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Mine Bitcoins with PENCIL and PAPER

Google engineer Ken Shirriff has mined Bitcoins with nothing more than a paper and pencil. While he says the process is about a quintillion times slower give or take than than a Bitcoin mining rig, the algorithm was easy enough to crunch. Shirriff completed a round of SHA-256 in 16 minutes and 45 seconds at which rate a full …
Darren Pauli, 30 Sep 2014
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Larry: Oracle's now a CLOUDY biz. Ignore everything I said before

Despite once declaring that the cloud was “complete gibberish”, “insane” and “idiocy”, former Oracle head honcho Larry Ellison has announced that the firm is now ready to be the foundation of the cloud for its customers. Larry Ellison speaking at Oracle Openworld yesterday (28th September) Speaking at the company’s Openworld …
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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
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Regina Eggbert gives her signature rundown of the week's tech news

Vid Youtube Video Tune in for a brief rundown of the week's eggiest tech tales from The Reg's avatar news anchor Regina Eggbert. Then find out more about this week's stories, including shell-shocked Bash, PC abandonment issues and bent mobes – here, here and here. ® Regina Egbert, El Reg's virtual news anchor
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Be your own Big Brother: Keeping an eye on Mum and Dad

Feature Time was, when relatives started to get old, they'd move into the spare bedroom. My grandmother's generation seemed to do a lot of that, with assorted great aunts taking up residence. But it's much less common now. Else and Alf Garnett, Mike and Rita Fancy an alternative to regular visits to Mum and Dad? Source: BBC, Till …
Nigel Whitfield, 27 Sep 2014
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Hollywood's made an INTELLIGENT science vs religion film?!

Film Review There’s nothing like the power of love to screw up a good movie about science. Whether it’s miracle medical cures for the mentally ill who just needed to find “the one” (Silver Linings Playbook) or the old chestnut that feelings about people and nature are just better than science and progress (Avatar), there’s nothing Hollywood …
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How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?

Can people hear the difference between lossy MP3 digital music files and lossless ones? Opinions differ strongly, with much obfuscation around audio cables, mastering and hi-fi componentry muddying the waters. This article was prompted by commentard critiques of Sonos streaming Wi-Fi speaker/player reviews and audiophiles saying …
Chris Mellor, 26 Sep 2014
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Galaxy Note 4 latest: Samsung rushes iPhone 6 Plus rival to China as Apple flails in dark

Perhaps looking to cut Apple's iPhone 6 Plus phablet off at the pass, Samsung is rushing out its 5.6-inch Galaxy Note 4 smartphone in China and South Korea ahead of schedule. Sammy said on Wednesday that its large screen Android phone will be available in South Korea on 26 September, with the Associated Press reporting China …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Sep 2014
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NSFW: Click here, watch iPhone 6 being TORTURED

Apple claims its latest device is bigger and better than any other mobile phone, but the iOS 8 sporting iPhone 6 Plus has already been criticised for supposedly bending in fanbois' pockets. So if it can't survive the flaming heat of an Apple lover's crotch, what hope has it got against a hammer or a large calibre rifle? Not a …
Jasper Hamill, 24 Sep 2014
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Ordnance Survey intern plonks houses, trees, rivers and roads on GB Minecraft map

Youtube Video Blighty’s Ordnance Survey organisation has updated the country’s map in Minecraft, adding roads, national rail networks and houses to the digital overview. A plucky intern at the mapping org stuck Britain into the vastly popular game this time last year. Now that he’s bagged himself a full-time position on the …
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My TIGHT PANTS made my HUGE iPHONE go all BENDY!

Apple's new embiggened iPhone 6 Plus has been snapped up by buyers for, among other things, its thin case and its 5.5-inch touchscreen. But Apple didn't mention that it also appears to be the company's most flexible handset – whether you like it or not. A handful of early adopters have reported that after carrying the phablet …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Sep 2014
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Rookie southies S Korea and S Africa prep for cluster-wrestling match

HPC Blog Rounding out the field for the recent ISC14 Student Cluster Competition in Leipzig are two semi-experienced teams that both have “South” in their names. Even though Team South Africa and Team South Korea are separated by a large amount of land and water, these two teams do have some things in common. Both of these teams have …
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Emma Watson urges UN to back feminism – trolls threaten to leak her 'nude selfies'

At the weekend, actress Emma Watson gave a well-argued and reasoned speech to the UN calling for better relations between the sexes. And lo, internet trolls appear to have set up a website threatening to release nude photographs of the Harry Potter star. The site, www.emmayouarenext.com, features a 4chan logo, a badly rendered …
Iain Thomson, 23 Sep 2014
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Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack

Apple’s shiny new iPhone 6 can be spoofed with the same fake fingerprints that tricked its older sibling, the iPhone 5S. That's according to mobile security firm Lookout, which said it discovered that it is possible to create a fake fingerprint that's capable of fooling the TouchID fingerprint sensor of the latest iPhones (6 and …
John Leyden, 23 Sep 2014
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Colias robots SWARMING out of the lab

Video Greybeards of the IT industry will remember RoboCode, the Java programming teaching game that let you set virtual robots in battle with each other. How about teaching a bunch of real robots how to swarm? That's the aim of the University of Lincoln's Colias project, which provides relatively low-cost – £25 a pop – micro-robot …
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Jesus phone RAISED from DEAD. Watch iPhone 6 get BURNED, DROWNED, SMASHED

Vid Apple's latest iPhones are the toughest mobes ever made, if the results of a sadistic insurer's torture test are to be believed. SquareTrade used a cruel robot to inflict all manner of pain on the two models of the iPhone 6, which can be bought in the normal size or as a well-endowed, ab-phab version with a 5.5-inch face. The …
Jasper Hamill, 22 Sep 2014
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NASA's MAVEN enters Mars orbit to sniff its gas

NASA's MAVEN spacecraft has reached Mars after a 10-month journey – and started its mission to study the Red Planet's upper atmosphere. The Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) dropped into orbit around Earth’s favourite neighbour around 3.24am BST after months of journeying through space. To do it, the craft had to …
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Moon landing was real and WE CAN PROVE IT, says Nvidia

It's only a product promo, but it's a smart one: Nvidia reckons the judicious application of its graphics technology can debunk one of the world's favourite “moon landing was a hoax conspiracies”. As a demo of the VXGI – voxel based global illumination – technology included in the company's new Maxwell graphics architecture, a …
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Who.is does the Harlem Shake

Websites across the internet are doing the Harlem Shake after online comedians began exploiting cross site scripting (XSS) flaws that make pages dance and speakers blare. The flaws exist in the DNS text record – not the protocol – due to a lack of sanitation, and allowed internet scamps to turn boring websites like Who.is into a …
Darren Pauli, 22 Sep 2014
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SpaceX blasts a mischief of mice, a 3D printer and a cuddly toy* into SPAAAACE

Vid Elon Musk's private spaceflight company SpaceX successfully launched its unmanned, mouse-laden Dragon 'craft in the early hours of this morning. The commercial cargo ship is carrying 2.5 tons of supplies destined for the International Space Station, NASA said. SpaceX rocket lifts off from Cape Canaveral. Image credit: NASA A …
Kelly Fiveash, 21 Sep 2014
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All the top tech news from Vulture Central this week

Vid Youtube Video Let animated news anchor Regina Eggbert guide you along a short amble through the tech news of the week. You can find this week's stories, including the saviour of Bitcoin, naughty tech firm's tax matters and hackers for hire, here, here and here. ® Regina Egbert, El Reg's virtual news anchor
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A spin of roulette in the sporty Ford Fiesta Black

Vulture at the Wheel A car is either a head or a heart purchase. If you look at numbers and depreciation, you buy a BMW. Emotion and passion, on the other hand, stereotypically leads to an Alfa Romeo. The new Fiesta Red and Black editions try to be both. It comes it the two colours favoured by roulette, so we took it for a spin. The car we tested …
Simon Rockman, 20 Sep 2014
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Weekend reads: Tales of Madchester in Chapter and Verse plus Shark and Ring of Steel

Page File El Reg bookworm Mark Diston reviews the latest literary treats. Lauded wordsmith Will Self's new novel takes some extraordinary twists and turns. Joy Division and New Order guitarist Bernard Sumner tells his life story and Alexander Watson delivers a unique take on WWI, history, not from the victors, but as told from the centre …
Mark Diston, 20 Sep 2014
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Reg bloke zips through an iPHONE 6 queue from ZERO to 60 SECONDS

Vid World+Dog descended upon the flagship London Apple Store today in an attempt to get their sweaty mitts on the phabulous new iPhone 6 Plus. This Register reporter was on hand a little after the shop opened, to get a sense of why on earth people would queue for weeks just for the opportunity to buy a phone which is only …
Jasper Hamill, 19 Sep 2014
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Your chance to WIN the WORLD'S ONLY HANDHELD ZX SPECTRUM

Competition Youtube Video Many of you reading this will have had a Sinclair ZX Spectrum as their first computer [or second, anyway. And it was the first one that really worked. - Ed]. With 16k or 48k RAM and a Z80 processor it was the first mass market colour home computer. Now you can win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary …
Simon Rockman, 19 Sep 2014
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Man buys iPHONE 6 and DROPS IT to SMASH on PURPOSE

First Crack In the queue to buy the iPhone 6 today, Vulture South met a chap named Alex McCredie, the founder of Sydney iThing repair company FixPod. Alex intended to buy an iPhone 6 Plus, then drop it to see what happened. To say Alex was a bit conflicted about the project is an understatement: he was clearly struggling with the idea of …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Sep 2014
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Credit card cutting flaw could have killed EVERY AD on Twitter

Twitter has patched a flaw in its service that allowed unauthorised users to delete every credit card from all accounts, potentially relieving the company of its advertising revenue, security researcher Ahmed Aboul-Ela says. The attacks worked through a direct object reference vulnerability and involved the manipulation of …
Darren Pauli, 17 Sep 2014
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Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS

It's with a great degree of relief that we can report today we appear to have cracked our Vulture 2 spaceplane's pesky servo power supply issue. As Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) regulars know, we were having a few issues with juice to our Pixhawk autopilot and servos. We originally had the whole rig powered from …
Lester Haines, 16 Sep 2014
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Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets

Weve, the bonk-tastic joint venture between EE, O2 and Vodafone to “create and accelerate the development of mobile marketing and wallet services in the UK”, has abandoned plans to launch a digital wallet. This follow on the heels of having lost £25m, on revenues of £13m in its first year, doing the mobile marketing stuff – as …
Simon Rockman, 16 Sep 2014
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'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux

New videos of a "Windows 9" variant have emerged, and to this hack's eyes they look to have brought Windows up to speed with tricks that various desktop flavours of Unix have had for a decade or more. The feature in question is being described as “multiple desktops” and looks an awful lot like the “workspaces” that have been …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Sep 2014
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MIT boffins cry havoc and let slip the ROBOT CHEETAHS of Whoa

Vid MIT roboticists in the US have exhibited a robo-cheetah that will run and bound across the landscape without the need for a power cord. Youtube video The big cat bot is of particular interest to robotics scientists since it's the fastest quadruped found in nature. The US government's secret-squirrel science nerve-center DARPA ( …
Iain Thomson, 15 Sep 2014
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No biggie: EMC's XtremIO firmware upgrade 'will wipe data'

There's a rumor that upgrading EMC's XtremIO firmware to v3.0 will wipe all user data from the flash array. It's mentioned here. It seems going from firmware version 2.4.x to version 3.0, expected by early October, will cause data to be lost – and customers will need to back everything up before the upgrade and restore it …
Chris Mellor, 15 Sep 2014
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Get your Indian Landfill Android One handsets - they're only SIXTY QUID

Three Indian manufacturers have signed up to make Android One budget handsets in India and the devices have been launched today. The Karbon Sparkle V is 6399 rupees (£64), runs KitKat 4.4, has a 1,700mAh battery, 1700mAh removable battery, 5MP rear and 2MP front cameras, quad core 1.3GHz CPU, 1GB of RAM with a slot for up to …
Simon Rockman, 15 Sep 2014
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Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s

Some may fondly remember the era that bought us The Clangers, Fawlty Towers and The Sweeney. But not Apple boss Tim Cook, who reckons the goggle box is stuck in a time warp so intense that watching it is like being sucked back back into the 1970s. In an interview with American talk show host Charlie Rose, Cook dropped a clanging …
Jasper Hamill, 15 Sep 2014
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Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around

US boffins are overturning the understanding of how Li-ion batteries charge, by watching the behaviour of individual molecules as they absorb charges. It's long been assumed that a battery charges fairly uniformly – in other words, that electrons are distributed evenly across the charge-carrying material as the battery charges. …
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Stricter shark and manta ray trade rules enforced from today

Vid Manta ray species and five types of shark now have greater protection from international trade, following new measures that were adopted last year. From today, anyone without an adequate permit will be banned from selling meat or fins taken from oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus), scalloped hammerhead shark ( …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014
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The week in tech news with cracking coverage from Regina Eggbert

Youtube Video A short stroll through this week's top tech news, with animated anchor Regina Eggbert. Get more in depth knowledge on the Apple, Google and Microsoft stories here, here and here. ® Regina Egbert, El Reg's virtual news anchor
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Apple's Mr Havisham: Tim Cook says dead Steve Jobs' office has remained untouched

Despite Apple cofounder Steve Jobs being dead nearly three years now, current Apple CEO Tim Cook has left Jobs' fourth-floor office at Apple untouched since his passing, a new interview has revealed. Cook made the revelation during a wide-ranging talk with broadcaster Charlie Rose that will air on the PBS TV network in the US …
Team Register, 13 Sep 2014
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Not pro Bono: Apple's audio junk mail made spammers' lives easier

Comment Apple's decision to push a new album by Irish boy band U2 into the iCloud libraries of millions isn't just egregious. It arguably plays into the hands of scammers. Without warning, the iPhone maker emitted Songs of Innocence with all the haste of a critical security update after the group's appearance at its Apple Watch and …
John Leyden, 13 Sep 2014
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Sleepy spotless summer Sun's shock solar storm surge stuns scientists

Vid The massive solar storm bathing Earth in radiation this week was a significant event not for its strength, but for its timing, say astronomers. On Wednesday, scientists detected a couple of coronal mass ejections (CMEs) which have been showering our planet, and will continue to do so over the next two days. As the peak of the …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Sep 2014
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SHINY NEW GADGETS! No, we're not joking, here's a load of them

IFA 2014 Image is everything - or so it has been said, and if the gadgets at the recent IFA techfest in Berlin are anything to go by, then manufacturers certainly seem to think we’re image-obsessed. With selfies being a global compulsion, perhaps they know us better than we know ourselves. Narcissism aside, the rise of wearable cameras …
Bob Dormon, 12 Sep 2014
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DUCKCROCZILLA 'alien' dinosaur could emerge from THE SEA

Pic Paleontologists have published the first pictures of a gigantic half-crocodile, half-duck dinosaur that evolved to swim – and was bigger than the fearsome Tyrannosaurus Rex. Spinosaurus aegyptiacus Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water ... "Working on this animal was like studying an alien from outer space …
Iain Thomson, 11 Sep 2014