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Panasonic TH-103PZ600

Dutch bicycle company pretends to be television company

Dutch bicycle company VanMoof has found that disguising its products as televisions leads to lower rates of damage in transit. The company's creative director Bex Rad took to Medium to share the company's story, recounting that the company has “struggled to find shipping partners that give our bikes the same obsessive love and …
Simon Sharwood, 26 Sep 2016
F-35

High rear end winds cause F-35A ground engine fire

The US Air Force says a strong tailwind is behind the flight line fire that has grounded yet another of its F-35 fighter aircraft. The F-35A caught fire while getting ready to fly an exercise from Mountain Home Air Force Base in Idaho. It was one of seven at the base for surface-to-air training. The fire happened while the …
Starship robot

R2D2 delivery robots to scurry through the streets of San Francisco

An Estonian robotics company is trialling six-wheeled delivery robots that can trundle through San Francisco delivering goods to the local population. The robots are built by Starship Technologies, a company founded in 2014 by Skype cofounders Janus Friis and Ahti Heinla, and can trundle along at 6kph (3.7mph) delivering goods …
Iain Thomson, 25 Sep 2016

Big Software is the next, er, big thing

You’ve heard of hyperscale, but now “Big Software” is the new big thing over at Canonical, and the open source outfit is keen to promote anything that fits with its vision of how massive, hyperscale infrastructure is going to be built and managed in future. Big Software is what the open source outfit sees as its mission to …
Dan Robinson, 25 Sep 2016

Australian border cops say they've cracked 'dark net' drug sales

Australian authorities say they can detect dark net transactions. We know this because the nation's Border Force (ABF), the black-shirt wearing guardians of Australia's frontiers, says as much in itstakedown notice of a “31-year-old man from Port Neill” in the State of South Australia. Said man fell foul of a joint ABF and …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Sep 2016
Lawyer up

And! it! begins! Yahoo! sued! over! ultra-hack! of! 500m! accounts!

Just two days after Yahoo! admitted hackers had raided its database of at least 500 million accounts, the Purple Palace is being dragged into court. Two Yahoo! users in San Diego, California, filed on Friday a class-action claim [PDF] against the troubled web biz: Yahoo! is accused of failing to take due care of sensitive …
Iain Thomson, 24 Sep 2016
Falcon9

SpaceX: Breach in liquid oxygen tank caused Falcon 9 fireball ... probably

A large breach in the liquid oxygen tank of SpaceX’s Falcom 9 rocket likely caused the explosion during a test at the start of this month, investigators have said. A static firing test at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida ended abruptly when the rockets burst into flames on the launchpad and disintegrated, along …
Paul Kunert, 24 Sep 2016

Oracle execs get that shrinking feeling

It still pays to run Oracle, just not as much as it used to - top executives’ packages shrank by double digits in fiscal ’16 as the software titan continued to desperately seek out cloud business. Company co-founder Larry Ellison, who these days also carries the CTO and exec chairman titles, received $41.5m in total for the 12 …
Paul Kunert, 24 Sep 2016
Toilet

Smelly toilets, smokers and the Kardashians. Virgin Media staff grill top brass

Smelly toilets, smoking outside and questions as to who is the best Kardashian: these were just some of the issues Virgin Media top brass were grilled on in a Q&A session with staff seen by The Register. Many of Virgin Media's staff are worried about their future following its mega merger with US biz Liberty Global - as …
Kat Hall, 24 Sep 2016

Days are numbered for the Czech Republic

The British government will start referring to Czechia rather than the Czech Republic, following advice from an official committee. The Permanent Committee on Geographical Names “establishes and applies the principles by which foreign geographical names (toponyms) should be written”. It is now advising use of Czechia in place …
John Oates, 24 Sep 2016
Radbot teaser image by Damon Hart-Davis

Lean in and pivot: Even Steve Jobs didn't work alone, startup boy

Radbot In which Damon Hart-Davis talks about life as a tech entrepreneur and tells us about his product. I toiled in banking for circa 20 years, amongst other gigs, including at the much-loved Lehman Brothers (motto: “Where Vision Gets Bilked” or whatever) and RBS, and a previous fintech start-up of mine, though I’m also an …

IBM botched geo-block designed to save Australia's census

Australia's Bureau of Statistics has heavily criticised IBM for the security it applied to the nation's failed online census, which was taken offline after a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack that battered a curiously flimsy defensive shield. The Bureau also admits it could have done better in a submission (PDF) to a …
Simon Sharwood, 23 Sep 2016
Robert Croucher

UK copyright troll weeps, starts 20-week stretch in the cooler for beating up Uber driver

Updated The owner of a firm involved in sending speculative invoices to suspected downloaders is in trouble of his own after being convicted of a brutal assault on an Uber driver outside an exclusive London members-only club. Robert Croucher, MD of consultancy Hatton & Berkeley, wept in the dock after being found guilty of pushing …
Iain Thomson, 23 Sep 2016

Double KO! Capcom's Street Fighter V installs hidden rootkit on PCs

A fresh update for Capcom's Street Fighter V for PCs includes a knock-out move: a secret rootkit that gives any installed application kernel-level privileges. This means any malicious software on the system can poke a dodgy driver installed by SFV to completely take over the Windows machine. Capcom claims it uses the driver to …
Chris Williams, 23 Sep 2016
wargames

Uni student cuffed for 'hacking professor's PC to change his grades'

A student at Kennesaw State University in Georgia is accused of hacking into his professor's computer to improve his grades. Chase Arthur Hughes, 19, was arrested and charged this week after allegedly raiding the university's computers in May. The teen made a number of alterations to his grades, and those of his friends, for …
Iain Thomson, 23 Sep 2016

Do AI chat bots need a personality bypass – or will we only trust gabber 'droids with character?

Machine communication is an area generating much excitement in AI. The ability to give machines a voice and personality has been the subject of many sci-fi films, and the push in natural language processing has brought that idea closer to reality. All the big AI players are investing in some sort of chatbot. Google just …
Katyanna Quach, 23 Sep 2016

Video service Binge On 'broke the internet' but 99pc of users love it

Analysis Do you remember the butthurt and angst heaped on T-Mobile US when it launched its Binge On service earlier this year? T-Mobile US offered a toll-free all-you-can-watch mobile video service, trading quality for quantity. The Binge On user would get video downsampled to 480 pixels, but none of it would count towards their data …
Andrew Orlowski, 23 Sep 2016
Container image via Shutterstock

Red Hat relabels OpenShift Enterprise to Container Platform

Red Hat’s on-premises application serving software has been given a rename from OpenShift Enterprise to OpenShift Container Platform, at the same time adding a slew of enhancements to improve scalability and security. OpenShift started out as Red Hat’s platform as a service (PaaS) offering for application development centred …
Dan Robinson, 23 Sep 2016

London-based Yahoo! hacker gets 11 years for SQLi mischief

A 23-year-old man has been sentenced to two years in prison for his part in a cyber attack on Yahoo! in 2012. Nazariy Markuta, of Harlesden, London, was a member of the D33Ds Company network, which nicked over 450,000 customer email addresses and passwords from Yahoo! after an investigation by the UK's National Crime Agency ( …
Hedvig_owl

The wise Hedvig owl heads aloft with a Universal Data Plane

Hedvig has updated its software-defined storage to version 2.0 and is flying with a Universal Data Plane concept. Its Distributed Storage Platform Version 2.0 adds a VMware vSphere Web Client Plugin, Docker Volume Plugin and Mirantis Fuel Plugin, each of which help to provide application-specific high-availability policies. …
Chris Mellor, 23 Sep 2016

Winners and losers: Here's who made the cut for mega TP2 framework

A public sector contracts fat cat and some household PC brands are among the suppliers that failed to directly win a place on a mega pan-government hardware and software framework contract, according to a preliminary list seen by The Register. The Technology Products (TP) 2 agreement, worth up to £4bn over four years, is due …
Paul Kunert, 23 Sep 2016

Double-dating VMware lover Tintri brings Hyper-V closer to its bed

Hybrid and all-flash array vendor Tintri is expanding Hyper-V support, extending its existing VMware virtual machine-aware facilities. Tintri pioneered VVOL-class storage admin for its arrays, meaning VMware admins could provision, operate and manage its hybrid flash/disk array storage, a long time before VMware delivered …
Chris Mellor, 23 Sep 2016

Naughty Zuck: Facebook fudged its video ad numbers

Facebook has been caught miscalculating viewing numbers for those watching ads on the site. The company admitted it had wrongly measured average viewing times for video ads by removing views of less than three seconds from its calculations, which helped to bump up the stats. The mistake overstates median viewing times for …
John Oates, 23 Sep 2016

Plusnet outage leaves customers unable to stream Netflix. Horrors!

Ongoing technical problems at gaffe-prone Plusnet are leaving customers unable to stream videos or play games. According to the outfit's forum, the problems first began to appear yesterday. However, Plusnet also encountered packet loss problems earlier this month. One customer wrote to The Register to complain: "There is no …
Kat Hall, 23 Sep 2016
Green data centre

Microsoft: We're hugging trees to save the 'world'

Microsoft is turning over a new leaf and going green. At least, that's what the firm’s chief environmental strategist has claimed as he sketched plans to make its data centres more sustainable and efficient. This is not the first time Microsoft has talked about cleaning up its act, but at a green technology event in Santa …
Dan Robinson, 23 Sep 2016

Cisco preps the P45s for 500 unlucky UK staffers

Cisco's UK staffers are beginning to feel the cold, sharp edge of the networking borg's axe, with up to 500 souls put at risk of redundancy across its entire local operation, multiple sources have confirmed to The Register. Switchzilla had said in August that a total of 5,500 global employees would be chopped this year, …
Kat Hall, 23 Sep 2016
Trophy. Image via Shutterstock

Think you’re a Tech Trailblazer but still warming up?

We know some blazers take longer to warm up than others, so you’ll be pleased to know that the deadline for this year’s Tech Trailblazers Awards has been extended to October 6. These awards have been running for six years, recognising and rewarding real innovation in real world business tech. So you can use that extra time to …
Team Register, 23 Sep 2016
IT Crowd's Roy: "Have you turned it off and on again?"

Sysadmin gets 5 years for slurping contractor payments to employer

A 49-year-old IT bloke from Essex has been sentenced to five years' imprisonment on two counts of fraud after his cunning plan to steal £450,000 from his employer was uncovered... almost immediately. Adeshola Dada, of Watts Crescent, Purfleet, Essex, was employed in the IT department of Genesis Housing Association, where he …
Man holds white flag while sitting alongside empty beer bottles next to a toilet bowl. Pic by Shutterstock

Shopkeeper installs forecourt khazi to counter mystery Dublin dung dumper

A desperate Dublin shopkeeper has placed a toilet and a pile of his very competitvely priced bog roll on the pavement outside his shop after a series of visits from a loose boweled night owl. Alan Buckley was forced to install the curb-side crapper outside his Clever Buys outlet in Finglas, because “someone keeps coming up and …
Clodagh Doyle, 23 Sep 2016
Top gear team photo by MediaPictures pl via Shutterstock

Jeremy Clarkson and Co. rise to top for Great British Bake Off replacements

Two weeks after Channel 4’s £75m grab of Great British Bake Off from the BBC, the broadcaster has a big marquee but no filling. Mary Berry has joined puckish Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc in electing to stay with the BBC, meaning three quarters of GBBO’s presenting line up evaporated. It was Berry who mitigated the unvarnished …
Gavin Clarke, 23 Sep 2016

Forgive me, father, for I have used an ad-blocker on news websites...

A survey of people using ad-blocking has mixed news for publishers. Thirty per cent of users deploying adblocking software were less inclined to visit websites that forced them to “whitelist” the site. On the other hand, in reality many do whitelist one or two favourites. 77 per cent of adblock software users have whitelisted …
Andrew Orlowski, 23 Sep 2016
Scholz' Star. Michael Osadciw/University of Rochester

Cosmology is safe and the Universe is one giant version of the Barbican

Scientists have confirmed that the universe is very likely the same in every direction, showing that the assumption of the universe being isotropic can be safely used in cosmology. The results, published in Physical Review Letters show that there is only a 1 in 121,000 chance that the universe is non-isotropic. On small …
Katyanna Quach, 23 Sep 2016

British unis mull offshore EU campuses in post-Brexit vote panic

British universities are looking to deepen links with their continental counterparts or even open offshore campuses in order to maintain their EU ties. Universities face a double hit of reduced research funding and fewer EU students choosing British institutions thanks to Brexit uncertainty. Staff recruitment has also been hit …
John Oates, 23 Sep 2016
Crown courtroom. Pic: Shutterstock

Judge makes minor tweaks to sex ban IT man's order

A York judge has made some trifling tweaks to an order he imposed on a former IT contractor banning him from having sex unless he asked police 24 hours in advance. District Judge Adrian Lower, sitting at York Magistrates' Court yesterday, heard John O'Neill's application to vary a Sexual Risk Order (SRO) that the same judge …
Gareth Corfield, 23 Sep 2016
Pulling the plug

Pull the plug! PowerPoint may kill my conference audience

Something for the Weekend, Sir? The man on stage is baffled. It was his big moment, a chance to show off his company’s proficiency and expertise, but now he’s being made to look useless. Two huge screens on either side of the stage are supposed to be displaying his presentation. They remain resolutely blank. A 200-strong audience of paying conference …
Alistair Dabbs, 23 Sep 2016
shutterstock_213172012

Woo hoo, UK.gov has unveiled yet another tech creche – for infosec

Plans are afoot in Westminster to burn even more taxpayers' cash by launching a new cyber-security startup accelerator in Cheltenham. The accelerator will be the umpteenth vehicle for funnelling money to muppets since the coalition government came to power. Other accelerators have included a military technology free-money …
band_aid_patching_648

OpenSSL swats a dozen bugs, one notable nasty

A dozen flaws have been patched in OpenSSL, including one high severity hole that allows denial of service attacks. The OpenSSL Project pushed patches in versions 1.1.0a, 1.0.2i and 1.0.1u, with most of the flaws flagged as low severity risks. The nastiest vulnerability (CVE-2016-6304) results when attackers issue a massive …
Team Register, 23 Sep 2016

Oi, Apple fanbois. Your beloved Jesus Phones are pisspoor for disabled users

Opinion Apple describes their sexy new iPhone 7 and iOS 10 operating system as the most advanced yet. Well, they say that every year, don't they? However, despite the fanfare, press coverage, and queues outside Apple stores - except in Denmark - one group of iPhone users can be forgiven for feeling let down by Apple, yet again. With …
Colin Hughes, 23 Sep 2016
NSA

Report: NSA hushed up zero-day spyware tool losses for three years

Sources close to the investigation into how NSA surveillance tools and zero-day exploits ended up in the hands of hackers has found that the agency knew about the loss for three years but didn’t want anyone to know. Multiple sources told Reuters last night that the investigation into the data dump released by a group calling …
Iain Thomson, 23 Sep 2016
TypeScript is an open source project that lets you code in a superset of JavaScript

It's Friday – and that means one thing: Yup, Microsoft's TypeScript 2.0 is out

Microsoft has released TypeScript 2.0, a major update to its typed version of JavaScript. TypeScript first appeared in October 2012, and is a project backed by Microsoft’s Anders Heljsberg – the inventor of C# and before that Borland’s Delphi. The thinking behind the open-source project, which is a superset of JavaScript, is …
Tim Anderson, 23 Sep 2016

'Faceless' Liberty Global has 'sucked the very soul' out of Virgin Media

Exclusive Virgin Media staff have voiced widespread discontent over its gobble by Liberty Global, with one describing their new corporate daddy as "faceless change drivers with no concern for the Virgin values," according to a Q&A with senior management this week seen by The Register. The questions, which were part of the company's …
Kat Hall, 23 Sep 2016
Man in tie smashes printer with baseball bat in a field.

If we can't fix this printer tonight, the bank's core app will stop working

On-Call Thank Arioch it's Friday, because the working week is nearly over and we can ease you into it with another instalment of On-Call, our end-of-week trawl through readers' memories of awkward jobs. This week, meet “Jonny G”, resident of Canada who “Once upon a very long time ago, worked for a large IT vendor in a role as an on- …
Simon Sharwood, 23 Sep 2016

Geek's Guide To Britain