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How to get $542m from Google: Dress as a SPACEMAN with dayglo dancers – Magic Leap

Vid Google and A-list venture capitalists have given more than half a billion dollars to Magic Leap, a mysterious startup that aims to "make computing more natural". Magic Leap Magic Leap ... your guess is as good as ours Magic Leap is based down in Florida, and has no products, revenue, or public business plan, as far as we can …
Iain Thomson, 21 Oct 2014
Cloud security

Defence giant BAE coughs $230m for cloud heavy SilverSky

BAE Systems has bought cloud-based email and network security firm SilverSky for $232.5m, seemingly finding the US company's products and customer base irresistible. Ian King, chief executive, BAE Systems, said: "SilverSky has an established sales force, a complementary suite of scalable products and a large installed customer …
John Leyden, 21 Oct 2014

FedEx helps deliver THOUSANDS of spam messages DIRECT to its Blighty customers

Fed-up FedEx customers in the UK were hit by an email storm yesterday, after a sad sap at the delivery company mistakenly hit the reply-all button on a daily alerts mailing list. Inevitably, it was then besieged by jokers, spammers and idiots replying with the request to be removed from the list. Reg reader, Nick, who flagged …
Team Register, 21 Oct 2014

Whisper tracks its users. So we tracked down its LA office. This is what happened next

Pics We were surprised as anyone when The Guardian revealed that, far from being “the safest place on the internet”, the anonymous messaging app Whisper was tracking the location of its users – even when they specifically denied the app access to their location. Worse, if someone's posts were deemed newsworthy, according to The …
Kieren McCarthy, 20 Oct 2014
Muscular man stripping off his shirt

Slap for SnapChat web app in SNAP mishap: '200,000' snaps sapped

Tens of thousands of stolen private SnapChat photos and vids are being plastered across the internet for perverts to download and ogle, it's claimed. SnapChat says it isn't to blame. When word spread on 4chan's notorious /b/ board that someone had allegedly swiped as many as 200,000 SnapChat files from strangers, it was feared …
Shaun Nichols, 10 Oct 2014
Uber logo

Let down by a lousy UberX driver? They probably skipped the 'optional $65 customer service training course'

Amid complaints about some badly behaving drivers, you may not be surprised to hear that Uber's training course for cabbies is not only optional – it costs them $65 each to sit through it, apparently. A Forbes blog post claims the taxi app maker's bargain-basement UberX service charges drivers to take a class on providing good …
Shaun Nichols, 10 Oct 2014
European Union Flag

EU privacy boogeyman unleashed by the very people with boogeyman-slaying weapons

Another day, another report scaremongering about Europe’s big reforms for laws that protect people's personal information. According to a fresh piece of research from Kroll Ontrack and Blancco – experts in data recovery and erasure respectively – 81 per cent of European IT managers surveyed are unfamiliar with the proposed new …
Costumed pirate

Economics prof denies digital pirates plundered €20bn from EU coffers

A European academic has rubbished claims by the Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) group that digital piracy cost the EU more than €20bn between 2008 and 2011. Making the assumption that the creative and service sectors performed at the same level, a grand total of around one million jobs and €47bn of …

Speaking in Tech: Startup funding – a little wine, dim lights, et voilà ... seed capital!

Podcast speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise This week, Speaking in Tech regular Greg Knieriemen has fled the country, leaving the ever-capable Ed Saipetch and Sarah Vela to host our weekly tech-cast. Today's episode was recorded at Spiceworld with special guests Scott Abel, co-founder and CEO of Spiceworks, and David …
Team Register, 8 Oct 2014
The extinct golden toad of the Monteverde cloud forests. Credit: US Fish & Wildlife Service

Dot-gay told it's NOT gay enough – but web'll be officially .eco-friendly

A slew of decisions over who gets to run new internet extensions have been handed down, meaning that within months domain names ending in "radio", "eco", "hotel" and "Osaka" will start appearing online. Those four were the lucky ones out of a group of 17 applications that asked for a "community evaluation" of their bids to …
Soylent

Take THAT, hated food! It's OVER, tedious chewing! Soylent strikes back with version 1.1

Soylent, the venture-funded startup that promises to free humanity from the hated burden of eating, has updated the formula of its mail-order nutrient gloop. "We have made two changes to the 1.0 formula, resulting in a food with greater neutrality and digestibility (as indicated by preliminary tests)," the company proclaimed in …
Disney's Beagle Boys

JPMorgan Chase: 76 MILLION homes, 7 MILLION small biz thumped in cyber-heist

Mega-bank JPMorgan Chase has admitted to suffering a major data breach that has been rumored since August, saying that as many as 76 million households and 7 million small businesses have been affected. The bank, which has never discussed the breach publicly before, made the disclosure in a filing with the US Securities and …
Uber logo

Super Cali so litigious, Uber is the focus. Even German judges say it's something quite atrocious

Taxi biz Uber perhaps can't wait to put this week in its rearview mirror – after it was dealt legal setbacks in four major cities: two in Germany, and two in California. In August, officials in Berlin and Hamburg decided that Uber should not operate in the two cities due to safety concerns and worries about unfair competition …
Shaun Nichols, 27 Sep 2014
Marc Andreessen

Bubble 2.0? Moneybags VC Andreessen warns profit-free startups: 'You will be VAPORIZED'

When it comes to the internet age, Marc Andreessen was in there right from the start. Now, when he talks, people listen. So when the geek-turned-venture-capitalist today warned there'll soon be a bloodbath unless startups start making bank, we imagine there were a few spilled soy lattes in the Valley. Andreessen took to Twitter …
Iain Thomson, 26 Sep 2014
Admiral Ackbar

Google to startup kids: Pssst, try our CLOUD ... the first $100K is FREE

Google is offering startups a cool $100,000 in credit if they're willing to power their apps using the Chocolate Factory's cloud services, rather than the competition's. The online advertising giant launched the new program, dubbed Google Cloud Platform for Startups, at its Google for Entrepreneurs Partner Summit in Mountain …
Neil McAllister, 12 Sep 2014
Star Trek Into Darkness

Next blockbuster you watch could be rendered on Google: Star Trek fx biz Zync gobbled

Google has confirmed its gobble of Zync, a cloud-based special effects rendering service. "Creating amazing special effects requires a skilled team of visual artists and designers, backed by a highly powerful infrastructure to render scenes. Many studios, however, don’t have the resources or desire to create an in-house …
Iain Thomson, 26 Aug 2014
closed_sign shut down under collapsed liquidation

Akamai warns: SMB security remains major risk

Security offerings for small businesses need to look more like those offered to enterprises, according to Akamai global security senior director Fran Trentley. Speaking to The Register while in Sydney for the Gartner Security & Risk Management Summit, Trentley said SMBs are increasingly seen as attack targets, and that poses a …
Photo of a stack of $100 bills

Amazon Twitch snatch catches Google the gobbler off guard

Amazon has confirmed its purchase of Twitch, the pose-streaming startup beloved of gamers, in a $970m deal which appears to confirm that video gaming is a spectator sport as well as a participatory one. "Today, I'm pleased to announce we've been acquired by Amazon. We chose Amazon because they believe in our community, they …
Iain Thomson, 25 Aug 2014
OLPC XO3 tablet solar cover small

Google gobbles Fitbit whiz Gecko Design to strengthen those things that don't shift ads

Google has bought up Gecko Design, the industrial design house behind products like the One Laptop Per Child PC and Fitbit. "This is an incredible opportunity for everyone at Gecko," Jacques Gagne, Gecko's president and founder, gushed on the company website. "We are very excited and honored to join Google(x) and work on a …
Iain Thomson, 23 Aug 2014

Rubber Ub' hub: Uber test-drives condoms, gift card, soap etc deliveries

Taxi app Uber is running drugstore deliveries to customers in the Washington DC area as part of a test to see if it can become more than an amateur cabbie collective. Uber's in-development Corner Store can be accessed from a tab in the Uber app, and allows people to order their toiletries from an Uber driver. The inventory list …
Iain Thomson, 19 Aug 2014
Taxi Driver

Uber and Lyft sitting in a tree, 'c-a-n-c-e-l-l-i-n-g each other's rides'

Uber has blasted rival taxi app firm Lyft over claims that Uber staff had deliberately ordered Lyft rides and then cancelled them. Lyft told CNN that it had logged 5,560 requests for rides from staff of Uber since October 3, 2013, and that there were numerous cases of people ordering short Lyft rides and spending the time trying …
Iain Thomson, 13 Aug 2014

Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage

Updated Online marketplace eBay went titsup for an unknown number of customers in the UK this morning, but the company has been very slow to respond to complaints. When quizzed about the outage by The Register, eBay 'fessed up to yet more wobbles with its tat bazaar. “We are investigating reports that certain eBay features are …
Kelly Fiveash, 12 Aug 2014

OK Google: Gobble chat app Emu. OK Google, now shut down Emu

Google has confirmed that it has opened up its wallet to acquire the development team behind the mobile chat app Emu. The web giant has not said what Emu's developers will work on at the Chocolate Factory, but we do know that the new jobs will not include maintaining any of the startup's products. Members of the Emu team posted …
Shaun Nichols, 6 Aug 2014
Roger Bamford

Oracle cluster daddy jumps ship to NoSQL upstart MongoDB

Roger Bamford, a pioneering database engineer who spent 30 years at SQL stalwart Oracle, has jumped over to the NoSQL side and landed in a new job at MongoDB. Bamford joins the seven-year-old startup with the title of distinguished engineer and will be part of the senior engineering team that develops the MongoDB database. " …
Neil McAllister, 30 Jul 2014
Lyft cars

Fares fair, says New York: Lyft finally gets in gear for the Big Apple

Ride-sharing service Lyft has agreed to a deal with New York officials to allow the company to open shop in New York City. The company said that as of 7pm local time on Friday it would launch in Brooklyn and Queens, two weeks after a last-minute legal threat from the state Attorney General forced the company to hit the brakes …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Jul 2014

Price cuts, new features coming for Office 365 small biz customers

Microsoft is still keen to shift its perpetual-license Office customers over to the Office 365 subscription model, and to that end it's planning a shakeup of its Office 365 plans for small and midsized businesses to offer customers more value and greater flexibility. Beginning on October 1, Redmond will launch three new Office …
Neil McAllister, 16 Jul 2014
scissors cut cable

WiGag war: Tiny low-power chip promises mobes 4.6Gbps Wi-Fi

The quest to kill video and IO cables with super-fast wireless connections is an old one. Now chip companies are gearing up for another push using the 802.11ad standard – aka WiGig – to scrap wires and carry data over the air at multi-gigabit-a-second speeds. Today, one such biz, Nitero, reckons its new hardware will outperform …
Iain Thomson, 16 Jul 2014
fingers pointing at man

Microsoft: OK, Office 365 sellers – you can be customers' 'first contact'

WPC Microsoft has relinquished more control over the way third-party suppliers can manage Office 365 and Windows InTune punters, finally making the channel the "first point of contact" for customers. It is now three years since the online productivity suite hit the streets. It took two years until Microsoft would allow third-party …
Paul Kunert, 16 Jul 2014

US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe

Freemium mobile network FreedomPop has set its sights on Europe. The LA-based company has signed a deal with BASE, a subsidiary of Dutch telco and MVNO-lover KPN. It will launch in Belgium and then plans to expand to the UK, Germany, France and Spain. In the US FreedomPop’s model starts with a base price of $0 for 200 minutes of …
Simon Rockman, 16 Jul 2014
Cloud Storage arrays

Don't mention ZE WAR: Battling Box touts unlimited storage to biz

Storage startup Box will give some of its customers unlimited storage, following moves from established cloud competitors Google, Microsoft et al. The upstart announced on Tuesday that its $15 per user per month "Business" customers will now be given unlimited storage. This, it says, is because "every industry – from …
Jack Clark, 15 Jul 2014
DigitalOceanSlough1

Smashing, groovy, baby – yay, capitalism! Digital Ocean flogs Brit VMs

Cheap-as-a-chips virtual-machine hoster Digital Ocean has put roots down in the UK by opening up its first bit barn in Blighty. The US cloud company, based in New York, said on Tuesday that it had opened the doors on its "London" (LON1) data center. Pricing for its Linux VMs hosted in England is the same as the pricing at …
Jack Clark, 15 Jul 2014

Barclays Bank counter staff to become iPad-toting 'community bankers'

Barclays Bank is following the lead of London Underground and replacing counter staff with machines and people loitering around to show customers how to use them. The move will affect all 6,500 cashiers, who will be renamed “community bankers” and will be armed with iPads. Barclays already has 37 counterless branches, but the …
Simon Rockman, 15 Jul 2014

YES: Scotland declares independence ... from the dot co dot uk empire

Scotland has shaken off the shackles of its English oppressors by ditching the vicious Sassenach web address system – and replacing it with a homegrown one. Anyone living in the People's Republic of Salmond can now manually secede from their Tory overlords in Westminster by choosing a new .scot suffix. Previously, the coddled …
Team Register, 15 Jul 2014

Chinese biz bloke builds his OWN 3,500-mile Tesla charger network

Disappointed at the lack of charging stations for his Tesla S electric car in his home province, a Guangdong-based businessman has responded in typically Chinese fashion: he built his own. And not just one, either. According to English-language news site Caixin Online, 44-year-old Zong Yi used his own money to buy and install an …
Neil McAllister, 14 Jul 2014
Lyft cars

Lyft hits the brakes: Ban threat stalls taxi app's New York City launch

Ride-booking app maker Lyft has scrapped plans to launch in New York City following legal threats from the city's Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC). A Lyft spokesperson confirmed that the planned Friday launch would be moved to Monday as the biz continues to work with authorities on a plan that would allow Lyft drivers to …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Jul 2014
Scrooge McDuck

Wannabe Startup CEOs Hate This Guy: Potato Salad man and the $60k

The future of startups is the chopping board, not the computer keyboard. In fact, there's one weird trick that if properly platform-ized could net a canny startup a mouthful of cash. Interested? [This better be good - Ed] That secret to startup liquidity, which The Register is able to reveal to you, dear reader, today, lies not …
Jack Clark, 7 Jul 2014

You 'posted' a 'letter' with Outlook... No, NO, that's the MONITOR

Something for the Weekend, Sir? “Sorry to bother you. Are you busy?” Instinctively, I look at my watch. Here we go. Bet you he’s going to ask me to fix something trivial. “Don’t worry, Bill,” I reply. “What’s up?” “The computer web isn’t working.” Ah bless, the guy’s long past retirement age but still hangs in there. In fact, he’s a bit of an entrepreneurial …
A guy in a paper hat at the protest

London officials won't take Uber to court – because cabbies are suing the drivers anyway

Car-ride booking service Uber has won a victory in London, UK, as the city's transport authority has decided not to pursue action against the biz after all. Transport for London (TfL) said in a statement to reporters that the San Francisco-headquartered company would not be be subject to further scrutiny by TfL over whether it …
Shaun Nichols, 3 Jul 2014
Picard Facepalm

PayPal says sorry: Fat fingers froze fundraiser for anti-spy ProtonMail

PayPal has lifted its embargo on ProtonMail, the Swiss startup raising funds via Indiegogo to build a communications system hardened against surveillance. The payment giant claims the account freeze wasn't a matter of policy, but a simple cock-up. We are happy to announce that @PayPal has restored our account access. Thanks …
Iain Thomson, 1 Jul 2014
A wrong way road sign in Boston, Massachusetts

Finding the formula for the travelling salesman problem

A wrong way road sign in Boston, Massachusetts What do heuristics, graph theory and doughnuts have in common? Each of them, in its own way, underpins one of the most challenging parts of the logistics process: planning delivery routes. Every day, millions of products find their way from manufacturers to distributors, …
Robin Birtstone, 18 Jun 2014
Photo by Thore Siebrands Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Supermodel Lily Cole: 'I got a little bit upset by that Register article'

Millionaire supermodel Lily Cole has told a national newspaper how upset she was by The Register's coverage of her taxpayer-funded wishing well, Impossible.com. Youtube video of Cole talking about impossible.com Using Freedom of Information laws, we attempted to discover how the wealthy socialite and globetrotter was awarded £ …
Andrew Orlowski, 16 Jun 2014
boris_001

Boris: Look on 'London's digital tentacles', ye mighty, and despair!

London mayor Boris Johnson and ex-New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg have today opened the inaugural London Technology Week. It's estimated 30,000 people will attend 200 talks and workshops over the next five days, covering everything from big data to "digital ladies". The confabs and demos will be held in locations sprinkled …
Jasper Hamill, 16 Jun 2014