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Seagate's triple-headed Cerberus could SAVE the DISK WORLD

Seagate is thinking of doubling up - or possibly even tripling - disk read heads to get a stronger signal from disk platters with more and narrower data tracks. TDK TDK disk read:write head Currently a disk read:write head has a single read head and a single write head. If the tracks on a disk platter are placed closer …
Chris Mellor, 15 Sep 2014
Satya Nadella

Microsoft splurges 2½ INSTAGRAMS buying Minecraft maker Mojang

+Comment Having closed down its own lesser gaming operations, Microsoft is spending $2.5bn on buying one with a big punch – Minecraft maker Mojang. Loss-making Minecraft will break even in 2015, Microsoft said in a statement. The deal is expected to close late this year. Microsoft is doing more than buying a leading and popular game …
Gavin Clarke, 15 Sep 2014
Rosetta

Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen

The European Space Agency has selected a site for the Rosetta space probe's lander, which is attempting to touch down on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The region – labelled Site J – lies at the top of the rock, which is unevenly shaped and measures about 4km across at its widest point. The Rosetta craft is now within 30km of …
Jasper Hamill, 15 Sep 2014
Flytrap

Yawn, Wikileaks, we already knew about FinFisher. But these software binaries...

WikiLeaks is making the controversial FinFisher commercial spyware tool available for download as part of the latest in a series of leaks that have put the operations of the controversial business under the microscope. FinFisher, which was part of UK-based Gamma Group International until late 2013 before relocating to Germany, …
John Leyden, 15 Sep 2014
Cheap kit kat

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

Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills

BT and other British network operators have followed in the footsteps of knickers model David Beckham by urging Scotland not to quit the Union. The companies, including the former state monopoly, EE, O2 and Vodafone, have written an open letter to Scots in which they are warned of the wallet-hitting drawbacks of voting for …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Sep 2014
Apple CEO Tim Cook in 1979, during his freshman year at Auburn University

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
Destiny

Half a BILLION in the making: Bungie's Destiny reviewed

Game Theory Repetition is a funny thing. If I was to write this review and say everything twice (say everything twice), you’d quite reasonably think I was daft. And yet, we gamers tend to delight in the repeat performance. Destiny - Mulitplayer The usual suspects? We even affectionately refer to it as “grinding” – the system whereby RPGs …
Mike Plant, 15 Sep 2014
Phones4u logo

Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water

Phones 4u's website is currently telling customers that it is unable to trade due to "the unexpected decision of EE and Vodafone to withdraw supply" from the retailer. It comes after the High Street firm, which has 550 stores throughout the UK and 5,596 employees on its books, confirmed late on Sunday that it had fallen into …
Kelly Fiveash, 15 Sep 2014
road closed road sign

Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales

Huawei - the planet’s third biggest shifter of smartphones - has abandoned plans to build more devices based on Windows due to slower than expected sales. This is a blow to Microsoft and its much-maligned Windows 8 operating system, which now has to rely on Nokia and other lower-ranked mobe makers to trade its wares. Huawei …
Paul Kunert, 15 Sep 2014

LOHAN tin-rattles to a whopping £27,000 on Kickstarter

With six days left to run on our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) Kickstarter campaign to take the Vulture 2 ballocket mission to Spaceport America, we're tantalisingly close to hitting our £30k target. We thank the more than 560 backers who have so far chipped in for a total of 60 LOHAN sticker sets, 160 mugs, 120 …
Lester Haines, 15 Sep 2014
Chat from the #opaustralia IRC channel

Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach

A security breach at popular, free and open source software-focused IRC network Freenode means users need to change their passwords. Freenode's IRC server was compromised and passwords were likely sniffed by unidentified hackers, prompting a warning to users that they should reset their passwords as a precaution. The security …
John Leyden, 15 Sep 2014
Intel Grantley Xeon

Maxta goes gung-ho for Grantley, cuddles up to big daddy Intel

Hyper-converged software startup Maxta has repaid Intel’s faith and investment with updated software featuring Grantley support and an Intel-flavoured reference architecture – eat this and you will have lots of Intel inside. Maxta (background here) has added stuff to its MxSP storage software platform: MaxDeploy pre-validated …
Chris Mellor, 15 Sep 2014
Arrow quiver

Hey, scammers. Google's FINE with your dodgy look-a-like apps

Attackers can easily craft third party scripts to imitate Google to trick users into granting authorisation to their email accounts, says infosec chap Andrew Cantino. The Mavenlink engineer said Mountain View did not make it sufficiently clear when users were approving third party access to their data, thus making social …
Darren Pauli, 15 Sep 2014
Seagate hybrid drives

Seagate's BUMPER State of the Storage Nation announcement

Analysis Positioning itself as a data steward, Seagate has presented its storage state of the nation pitch, announcing: three new disk drives; LaCie Thunderbolt external storage; two server flash cards and a controller; an HPC array; a new backup appliance; and a bright and shiny cloud and enterprise business unit. Seagate is continuing …
Chris Mellor, 15 Sep 2014
Doom printer hack

Infosec geniuses hack a Canon PRINTER and install DOOM

Security researchers have demonstrated a hack that allowed them to get into the web interface of a Canon Pixma printer before modifying its firmware to run the classic 90s computer game Doom. The proof-of-concept demo by security researchers at Context Information Security, which involved remotely accessing the web interface on …
John Leyden, 15 Sep 2014
chart

Big Blue bludgeons its way to top of software-defined storage kingdom

IDC has ranked IBM as the top supplier of Software-Defined Storage Platforms (SDS-P) in its second quarter 2014 Worldwide Storage Software Qview survey. IDC says SDS-P is ”a new functional market added to the total storage software market that covers block, file, object, and/or hyper-converged software offerings that enable the …
Chris Mellor, 15 Sep 2014
Glenn Greenwald and Kim Dotcom

Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign

Edward Snowden and Kim Dotcom have joined hands and waded into New Zealand politics ahead of the nation's forthcoming election, by alleging prime minister John Key has told fibs about his government's involvement with the NSA's nasties. Snowden has released a new missive in which he claims that the many tools with which he …
Chongqing's segregated footpath

Chinese city creates footpath for smartphone addicts

China's fifth-largest city, Chongqing, has decided to help out smartphone addicts by devoting a chunk of footpath so they never need to look up from their screens as they walk around. As anybody who's collided with a mobe-stroking pedestrian (or, for that matter, anybody who's ruined their Candy Crush score by striding into a …
Spectral map

Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom

UK regulator Ofcom is looking for radio hams' opinions about proposed changes to spectrum and amateur licensing. In exchange for giving up some spectrum, hams are getting access to new spectrum in the 470 kHz and 5 MHz bands that the Ministry of Defence is happy for them to use. Users of that spectrum will have to quit if the …
V

Boffins: Searching for ALIENS is like looking for PIZZA among students

Boffins have warned that humanity may have missed out on finding aliens because we are looking for the wrong signs. A researcher at the University of St Andrews said we could draw closer to “a profound moment for humanity”, if only we followed his rules on how to find life out in deepest space. He warned that the presence of a …
Jasper Hamill, 15 Sep 2014
Sad cloud

China, clouds, to kill data centre tech market growth

China's data centre kit-providers will take two per cent of the global market from current suppliers, according to newly-released Gartner research titled “Four Highly Disruptive Factors Will Challenge the Survival of Incumbent Data Center Market Vendors.” Gartner says China will advance because it is “buoyed by deep resources” …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2014
First text

New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone

A project that's just landed on github aims to let users in the developing world access Web pages over text messages alone. It's not as absurd an idea as it might first seem, to those of us whose first-world-problems include “how do I delete the U2 album from my iTunes library?” While the number of mobile phones in the world …
Brute Force

Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers

A popular Brazilian newspaper has been hacked by attackers who used code that attacked readers' home routers, says researcher Fioravante Souza of web security outfit Sucuri. Attackers implanted iFrames into the website of Politica Estadao, which, when loaded, began brute force password guessing attacks against users. Souza says …
Darren Pauli, 15 Sep 2014

Netscape plugins about to stop working in Chrome for Mac

Google has let it be known that it will stop working on 32-bit versions of Chrome for Mac OS. In a brief post, The Chocolate Factory says “Unlike on Windows, where Chrome is available in both 32-bit and 64-bit, on Mac, Chrome will only be available in 64-bit with version 39 and after.” There's no explanation for the change but …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2014
SLAC's battery charging test rig

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. …
Ciscoblood

Benioff bails from Borg Board

Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff has decided not to stand for re-election to Cisco's Board of Directors at the company's November annual general meeting. Cisco filed the paperwork to make it happen last Firday, and issued a statement attributed to its own CEO John Chambers to cement the departure. Chambers' statement is as …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2014
The Antikythera Mechanism

Archaeologists and robots on hunt for more Antikythera pieces

Archaeologists have set out on another expedition to the Antikythera wreck site, with the aim of finding the missing pieces of the site's famous “ancient computer”. The Antikythera Mechanism is a device which has fascinated the world ever since its discovery in 1901, since it seemed to embody technology far beyond the roughly 60 …
Sorry we're closed

Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer

Phones 4u fell into administration late on Sunday, after carrier EE cut its ties with the UK retailer. The company said in a statement that's EE's "unexpected" decision not to renew its contract with Phones 4u meant the High Street business would be without any mobile network partners. EE's withdrawal from that deal, which runs …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014

eBay DROPS DEAD AGAIN - tat bazaar says sorry, scrambles to resurrect site

eBay went titsup earlier today, and the company is now attempting to bring its site back to life. The online tat bazaar coughed to an unexplained technical blunder preventing an unknown number of its subscribers from accessing the site, which many buyers and sellers of used goods enjoy using in their spare time on the weekends …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014
Jaws on Blu-ray disc

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
Lego Minecraft

Microsoft's rumoured $2.5bn Minecraft gobble expected on Monday

Microsoft is reportedly planning to spend $2.5bn on the rumoured buyout of Minecraft maker Mojang, with a deal speculatively set for Monday. As The Register noted earlier this week, such an acquisition would be the first big payout for new Redmond chief Satya Nadella. Reuters reported that Microsoft would scoop up the game …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014

New Snowden leak: US and Brit spooks 'tap into German telco networks to map end devices'

An NSA and GCHQ surveillance programme - dubbed Treasure Map - grants US and British spooks access to the networks of German telcos such as Deutsche Telekom, according to a new stash of leaked documents from Edward Snowden. Der Spiegel published the latest revelations today. However, Deutsche Telekom reportedly said it had found …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014
Regina Egbert, El Reg's virtual news anchor

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
Spin

In a spin: Samsung accuses LG exec of washing machine SABOTAGE

LG's top home appliances exec Jo Seong-jin has been accused of vandalising Samsung washing machines at two stores in Germany during the IFA shindig in Berlin earlier this week. Samsung has reported the matter to Seoul prosecutors to probe the allegations, according to Reuters. The competing South Korean electronic giants came …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014

Evil mining firms? Please. Obeying profit motive is KINDER to the environment

Worstall @ the Weekend Goldman Sachs has released a note to investors shouting that this is the end of the iron age. But it's not talking about how pointy bits on spears are now replaced by lead in bullets: rather, that the age when owning a mountain of iron ore was a route to easy billions is over. We don't need your I wouldn't normally bring such …
Tim Worstall, 14 Sep 2014
Pikemen overtaking a bus outside St. Paul's Cathedral, London

'There is no downside – unless you count the total bath you take moving your stuff'

The eXpat Files Welcome to The eXpat Files, a new weekend Reg regular in which we chat to an IT professional who's decided to seek his or her fortune in another land, so you can learn how to follow in their footsteps. This week, we chat with Piers Goodhew, an Australian who spent the last two years working in London, but is about to head home …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Sep 2014
The fashion world’s most privileged urchin lounges in a luxury hotel in Paris, 1993. © Geoff Wilkinson/RexUSA

Weekend reads: A new Poirot, drug-fuelled Champagne Supernovas and The Establishment

Page File El Reg bookworms Mark Diston and Lucy Orr pore over the latest book releases. Owen Jones, author of Chavs , has a pop at the establishment, Maureen Callahan gets right under the skin of the fashion world's excesses in the 1990s, and Sophie Hannah's new work is the supposed "literary event of the year" – a brand new Poirot …
Withings Home camera

Be your own Big Brother: Monitoring your manor, the easy way

Feature If you've ever had the misfortune to be burgled, you'll know how nervous it can make you feel. After my own experience some twenty years ago, it took a long time before I could leave the flat without fretting, and perhaps using my new-fangled mobile phone to call the home computer and check that it was still there to answer the …
Nigel Whitfield, 14 Sep 2014
Photo of a stack of $100 bills

Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say

Banks and credit card providers are paying a hefty price to be part of Apple's new Pay system, unveiled by boss Tim Cook earlier this week. According to the Financial Times, which cited two people familiar with the terms inked between Cupertino and interested parties, 15 cents of a $100 purchase will be pocketed by Apple. As …
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Sep 2014
android tongue

Bloat-free, unlocked Moto X to be dubbed 'Pure Edition', says report

Motorola has reportedly named its yet to be released bloat-free, unlocked Moto X the "Pure Edition". According to the Verge, the handset maker is planning to ship the unbranded version of its Moto X model later this month. Some readers might struggle with the concept of "pure", though, given that the device runs on Android. …
Team Register, 13 Sep 2014
Our playmonaut tries out a jetpack, watched by a circling vulture

DARPA-backed jetpack prototype built to make soldiers run faster

Vid Students are working on a test build of a wearable jetpack that could help soldiers run faster on the field of combat. The project dubbed 4MM, or 4 Minute Mile, has been backed by the US defence agency DARPA. It was dreamed up by Arizona State University faculty mentor Jason Kerestes, who built a prototype of the jetpack. He …
Team Register, 13 Sep 2014