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John Lettice

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EVIL US web giants shield TERRORISTS? Evil SPIES in net freedom CRUSH PLOT?

Analysis Evil US Internet companies are shielding terrorists plotting our destruction! Woo! Evil Tory bastards are using the Woolwich Report as an excuse for a further crackdown on the Internet, muslims and ultra-left Guardian columnists.* Woo! Or, perhaps, neither of the above? All the shouting is based on the parliamentary …
John Lettice, 28 Nov 2014
Uber - living the dream

'How a censorious and moralistic blogger ruined my evening'

So you’re at an Uber-hosted dinner for New York media high-rollers, and the Uber exec - Emil Michael, senior VP for business - you’re talking to goes off on one, suggesting he could hire a million dollar team to dig up dirt on hostile journalists and their families. What do you do? This - apparently - depends on who you are. …
John Lettice, 21 Nov 2014
Felix Dennis, MD of Dennis Publishing

Farewell Felix Dennis, deal-maker supreme of tech publishing

Obituary There's quite a bit that comes to mind when you think about Felix Dennis: the Oz mag obscenity trial, Maxim, drugs, women and dodgy poetry… But we're not going to do these here - at least, not yet. Felix Dennis, who died last weekend aged 67, was a pivotal figure in tech publishing: a super-smart dealmaker whose judgment and …
John Lettice, 26 Jun 2014

Doctor Who Episode One: Through a glass. Darkly

Doctor Who @ 50 Today, the world of 1963 seems extraordinarily remote - and narrow. The “Beatles” name was still a jarring pun, and Telstar live transatlantic TV was just a little over a year old. I remember seeing JFK via Telstar when it kicked off, and then again that November in Dallas in 1963. There were no supermarkets, no plastic bags, …
John Lettice, 21 Nov 2013

Ed Iacobucci: Brains behind OS/2 and Citrix, nicest guy in tech

Obituary About a year before air taxi DayJet was scheduled to launch, Ed Iacobucci, who died last week, called me up to make sure I was thoroughly briefed on what he was doing and how it worked. We spent over an hour on the phone, no PowerPoints, no marketing pitch, just Ed explaining, making sure I got it. It’s not normal for CEOs to …
John Lettice, 24 Jun 2013

Gaping hole in Google service exposes thousands to ID theft

Exclusive A security flaw accessible via Google's UK motor insurance aggregator Google Compare has potentially exposed vast numbers of drivers to identity theft. The vulnerability, the existence of which has been verified by The Register, made it possible for comprehensive personal details - including names, addresses, phone numbers and …
John Lettice, 08 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Tru unveils iPad local rate data-pricing for UK, US and Oz

Multi-country "local anywhere" mobile operator Tru is launching a £20-a-month iPad bundle that currently provides local rate broadband in the UK, US and Australia. A similar package will be available in the US "shortly", according to the company, which also intends to add Spain, Hong Kong and the Netherlands to its roster of …
John Lettice, 01 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

The Register and Australia-New Zealand

As some of you have already noticed, in the last few weeks The Reg has been running more locally-sourced stories in Australia-New Zealand. Our plans here are still in soft launch mode, but we think it's appropriate (possibly even overdue) that we give local readers a head up about them now. For quite a few years now The Register …
John Lettice, 28 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

MS tacks Mozilla 'Do Not Track' header onto W3C submission

In a move that melds sneaky with shrewd, Microsoft has added Mozilla's Do Not Track browser header to the submission of its Tracking Protection proposal to the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). This potentially leaves Google – the third of the three contenders for privacy-enhanced browsing – isolated in a self-regulatory alliance …
John Lettice, 25 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

Murdoch, The Daily, and life without the web

News Corp doesn't get a whole lot of love on the web, nor does it seek it. Just over a year ago company chairman Rupert Murdoch described news aggregation as "almost wholesale misappropriation of our stories… it's theft", and shortly afterwards the paywalls went up at the Times and Sunday Times. Web readership plummeted, …
John Lettice, 02 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

ID card astroturf - No2ID beats the truth out of IPS

A cackling Phil Booth, No2ID National Coordinator, writes to tell us that six months after he first pestered the Identity & Passport Service about its quotes from ID card-toting happy campers in its publicity material, it has confessed - um yes, all but one of those quoted worked for the government. "We can confirm that eight of …
John Lettice, 29 Jul 2010
The Register breaking news

French regulator orders Google to reinstate Gatso-buster's account

Google has "a dominant position in search advertising", said France's antitrust authority today as it gave the company four months to open up about its cancellation of the AdWords account of Navx, a vendor of speed camera warning devices. Ominously for Google, the regulator also noted the company's 90 per cent share of the …
John Lettice, 30 Jun 2010

Did the iPad just save Wired, and Conde-Nast?

Saving the whole of the newspaper industry is a big ask, even for a "magical and revolutionary" device, but there might just be hope for the magazine business. The rapaciously-priced ($4.99 for this month's issue) iPad edition of Wired has comfortably outsold the somewhat cheaper print edition, and it's not even ad-free. On the …
John Lettice, 16 Jun 2010
The Register breaking news

Apple adds 'make the web go away' button to Safari 5

Steve Jobs didn't get around to mentioning Safari 5 in his WWDC keynote last night, but it rolled out anyway shortly after he finished up, and today publishers throughout the world are surely beginning to wonder, 'hang on, what's this Reader thing?' Safari 5 has a nice little button next to the URL that effectively kills the …
John Lettice, 08 Jun 2010
The Register breaking news

Prisoner of iTunes - the iPad file transfer horror

First the good news - it's light, compact, reasonably capable for typing, and it has enough battery life for you not to be forever worrying about where your next power socket's coming from. These advantages alone are sufficient for me to take the iPad seriously for note-taking and for document viewing and manipulation, and to …
John Lettice, 07 Jun 2010
The Register breaking news

Apple opens international iPad store ahead of rollout

Apple has opened the iPad section of the iTunes app store for business outside the United States - kinda, sorta. Previously, iPads not being on sale yet anywhere other than the US, the iPad just wouldn't let you log into the app store directly unless you had a US iTunes account. Now it will, although in various respects the non- …
John Lettice, 20 May 2010
The Register breaking news

The commercial cuckoo hiding in the BBC's global mission

Check the calendar dates and a possible cunning plan emerges. On Thursday 6th May, there was a strong possibility that the UK would elect a Tory government, one that would be eyeing BBC funding suspiciously. On Tuesday 11th of May, BBC director general Mark Thompson gave a speech at Chatham House on "Nation Speaking Peace unto …
John Lettice, 19 May 2010
The Register breaking news

The iPad, news saviour? Murdoch may have something here

iPad diaries Rupert Murdoch, in the face of widespread scepticism, thinks he can charge for news on the internet - but what if he's right? And the dead tree publishers, the derided MSM who initially welcomed the iPad as a potential saviour - what if they were right, too? Even if only a little bit? After time spent playing with the iPad I …
John Lettice, 18 May 2010
The Register breaking news

Identity & Passport Service in suicide bid?

All is not well - as we suggested might be the case this morning - at the Identity and Passport Service. Matter of fact, it may have just killed itself. A sad little note posted today by IPS reads: "Both Parties that now form the new Government stated in their manifestos that they will cancel Identity Cards and the National …
John Lettice, 12 May 2010
The Register breaking news

Biometric passport 2.0 scrapped alongside ID cards, NIR

Second-generation biometric passports will be scrapped alongside ID cards and the National Identity Register by the new Tory-LibDem government, probably as part of a merger between the LibDem Freedom Bill, and the Great Repeal Bill advocated by some sections of the Tory party. It isn't as yet entirely clear what will be in this …
John Lettice, 12 May 2010
The Register breaking news

Lost iPhone 4G vendor loaner outed

The man who found Apple's lost iPhone 4G and gave it to Gizmodo for $5,000 has been outed by Wired, the Dick Rowe of hot hardware. Wired identified Brian J Hogan of Redwood City, California via clues on social networking sites, having apparently failed to respond when they were emailed about the phone at the end of March. …
John Lettice, 30 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

Apple, the iPhone 4G, the cops and the click-tart

Impressive. A not insignificant section of the intertubes is holding Apple entirely responsible for a brutal, paramilitary-style dawn raid by heavily-armed cops (we exaggerate, before they do) on the lovely home of peaceful citizen and Gizmodo editor Jason Chen. And all we actually know that Apple has done is first, ask Gizmodo …
John Lettice, 28 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

Cops raid Gizmodo editor in pursuit of iPhone 4G 'felony'

Gizmodo editor Jason Chen has been raided by Silicon Valley's computer crime force in hot pursuit of the case of the missing iPhone prototype. According to a bulletin published by Gizmodo today, they broke down the front door to gain entry, and departed some hours later with a truck containing Chen's computer equipment. The …
John Lettice, 26 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

UK Gov, and privacy invasion without a safety net

Comment It’s scarcely unusual. You’re preparing an email, you start typing an email address, autocomplete fills one in from you, and then you may or may not notice as the email speeds off that it’s going to someone entirely different from the intended recipient. If the email includes personal details of 10,000 people and the person you’ …
John Lettice, 18 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

Guy Kewney, pioneer, guru, friend - RIP

RIP When I first met Guy Kewney, who died early this morning after a long struggle with cancer, he was already firmly established as star columnist at Personal Computer World - then, and for years to come, the UK's flagship IT publication. Until he started working for The Register a couple of years back, that was one of the few …
John Lettice, 08 Apr 2010