Articles about Sheffield

Allow us to sum this up: UK ISP Plusnet minus net for nine-plus hours

For the past nine hours or so today, bungling Brit broadband ISP Plusnet's internet service has been rather wobbly – with network packet loss wrecking some connections. This lack of stable connectivity for unlucky punters will hit things like online video and voice calls, gaming and streaming the most. Uptime-adverse Plusnet …
Shaun Nichols, 22 Nov 2016

Three to appear in court over TalkTalk hack

Three men are due to appear at the Old Bailey charged with various offences linked to an investigation into the mega TalkTalk hack a year ago. The investigation was launched in October 2015 by the Met's Falcon Cyber Crime Unit following the hack in which 157,000 of its customers' personal details were accessed. On Tuesday, 15 …
Kat Hall, 18 Nov 2016

Robot solves Rubik's Cubes in 637 milliseconds

A robot has reportedly broken the world record for solving a Rubik's Cube in the shortest time – the third occasion this year it has fallen. The builders of the Sub1 Reloaded robot claimed it took 637 milliseconds to figure out the cuboid puzzle at the Electronica trade fair in Munich. The power for motor control was supplied …
Paul Kunert, 10 Nov 2016
Manchester BSOD

Heathrow airport and stock exchange throw mystery BSODs

BSOD WATCH It's no surprise that public transport delivers up a huge number of BSODs, since transport needs to disseminate lots of information. So let's open this week's BSOD Watch with not one, but three BSODs readers spotted at London's aviation paradise, Heathrow Airport. Paul sent us a pair from 2012. Nice composition in the first, …

'Power equipment failure' borks EE's data services across England

EE's 2G and 3G data services are struggling this afternoon after what seems like a power equipment failure caused problems at the telco's switch sites. Customers in the UK have been complaining about "a major outage of 3G data," with one Reg reader saying that at 5am this morning access point name connection requests were …
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Replacing humans with robots in your factories? Hold on just a sec

The integration of robots into production processes will impact on traditional liability arrangements and raise a range of other legal issues for manufacturers to consider, including in relation to health, safety and data protection. A rise in the number of robots in operation might also prompt social and ethical dilemmas that …
OUT-LAW.COM, 30 Aug 2016
UK border control at Heathrow. Photo by 1000 words/Shutterstock editorial use only

Paper mountain, hidden Brexit: How'd you say immigration control would work?

At some point in the next few years we will be in a post-Brexit world, and the UK will have regained complete control of its borders. Or maybe not. At this juncture, it's worth taking a long hard look at how that might work. Spoiler: it won't. And that's because of two things, law and logistics. Those immediately affected by …
John Lettice, 22 Aug 2016

Email proves UK boffins axed from EU research in Brexit aftermath

Following anecdotes of British scientists being axed from EU-funded projects, one academic has revealed actual evidence of UK boffins being dumped from Euro research efforts in the Brexit aftermath. Paul Crowther, interim head of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Sheffield, today leaked an email confirming colleagues …
Katyanna Quach, 05 Aug 2016
Pop art-style illustration: Woman holds head in despair. Illustration via Shutetrstock

Sky fibre down at breakfast-time across the nation

Sky broadband customers have been hit by an outage this morning, which appears to be disrupting services nationwide. Sky tweeted: "We are aware that fibre customers are having issues browsing, engineers are investigating. Sorry for making your morning more stressful." According to its service status page, the issue started at …
Kat Hall, 02 Aug 2016

Dark scientists' LUX-ZEPLIN doubles down on WIMP hunt

Scientists working on the Large Underground Xenon experiment recently announced they had found no signal of dark matter. But although the results were not quite what they hoped for, it has left them feeling even more determined to hunt down the universe’s most mysterious particle. A second phase of the experiment, known as LUX …
Katyanna Quach, 01 Aug 2016
Fibre, image via Shutterstock

Happy 50th birthday, optical fibres for telecoms

One of the seminal developments in modern telecommunications turns 50 years old this month: the paper that bootstrapped the world of optical fibre communications. With this publication in the July 1966 issue of Proceedings of the Institution of Electrical Engineers (now the IET), Charles Kao upended then-current research into …
London, United Kingdom - June 23, 2016: British Referendum. A voting station in inner London is the grand entrance to St Matthew's Church. UK is voting to stay or leave the EU. pHOTO Ms Jane Campbell/SHUTTERSTOCK - EDITORIAL USE ONLY

PM resigns as Britain votes to leave EU

BREXIT The UK has voted to leave the European Union, confounding the polls, the "experts" and the British establishment in the biggest turnout for a vote here in 24 years. Prime Minister David Cameron announced his resignation at 8:30am this morning. The count stands at 51.9 per cent Leave, and 48.1 per cent remain – and more than a …
Andrew Orlowski, 24 Jun 2016
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Trustmarque has been sold yet again – this time to Capita for £57m

Capita has acquired Microsoft licensing house and managed services biz Trustmarque for £57m in cash – the fourth time the company has changed hands in three years Trustmarque, part of the Liberata Group, was rolled onto the market in February by parent Ardbid Ltd, appointing investment bank William Blair to find a buyer, as we …
Paul Kunert, 21 Jun 2016

Users fear yet another hack as TalkTalk services go down

TalkTalk is down again, with frighteningly little being said by the business as to why. A post on its official forums copped to the problem, apologising for the lack of services. The website at TalkTalk.co.uk has been replaced with a holding page, where the telco is informing visitors that the "Customer Service team are …

HSBC swinging axe on UK IT department, 840 heads to roll

HSBC is to wipe out more than 800 of its UK-based techies in a move Unite the union has condemned as a ‘reckless’ drive to offshore jobs. The redundancies are part a wider cost cutting drive that will see the bank slash 8,000 positions in Blighty and a total of 50,000 worldwide by the end of next year, with the aim of saving $ …
Kat Hall, 16 May 2016

Kobayashi Maru gets real: VR and AR in meatspace today

Three years ago few people other than hardcore gamers and those working in specialist industrial fields were still talking about VR. It was a gimmicky technology cursed by the “P” word (“potential”) and huge, ungainly headsets that generated a flurry of interest in the late 1990s that quickly evaporated. Today, it’s big news …
Alistair Dabbs, 13 May 2016
Terminator

Blighty gears up for first UK Robotics Week

The acronymically-abundant UK Robotics and Autonomous Systems Network (UK-RAS Network) tentacle of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has announced further events which will feature at the first UK Robotics Week from 25 June to 1 July. As we previously reported, the event is backed by the Royal …
Lester Haines, 19 Apr 2016

Web wobbles at Misco: Might be back up today, or tomorrow

Not wanting to be totally outdone by the recent outage at arch rival Insight Enterprises, online reselling rival Systemax Europe - trading as Misco - has battled its own web demons for the best part of this morning. The company’s site first fell over at least two hours ago with its Twitter feed acknowledging the worldwide …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016
IBM 26 on/off switch by https://www.flickr.com/photos/mwichary/ cc 2.0 attribution generic https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Power outage in Sheffield kills e-commerce at Insight UK

Insight Enterprise's UK website has been out of action for almost the entire day following an external power outage in Sheffield that took down its data centre in the same locale. The problems began just after 3.00am today, and El Chan understands that when the electricity returned, a surge killed the power protectors and took …
Paul Kunert, 17 Mar 2016

Silicon photonics boosted with UK fabrication research

Silicon photonics is one of the industry's hottest research fields, because it holds out the promise of accelerating on-chip communications without the extra heat that faster copper-based comms generate. One of the big challenges is fabrication, and that's the subject of research announced by University College London, Cardiff …

Staffers in charge of HPE's UK IT outsourcing face redundo in April

Around a quarter of Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s current IT Outsourcing staff are expected to be made redundant at end of next month, according to company insiders. As we exclusively revealed on Friday, 780 ITO workers are among 1,000 heads in the UK Enterprise Services division that were told their jobs are at risk. Sources …
Paul Kunert, 10 Mar 2016
Woman in bathrobe is shocked by something she is reading on her laptop. Pic via Shutterstock

BT blames 'faulty router' for mega outage. Did they try turning it off and on again?

BT has blamed a faulty router for knocking its network offline yesterday, leaving hundreds of thousands of customers without the internet. The telecoms giant apologised for the failure, which began at around 2pm yesterday afternoon. Customers across the country were unable to get online, with reports of the outage affecting …
Kat Hall, 03 Feb 2016

PCS: We'll ballot Hewlett Packard Enterprise members over job cuts

The Public and Commercial Services union is gearing up to test the appetite for industrial action among services staff at Hewlett Packard Enterprises over the latest round of planned job cuts. Some 166 staff in HPE’s infrastructure outsourcing unit in Lytham that work on public sector contracts including the Department of Work …
Paul Kunert, 03 Feb 2016

'No safe level' booze guidelines? Nonsense, thunder stats profs

The heads of Britain’s statistics society have written to the Health Secretary to point out that the government’s alcohol guidelines don’t accurately reflect the numbers. Two weeks ago the British civil servant at the Department of Health responsible for issuing medical advice (who rejoices in the corporate-inspired title of “ …
Andrew Orlowski, 22 Jan 2016
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Video game retailer GAME in email marketing FAIL

Hundreds of UK video game fans became unwitting recipients of each others’ email addresses this week following a messaging cock-up at online retailer GAME.co.uk. El Reg learned of the snafu through reader David, who seems to have been something of a patient zero in the minor privacy flap. Human error meant that “To:” field …
John Leyden, 14 Jan 2016
Gundam robot replica on May 11, 2012 in Tokyo. The sculpture is 18m tall and is the tallest replica of famous anime franchise robot, Gundam. Image via Shutterstock, editorial use only

BBC risks wrath of android rights activists with Robot Wars reboot

BBC 2 has shrugged off the rising android-rights movement to reboot Robot Wars, the mechano pugilistic punch-fest which enlivened many hungover Sundays* in the late '90s. The broadcaster has commissioned six one hour episodes of the new series from Mentorn Scotland, which it reckons will exploit “a raft of technological …
Joe Fay, 13 Jan 2016

Roundworm infection increases female fertility

Scientists have – slightly improbably – discovered that infection by the roundworm Ascaris lumbricoides increases fertility in women belonging to Bolivia's Tsimane ethnic group. In their abstract, published in Science, the researchers explain that they studied "nine years of longitudinal data from 986 Bolivian forager- …
Lester Haines, 20 Nov 2015
No junk mail. Pic: gajman, Flickr

Looking for a council house in Sheffield City? Meet your fellow tenants

An e-tempest is brewing in the beautiful northern metropolis of Sheffield after a City Council staffer forgot to BCC locals due to renew their Housing Register status. It was a mere 10 minutes later, displaying a laudable commitment to remediating the leak, that the council followed up the email seeking "to recall the message …
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Sound waves could power the future's magnetic HDDs

Our need to store data is growing at an astonishing rate. An estimated 2.7 zettabytes (2.721) of data are currently held worldwide, equivalent to several trillion bytes for every one of the seven billion people on Earth. Accessing this data quickly and reliably is essential for us to do useful things with it – the problem is, …
Tom Hayward, 13 Nov 2015
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Take redundancy if you want, Capita IS for turning now, after all

Crapita is to shutter both the Bury and Glasgow call centres that provide phone support for O2 customers after hundreds of staff – all of those in scope – accepted voluntary redundancy, a union said. This is a complete about-turn by the integrator-cum-outsourcing monster which even until a few weeks ago was telling us that no …
Paul Kunert, 14 Aug 2015

Boffins' audacious plan to blow up aircraft foiled by bomb-proof bag

Forsaken planes have been used in a series of boffinry experiments this week to test whether a bag lined with bomb-proof material could withstand an explosive blast. A group of international scientists and academics from the University of Sheffield – backed by the European Commission and run by a consortium of businesses and …
Kelly Fiveash, 26 Jul 2015
Wi-Fi  on the streets of leeds

AQL looks for Ofcom approval, maybe more blue hotspots to come?

Regional telco AQL is looking to get Electronic Communications Code (ECC) approval for installing its services, including free Wi-Fi around Leeds, mobile data services, and very, very fast fibre in the ground. The company has one customer wired up at 100Gbps, lots at 10Gbps and hundreds at 1Gbps, and has applied to Ofcom to …
Simon Rockman, 01 Jun 2015

Last flying Avro Vulcan, XH558, prepares for her swan song

The Vulcan To The Sky Trust has announced "with considerable sadness" that this summer will be the public's last chance to catch Avro Vulcan XH558 thundering through British skies, as the legendary V-bomber will be permanently grounded at the end of this flying season. The trust explains that the axe will fall because "three …
Lester Haines, 20 May 2015
Zuck balloons

Facebook policy wonk growls at Europe's mass of data laws

Facebook's Brussels lobbyist Richard Allan took to the pages of the Pink 'Un on Wednesday morning to have a good old moan about "multiple" EU nations digging around the free content ad network's data-slurping biz practices. He complained that the actions of national privacy watchdogs within the 28-member-state bloc posed a …
Kelly Fiveash, 29 Apr 2015
LIZARD WEARING A TOP HAT SITS ON A BRANCH.  Brett Weinstein pic - ALTERED BY JUDE KARABUS - licensed under  CC 3.0

E-voting and the UK election: Pick a lizard, any lizard

Feature On Thursday May 7, the UK goes to the polls for a General Election. For those from elsewhere, we use the First Past the Post voting system, with each MP representing a specific geographical constituency. So, a majority of one is enough to win a seat, and the party leader who can command a majority of votes in the House of …
Nigel Whitfield, 29 Apr 2015

So why exactly does almost ALL tech live in Silicon Valley?

Worstall @ the Weekend It was Ben Bernanke who pointed out that economics isn't really all that much good at predicting the next recession (and the long-standing joke is that economists have predicted 11 out of the past three), but it is pretty good at working out why the world is the way it is. Which brings us to the cutting edge of modern economic …
Tim Worstall, 19 Apr 2015
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Legal biz Irwin Mitchell outsources majority of IT to Esteem

Law firm Irwin Mitchell is to outsource IT operations to Esteem from Monday, with the “majority” of staff expected to be TUPEd across, although some are refusing to relocate 200 miles to the Woking call centre The desktop support function was already contracted to Esteem at the end of 2012 for £1.7m with 15 people joining the …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2015
Mississippi River Lock and Dam number 7 with the I-90 Mississippi River bridge downstream. Image: Public Domain

GLOWING TAMPONS hold the key to ending pollution

A paper by a University of Sheffield research team, published Tuesday in the Water and Environmental Journal, has sought to answer one of the eternal questions facing humanity — how female hygiene products can be used to detect sewer misconnection discharge. Professor of Environmental Engineering David Lerner told The Register …

How a hack on Prince Philip's Prestel account led to UK computer law

This week marks the 30th anniversary of arrests in the infamous Prestel hack case. It led to arrests, breached the Royal Family's security and helped give birth to the UK's first computer crime law. What began as a hack against the Prestel Viewdata system – which opened up access to Prince Philip's mailbox – later led to the …
John Leyden, 26 Mar 2015
FiveNinjas Slice Media Player

Hackable media box based on the Raspberry Pi compute module: Five Ninjas Slice

Review My original idea was to review the Raspberry Pi Compute Module. But the thing about the Compute Module is that it’s not an end-user product: it was designed for manufacturers looking for an ARM-based platform on which they can build devices they can sell. FiveNinjas Slice Media Player FiveNinjas Slice Media Player Unlike …
Tony Smith, 16 Mar 2015
Young hipster man wearing hat, suspenders, bow-tie and fake-looking tattoo-sleeve. Image via shutterstock

About that UK digital biz renaissance? Not so fast

Guest Opinion The Gibson Index business database has been surveying UK businesses since 2003. Here, founder Marcus Gibson explains why the Tech City quango’s "Tech Nation" survey touting the success of "digital" Britain is deeply flawed. The Tech City quango last week claimed to conduct the "first national" survey of the UK’s digital …
Marcus Gibson, 10 Feb 2015
Spam

Plusnet could face DATA BREACH probe over SPAM HELL gripes

Exclusive BT-owned Plusnet faces a possible data breach investigation by Britain's Information Commissioner's Office, after complaints from the ISP's customers about their email accounts being swamped by spam were dismissed. As The Register reported last week, an unknown number of subscribers expressed concern that their email accounts …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Dec 2014
Fawlty Towers

Plusnet customers SWAMPED by spam but BT-owned ISP dismisses data breach claims

BT-owned ISP Plusnet has rebuffed concerns from customers who are worried that their email accounts have been compromised by spammers. Despite the protests, at time of writing, Sheffield-based Plusnet was yet to turn itself into the UK's data watchdog – even just as a symbolic gesture to placate subscribers who fear that a …
Kelly Fiveash, 07 Dec 2014

Mega GP tech services framework badge awarded

Insight UK and Phoenix IT Group are flying the flag for mainstream tech suppliers after scoring a seat on the mammoth General Practice Systems of Choice (GPSoC) framework. GPSoC covers 75 per cent of GP surgeries in England and is administered by the Health and Social Care Information Centre, which provides information, data, …
Paul Kunert, 24 Nov 2014

Are CSC's mega-costly NHS contracts finally turning a profit?

CSC's troubled billion-pound NHS contracts finally appear to be turning around, chief executive Mike Lawrie revealed in a conference call. However, it is unlikely the firm will ever recoup its money from the defunct systems, which have cost the company close to £2bn. In a conference call for CSC's second quarter earnings Mike …
Kat Hall, 11 Nov 2014
Chesterfield’s twisted spire: Local Store Manager, Adam Osowski, with fellow EE employee

EE plonks 4G in UK Prime Minister's backyard

While EE didn’t win our Monopoly board coverage survey, the formerly fruity network did prove to be top dog for data speeds – and that’s down to having more spectrum than its rivals. Chesterfield’s twisted spire: Local Store Manager, Adam Osowski, with fellow EE employee Chesterfield local store manager Adam Osowski asks a …
Simon Rockman, 28 Aug 2014
Fight Night Champion

EE: STILL Blighty's best mobe network, says 'Frappucino' Moore

EE is still the best mobile network in the UK, but the others are catching up and Three is the one to watch. This is the conclusion of the latest report from RootMetrics the mobile survey company which regularly looks at UK mobile coverage and is headed by Bill ‘Frappuccino’ Moore. The previous survey descended into a war of …
Simon Rockman, 19 Aug 2014

We're ALL Winston Smith now - and our common enemy is the Big Brother State

Worstall on Weds The latest thing we've all got to worry about in this brave new world of ours is that the young, not having read Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four, are simply too eager to give up their information and privacy to the tech giants. Those richer in years have been forewarned by the novel and are thus less likely to get sucked into …
Tim Worstall, 11 Jun 2014

Dixons tells HQ workers: Yes, that IS a creaky trapdoor you hear. You're at risk of redundo

Dixons has unlocked but not yet opened a trapdoor underneath at least 100 bods at its Hemel Hempstead HQ. The retail biz today kicked off a 45-day redundancy consultation with headquarters staff. This comes ahead of a £3.7bn merger with Carphone Warehouse (CPW), first mooted in February, but Dixons insisted the head office …
Paul Kunert, 12 May 2014
Wireless Armour Shorts

Brit chap weaves silver bullet for wireless health scare bollocks

Move over, brain-cancer scare-mongers: a Brit physics graduate has taken the kind of material used to create anti-stink exercise gear, run it up as underwear, and is trying to flog it as a Faraday cage for mens' wedding tackle. By including four times as much silver in its product than the typical five per cent weave used for …