redo phone unlock rules

The five largest US wireless carriers say they are all onboard with new policies designed to make it easier for customers to use their mobile devices on the network of their choice.
Neil McAllister, 13 Dec 2013

Bring it on, stream biz Aereo tells TV barons – see you in Supreme Court

Cloud-based TV streaming and DVR startup Aereo has said it won’t oppose a move by the four biggest US television broadcasters to take it to America's Supreme Court – and said it is looking forward to fighting their allegations of copyright infringement.
Iain Thomson, 13 Dec 2013

Big goolies-grabbing black snake nips unlucky bloke's trouser snake

Users of a Ghanean public toilet fled the premises in panic after a "big black snake" sank its fangs into an unfortunate 34-year-old's todger.
Lester Haines, 13 Dec 2013

China's 'Airpocalypse' forces pilots to learn BLIND landings in smog

China's air pollution is so bad, the country's Civil Aviation Administration has ordered all pilots of domestic flights to be trained in low-visibility landings.
Rik Myslewski, 13 Dec 2013

Boffins: On my command, unleash REMOTE CONTROL BULL SPERM

German scientists have invented remote-controlled cyborg sperm bots which can be steered using magnetic fields.
Jasper Hamill, 13 Dec 2013

Cryptolocker copycat ransomware emerges – but an antidote is possible

Hot on the tail of devilish Cryptolocker comes a copycat software nasty that holds victim's files to ransom – but the newcomer's encryption is potentially breakable, we're told.
John Leyden, 13 Dec 2013
Houses of Parliament at night-time
9

UK.gov chucks another £260m at MOOC-based cyber security training

The UK government has published a progress report praising its own achievements in the two years since it launched an ambitious plan to make Britain the best place to do e-commerce.
John Leyden, 13 Dec 2013
6

Want to know about Seagate's tech specs? Ask a BEANCOUNTER

Comment You have to smile when the financial guy rather than the techie is the one giving the talk on what a vendor's product is going to look like next year. But this is not uncommon in the disk drive and SSD industry, especially among its Big Three: Seagate, Toshiba and WD.
Chris Mellor, 13 Dec 2013
Homer Simpson driving

Marketing told us: 'Justin Bieber is a fad. He’s not going to last.' – Company formerly known as RIM

Quotw This was the week when former senior BlackBerry bod Vincent Washington claimed the Canadian company turned down an offer from Justin Bieber to be the firm's brand ambassador back at the peak of its popularity.

Symantec gives three-year-old Storage Foundation a taste of flashy cache

Symantec has updated its long-lived Storage Foundation software to make use of a server’s SSDs and speed up app and data access times by up to 400 per cent.
Chris Mellor, 13 Dec 2013

How Britain could have invented the iPhone: And how the Quangocracy cocked it up

Special Report This is a disturbing, cautionary tale of quasi-government and its bungling. It describes how Britain could have led the recent advances in touchscreen technology, developing kit capable detecting more than one fingertip at once, years before Apple did – if it weren't for the nation's treacle-footed, self-serving quangocracy.
Andrew Orlowski, 13 Dec 2013

You gotta fight for your copyright ... Beastie Boys sue toymaker over TV ad

Hip-hop heroes the Beastie Boys aren't impressed by toymaker GoldieBlox's climbdown in their rather bizarre copyright dispute – which started when the building-block company used the band's music in an ad.
Andrew Orlowski, 13 Dec 2013
Bezos headshot

Phew! These DynamoDB queries are heavy. C'mon Amazon, give us a hand

Amazon has brought global secondary indexes to its non-relational, rentable DynamoDB database.
Jack Clark, 13 Dec 2013

Black Box? LUN-fest? What does business centric storage really mean?

Live Chat today at 14:00 GMT What – or who – defines your storage? Is your storage minded by a priestly case of LUN monglers who guard the sacred administration software fiercely? Is your storage "software defined"? Is it a black box, an API-driven thing controlled by devs or managed by the operations types through Puppet?
David Gordon, 13 Dec 2013

Twitter's shock block unlock deemed cockup, gets a lockup

Twitter has quickly backtracked on a tweak it made to the microblogging site's block function after users complained that the change would make the service "less safe".
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Dec 2013
Bitcoins

We MUST be told: How many Bitcoins do I need to kill a melon-head?

Something for the Weekend, Sir? Banks. Bastards, all of ’em, yah boo sucks.
Alistair Dabbs, 13 Dec 2013
A boat full of Fail

Home Office clumsily LEAKS data of 1,598 immigrants, blames 'transparency'

The Home Office has embarrassingly coughed to accidentally leaking the personal details of 1,598 immigrants.
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Dec 2013
balaclava_thief_burglar

Cardslurping kingpin caged for 18 years over Carderplanet forum

A Ukrainian national who co-founded the infamous cybercrime marketplace CarderPlanet has been jailed for 18 years following a lengthy US legal process that ran for more than a decade.
John Leyden, 13 Dec 2013
Chelsea Charms. Pic from This Morning Facebook page

BT network-level STOCKINGs-n-suspenders KILLER arrives in time for Xmas

BT has flicked the switch on its promised network-level filter system in a move to swerve regulatory meddling from Whitehall.
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Dec 2013

Apple's GOLDEN BLING MOBE still the top selling US handset

Apple's blinged-up iPhone 5s is still the top selling phone in America, new stats have revealed.
Jasper Hamill, 13 Dec 2013
Bitcoins

Apple fanbois warned: No, Cupertino HASN'T built a Bitcoin mining function into Macs

The denizens of internet horror-forum 4chan have come up with a hoax designed to trick Mac fans into deleting all the files on their machines by running commands supposedly needed to turn on hidden Bitcoin mining features.
John Leyden, 13 Dec 2013
Cassini image of Jupiter. Pic: NASA

Jupiter moon Europa spotted spraying WATER into SPAAACCCEE

Boffins have spotted huge plumes of water vapour erupting from the frozen surface of Jupiter's moon Europa, raising the possibility that it could one day be inhabited by humans.
Jasper Hamill, 13 Dec 2013
Photo by Adam Hart-Davis

IBM hid China's reaction to NSA spying 'cos it cost us BILLIONS, rages angry shareholder

An IBM shareholder is suing Big Blue, accusing it of hiding the fact that its ties to the NSA spying scandal cost it business in China – and wiped billions off its market value.

Facebook's monster PHP engine ready to muscle into ARM server chips

Facebook has taken further steps in its quest to run production workloads on ARM-powered servers.
Jack Clark, 13 Dec 2013
Laser truck

US military's RAY-GUN truck BLASTS DRONES, mortars OUT OF THE SKY

Pic The US military has successfully tested a truck armed with an auto-targeting laser that can shoot down mortars and flying drones in the air before they cause a kerfuffle for troops on the ground.
Iain Thomson, 13 Dec 2013
Photo of the KitKat mascot among the Android lawn statues

Google tells EFF: Android 4.3's privacy tool was a MISTAKE, we've yanked it

Privacy campaign group the Electronic Frontier Foundation is more than a little miffed with Google – after the Chocolate Factory pulled an Android tool that lets users control the information apps can harvest.
Iain Thomson, 13 Dec 2013
Capitol By Matti Mattila licensed under Creative Commons http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

'Disruptive, irritating' in-flight cellphone call ban mulled by US Senate

The US Senate is considering a bill that would ban in-flight cellphone calls.
Shaun Nichols, 13 Dec 2013
5

ARM swallows graphics software biz Geomerics to tart-up mobile games

ARM has acquired its Cambridge, UK, neighbor Geomerics, a graphics software firm whose cross-platform flagship product is Enlighten – described by the company as "the only technology capable of computing real-time global illumination on consoles or mobile platforms," and which game developers incorporate into their rendering engines to add photorealistic lighting effects.
Rik Myslewski, 13 Dec 2013