Shaun Nichols

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Family of technician slain by factory robot sues everyone involved

The family of a repair technician killed in an auto parts factory accident is suing five robotics companies they say are responsible. In a suit [PDF] filed to the Western Michigan US District Court this week, the family of Wanda Holbrook claims that the companies that built, installed, and maintained the robotics at a trailer …
Shaun Nichols, 11 Mar 2017
Revenant in Doom reboot

DOOM'd! Quake god John Carmack lobs $22m sueball at ZeniMax

Wizard programmer John Carmack is suing his former employer ZeniMax alleging $22.5m in unpaid stock options. Carmack, now chief technology officer of Facebook's Oculus VR, claims games developer Zenimax owes the money as part of the 2009 deal ZeniMax made to acquire Carmack's id Software, the studio behind Wolfenstein 3D, Doom …
Shaun Nichols, 10 Mar 2017
Image by: TijanaM http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-501730p1.html

Google dangles bundle of cloud goodies to lure biz devs away from AWS

Google Next '17 Google has rolled out a slew of new additions to its Cloud platform, including public release of the Cloud Functions serverless code set. The real-life Hooli says that it hopes the new features and services strike a chord with developers and companies hoping to migrate from on-prem systems. Part of the news is the move of …
Shaun Nichols, 10 Mar 2017
People using a Google Jamboard

Google employs super clever rich people to basically rip off Slack

Google Next '17 Google hopes to further invade the worlds of teleconference and business chat with a set of new offerings. The Mountain View ads broker unveiled new hardware and software today that will take on the likes of Slack and Cisco Spark. Dubbed Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat, the services will allow a collection of users – such as a …
Shaun Nichols, 09 Mar 2017
Old cash register photo via Shutterstock

Google to Chrome-plate our shops with creepy mood-sensing AI signs

Google Next '17 Google is pitching retailers on a total conversion of their floor, register, and warehouse systems to its Chrome, Android, and Cloud platforms. The Chocolate Factory painted a picture for customers of single-use devices linked up through its mobile platforms and managed through a web interface. To help push that idea, Google …
Shaun Nichols, 08 Mar 2017

Come 'ere, you big SAP: Google buddies up to boost its business cloud

Google Next '17 Google Cloud is in a full-on push to build an ecosystem for itself with a fresh line of partnerships. The Mountain View ad giant's hosted compute business is teaming up with the likes of SAP, Pivotal, and Rackspace to help them offer additional services to lure businesses into the Google Cloud service. For SAP, the …
Shaun Nichols, 08 Mar 2017

Ohi-D'oh! US prison hands inmates' SSNs over to... an identity thief

Prison authorities in Ohio, US, mistakenly provided the social security numbers of thousands of inmates to a man convicted of identity theft. The Mansfield News Journal says it was directly contacted by Lonny Bristow, who said he was sent the social security numbers of more than 2,000 prisoners when he made a public records …
Shaun Nichols, 08 Mar 2017
Kids in preschool class

Help wanted: Uber boss Travis seeks babysitter for him and his execs

Following a string of damaging revelations about its atrocious corporate culture, Uber is seeking fresh help to clean up its act. Uber boss Travis Kalanick announced on Tuesday he will try to hire a chief operating officer to help him run the San Francisco-based toxic upstart. Good luck, Trav, given that putting Uber on your …
Shaun Nichols, 07 Mar 2017
Mobile phones on Iran flag

ZTE-gads! Chinese giant fined $900m by Uncle Sam for Iran trade deals

Chinese giant ZTE has been fined $900m by the US government for skirting trade blocks by selling comms hardware to Iran. Today in a Texas district court, ZTE pleaded guilty to busting sanctions, obstructing justice, and lying to investigators. The corp has also settled out of court with the US Department of Commerce, and the …
Shaun Nichols, 07 Mar 2017
Wordpress logo

Put down the coffee, stop slacking your app chaps or whatever – and patch Wordpress

Internet scribblers who use WordPress must update their installation of the publishing tool following the disclosure and patching of six security holes. Version 4.7.3 of the content management system includes fixes for the half dozen flaws that could allow for, among other things, cross-site scripting and request forgery …
Shaun Nichols, 07 Mar 2017
Photo by Northfoto / Shutterstock

RadioShack bankruptcy savior to file for, you guessed it, bankruptcy

The company that arose from RadioShack's 2015 bankruptcy saga could soon itself be filing for bankruptcy. General Wireless is reportedly on the brink of seeking protection from creditors and entering the liquidation process. The biz could not be reached for comment. The formal paperwork for the bankruptcy could be posted …
Shaun Nichols, 06 Mar 2017

Sprint sprints off with $140m from Time Warner after VoIP patent battle

Sprint has been awarded $139.8m in damages after a jury found that Time Warner Cable infringed on five of its patents related to voice-over-IP calling systems. The jury in Sprint's home town of Kansas City found that TWC, now part of Charter, violated the five patents on technology related to the operation of TWC's VoIP …
Shaun Nichols, 06 Mar 2017

Did your in-flight entertainment widget suck? It's Panasonic's fault, claims software biz

Panasonic has been hit with a lawsuit accusing the electronics giant of monopolizing the market for in-flight entertainment (IFE) devices with a series of dirty tricks. Software maker CoKinetic says that Panasonic Avionics has been illegally rigging their in-flight entertainment hardware not to work with software provided by …
Shaun Nichols, 03 Mar 2017
police

COP BLOCKED: Uber app thwarted arrests of its drivers by fooling police with 'ghost cars'

Not content with cultivating a toxic, sexist and hostile corporate culture, Uber is on a collision course with cops worldwide. The ride-sharing app maker produced – and, for years now, used – a software tool called Greyball that thwarts attempts by police to arrest or fine Uber drivers wherever the car-hailing service is …
Shaun Nichols, 03 Mar 2017

Google, what the hell? Search giant wrongly said shop closed down, refused to list the truth

A restaurant owner feared for her business's future this week after it was mistakenly listed as closed down on Google Maps – and the ad giant wouldn't correct the error. Kaie Wellman says that her rotisserie chicken outlet Arrosto, in Portland, Oregon, US, was showing up as "permanently closed" on Google's mobile search …
Shaun Nichols, 03 Mar 2017

Netflix investor sues vid giant for 'covering up' subscriber stats stumble

Netflix is facing a class-action lawsuit from one of its investors, who claims executives withheld bad news from shareholders – and cost them billions of dollars in losses. The video-streaming giant is accused of failing to promptly warn shareholders that raising the cost of its monthly subscriptions was putting off potential …
Shaun Nichols, 02 Mar 2017
Amazon data center

Amazon S3-izure cause: Half the web vanished because an AWS bod fat-fingered a command

Amazon has provided the postmortem for Tuesday's AWS S3 meltdown, shedding light on what caused one of its largest cloud facilities to bring a chunk of the web down. In a note today to customers, the tech giant said the storage system was knocked offline by a staffer trying to address a problem with its billing system. …
Shaun Nichols, 02 Mar 2017

$310m AWS S3-izure: Why everyone put their eggs in one region

Analysis With Amazon now recovered from a four-hour outage that brought a large portion of the internet to a grinding halt, analysts are looking back to see what lessons companies can learn from the ordeal. The system breakdown – or as AWS put it, "increased error rates" – knocked out a single region of the AWS S3 storage service on …
Shaun Nichols, 02 Mar 2017
Credit card theft

Online shops plundered by bank card-stealing malware after bungling backend Aptos hacked

Shoppers of 40 online stores have had their bank card numbers and addresses slurped by a malware infection at backend provider Aptos. The security breach occurred late last year when a crook was able to inject spyware into machines Aptos used to host its retail services for online shops. This software nasty was able to access …
Shaun Nichols, 01 Mar 2017

Who will banish spy-cam drones from US skies? The FAA doesn't want to do it. EPIC disagrees

Privacy advocates are pressing the US Federal Aviation Administration to ground creepy peeping-tom drones. The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) filed a legal challenge [PDF] on Tuesday over what it says is a lack of privacy protections in the FAA's latest private drone rules. The regulator has started enforcing …
Shaun Nichols, 01 Mar 2017
Man runs as a fire engine pulls up to a burning building. Pic by Shutterstock

AWS's S3 outage was so bad Amazon couldn't get into its own dashboard to warn the world

Tuesday's Amazon Web Services mega-outage knocked offline not only websites big and small, by yanking away their backend storage, but also knackered apps and Internet of Things gadgets relying on the technology. In fact, the five-hour breakdown was so bad, Amazon couldn't even update its own AWS status dashboard: its red …
Shaun Nichols, 01 Mar 2017

In a loving tribute to its fiery washing machines and Note 7... Samsung management explodes

Samsung supremo Lee Jae-yong has been formally charged with bribery and embezzlement – sparking the dramatic shut down of the tech giant's top strategic office. Lee, aka Jay Y Lee, was indicted Tuesday by the South Korea special prosecutor's office for his alleged role in a high-profile bribery scandal that has already led to …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Feb 2017
AWS boss Andy Jassy speaking at AWS SFO Summit 2015

Amazon's AWS S3 cloud storage evaporates: Top websites, Docker stung

Amazon Web Services is scrambling to recover from a cockup at its facility in Virginia, US, that is causing its S3 cloud storage to fail. The internet giant has yet to reveal the cause of the breakdown, which is plaguing storage buckets hosted in the US-East-1 region. The malady kicked off around 0944 Pacific Time (1744 UTC) …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Feb 2017
Soaring costs in San Fran. from www.shutterstock.com

San Francisco uni IT bods to protest Tuesday over cuts, outsourcing

Dozens of IT workers slated to be laid off from their jobs at the University of California, San Francisco are planning a protest this week. The Communications Workers of America (CWA) labor union says that it will be helping some of the 78 laid-off techies take part in a protest Tuesday outside the research university's …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Feb 2017
The Windows 10 Store

Microsoft slaps Apple Gatekeeper-like controls on Windows 10: Install only apps from store

A feature in the Windows Insider Preview Build 15042 allows administrators to block the installation of any Win32 application that is not fetched from Microsoft's software marketplace. This configurable barrier is a new option presented in the beta Windows build. Users – with admin account permissions – will be able to allow …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Feb 2017

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