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A garden gnome depicted stretched out across picnic table... with a pipe in one hand while the other props him up. Has a confrontational look in his eye...

Groupon flees from army of angry GNOMES: Trademark bid for 'Gnome' tab scrapped

Groupon has given up its pursuit of the trademark "Gnome", intended for its sales register tablet, after being chased off by the open-source GNOME project. The upstart voucher flinger told The Register that it was no longer looking to trademark "Gnome" in the wake of outrage from folks at the Linux desktop software foundation of …
Shaun Nichols, 11 Nov 2014
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Amazon bags control of .book and .pay domains – but NOT .cloud

Bookseller-turned-bazaar Amazon has beaten off competition from eight other companies, including Google and publisher Bowker, to win the right to sell domains ending in .book. It's not known how much Amazon paid since the gTLD was bought at private auction, although it is believed to have been between $5m and $10m – Amazon just …
Kieren McCarthy, 11 Nov 2014
BrickArms' Toy taliban figure

EU battles over 'anti-terrorist' passenger records slurper law

Law enforcement agencies just want all the data they can get their hands on, regardless of justification - so said disgruntled MEPs at the European Parliament’s hearing on PNR on Tuesday. The PNR (Passenger Name Records) Directive is a proposed EU law that would force airlines to hand over personal information about all …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Nov 2014

FCC to Obama on net neutrality: We work for CONGRESS, SIR, not YOU

US watchdog the FCC has politely told President Obama to get stuffed, gently pointing out that the agency reports to Congress – not the White House. President Obama excited his supporters yesterday, following a drubbing in the mid-term elections, by going nuclear on internet regulation. The White House said it backed the …
Andrew Orlowski, 11 Nov 2014
Parcelcopter

We don't NEED NO STEENKIN' DRONE RULES, peers told

No further regulation is needed to address privacy concerns around the use of commercial drones, a House of Lords sub-committee was told. Baroness Kramer, the minister of state for the Department for Transport, said yesterday: "We do not believe that any additional regulatory changes are needed to ensure adequate privacy and …
Kat Hall, 11 Nov 2014
Hangar One at Moffett Field, California - 1999

Consumer group SLAMS NASA for letting Google rent $1bn 'playground'

A consumer watchdog has slammed NASA for signing a whopping $1bn deal that will see a historic airbase turned into Google's space "playground". Mountain View has inked a deal with the space agency which will see it rent Moffett Federal Airfield for 60 years. The massive site is home to the Ames Research Center, where the Kepler …
Jasper Hamill, 11 Nov 2014
Columns of coins in the cloud

Rackspace CEO Rhodes: Just months on the job and look at our swollen digits

Taylor Rhodes, the latest man to grab the CEO chair at Rackspace, must have, er, racked up the celebratory drinks last night as the hoster-come-cloud-flogger reported a comparatively decent set of Q3 fiscal ’15 financials. The Texan-based biz reported revenues of $460m, up 4.2 per on last quarter and 18.3 per cent higher than …
Paul Kunert, 11 Nov 2014

Bullish Vodafone barges back into UK consumer broadband market

Vodafone is plotting to re-enter the UK's competitive broadband market in 2015 – with a little help from arch enemy BT. The mobile operator said this morning that it would use the Cable & Wireless Worldwide network it bought in 2012 to tout its rival service at Brits. That acquisition gifted Voda with access to nearly 13,000 …
Kelly Fiveash, 11 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
Vodafone UK booster brolly

Vodafone's 4G investment is beginning to pay off

What matters in results isn’t how good or bad they are, but how they compare with what lots of very highly paid people have been calculating they would be. This makes the Vodafone results for the six months to 30 September 2014 good. While the Earnings Before Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) from-day-to-day business …
Simon Rockman, 11 Nov 2014

Microsoft snorefest: For crying out loud, Nadella – just channel Ballmer!

Future Decoded Once upon a time, around every November, Steve Ballmer visited the UK on an official, annual state visit. Microsoft parked a giant metaphor DeLorean at the entrance to its Future Decoded conference in London Microsoft’s ex-CEO took time out from meeting customers to meet selected national press or trades to whom he’d say …
Gavin Clarke, 11 Nov 2014

What kind of generation doesn't stick it to the Man, but to Taylor Swift instead?

Interview David Lowery is a mathematician, musician (Cracker, Camper Van Beethoven), songwriter and producer. He also teaches business at the University of Georgia. "Congratulations!," Lowery wrote two years ago in a widely read post — "your generation is the first in history to rebel by unsticking it to the man and instead sticking it to …
Team Register, 11 Nov 2014
European Union Flag

Are open Wi-Fi network bods liable for users' copyright badness?

The EU's highest court has been asked to rule on whether commercial providers of free and open Wi-Fi networks can be held liable for copyright infringement carried out without their knowledge by a user of their network. A court in Munich has asked the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) to provide it with guidance on how to …
OUT-LAW.COM, 11 Nov 2014
The MQ-9 Reaper drone in flight

British drones target ISIS for the first time

The RAF has launched its first drone strikes against Islamic fundamentalists ISIS, marking an escalation of Blighty's air war in Iraq. A British Reaper drone attacked a terrorist encampment near Bayji, north of Baghdad, where militants were planting improvised explosive devices. It then circled the area, providing real-time …
Jasper Hamill, 11 Nov 2014

TPP takes another tiny step forward

Intellectual property negotiations remain a key roadblock in the ongoing Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations, according to a statement released after the Beijing meeting of trade ministers and negotiators. While the 12 nations' heads of government agreed to “make concluding this agreement a top priority”, the leaders' …
cloud

Ex-EMC exec to head up SDN switch vendor Plexxi

SDN switch vendor Plexxi has snapped up the former head of EMC's VNX storage array business, Rich Napolitano, as CEO. Founder and board member David Husak remains with the company as EVP of strategy and engineering, and has been working with Napolitano for some time, since the latter has been on the Plexxi board. In the company …
channel_teaser_exit

Juniper boss exits after board probes his 'leadership and conduct'

Juniper Networks CEO Shaygan Kheradpir has walked the plank and its R&D boss Rami Rahim has been elevated to take his place. In a carefully-worded statement, the company says merely that the board reviewed Kheradpir's “leadership and his conduct in connection with a particular negotiation with a customer”. “The board and …
Hortonworks logo

Yahoo!-backed Hadoop biz Hortonworks flings itself at the stock market

Big data analytics firm Hortonworks filed paperwork with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday announcing its intent to go public, making it the first of the Hadoop startups to float an initial public offering. The filing didn't say how many shares Hortonworks plans to offer or at what price, but it estimated the …
Neil McAllister, 10 Nov 2014
Beware of the dog

Names, ages, addresses, SSNs of US postal staff slurped in 'mega-hack'

The US Postal Service has called in the FBI after hackers apparently grabbed names, addresses, social security numbers and other sensitive records from its staff database. It's feared miscreants got into USPS corporate servers, and swiped data that will be a lucrative haul for identity thieves and other fraudsters. USPS employs …
Iain Thomson, 10 Nov 2014

Obama HURLS FCC under train, GUTPUNCHES ISPs in net neut battle

Barack Obama has set the cat among the pigeons in the battle over net neutrality – by issuing a blunt demand that internet access be treated as a public utility in the United States. In a two-minute video, also given its own page on the White House website, Obama warns that "abandoning the principles" behind the internet's …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 Nov 2014
New infantry kit modelled by British troops. Credit: MoD

MoD releases code to GitHub: Our Ideaworks... sort of

The Ministry of Defence is to consider making some of its more "sophisticated" software available online, having for the first time publicly released code onto open-source site Github.com. The web application "Ideaworks" was developed by the MoD'S Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) for work collaboration. A …
Kat Hall, 10 Nov 2014
Pile of mobiles

Samsung, Vietnam in talks over another BEEELLION-DOLLAR mobe factory

Samsung Electronics has applied for a licence to open a new $3bn smartphone factory in northern Vietnam, near an existing facility. Sammy is planning to build the plant in Thai Nguyen province, where it already has a $2bn phone factory that it opened in March, Dau Tu newspaper originally reported. In an emailed statement, the …
Downing Street road sign

Reg mobile man: National roaming plan? Oh UK.gov, you've GOT to be joking

Comment It seems the government’s solution to poor mobile phone coverage in the UK is to mandate a system that leads to less mobile phone coverage. They have got this backwards. As my colleague Andrew Orlowski has noted, it’s a typical Ministry of Fun reaction to a problem of the government’s own making. If national roaming is …
Simon Rockman, 10 Nov 2014
chart

It's a bad day to be Serco's CEO... or an investor, come to that

Scandal-hit integrator Serco today issued its fourth profit warning of this fiscal and calendar year, confirmed a £1.5bn write-down and provision to cover to loss-making contracts and effectively exited private sector business process outsourcing. The financial markets reacted negatively, sending the company’s share price …
Paul Kunert, 10 Nov 2014
BlackBerry Passport

BlackBerry chief vows: We'll focus on 'core devices' and on, er, NOT LOSING MONEY

BlackBerry chief John Chen has said that the Canadian firm won’t be trying to launch too many new devices as it struggles to claw its way back to profitability. Chen told Reuters that the firm was focused on profits, so it wouldn’t be pushing for heaps of new smartphones. "Once we turn this company to profitability again, I …
GCHQ Benhall doughnut aerial view

Don't assume public trusts you, MI5. 'Make a case' for surveillance – Former security chief

Spooks and security agencies must openly debate the public's concerns over surveillance following the Snowden revelations, former head of MI5 and current thriller writer Stella Rimington has said. "It is not enough nowadays for intelligence services to say we have your best interests at heart," she told delegates at Microsoft's …
Kat Hall, 10 Nov 2014
Peter Sunde

The Pirate Bay co-founder exits jail, now, er, free to eat vegan food

Pirate Bay co-founder Peter Sunde has been set free after spending five months in a Swedish jail. Sunde is better known as Brokep and was collared earlier this year on a Swedish farm. He announced his freedom in the following tweet: My body just got re-united with my soul and mind, the parts of me that matters and that never …
Jasper Hamill, 10 Nov 2014
Hacked sarcasm

Someone has broken into your systems. Now what?

So, you've been hacked. Compromised. Breached and violated. Some criminal Goldilocks has been inside your network and found that your data was neither too hot nor too cold but just right. What are you going to do about it? This could happen to any organisation and what you do to mitigate the problem could define your public …
Danny Bradbury, 10 Nov 2014
Cameron Diaz

CAMERON DIAZ covers top BOFFINS in GOLD at Breakthrough Prizes

Cameron Diaz, Benedict Cumberbatch and Mark Zuckerberg were among the assembled luminaries at NASA's Ames campus in Silicon Valley over the weekend – where techbiz titans and people paid to pretend to be boffins in the movies distributed $36m at the Breakthrough Prize ceremony. The money was awarded by tech luminaries on the …
management project3

CSC set for ANOTHER re-org but no redundancies involved

Re-arranging the UK deck chairs on good ship CSC is the strategy the integrator has chosen after shelving plans to make further redundancies, according to numerous sources. The US-owned business does not generally shy away from making redundancies, axing 750 people from its Brit operation in late April and parting company with …
Paul Kunert, 10 Nov 2014
medical_doctor_health_channel

NHS XP patch scratch leaves patient records wide open to HACKERS

Thousands of patient records could be left exposed to hackers, as up to 20 NHS trusts have failed to put an agreement in place with Microsoft to extend security support for Windows XP via a patch, The Register can reveal. The majority of trusts still operate Windows XP and have signed up to a £5.5m Cabinet Office agreement with …
Kat Hall, 10 Nov 2014
BrickArms' Toy taliban figure

'Tech giants who encrypt comms are unwittingly aiding terrorists', claims ex-Home Sec Blunkett

Former, draconian Home Secretary David Blunkett – who held the post at the time of the 9/11 attacks in the US – has claimed that technology companies that encrypt communications on their networks are helping terrorists to spread fear. The Labour MP, writing in Saturday's Daily Telegraph, lambasted Martha Lane-Fox for telling the …
Kelly Fiveash, 9 Nov 2014
President Putin doing judo

What? El Reg had a cheap dig at Putin?! SAY IT AIN'T SO

CoTW Dissing Vladimir Putin and re-publishing all those hilarious "macho" PR pics of him over the years is a public service. Unfortunately, one Register commentard disagrees. Happily, you all disagree with him. DISAGREECEPTION. First, before we show you that particular snippet, here's a few other little gobbets of joy from this week' …
Doctor Who in Listen

Does Father Christmas expect a happy ending with Clara in Doctor Who?

Vid Shaun of the Dead star Nick Frost will appear in Doctor Who's Christmas special as Santa Claus. Youtube Video Viewers of last night's finale on the Beeb will have seen Frost arrive at the entrance to the Tardis as a deadpan Father Christmas, after the Doctor's cryptic farewell with Clara. Coo-eee! [knock, knock] Hello. [knock …
Team Register, 9 Nov 2014

If only 0.006% care about BLOOD-SOAKED METAL ... why are we spending all this cash?

Worstall @ the Weekend As El Reg's official dodgy metals dealer, another tilt at the oh-so-fashionable concerns over conflict minerals and that “blood in the mobile” campaign. The essential point is that almost none of us seem to be very interested in the subject so why the hell are we spending billions of dollars on it? You can read past coverage of …
Tim Worstall, 9 Nov 2014

Elon Musk and ex-Google man mull flinging 700 internet satellites into orbit

Space rocket baron Elon Musk is reportedly in tentative talks with industry players and regulatory bods to build 700 internet satellites weighing less than 250 pounds each. The billionaire is discussing the plans with Greg Wyler, according to the Wall Street Journal. Until very recently, Wyler was leading Google's efforts to …
Team Register, 9 Nov 2014
Cyberman on steps of St. Paul's

Doctor Who trashing the TARDIS, Clara alone, useless UNIT – Death in Heaven

TV Review Please note: THIS IS A POST-UK-BROADCAST REVIEW – THERE WILL BE SPOILERS! Brid-Aine says: The thrill is definitely gone. This finale couldn’t lift itself up from the messy morass of the rest of the season, or redeem either Peter Capaldi’s Doctor or Jenna Coleman’s Clara Oswald. All of it, down to the completely annoying and …
Gavin Clarke, 8 Nov 2014
Original "Airplane" image from Paramount Pictures

Brussels' transport chief demands a single European sky to end 'air traffic gridlock'

EC officials are pushing for countries in the 28-member bloc to bring an end to "gridlock in the skies" above Europe, by urging them to be more flexible about national airspace. The EU's transport commissioner, Violeta Bulc, said during a speech in Rome, Italy on Friday that attitudes needed to change to address what she claimed …
Kelly Fiveash, 8 Nov 2014
Regina Egbert, El Reg's virtual news anchor

Who rules the ‘net, when will we see Oculus Rift and should tech tycoons REALLY be homeless?

Youtube Video This week's top tales include the UN defeated in its attempt to rule the 'net, Brendan Iribe's tantalising clues on when Facebook's Oculus Rift techno-specs can be expected to hit the shelves and a US politician telling tech tycoons they should sleep on the streets. Want to know more? Click here, here and here …
Marianne Faithfull: Girl on a Motorcycle

Danish lit star Helle Helle, Marianne Faithfull and Jim Al-Khalili on Quantum Biology

Page File El Reg bookworm Mark Diston reviews the latest releases from the publishing world. Helle Helle proves a master of understatement while Marianne Faithfull's recollections seem large than life. And talking of life, scientists Jim Al-Khalili and Johnjoe McFadden shed light on the latest thinking on its mysteries. This Should be …
Mark Diston, 8 Nov 2014
gTLD graphic

Newly public dot-dentist flogger Rightside's shares jump on strong domain sales

In its first earnings report since going public, domain-name specialist Rightside reported revenues of $48.8m, a 7 per cent revenue increase over the year-ago quarter, causing its shares to jump by 4.5 per cent. The company is now valued at $173m. Rightside is unique in the domain name industry in that it services every level of …

Aereo-no! Streaming telly biz axes staff, shuts down operations

Embattled video streaming firm Aereo has been forced to lay off most of its staff as the company continues to face a US ban. Local news reports from Boston broke word that the company has shut down its operations in the city and closed its offices, laying off local all employees in the process. According to an employee letter …
Shaun Nichols, 8 Nov 2014