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Japan develops robot CHEERLEADERS which RIDE on BALLS

A major electronics company in Japan has developed a team of robot cheerleaders which are designed to seat themselves atop balls and carry out vigorous coordinated manoeuvres, thus: “We developed the Murata Cheerleaders to demonstrate our electronics technologies,” enthuses Koichi Yoshikawa, Senior Manager of Corporate …
Team Register, 29 Sep 2014
By Frank Wouters, licensed under CC 2.0

Russia: SEXY LIZARDS which landed FROM SPACE are all DEAD

Russia's space agency has made the announcement everyone must have been fearing: after being launched, lost, and recovered, its famed “sex geckos” have all died. After a premature political announcement of their safe return to Earth, space agency Roscosmos issued a brief statement that the geckos had perished during the landing …
The new Twitter logo. Pic: Twitter

Amazon: Wish in one hand, Twit in the other – see which one fills first

Amazon users can now add items to their wish lists via a Twitter hashtag. The web souk said customers can link their Twitter accounts with their Amazon profiles, and automatically send tweeted links into their Amazon wish list of desired stuff. Under the new system, users can reply to Tweeted links of Amazon products with a # …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Sep 2014

So which miscreants wrote the CosmicDuke info-slurping nasty?

Security researchers have uncovered a link between a Trojan and a recently discovered cyber-espionage tool which suggests cyber-spies behind recent attacks on Western governments cut their teeth writing conventional Trojans. CosmicDuke combines elements from the Cosmu Trojan and a backdoor known as MiniDuke, previously …
John Leyden, 04 Jul 2014
Encapsulation of OCO-2 ahead of launch

NASA: Satellite which will END man-made CO2 debate in orbit at last

NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory 2 (OCO-2) not only managed to lift off today, it also achieved successful separation from its booster stack and got into orbit. Youtube Video The satellite – which will study the absorption of sunlight by carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere – is the third attempt to get a CO2-measuring craft …

Japanese finally produce a ROBOT which isn't DEAD INSIDE

Boffins have unveiled a robot that, we're confidently told, can understand human emotions. Named Pepper, the shiny machine has what appears to be a tablet computer strapped to its chest, and it resembles a cross between a mermaid and a, ahem, marital aid. It is the work of SoftBank Mobile Corp, a Japanese cell network, and …
Jasper Hamill, 05 Jun 2014

Careful with 'fibre speed record' hype: which record's been broken?

Last January, NASA's Energy Science Network (ESNet) ran a test that achieved 91 Gbps end-to-end data transfers. The test made belated news this week in another outlet that touted ESNet as a "shadow network" faster than Google fibre. Leaving aside the inappropriateness of that hype, it got El Reg thinking about the business of …
Magma testing in the laboratory

Brits to vote: Which pressing scientific challenge should get £10m thrown at it?

Regular Brits are going to get to decide which of humanity’s challenges will get a £10m shot at being solved, in a new prize from the UK government and charity NESTA. The Longitude Prize wants to hand over the millions to the best idea for sorting out one of six problems facing the human race - eco-friendly flight, sustainable …
Windows 8.1 Update Start Screen

Windows 8.1, which you probably haven't upgraded to yet, ALREADY OBSOLETE

Microsoft is urging users running Windows 8.1 to update their systems soon, since the company plans to drop patch support for early versions of the operating system. Redmond said that after May it would only issue updates for systems running the Windows 8.1 Update release and later. The move means that Windows 8.1 systems which …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Apr 2014
Steve Ballmer

Which sweaty exec dreamt up Office for iOS? Ballmer, Ballmer, Ballmer

You wouldn't expect Steve Ballmer to shout "iPad, iPad, iPad" at his staff, but that's exactly what the perspiring madman might have yelled ahead of the release of Office for iOS. Youtube Video According to members of Microsoft's iPad development team, Bill Gates' excitable protégé personally pushed through the release of …
Jasper Hamill, 09 Apr 2014
Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerburg

'Hmm, which is more important: connectivity or malaria vaccine?'

This was the week when Bill Gates said that Mark Zuckerberg's attempts at benevolent billionaire philanthropy were rubbish. The ex-Microsoftie belittled Zuck's attempts to better mankind by getting everyone online, saying that should be pretty far down on the list of things humanity needs to have fixed. The Facebook founder …
Indonesia's spiffing No Spam logo

Guess which major US telco ISN'T cracking down on premium SMS spam?

AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile have agreed to stop charging their customers for premium text messages (PSMS), a practice that costs US folks an estimated $2bn in excess charges a year. The ban isn't total – Verizon isn't stopping the practice because it says it is still in the process of winding down its PSMS service. But it's not a …
Iain Thomson, 23 Nov 2013

Nvidia to Intel: 'Which HPC chip brain will win? Let the people decide'

Nvidia is of the opinion that in the tussle with Intel as to whether Nvidia's Tesla GPU accelerators or Chipzilla's Xeon Phi many-core CPU coprocessors will dominate the supercomputing market, the HPC community has already voted with its checkbooks. "This community continues to invest in GPU computing – GPU-based accelerated …
Rik Myslewski, 20 Nov 2013
Credit: Bjørn Christian Tørrissen Licence: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en

So, which people you read about in The Register got gongs in the Honours list?

It's New Year's again, which means that another Honours list has been issued by the British government, designating those who will henceforth go through life with some more letters after their name and a new gong dangling from their formal eveningwear. Many of these people are of only marginal if any interest to Reg readers, but …
Lewis Page, 01 Jan 2014
Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer installed on the S3 truss on ISS

'Scientists are coming to space with USBs which are infected'

This was the week when marketing for new games consoles the Xbox One and the PS4 really went into overdrive. Microsoft are hoping to steal a march on Sony by getting its Xbox out a little earlier, but hit a bit of a snag when some of the consoles went out way too early. The Ones are supposed to ship on November 22, a week before …
"334/365 this is a phoooonne!!!" - Lazurite

Microsoft pulls Win 8.1 RT code which upgraded Surface 'slabs into BRICKS

Microsoft has quickly backpedalled on its Windows 8.1 update, pulling it from the Windows Store after reports that it was bricking Surface tablets. In this post at its Answers site, Microsoft explained the withdrawal of the update: “Windows RT 8.1. Microsoft is investigating a situation affecting a limited number of users …
Doctor Who 50th Anniversary episode poster

Which Who to view? Pick one from two: Doctor Who twin trailers hit the interwebs

The BBC has released two trailers for its 50th anniversary episode of Doctor Who, "The Day of the Doctor" and announced that it will hit screens at 7.50pm on 23 November. Youtube Video The trailers premiered over the weekend on Saturday and Sunday and are now available on the BBC's Doctor Who website. Very little plot detail …
A photo taken with the iPhone 5s

iPhone 5S autopsy shows WHY it can't tell which end is up – dev

Balance problems plaguing the iPhone 5S popped up with the first reviews. But a teardown by Chipworks and the musings of an iOS dev have isolated a likely reason why the steering on that motor racing app is about 5 degrees off. It's all down to a replacement accelerometer which lacks the accuracy of its forebear. Although …
Bill Ray, 18 Oct 2013

You're either mighty brave or mighty stupid. So which is it, Twitter?

Cash-strapped microblogging website Twitter filed for its initial public offering late yesterday, revealing a huge battle ahead for the company to convince investors it's not just another corporate flash in the pan. As it began prepping for its Wall Street debut, the Dick Costolo-run outfit finally addressed its lack of a proper …
Kelly Fiveash, 04 Oct 2013
The Register breaking news

BAN THIS SICK FILCH: Which? demands end to £1.50-per-min 'help' lines

Consumer campaigners at Which? are calling for a ban on costly helpline and customer call-lines. Executive director Richard Lloyd said it was "outrageous" to force people with questions or complaints to call higher-rate numbers - such as those starting with 09, 0845, 0844, and 0871 - that could charge up to £1.50 a minute. "It' …
Guardian's smashed computer

MYSTERY of Guardian mobos and graphics cards which 'held Snowden files'

The Guardian’s picture of the computers it claims to have smashed in order to placate the British government over the Snowden affair has been called into question over both what it shows - and what it doesn’t. Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger yesterday revealed that GCHQ operatives last month paid the paper a visit in order to …
Tony Smith, 21 Aug 2013
closed_sign shut down under collapsed liquidation

Company which built O2's London 4G in administration

Cellular Systems, the company which built O2's 4G network in London and which was apparently a cornerstone of Cornerstone - the Vodafone/O2 shared-infrastructure project - has gone into administration. Cellular Systems built the 4G trial network 18 months ago, so that O2 could test LTE transmissions at 2.6GHz before the spectrum …
Bill Ray, 01 Jul 2013
The Register breaking news

Galaxy S4 way faster than iPhone 5: Which?

UK consumer magazine Which? has dropped a benchmark bucket on the iPhone, rating it the slowest of seven smartphones under test. The magazine ran the Geekbench 2 test on seven phones – the iPhone 5, Samsung's Galaxy S4, the HTC One, Sony's Experia Z, Google's Nexus 4, the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, and the BlackBerry Z10. With a …

Which big rack should you splash out on at ISC’13?

What would you get if you combined the World Cup and March Madness with computer science and HPC? You'd have yourself a cluster-building competition for students, and that’s exactly what’s on the docket beginning 17 June. The venue is International Supercomputing Conference 2013 (ISC'13) in Leipzig, Germany, where we’ll see …
Hitler and JC Penney kettle

Kettle 'which looks like HITLER' brews up sturm in a teacup

US retailer JC Penney is doing a brisk trade in a designer kettle after someone noticed it bore a certain resemblance to Adolf Hitler. Over the weekend, a snap of a billboard ad for the "Michael Graves Design Bells and Whistles Stainless Steel Tea Kettle" popped up on Reddit. The offending kettle and Adolf Hitler Spot the …
Lester Haines, 30 May 2013
The Register breaking news

Elephant which speaks: Rare. One which speaks Korean: Even Rarer

A captive Asian elephant called Koshik can do more with his trunk than just spray water at zoo visitors - he can use it to speak KOREAN. Boffins studied claims that Koshik's vocabulary extends to five words in the native tongue of his adoptive home and found they were true. The words, translated to English, are "hello", "sit …
Paul Kunert, 02 Nov 2012
Sony Xperia ZR

Which petite model likes a fondle and GETTING WET? Sony's Xperia ZR

Sony has come up with a new waterproof smartphone: the Xperia ZR, which is essentially an Xperia Z with a slightly smaller screen. The gadget giant's other hydrophilic phone, the Z, is, our reviewer thought, “a bit of a slab”. Thankfully, the Japanese manufacturer has launched a slightly more compact model. The Xperia ZR's …
Tony Smith, 13 May 2013
The Register breaking news

EFF report identifies which internet firms 'have your back' on data

The annual Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) report on data protection among online firms has shown lax privacy standards among some of the biggest names in the business when the government comes knocking at the door. A total of 18 companies were assessed on their privacy policies and T&Cs, stated procedures for handling …
Iain Thomson, 01 May 2013

Samsung vs Apple: which smartphone do Reg readers prefer?

Reg readers feel strongly about their smartphones. This much was clear when Freeform Dynamics analysed the results of a recent research study looking at Reg readers' habits and activity with respect to smartphones, tablets, TV viewing and electronic gaming (discussed in a previous article), Altogether, 1122 respondents took part …
Team Freeform, 16 Apr 2013

Cook: iPad is a gateway drug which leads to harder Mac addiction

Apple CEO Tim Cook has claimed that surging iPad sales could result in people buying more Mac computers. Answering questions after he announced quarterly results last night, the Cupertino overlord said that tablet sales could end up getting users hooked on Apple products, perhaps encouraging them to graduate to more expensive …
Jasper Hamill, 24 Apr 2013
The Register breaking news

Website which 'could have prevented Rwandan genocide' goes live

A genocide prevention charity and a campaign software development house have joined forces to create an all-encompassing database of online hate speech. The insults are collected together on a site called HateBase, which aims to provide NGOs and governments with the ability to "use hate speech as a predictor for regional …
Jasper Hamill, 08 Apr 2013
The Register breaking news

Half of US smartphone owners have no idea which mobe to buy next

Were "ecosystems" of apps and developers ever the clincher in the smartphone wars? The conventional wisdom is that once users are locked in an online software store they will never leave. Perhaps this stickiness has been oversold. Now 44 per cent of 1,500 smartphone owners surveyed by MKM Partners in the US aren't sure which …
Andrew Orlowski, 12 Apr 2013

Which volcanoes impacted ancient climate? Sulphur tells the story

A staple complaint of the climate sceptic, that it’s impossible to determine the impact of historical volcanic eruptions on the climate, is a step closer to being spiked, courtesy of work at the University of Copenhagen. The university’s Matthew Johnson, an associate professor in the Department of Chemistry, has published work …

Which Linux admin tools and tricks would YOU stake your career on?

Those seeking to enter the rewarding world of Linux system administration can be scared off by the platform's sometimes outright hostility towards the concept of "administrator friendliness". Linux – and the community that surrounds the open-source OS – can seem intimidating to the uninitiated, but it does not have to be so. To …
Trevor Pott, 21 Feb 2013
The Register breaking news

Switching to IT: Which qualifications are worthwhile?

From time to time we dip into El Reg Forums to highlight questions raised by our commentards. Today we republish this post from Thomas 4, who writes: I'm considering a change of career from my current medicinal line of work and stepping into the great grand world of IT. My current plan is starting in helpdesk work and moving up …
Drew Cullen, 08 Jan 2013
cable

Which sneaky storage upstart is drilling into software-network craze?

PernixData is a startup in stealth mode developing a data platform for the software-defined data centre (SDDC). Stealth mode means the company has talked to angel or seed investors about its basic proposition and the money people like it well enough to pump in initial startup cash. A founding company organisation is then set up …
Chris Mellor, 11 Jan 2013
The Register breaking news

US Department of Energy: Which bright spark just hacked us?

Personal information on several hundred employees at the the US Department of Energy has been compromised as the result of a hack attack, according to media reports. The FBI is reportedly investigating the attack, which was detected around two weeks ago. According to officials quoted in the Washington Free Beacon, the damage …
John Leyden, 05 Feb 2013
Hobo Mounting Solution

Clash of the Titans: Which of you has the GREATEST HOME LAB?

Last week's article about home labs and their career-enhancing powers produced some interesting comments from readers about their home labs. That got us thinking: in the spirit of our infamous Ventblockers series, in which readers sent in gut-wrenching photos of filth-laden IT kit, what about a servers'n'sofas challenge to show …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Feb 2013
The Register breaking news

Malware made which can share a smartcard over the internet

Security researchers have developed proof-of-concept malware that allows attackers to obtain remote access to smart card readers attached to compromised Windows PCs. The experimental malware developed by Itrust Consulting allows hackers to share a USB-based smart card reader over the internet. As such the attack goes one step …
John Leyden, 20 Nov 2012
grab_that_cash

Credit insurance: The hidden data-driven force which killed Comet

A quick look at what happened to high street electronics retailer Comet when its credit insurers slammed their wallets shut should be enough to get any IT business interested in cash-flow, insurance and credit lines. But while credit and cash-flow are often seen as stale subjects, they can be the lifeblood of business - almost …
Eddie Pacey, 16 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Windows 8 'penetrated' says firm which sells to world's spy agencies

French security researcher firm Vupen claim to have already developed a reliable windows 8 exploit, just days after the launch of latest edition of Microsoft's flagship operating system. The sometimes controversial firm, which sells the exploits it develops to Western government agencies and deliberately avoids sharing …
John Leyden, 01 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Windows Phone 8 has a secret feature which may activate at any time

Microsoft has embedded software from Devicescape into Windows Phone 8, allowing smartmobes to automatically leech off 11 million free Wi-Fi hotspots. Devicescape's technology is already mandated by Intel in its Ultrabook blueprints, but this Windows Phone tie-up is potentially a much bigger deal as phones already outnumber …
Bill Ray, 06 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Outfit which will save your Freeview TV from 4G interference stands up

The UK's mobile networks, in agreement with Ofcom and the Ministry of Fun, have set up a company to spend the £180m assigned to make sure that Freeview reception isn't knocked off the air by 4G. Digital Mobile Spectrum Limited will fill the role described as "MitCo" (mitigation company) in the various consultations and …
Bill Ray, 18 Oct 2012
The Register breaking news

New trend: Trojan which steals your pics instead of your text

Miscreants have developed a strain of malware that steals image files from compromised systems. The Pixsteal-A Trojan dispenses with the conventional tactic of only stealing text files, instead concentrating on uploading .jpg, .jpeg, and .dmp (memory dump) files from infected machines onto a remote FTP server. The switch in …
John Leyden, 06 Nov 2012
Germany celebrates winning Fifa world cup 2014 in Brazil

You can crunch it all you like, but the answer is NOT always in the data

Evidence-based decision making is so clearly sensible because the alternative — making random decisions based on no evidence — is so clearly ludicrous. The “evidence” that we often use is in the form of information that we extract from raw data, often by data mining. Sadly, there has been an upsurge in the number people who move …
Mark Whitehorn, 20 Oct 2014
Brute Force

Visual voicemail hack makes your messages a snack

Sydney penetration tester Shubham 'Shubs' Shah has urged US and European researchers to probe their telco's voicemail security after he found accounts held by local telcos Vodafone and Optus were open to attack. The two telcos were vulnerable because design flaws mean neither limited the number of password guessing attempts in …
Darren Pauli, 20 Oct 2014
IE8 patch

Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch

Another Patch Update Tuesday, another red face for Microsoft, which has again been forced to pull a patch to prevent nasty side-effects. Explained at TechNet, the patch that aimed to add “SHA-2 Hashing” to Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 has instead raised some concerns among Redmond's customers. The company is therefore “ …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2014

'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail

The man that Australia's Federal Police once described as "a self-proclaimed leader of the group ‘Lulz Security’ (Lulzsec) has been sentenced to 15 months of home detention, after a local magistrate decided he was just a very naughty boy. Flannery was sentenced last week in a case that has to date evaded law reports and media …
Malware

Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz

Analyst firm Gartner has departed from its usual areas of expertise to issue advice on how to combat the Ebola virus. The firm's advice, which it says it is offering for free because “issues of public safety deserve broad distribution in the public interest”. The advice is so earnest that it almost sounds comical. For example, …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2014
Cellular antenna. Source: Vxla/Flickr

FCC, Google cast eye over millimetre wireless

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is firing up an investigation into millimetre-wave frequency spectrum allocations, and Google has filed an application to fool around with the same band. The FCC “notice of inquiry” is intended to work out what the US's regulatory response will be to the use of frequencies beyond 24 …