Articles about Sun

Ash loses his head in a still of the movie Alien. Copyright: 20th Century Fox

Spoiler alert: We'll bet boffins still haven't spotted aliens

As any followers of the “Tabbi's Star” controversy will tell you, put “aliens” in a media release and you're bound to get the clicks. So it was over the weekend when the Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific accepted a paper claiming to have identified 234 stars out of a couple of million whose signatures …
Two eggs hugging couple arranged in carton

EMC Dell deal: They're loved up and living together, but whose house rules?

Comment Dell and EMC are culturally separated by their different approaches to product development, to servers in Dell and storage in EMC. In the combined house, what will be the effect? Dell's forte, or at least the chief of them, is a superbly executed supply chain, box-development and shifting at a level no one has bettered - well …
Chris Mellor, 20 Oct 2016
Sun shines on the clouds. Photo by Shutterstock

Pivotal turn to Google Cloud

Pivotal says that its Cloud Foundry PaaS will now run on Google Cloud. The move will give Cloud Foundry customers another option for running apps built with the platform. According to Pivotal, it will also give companies running Cloud Foundry apps access to Google's own data service apps. "These organizations can capitalize …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Oct 2016
Oracle and Sun logo

Oracle's quarterly security release offers 253 patches

Oracle has released its quarterly patch dump, this time offering 253 fixes for 76 products. Of those, 15 have a Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) score of 9.0 or over, making them critical. Interestingly, Oracle's short-form announcement of the patch dump includes this warning regarding critical bugs. Italics are …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Oct 2016
Embarrassed/exhausted man sits in front of laptop in hipstery office. Photo by Shutterstock

Email security: We CAN fix the tech, but what about the humans?

Last month’s Mr Chow ransomware attacks serve as a timely reminder that security should be at the top of any business IT strategy. Ransomware is on the increase, at least according to the FBI and while it is not all email borne, it is an example of how sophisticated hackers and criminals are getting with technology. Certainly …
MIlky Way

Student software finds new Minor Planet found way out beyond Pluto

Deep space real estate speculators, meet your next target: the International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center has posted news of 2014 UZ224, a newly-verified minor planet. We don't know a lot about 2014 UZ224, which looks to have a diameter of about 530km. Humanity spotted the object about 91.6AU from Sol – or 13.7bn …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Oct 2016

Twitter yanks data feeding tube out of police surveillance biz

Updated Twitter has suspended its commercial relationship with a company called Geofeedia – which provides social media data to law enforcement agencies so that they can identify potential miscreants. The social media company announced the change through its Policy account on Tuesday morning following the publication of a report by …
Thomas Claburn, 11 Oct 2016
Oracle and Sun logo

NetSuite gobble? We'd walk

Oracle has extended the expiration date of its tender offer for the acquisition of NetSuite to November 4, 2016, but says this will be its final extension and that it will "terminate its proposed acquisition" if the deal can't be done by its new deadline. Big Red's US$9.3bn offer has been resisted by shareholders who feel it …
Simon Sharwood, 09 Oct 2016

Hubble telescope spies massive 'cannonballs' of fire from dying star

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has detected massive, super-hot "cannonballs" shooting from a dying star, which has left scientists puzzled over the source of these giant globs of gas. The fireballs are twice as big as Mars and are travelling so fast, it would only take 30 minutes for them to travel from Earth to the moon, …
Katyanna Quach, 07 Oct 2016

Invasion of the virus-addled lightbulbs (and other banana stories)

Something for the Weekend, Sir? Yikes, all I have to do is go away for a couple of weeks and all hell breaks loose. But at least it’s the right kind of hell: that is, the veritable technological hell that I’ve been predicting in these columns for years. First off as I sit back in my late-vacation sun lounger to read the news on my tablet is that the Krebs on …
Alistair Dabbs, 07 Oct 2016
Chandra's wandering black hole

Stripped of its galaxy, this black hole is wandering naked in the cosmos

Boffins analysing old Chandra x-ray telescope data have spotted a rarity indeed: an X-ray source that seems to be a black hole, but without a galaxy to surround it. At an estimated 100,000 times the mass of the sun, the black hole in question – at the edge of lenticular galaxy SDSS J141711.07+522540.8, about 4.5 billion light …
Andromeda: "Google Android" bot taking off with Chrome power backpack. Image mashup of two SHutterstock stock images.

‘Andromeda’ will be Google’s Windows NT

If you were to design a client operating system with the goal of being used by two billion people, what would it look like? We might soon find out what Alphabet’s looks like. Today’s announcement’s from Alphabet’s Google is expected to reveal "Andromeda", the merged Android/Chrome OS. Executives have been hyping today’s event …
Andrew Orlowski, 04 Oct 2016

WikiLeaks claims 'significant' US election info release ... is yet to come

Julian Assange has said WikiLeaks intends to publish documents ahead of the presidential race between Clinton and Trump that will include "significant" material about how the US election operates. Assange was speaking at a press conference in Berlin to celebrate the organisation's 10th birthday today, an event which had been …
Kat Hall, 04 Oct 2016
Rosetta snap of Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Pic: ESA

Swansong for Rosetta as it lands on the duck-shaped comet

It has been an epic journey, much more than 12 years in the making, but Rosetta has gone out in a blaze of glory. The final commands were uploaded to the spacecraft mid-morning on September 29 – and now there is no going back. Rosetta was programmed to touch down on comet 67P some time in the late morning of September 30. It …
Monica Grady, 04 Oct 2016
Artist's impression of Rosetta orbiting its prey. Pic: ESA, image by AOES Medialab

Rosetta spacecraft set for smash landing

Update The European Space Agency was set to crash its Rosetta space probe into comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko as the final stage of its 12-year research mission at 12.18pm BST today (7:18am EDT). The 19km descent from orbit was to end with a walking pace impact but Rosetta is not designed for landing and is not expected to survive. …
John Oates, 30 Sep 2016
Cloud server room. Photo by Shutterstock

Big data and the cloud: It's not even that scary

Sysadmin blog Once all the marketing is cleared away, just what is big data, and how does it help real businesses of all sizes? Marketing would have us believe that big data is new, huge, terrifying, complicated, impossible without their help and yet will deliver unmatched benefits. Like many things in tech, however, big data is really just …
Trevor Pott, 30 Sep 2016
The word futile

Oracle loses (again) in battle to get Google Java case retried (again)

Oracle has been turned away in its latest effort to get a new trial for its Java API copyright claim against Google. San Francisco District Court Judge William Alsup denied [PDF] Oracle's latest motion to have the case reheard, this time on grounds of misconduct on the part of Google's lawyers. The legal war, which has been …
Shaun Nichols, 29 Sep 2016
Locker room jocks photo via Shutterstock

Oracle's Coach Larry needs Microsoft plays to beat Amazon

Analysis SAP. Crack! IBM. Snap! Salesforce. Bang! Workday, I can see you - come over here... In the locker room that is Oracle’s quarterly conference calls with Wall Street, somebody’s ass is always on the receiving end of a sharp thwack from the towel of head coach Larry Ellison. Ellison has zinged his verbal towel off many a noble …
Gavin Clarke, 29 Sep 2016

D-Link DWR-932 B owner? Trash it, says security bug-hunter

If you've got a D-Link DWR-932 B LTE router, you might want to fire it into the sun – or hope that a firmware upgrade lands soon. Following the consumer broadband industry's consistently lackadaisical attitude to security, the device suffers from everything from backdoor accounts to default credentials, leaky credentials, …

The server's down. At 3AM. On Christmas. You're drunk. So you put a disk in the freezer

On-Call The On-Call inbox is full to overflowing, so we felt like letting another reader's tale of late-night weirdness into the wild. In this tale, reader “Nic” told us that “Back in the 1990s when being a web designer was a job and ISDN was considered hot stuff I worked as a sysadmin at an outfit strategically located above a guitar …
Simon Sharwood, 27 Sep 2016
Pippa Middleton

British bloke bailed after 'hacker plunders Pippa Middleton's iCloud'

A man in Northamptonshire, UK, has been quizzed by cops investigating attempts by a hacker to sell the private photographs of Pippa Middleton – the sister to the Duchess of Cambridge. This weekend, The Sun reported that someone using the nickname "Crafty Cockney" contacted it with an offer of the contents of Ms Middleton's …
Iain Thomson, 26 Sep 2016

The wise Hedvig owl heads aloft with a Universal Data Plane

Hedvig has updated its software-defined storage to version 2.0 and is flying with a Universal Data Plane concept. Its Distributed Storage Platform Version 2.0 adds a VMware vSphere Web Client Plugin, Docker Volume Plugin and Mirantis Fuel Plugin, each of which help to provide application-specific high-availability policies. …
Chris Mellor, 23 Sep 2016
stack of newspapers view from the side

Nexsan's new salesman

Imation storage array subsidiary Nexsan has a new worldwide sales boss. Tony Craythorne has been hired as SVP Sales at Nexsan. He has more than 25 years of sales experience, running sales teams in the USA, Europe and Asia. Most recently he was SVP of worldwide sales at NexGen Storage, which was sun out by SanDisk and then …
Chris Mellor, 22 Sep 2016
Man holds banana like a gun. Photo by Shutterstock

Lethal 4-hour-erection-causing spiders spill out of bunch of ASDA bananas

Yet another British family has been forced to flee its habitat after an infestation of Brazilian wandering spiders smuggled itself into their nest on the back of a bunch of supermarket bananas. The Brazilian wandering spider's bite is so venomous it can leave males of many species with a painful four-hour long erection before …
ESA Rosetta history

Rosetta probe's final death dive planned for just after last call next Friday night

The European Space Agency (ESA) has held an hour-long hangout to explain what's likely to happen when its Rosetta spacecraft touches down on Comet 67p. On Sunday, after a final manoeuvre, the spacecraft will start a 14-hour descent. Operations manager Sylvain Lodiot says the agency expects Rosetta to land somewhere inside a …
Pluto, visible and X-ray

Pluto's emitting X-rays, and NASA doesn't quite know how

The Chandra space telescope has spotted X-rays emanating from Pluto. What? That's “cold, dead, former planet Pluto with no magnetic field”, to most of us: orbiting between 4.4 billion km and 7.4 billion km from the sun out in the Kuiper belt, with no way to generate heat. That Pluto. Since we don't suppose the former-planet …

Map to the stars: Gaia's first data dump a piece of 3D Milky Way puzzle

The European Space Agency has revealed the first catalogue of stars mapped during its Gaia mission today. The Gaia space probe aims to capture over a billion stars, distant galaxies and quasars to produce the largest and most detailed three-dimensional map of the Milky Way galaxy. Nearly halfway into its mission, the probe …
Katyanna Quach, 14 Sep 2016
Oracle's Java is 20 years old

Oracle happy to let Apache Foundation adopt NetBeans

The Apache Software Foundation is considering a proposal to take custody of Java development environment NetBeans. The IDE allows development in Java and in other languages and runs operating systems that can fire up a JVM. As the Foundation explains in its proposal, “NetBeans has approximately 1.5 million active users around …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Sep 2016
Picture by Sunshine Press

Edward Snowden's 40 days in a Russian airport – by the woman who helped him escape

Interview Sarah Harrison, the British WikiLeaks journalist who successfully spirited Edward Snowden from Hong Kong to safe(ish) asylum in Russia, has told The Register how she did it – and what’s next for the NSA whistleblower, and for Julian Assange. She spoke to us a week before the Oliver Stone film Snowden is released*, although she …
Iain Thomson, 12 Sep 2016
Container image via Shutterstock

Little boxes made of ticky-tacky: What Dell's record-busting $67bn EMC deal means

Dell’s acquisition of EMC is large by several measures: a $67bn purchase price – the most ever paid in tech. The claimed joint revenue for Dell and EMC is $74bn and the current joint workforce is 140,000 – with 40,000 being sales staff. Even the statements as to “why” Dell is buying EMC are big – yuuuge - with Michael Dell at …
Gavin Clarke, 08 Sep 2016

Star Trek's Enterprise turns 50 and still no sign of a warp drive. Sigh

Star Trek @ 50 Zooming through space faster than the speed of light is integral in science fiction if the story unfolds over different planets, galaxies and universes. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy had hyperspace, the TARDIS in Doctor Who travelled through a time vortex, and Star Trek used warp drive. The sight of the Starship …
Katyanna Quach, 08 Sep 2016
Freddie Mercury

Asteroid 'FreddieMercury'

Queen guitarist Brian May has announced that the International Astronomical Union has re-named an asteroid “FreddieMercury”, to mark what would have been the singer's 70th birthday. Previously known as Asteroid 17473, aka 1991 FM3 has a diameter of 3.435km ± 0.374 km, orbits the Sun every three years and eight months and does …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Sep 2016

Second 'dimmer switch' star spotted

One curious case of “what's that?” in astronomy is a puzzle: two gets astrophysicists on the way to an answer. An oddly-dimming star called EPIC 204278916 (EPIC in this article) might help boffins understand the “Dyson sphere” (no, it's not) Tabby's star. The group led by Simone Scaringi from the Max Planck Institute for …

EMC-Pure Storage patent sueball circus sent back to square one

EMC's $14m patent award against Pure Storage has been set aside by a judge who has ordered a new trial. The judge in the Delaware District federal court case ruled that the jury didn't consider the notion that EMC's patent, number 7,434,015 dealing with deduplication, is invalid due to an earlier patent issued to Sun …
Chris Mellor, 02 Sep 2016

Dwarf planet Ceres has a watery secret: An 11 mile wide ice volcano

Ahuna Mons, the 13,000 foot high, 11 mile wide volcano on dwarf planet Ceres is made entirely out of ice – and provides evidence that water may have once existed beneath the planet's surface. "Ahuna is truly unique, being the only mountain of its kind on Ceres," said David Williams, co-author and associate research professor …
Katyanna Quach, 02 Sep 2016

African Ring of Fire to show up at annular solar eclipse

Tomorrow’s morning sky will be temporarily blotted by an inky blackness as the Sun disappears behind the moon, leaving a dazzling ‘ring of fire’ in an annular solar eclipse over Africa. For those who aren’t lucky enough to observe this phenomenon, robotic telescope service Slooh will host live coverage of the event on the web …
Katyanna Quach, 31 Aug 2016
Minor Planet Center image of 2016 QA2 orbit

Blink and you missed it: Asteroid came within 90,000 km, only one sky-watcher saw it

A small asteroid made a rare, close pass between Earth and the moon on August 28. 2016 QA2 is estimated by the Minor Planet Center (MPC) as being somewhere between 25 and 55 metres in diameter – so small that it nearly passed without notice. The MPC's note about the asteroid attributes its discovery to Brazil's SONEAR …

Go forth Spitzer! To infinity and....

NASA’s trusty Spitzer Space Telescope is set to enter the next stage of its mission which has been dubbed “Beyond” in October. The 0.85-metre device is the largest infrared telescope in space and covers an important wavelength range - 3 and 180 microns - not observable from the ground. Launched in 2003, the telescope has …
Katyanna Quach, 26 Aug 2016

Radicalisation? gets itself in cluster-muddle over 'terrorism'

Analysis Today's report by a Parliamentary committee called for everyone from the government to the press to combat terrorism by creating "counter-narratives" to those used by ISIS to justify its actions. It also argued that it was the responsibility of the press and social media sites to facilitate the creation of these “counter- …
Chinese Martian probe

Mars to get Chinese delivery. Estimated time of arrival: 2020

The Chinese space program has taken a massive step forward as the country unveiled its design for a rover to scoot across the surface of Mars. The mission to the Red Planet will see the rover launched on a Long March-5 carrier rocket from the Wenchang Satellite Launch Center in China's Hainan province. It is scheduled to land …
Iain Thomson, 25 Aug 2016
Fingers crossed

Dell trademarks everything it does as 'Cross Cloud'

Dell has filed a trademark for 'Cross Cloud' that covers just about everything it does. And when we say everything we mean it: the trademark covers printer cartridges, servers, headphones, all manner of consulting services and even leasing. The descriptions of what the trademark covers run to 1,500 words. So what's Dell up to …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Aug 2016

'Second Earth' exoplanet found right under our noses – just four light years away

Rumours that a terrestrial planet orbiting Proxima Centauri – the Sun’s closest neighbour – may be Earth-like have been confirmed today in a paper published in Nature. The possibility that extraterrestrial life may exist next door was first reported last week in Der Spiegel, a German weekly news magazine. Excitement bubbled …
Katyanna Quach, 24 Aug 2016
Priest, image via Shutterstock

MySQL daddy Widenius: Open-source religion won't feed MariaDB

Interview MySQL daddy Monty Widenius has dismissed claims the MariaDB fork is veering away from open source. Rather, the chief technology officer of MariaDB corporation called his firm’s embrace of a commercial licence for part of MariaDB "critical" to delivering new revenue and for the continued development of open-source software. …

Stop lights, sunsets, junctions are tough work for Google's robo-cars

Hot Chips After cruising two million miles of public roads, Google's self-driving cars still find traffic lights, four-way junctions and other aspects of everyday life hard work. To be sure, the hardware and software at the heart of the autonomous vehicles is impressive. But it's just not quite good enough yet to be truly let loose on …
Chris Williams, 24 Aug 2016

NASA tried turning lost spacecraft STEREO-B off and on again... but it didn't work. True story

NASA has managed to reestablish a connection with the STEREO-B spacecraft after contact was lost in October 2014. The spacecraft is part of a pair. STEREO-A flies ahead of Earth’s orbit, whilst STEREO-B trails behind. Both spacecraft were employed on NASA’s Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory (STEREO) mission to provide …
Katyanna Quach, 23 Aug 2016
Spy hides in dustbin, lifts lid to take photograph

Californian gets 50 months in prison for Chinese 'technology spy' work

A sting operation by the US Department of Homeland Security has netted one California woman a 50-month sojourn in prison after she was found guilty of trying to break the US Arms Export Control Act. The court heard that between March 2011 and June 2013, Wenxia Man, 45, of San Diego, worked with a Chinese national – who she …
Iain Thomson, 23 Aug 2016
HMS Illustrious. Crown copyright/MoD

Former RN flagship HMS Illustrious to be sold for scrap – report

Aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious will be sold for scrap in spite of efforts to preserve her for the nation as a museum ship, according to reports. The warship – affectionately known as “Lusty” – is set to be sold to Turkey's LEYAL Ship Recycling for £2.1m, according to The Sun. Launched in 1978, Lusty was still being fitted …
Gareth Corfield, 22 Aug 2016

My headset is reading my mind and talking behind my back

Something for the Weekend, Sir? It only takes a minute to capture a 3D model of my orifices. They tell me it’s the only way I can be sure of a tight fit. Perhaps I could order a hologram of my 3D orifices that I can hang on my living room wall. It would make a nice conversation piece for visitors to admire. "Isn’t it creepy how my orifices seem to follow …
Alistair Dabbs, 19 Aug 2016
Robots with Cursors from Shutterstock

Oracle Java copyright war latest: Why Google's luck is about to run out

Analysis Oracle says one of the foundations of Google's legal victory in the Java API copyright trial has exploded – and that means a retrial is needed. Oracle was trying its luck in court yesterday, demanding a retrial – although regardless of its success in forcing a third trial, the outcome of the second trial is on course to be …
Andrew Orlowski, 18 Aug 2016

NASA to begin first asteroid sample mission: Seeks 'pristine' specimen

NASA is preparing for its first mission that will see a spacecraft retrieve a “pristine sample” of an asteroid so that it can be studied on Earth. The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft will be launched on 8 September 7:05pm EDT (12:05 am BST) from Cape …
Katyanna Quach, 18 Aug 2016