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Slick looking picture of  xiaomi's Mi3 Android smartphone

China's Apple? PAH! We're looking for SUCCESS in internet TV – Xiaomi

Rising star mobile company Xiaomi is planning an assault on TV content and has reportedly set aside $1bn with which to do it. The company – which is currently giving Samsung a run for its money and recently raised $1.1bn to value the company at $45bn – has budgeted $1bn for building internet content in China and foreign markets …
Simon Rockman, 19 Jan 2015

Twitter complies with Turkey's 'national security' blackout demand – BLOCKS newspaper's tweets

Turkey has once again browbeat Twitter into censoring some of the content posted on the micro-blogging site, after being threatened with an outright ban in the country. The demand came after the Turkish government issued a court order in Adana on Thursday. According to the New York Times, officials had told news organisations to …
Kelly Fiveash, 18 Jan 2015
Mulder in The X-Files

This could be a case for Mulder and Scully: Fox 'in talks' to bring back The X-Files

Chris Carter's cult, '90s telly classic The X-Files could be set for a return to the small screen, after the Fox network confirmed it was in talks to hit reboot on the drama series. Original cast members David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson are expected to reprise their roles as FBI special agents Mulder & Scully in the popular …
Team Register, 18 Jan 2015
The Year of Living Danishly

The Year of Living Danishly, The Internet is Not the Answer and Classical Literature

Page File El Reg bookworm Mark Diston reviews the latest releases from the publishing world. Helen Russell discovers all that is Nordic is not noir after all, they're actually quite a content – medication optional. Silicon Valley sourpuss Andrew Keen reckons we're better off without the web or something like that. Meanwhile, Richard …
Mark Diston, 17 Jan 2015
Purported iPhone on the cover of a 2006 issue of the French publication, 20 Minutes

IT cock-up – not jihadi DDoS – fingered for French web media blackout

Several prominent ‪French news websites‬ fell off the web on Friday for several hours in what's looking like a technical failure rather than a denial-of-service attack. It was, at first, assumed Islamist miscreants had attacked the sites, lashing out in anger at press coverage of the C‪harlie Hebdo‬ killings. Le Parisien ( …
John Leyden, 17 Jan 2015
Cartoon of fist clutching dollars smashing out of smartphone

Microsoft & Paypal link hands, turn round and slap Apple Pay

Microsoft will start supporting PayPal’s "PayPal Here" hardware, so people can buy things with their mobile phones. The partnership, which is only for the US initially, will allow retailers to use a Lumia or Surface to take payments through PayPal. The idea is that they will then want to use Microsoft products rather than …
Simon Rockman, 16 Jan 2015
Zombie rising from the grave

PROOF the undead STALK Verizon users: Admen caught using 'perma-cookie'

Researchers have spotted an advertising agency using Verizon’s indestructible cookies to silently track people across the internet. Back in 2012, Verizon started injecting a "unique identifier token header" (UIDH) into each HTTP request sent through its mobile data network; these identifiers are unique to each subscriber and …
Iain Thomson, 15 Jan 2015
Hemsworth in Blackhat

Hollywood vs hackers: Vulture cracks Tinseltown keyboard cornballs

A lot of exciting things are happening online right now. Eye-boggling blocks of code are presently being distilled into art, pornography and weapons of war, and making that distillation look exciting on film would be a challenge for film-makers who thoroughly understood the world of IT. And, if we’ve learned anything from the …
Michael Moran, 15 Jan 2015
First Charlie Hebdo cover after attack. copyright: charlie hebdo

Bloke in Belgium tries to trademark Je Suis Charlie slogan

An, er, enterprising individual has attempted to register the phrase “Je Suis Charlie” as a trademark in Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. The Benelux Trademarks Office told El Reg on Tuesday that it had received an application in Dutch to register the slogan just one day after the staff of Charlie Hebdo were murdered in …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Jan 2015

Spotify flips bird at Taylor Swift, adds MILLIONS more users

Spotify says it now has 15 million subscribers, up five million from last May, having added 2.5 million paying punters in the Christmas period alone. It also claims to have 35 million users on its free ad-supported version. Spotify launched a new “family plan” in October, allowing two household members to subscribe for £17.99 …
Andrew Orlowski, 13 Jan 2015
Zuckerberg new news feed

Speak your brains, Colombia – Facebook chief to walk among you soon

A no doubt carefully-selected bunch of Latin American Facebookers will get to quiz the free-content ad network's kingpin Mark Zuckerberg during his first "Townhall Q&A" session away from Menlo Park. The billionaire, copper-haired boydroid, who has been extra chatty about freedom of expression this week, will be present at a …
Kelly Fiveash, 10 Jan 2015
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un

Last year was utter rubbish. Thanks for being part of it!

Something for the Weekend, Sir? I’m glad 2014 is over. It was rubbish. However, given the circumstances, can we have it back please? This year is worse. Not only was last year crap for many, Facebook’s algorithm oompaloopas made sure they rubbed it in by showing us graphically how crap it was via its now-notorious Year in Review fail. To be fair, all it did …
Alistair Dabbs, 10 Jan 2015
Montage of front covers from Charlie Hebdo magazine

French Google fund to pay for 1 million print run of Charlie Hebdo next week

Money put into a fund by Google as a sweetener for French publishers during the link tax row of 2013 will be used to pay for next week’s edition of Charlie Hebdo. Following an attack by gunmen on the magazine's offices in Paris on Wednesday – in which 12 people were killed – the media world has come together to support the …
Sony X85 65-inch flat panel 4K TV

Got a 4King big TV? Ready to stream lots of awesome video? Yeah, about that…

While electronics giants are showing off their internet-connected 4K TVs, most people still do not have the web bandwidth to stream stuff in ultra high-def. That's the conclusion reached by the latest quarterly report [PDF] from internet backbone-manipulation outfit Akamai, which shows that only about 12 per cent of netizens …
Shaun Nichols, 9 Jan 2015
James Franco and Seth Rogen in The Interview

Speaking in Tech: The Interview? PAH. Nobody'd bother if the Norks had kept quiet

Podcast speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise The whole crew is together again for the New Year's ep of El Reg's tech cast, hosted by Greg Knieriemen, Ed Saipetch and Sarah Vela, with special guest Mark Twomey (aka Storagezilla) of EMC. Don't be alarmed when you start the podcast - we have a new introduction this week …
Team Register, 7 Jan 2015
spiders crawl through tunnel of binary numbers

Right to be forgotten? That’s not Google’s call – data MEP Albrecht

Even though changes to Europe’s data protection laws would not substantially alter the right to deletion or erasure, perhaps Google shouldn’t be making such calls on its own, according to Jan Philipp Albrecht, a leading data protection MEP. Last May, Google was ordered to remove links to “outdated or irrelevant” information …
Rotten apple

FREE EBOOKS: Apple falls into line with EU refund laws

Apple has brought its latest terms and conditions in line with the EU's consumer laws, allowing customers to demand a refund for apps, ebooks and music within two weeks of purchase. Users of Apple's App Store, Mac App Store, iTunes Store and iBooks in Germany, France, Spain, Poland, and the Netherlands (as well as non-EU Norway …
Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP. Pic: Jennifer Jane Mills

UKIP website TAKES A KIP, but for why?

Updated UKIP's website is currently out of action, but the reason for its little sit-down remains a mystery given that the domain name is not set to expire until early next year. It's been suggested elsewhere that Nigel Farage and his loony pals have failed to pay their domain renewal fees for the service hosted by 123-reg. However, a …
Kelly Fiveash, 6 Jan 2015
slow_sign

Twitter hit by giant go-slow days after last mega-wobble

Twitter suffered a second major disruption to its micro-blogging site in the early hours of this morning after the service went titsup on 28 December. Users moaned that tweets were delayed after being posted on Twitter. Other users reported that their timelines were very slow to update with new tweets. The latest technical …
Kelly Fiveash, 6 Jan 2015
Chromecast

Google casts about for wireless audio

Google casts about for wireless audio Google in your speakers – what could possibly go wrong with that? Google’s Chromecast legitimised the market for small HDMI nubbins that stream content from mobile devices into tellies. Now the company’s making the same technology a platform for audio equipment makers to embed in speakers. …
Clog dancers. image via shutterstock http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-138156878/

Facebook privacy policy change leaves Dutch stomping feet

Facebook is under investigation by the Dutch Data Protection Authority (DPA) after it unveiled plans to overhaul its new privacy policy in November. The social network says the new policy was an attempt to “simplify” its privacy rules, but the College Bescherming Persoonsgegevens (the Dutch DPA) is concerned about the use of …
Road closed

VPN users reckon Netflix is blocking them

Netflix is being accused of planning to enforce its terms and conditions by blocking connections from services that bypass geographic blocks. If the reported blocking proves effective, users in nations not served by the media streamer would find themselves stuck with the company's limited local catalogue, rather than continuing …
Pigeon crapping on statue

Music fans FUME over PJ Harvey ticket CHAOS as Somerset House site buckles

Many PJ Harvey fans who rushed to buy tickets from Somerset House's online store on Friday were left bitterly disappointed, after the website buckled under demand. It was announced yesterday that the two-time Mercury Prize winner would be collaborating on a live installation in London with Somerset House on the artist's …
Kelly Fiveash, 3 Jan 2015
Conrad Schnitzler

I'm sooooo green: The Beginner's Guide to Krautrock

Feature At this time of year, most of us will have heard more than a few bars of Stille Nacht (aka Silent Night), perhaps sipped some glühwein (mulled wine) and chomped on some stollen. So how about a Teutonic taster of a different sort to last the whole year round? Focusing on the the pioneering electronic musicians of the late 20th …
Mark Diston, 3 Jan 2015
Raphael's School of Athens

The Just City: A brilliant, if puzzling, philosophical dialogue

Page File At first glance, Jo Walton’s novel The Just City doesn’t seem to fit into the category of science fiction at all. We open with the god Apollo, who is confused about why Daphne the nymph chose to pray to the gods to be turned into a tree rather than sleep with him. Pleading with the goddess Athene for understanding, she …
Swiss Cow

Magic streaming beans? Sure, have my cow - music biz

"Why do people keep buying CDs?" we asked in 2009, after a decade of declining plastic sales. And the year after. Yet no matter how many times it was pronounced dead, the CD just wouldn't die. Figures from industry group BPI show the plastic relic remains a market favourite – and surprisingly is proving more resilient than …

Let it go, let it go ... Sales of games, video and music up for second year

Blighty sales of video, games and music rose 2.2 per cent to £5.66bn in 2014, with games sales alone up 7.5 per cent to £2.45bn, compared with the previous year. Sales were evenly split between physical and digital purchases, according to preliminary figures released by trade group Entertainment Retailers Association. This …
Kat Hall, 2 Jan 2015
The Child Catcher

Universal Pictures told off for scaring kids with nasty vid

Universal Pictures has had its hand slapped by the Advertising Standards Authority for scaring kiddies by featuring a 15-rated horror film clip before Youtube videos of Minecraft characters. The complaint was made after an eight-year-old boy saw a Youtube ad for the film As Above, So Below and became distressed by it. Scenes …
Kat Hall, 31 Dec 2014
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, aged 81, of the United Kingdom. Photo taken during a visit in NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. Greenbelt, Maryland, USA

No wind-up: Second New Year's honour for Baylis music box

Former co-founder of Lastminute.com Brent Hoberman and inventor of the wind-up radio Trevor Baylis were two names in just a handful of science and tech folk to be handed gongs in the 2015 New Year's honours list. Both were awarded Commander of the Order of the British Empire, the second shiny medal for Baylis after receiving an …
Kat Hall, 31 Dec 2014
James Franco and Seth Rogen in The Interview

Toffee, Apple? U.S. fanbois get their sticky fingers on Nork-teasing flick The Interview

Apple has begun offering the controversial Sony Pictures' movie The Interview, starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, for rent and sale on its Stateside and Canada iTunes stores. Fanbois who are willing to shell out $14.99 can purchase a high-definition version of the Nork-ribbing flick from Apple's online shop. It comes days …
Kelly Fiveash, 28 Dec 2014
Who trio, photo: BBC

Doctor Who's tangerine dream and Clara's death wish in Last Christmas

TV Review Readers please note: THIS IS A POST-UK-BROADCAST REVIEW – THERE WILL BE SPOILERS! Brid-Aine says: I don’t usually have much time for schmaltz and sentimentality, but I make an exception for Christmas. I can take a certain amount of it at this time of year, the season of goodwill and all that. But the sight of the new and …
Team Register, 25 Dec 2014

Sony releases Nork flick The Interview straight to DVD (digital video download)

In a shining example of how high culture* will always defeat the jackboot tactics of oppressive states like North Korea, the Seth Rogen/James Franco film The Interview is now available for viewing via multiple online streaming services. Google and Microsoft both announced that the flick – which surely cannot be any more farcical …
Neil McAllister, 24 Dec 2014
James Franco and Seth Rogen in The Interview

Shock! Nork-grating flick The Interview WILL be in cinemas – Sony

After days of ridicule for caving into ludicrous anonymous threats against moviegoers, Sony Pictures and US cinemas will show The Interview this Christmas, after all. According to the likes of Associated Press, BBC News and Variety, the Seth Rogan comedy flick about the assassination of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un will be …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Dec 2014
snowden insider theft security

Google it! Ruskie gov user data slurps jumped 25% last year

Google user data access requests from the Russian government jumped a whopping 25 per cent in the last six months of 2013, Mountain View has revealed in a rejigged version of its "Transparency Report". The ad giant said it had tweaked the way it presented the information requested by governments around the world to try to "make …
Team Register, 23 Dec 2014
putin topless

Facebook slammed for blocking protest event page at Russia's request

Russian political dissidents voiced their displeasure with Facebook on Monday after the social network blocked an event page promoting a demonstration on behalf of jailed opposition leader Aleksei Navalny. The page in question was reportedly blocked at the request of Roskomnadzor, Russia's state internet policing body. "We were …
Neil McAllister, 23 Dec 2014
Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak

Brit thesp Kate Winslet eyes lead female role in Steve Jobs biopic – report

British actor Kate Winslet has reportedly entered talks with Universal to play the lead female role in the biopic of Apple supremo Steve Jobs, who died in 2011. According to Variety magazine, Oscar winner Winslet, who is perhaps best known for her performance in epic, watery-doom flick Titanic, was likely attracted to the film …
Team Register, 21 Dec 2014
James Franco and Seth Rogen in The Interview

Norks: FBI's Sony Pictures' hacking allegations are 'groundless slander'

"Grave consequences" have been threatened by North Korea, after the FBI alleged on Friday that Norks were behind the savage hack of struggling film studio Sony Pictures. The Kim Jong Un-led country demanded a joint investigation with the US to further probe the incident. North Korea has denied responsibility for the massive …
Kelly Fiveash, 20 Dec 2014
Google UK office logos

Google sues Mississippi Attorney General 'for doing MPAA's dirty work'

Google is taking legal action against the Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood, alleging he exceeded his authority in suing the ad giant over piracy – and taking his cues from the Motion Picture Ass. of America. In October 2013, Hood filed a subpoena against Google, accusing the web ad giant of encouraging online piracy, …
Iain Thomson, 20 Dec 2014

Apple v BBC: Fruity firm hits back over Panorama drama

Apple has refuted claims made by the BBC’s Panorama programme that it is not working hard enough to protect the rights of workers. The programme Apple's Broken Promises claimed that Pegatron - a contractor making the iPhone 6 - was abusing rules on working hours, keeping workers' ID cards, and using underage workers. Employers …
Simon Rockman, 19 Dec 2014
SOURCE:  http://www.sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=view&id=1412135

Couch potatoes relax: Netflix scores big STREAMING TV PATENT win

Netflix has scored a big win in its ongoing patent infringement battle with video-on-demand software provider OpenTV. The District Court of the Hague on Wednesday ruled that Netflix does not infringe OpenTV’s patent in the Netherlands, saying that the latter’s claim did not meet the criteria of “novelty and inventiveness”. In …
Jennifer Baker, 18 Dec 2014
Steve Jobs

Judge bars dead Steve Jobs from appearing on TV news FROM BEYOND THE GRAVE

A US judge has stricken a request to release a video of Steve Jobs recorded just months before the Apple cofounder and CEO died in 2011. Judge Yvonne Gonzalez-Rogers has denied [PDF] a motion filed by three US news organizations that would have compelled the court to make a video deposition from Jobs available to the public. …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Dec 2014

Nork-ribbing flick The Interview AXED: Sony caves under hack terror 'menace'

Sony Pictures has confirmed the inevitable and cancelled the December 25 launch of The Interview after most major theater chains refused to run it. "The ability of our guests to enjoy the entertainment they choose in safety and comfort is and will continue to be a priority for theater owners," said the National Association of …
Iain Thomson, 18 Dec 2014