Articles about Surface

Earth

Earth's core is younger than its crust surface

Back in the early 1960s, physicist Richard Feynman remarked that the centre of the Earth had to be a little younger than the surface, since it would experience gravitational time dilation. Now, boffins from two Danish universities have put a value to that difference, and while they agree with his hypothesis, they've corrected …

Surface Book nightmare: Microsoft won't fix 'Sleep of Death' bug

Hands-on In its most recent quarterly earnings report, Microsoft highlighted its increasingly popular Surface line as the growth leader in its More Personal Computing line of business. Surface led the category with 61 per cent growth in constant currency, a rise driven by the top products in the line, the Surface Pro 4 tablet and the …
Addison Snell, 27 May 2016

The Windows Phone story: From hope to dusty abandonware

Special Report We stroll down Memory Lane and ask: was this The Ultimate Curse of Fry? Spring cleaning the other day, my wife found a Windows wristband. It was in a box where ten year old 4MB MMC cards went to die, along with paperclips, odd screws and a lot of dust. Keep or chuck? Chuck, I said, before looking closer, and realising that it …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 May 2016

NASA firms up Space Launch System nanosat manifest

NASA has announced three more CubeSats which will travel on the first mission of the Space Launch System (SLS), slated for lift-off in 2018. A total of 13 CubeSat berths are available aboard Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1), which is primarily intended to dispatch an Orion capsule "to a stable orbit beyond the moon to …
Lester Haines, 27 May 2016
Runner photo, via Shutterstock

Dropbox gets all up in your kernel with Project Infinite. Cue uproar

Dropbox is on the defensive after revealing its file-sharing service will in future tap into the very heart of your computer’s operating system. Project Infinite, unveiled in April, will take Dropbox out of the browser on the PC or Macs and integrate it directly with your machine’s local file storage. Items stored in your …
Gavin Clarke, 26 May 2016

UK eyes frikkin' Laser Directed Energy Weapon

The UK's Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) is considering several contenders to supply a Laser Directed Energy Weapon (LDEW) for evaluation as part of a programme which could "ultimately could see the MOD fund a full-up programme to buy defensive laser weapon system". According to this report, companies …
Lester Haines, 26 May 2016
Surface Book

Booming sales of flippy detachables offers hope to glum PC market

Booming sales of computers and tablets with detachable and rotating keyboards brought some cheer to the ailing PC market in the first quarter of 2016, according to research. Sales of detachables and convertibles rose 40 per cent to 3.6 million units in the first quarter of the year, offering a boon to the shrinking computer …
Kat Hall, 24 May 2016

Asteroid-sampling spacecraft prepped for September launch

NASA's improbably acronmyed* "Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security – Regolith Explorer" (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft has arrived at Florida's Kennedy Space Center ahead of a September launch on an asteroid-sampling mission. OSIRIS-REx will travel to near-Earth asteroid Bennu, arriving in 2018, and …
Lester Haines, 24 May 2016
Janus

ENISA / Europol almost argue against crypto backdoors

While the FBI, in the person of James Comey, continues its campaign to persuade the tech sector that mathematics isn't that big a thing and therefore backdoors are feasible, The European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA) and Europol have tip-toed around the issue, issuing a joint statement that both …
robot rally car

Safety, pah! Digital Dukes of Hazzard have robot cars powersliding

Video Last month, Google, Ford and Uber started a lobbying group called the Self-Driving Coalition for Safer Streets to promote autonomous vehicles on safety grounds, but boffins in Georgia are having far more fun with their hardware. While Google spends time pootling around Mountain View at 25mph, researchers at Georgia Tech, the …
Iain Thomson, 23 May 2016

Cock fight? Not half. Microsoft beats down Apple in Q1

Microsoft won bragging rights over Apple in Britain’s biz slab sales stakes following the first full quarter the two rivals went head to head with their Pro devices. The iPad Pro, released in last October, sold 107,000 units in the UK in Q1 versus 275,000 Surface Pro devices, which was up on the 83,000 units Microsoft flogged …
Paul Kunert, 23 May 2016

Mars satellites show remains of massive tsunamis that ravaged Red Planet

Scientists think they have spotted the remains of two huge tsunamis on Mars caused by asteroids striking the planet back when it still had water. In a paper published in Nature Scientific Reports, the boffins say pictures from the imaging and radar satellites orbiting Mars show the effects of two separate asteroid strikes on …
Iain Thomson, 20 May 2016
Google car

Reavers! Google patent would affix pedestrians to car hoods

Google has been granted a patent on a system that would adhere victims of car strikes to the vehicle for their own safety. US Patent 9,340,178 describes a substance that would be hidden under a protective layer, only to be exposed on impact to adhere pedestrians or crash victims to the car rather than tumbling to the pavement …
Shaun Nichols, 19 May 2016

Africa poses for 7,000 snap mosaic

Boffins have used 7,000 images from Europe's Sentinel-2A Earth-watching satellite to construct a fine mosaic of Africa, shown entirely cloud-free in all its continental glory. The Sentinel 2-A mosaic of Africa Clear skies over Africa Most of the images - totalling 32 TB of data - were snapped between December 2015 and …
Lester Haines, 19 May 2016
android logo

Google asks the public to name the forthcoming Android N operating system

Google I/O 2016 Google has been using its developers conference to show off forthcoming improvements in Android N and is taking the unusual move of asking the public to name it. Traditionally Android builds have been named after foodstuffs, like Jellybean or KitKat – the later picked not for marketing dollars but as an attempt to show how " …
Iain Thomson, 18 May 2016
Nokia 1011

How Nokia is (and isn't) back in the phone business today

Analysis We have a new phone company today, and it’s European. And the badge says Nokia. So is Nokia back in the phone biz? Yes and no. It won’t spend a penny on either making or marketing phones - even at arm’s length. All that is going to be the job of a new entity, HMD Global Oy, run by present and past Nokians. From HMD we can …
Andrew Orlowski, 18 May 2016
Still from Minions cartoon trailer.  	Copyright: Universal Pictures

Hey you – minion. Yes, IT dudes and dudettes, they're talking to you

Sysadmin Blog Who are you, dear reader, and why are you reading this? If you've a yen to answer that literally, by all means please do, but the question is somewhat more metaphorical in intent. I'm not seeking an existentialist answer about your sense of purpose in life, but I am hoping that you can answer – to yourself if to no one else – …
Trevor Pott, 18 May 2016
Monster 6502 board

Chaps make working 6502 CPU by hand. Because why not?

The 6502 CPU is a fondly-remembered CPU* for good reason: along with chips from Motorola, Intel and Zilog, it helped create the personal computer business in the 1980s. However, this project is affection on a grand scale: some US enthusiasts are creating a transistor-for-transistor replica of the chip's design using discrete …
Dr Keevers with the prism solar cell

New solar cell breaks efficiency records, turns 34% of light into 'leccy

University of New South Wales boffins have laid hands on another record, with a solar cell demonstrating 34.5 per cent conversion efficiency. The work was carried out by Dr Mark Keevers and Professor Martin Green, who heads up the university's Centre for Advanced Photonics. It's the kind of result that would get Olympic …
Afraid of the dark, image via Shutterstock

Americans cutting back on online activity over security and privacy fears

Nearly half of all Americans have not carried out a normal online task because of security and privacy fears, according to a new survey by the US government. Forty-five per cent of the 41,000 households contacted said they had decided not to do online banking, or buy goods online, or post on social networks because they were …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 May 2016
hdd_head_stack_648

Seagate ready for the HAMR blow: First drives out in 2017

Seagate is reducing its manufacturing capacity while still focusing on high-capacity disk drives for cloud and hyper-scale storage of unstructured data. This means it needs higher capacity drives, requiring new read-write head technology. It is a high-technology, nano-scale, clean room manufacturing process, and drive read- …
Chris Mellor, 12 May 2016

Dwarf planet intumesces before astronomers' gaze

Astronomers have used observations from the Kepler space telescope and the Herschel Space Observatory to determine that the trans-Neptunian object "2007 OR10" is bigger than previously thought, and now ranks third in the solar system's dwarf planet size league table, behind Pluto and Eris. The distant body was first spied back …
Lester Haines, 12 May 2016

Italians rattle little tin for smartmobe mini lenses

An Italian "microscopy, consumer electronics and micro-optics" outfit is offering smartphone and tablet owners the chance to get up-close and personal with the world via "an ultra portable and very affordable set of 2 mini lenses which turns your smartphone or tablet into a digital microscope". Working with the Istituto …
Lester Haines, 11 May 2016
Image by EcoPrint http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-60660p1.html

Archaeologists find oldest ever ground-edge stone axe

The world's oldest known ground-edge axe has been discovered in Australia's remote north Kimberley region, pushing back the date of the invention to some 49,000 years. It is estimated to be 10,000 years older than the previous oldest axe of its type, also found in Australia in 2010. The oldest so-called hafted axes - those …
Darren Pauli, 11 May 2016
Hydra's spectrograph

Icy Hydra outshines its dirty neighbour Charon

NASA's latest data release from its New Horizons probe has confirmed the reason that Pluto's moon Hydra is covered by ice. The agency says its analysis of the highly-reflective Hydra shows “the unmistakable signature of crystalline water ice: a broad absorption from 1.50 to 1.60 microns and a narrower water-ice spectral …
Mercury DEM

NASA, USGS publish topographical map of Mercury

NASA, the US Geological Survey and various university faculties have released a dream package for the imaginary hiker and geodata geek: a topographical model of Mercury. The release is based on data delivered by the Messenger spacecraft that slammed into the planet last year. Also taking part in the release are Arizona State …

Jaku botnet runs targeted attack behind sandstorm of routine malfeasance

Security researchers have spotted an on-going global botnet campaign seemingly linked to North Korea. The Jaku botnet has an unusual split personality. On the surface it’s spreading en masse through pirated software (warez) or poisoned BitTorrent trackers to notch up around 17,000 victims at any one time. However, a six month …
John Leyden, 05 May 2016

Mercury to transit Sun: Viewer discretion advised

Mercury will transit the Sun next Monday, and those wishing to witness this occasional event without risking blindness will be pleased to know that NASA will have full coverage. The planet will creep across the Sun's fiery surface between 11:12 GMT (7:12 AM EDT, 12:12 BST) and 18:42 GMT (2:42 PM EDT; 19:42 BST). The entire …
Lester Haines, 04 May 2016

Intel has driven a dagger through Microsoft's mobile strategy

Analysis Intel’s retreat from mobile chips is one of the biggest disruptions to the Wintel relationship in Microsoft’s 35-year business relationship with the chip giant – if not the biggest of all. There have been tiffs before, but not like this – and it raises serious questions about Microsoft’s mobile investments. Don’t expect rebel …
Andrew Orlowski, 03 May 2016

Europe's Earth-watching sat beams back icy first pic

Europe's Sentinel-1B Earth-watching satellite has delivered its first image, a tad over two days after soaring aloft from Kourou, French Guiana, and a mere two hours after its Synthetic Aperture Radar was fired up. Norway's Svalbard archipelago - including the Austfonna glacier - was the satellite's inaugural snap (full …
Lester Haines, 29 Apr 2016

Getty on Google: It’s all about traffic, duh

Photo giant Getty Images has had enough – it has filed an antitrust complaint in Europe against Google. And the reasoning behind the action is more subtle than readers might think. Getty Images' VP Jonathan Lockwood explained why. Getty’s action isn’t a copyright dispute, he points out. It isn’t about piracy, rights, or right- …
Andrew Orlowski, 28 Apr 2016

Hubble spots ice moon orbiting dwarf planet Makemake

The Hubble telescope has spotted an ice moon orbiting the dwarf planet Makemake. Makemake (pronounced mar-kee mar-kee) is 1400 kilometres in diameter and is the second brightest dwarf planet behind Pluto. It resides in the Kuiper Belt and is one of five dwarf planets to be recognised by the International Astronomical Union. It …
Darren Pauli, 27 Apr 2016

Boffins believe buggy Binder embiggens Android attack surface

Bugs in Android's Binder inter-process communication (IPC) mechanism open up a mass of security bugs, according to University of Michigan boffins Huan Feng and Kang Shin. In a paper posted to Arxiv, the duo say developers aren't doing enough sanity checking between Binder server and clients. Specifically, they often forget to …

LG: Stop focusing on Apple and Samsung. There's us. And our G5. Look at it. Look at it

Review Every year LG threatens to steal the flagship crown, but the press pauses briefly only on the device before returning to speculating about Samsung and Apple. LG’s flagships have featured ground-breaking screens (Quad HD), unusual banana shaped glass and consistently good imaging. But still no breakthrough. No wonder LG got fed …
Andrew Orlowski, 26 Apr 2016

Europe's Earth-watching sat rides Soyuz to orbit

VID Europe's Sentinel-1B satellite thundered aloft yesterday from Kourou, French Guiana, en route to its Earth-monitoring role as part of the Copernicus environmental monitoring network. The Soyuz lifter departed the launchpad at 21:02 GMT. Some 23 minutes later, Sentinel-1B separated from the rocket's Fregat upper stage to …
Lester Haines, 26 Apr 2016
Sentinel-1B

Sentinel-1B sat blasts off

After four days of delays, the Sentinel-1B satellite has at last lifted off from French Guiana. Sentinel-1B Fourth time lucky The satellite, along with a French space agency telescope and three student-designed CubeSats, blasted off from the Guiana Space Centre atop a Soyuz rocket at 2102 UTC (1402 PT) and has now reached …
Iain Thomson, 25 Apr 2016

175 teams, 4 continents, $36,000: It's the Amazing HPC Cluster Race

HPC Blog The largest student cluster competition in the known world kicked off last Monday in Wuhan, China. Sixteen teams representing universities from China, South America, the US, and Europe are participating in the fifth annual Asian Student Supercomputer Challenge. The competition just gets bigger and bigger. This year, it started …

Irish researchers sweep smartphones clear of super bugs

A team of Irish scientists has developed a way to neutralise that threatening sump of biological mayhem you just can’t leave home without - the mobile phone. Happily the nano-technology can also be turned on to lesser sources of harmful bacteria such as children’s toys, kitchen worktops, TV remotes and toilet. A team led by …
Joe Fay, 22 Apr 2016
Strom Clouds

Stalled cloud growth, software flatlining, hated Lumias unsold... It's all fine, says Microsoft CEO

Microsoft is putting a brave face on disappointing third-quarter earnings that saw profits fall 25 per cent year-on-year and cloud revenues failing to rise fast enough to offset losses in other areas. Earnings per share were $0.62 non-GAAP, down 23 per cent from 2015, compared to analysts' estimates of $0.64. "We had a solid …
Iain Thomson, 21 Apr 2016

Soyuz to loft Sentinel-1B Earth-watching sat

Europe's Sentinel-1B Earth-watching satellite will soar heavenwards tomorrow from Kourou, French Guiana, riding a Soyuz lifter to a 700km altitude polar orbit. It'll orbit 180° apart from its identical twin - Sentinel-1A - which launched in April 2014, on a joint mission to deliver data as part of the Copernicus environmental …
Lester Haines, 21 Apr 2016
Claw hammer

Delphix appoints new CEO – but hasn't filled vacant CTO spot

Structured data copy virtualising startup Delphix has appointed Chris Cook as president and CEO, with founding CEO Jedidiah Yueh become executive chairman of the board. Why? Cook has been president and COO of New Relic since September 2011, joining from CA where he held exec-level positions since 2005. He was a sales VP at …
Chris Mellor, 19 Apr 2016
Google faces antitrust charges in the European Union

So you’d sod off to China to escape the EU, Google? Really?

Analysis Google structures its entire organisation to avoid privacy laws, minimise taxes and de-risk itself from competition oversight*. Today Google’s European supremo hinted that being in China might be less of a hassle, and that losing Google would serve us Europeans right for being so backward. Of course, it’s a sheer coincidence …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Apr 2016
Super Pressure Balloon overhead in Victoria

Windy Wanaka wallops NASA's Super Pressure Balloon launch

Weather has again delayed the fourth launch of NASA's super pressure balloon (SPB) from Wanaka in New Zealand. The giant windbag, meant to stay aloft for around 100 days at 33.5 km altitude, has been waiting for the weather to turn in its favour since the beginning of the month. The problem is that even six knots of wind at …

US poised to unleash stadium-sized sandwich bag

NASA's long-duration super pressure balloon (SPB) mission looks to be set for launch tomorrow morning from Wanaka Airport, New Zealand, now that "forecast surface and low-level winds are aligned", as the space agency puts it. The SPB is made of "22 acres of polyethylene film – similar to a sandwich bag" and swells to a …
Lester Haines, 18 Apr 2016
Scott on the surface of the Moon during Apollo 15. Pic: NASA

Obama to admit Moon landing was faked?

Bookie Paddy Power has conceded it seriously underestimated Leicester City's chances of winning the Premier League, rating that laughable prospect when the season kicked off as less likely than Obama admitting the Moon landing was faked. Back in August, the odds against Claudio Ranieri's team pulling off a historic triumph …
Lester Haines, 18 Apr 2016

Seagate revenue numbers rain on cloud after market misses

+Comment Seagate has issued an early warning that its third fy2016 quarter revenue will be off by $100m from its forecast of $2.7bn. The company expects to report revenue of approximately $2.6bn and non-GAAP gross margin of approximately 23 per cent, for the quarter which ended April 1 – no, this is not a late April Fool joke. The …
Chris Mellor, 15 Apr 2016

Bug bounty blitzers open-source sick subdomain-spotter

BSides Canberra Hacking duo Shubham Shah and Nathaniel Wakelam will publish two tools that have helped them to haul in big bucks from bug bounty programs. Nathan Wakelam (left) and Shubham Shah. Image: Darren Pauli The tools, AltDNS and Assetnote, help hackers to automatically identify subdomains and hosts, then generate mobile phone push …
Darren Pauli, 15 Apr 2016
Exomars First Light photo. Image copyright ESA/Roscosmos/CaSSIS

ExoMars works! 2 Mbit/s link established and camera snapping

The European/Russian ExoMars craft is doing just fine, says the European Space Agency (ESA), with first light reaching its cameras and everything humming along nicely. The camera on the craft's Trace Gas Orbiter has been used in anger to capture the image above (or here for those on our mobile site), which came to us courtesy …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Apr 2016

Cutting edge security: Expensive kit won't save you

We all want to protect our customer and employee data, but as the threat landscape changes and the publicly disclosed data breaches get increasingly larger, our approach may need to change. What constitutes "state of the art" information security in 2016? It’s tempting to create a listicle of 10 shiny new security tools that …
Danny Bradbury, 13 Apr 2016

Watch: SpaceX finally lands Falcon rocket on robo-barge in one piece

Video SpaceX has finally succeeded in landing the first stage of its Falcon rocket at sea – after blasting off more supplies to the orbiting International Space Station. Landing from the chase plane pic.twitter.com/2Q5qCaPq9P — SpaceX (@SpaceX) April 8, 2016 What you're seeing here is the lower stage of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket …
Iain Thomson, 08 Apr 2016