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Belgacom phone box. Pic: Peter van den Bossche

Belgian telco prepares to tear out last of nation's phone boxes

Proximus, the Belgian mobile operator, is about to complete the process of removing its last 300 phone boxes. The last will be ceremonially felled on June 1 in Antwerp. As part of the removal of the phone boxes, thirty of them were put up as prizes in a competition which took the form of a cultural project. (link via Google …
Simon Rockman, 21 May 2015
China

China spending $182 BEEELLION on net construction by end of 2017

Beijing has announced a $182bn programme of network infrastructure spending, supplementing the development of China's service sector over the next two and half years. The State Council, China's chief administrative authority, said the government will invest at least $69.3bn in network construction this year, which in turn will …
Flash Gordon

It pays to fake it: Test your flash SAN with a good simulation

It is pretty obvious that storage systems vary. You could reply, with some justification: “No shit, Sherlock!” What is less obvious and more useful to know, however, is how and why they vary and how the variation – not just between all-disk, hybrid and all-flash arrays but even between different arrays of the same class – can …
Bryan Betts, 21 May 2015

A good effort, if a bit odd: Windows 10 IoT Core on Raspberry Pi 2

First Look Microsoft has released a preview of Windows 10 for Raspberry Pi 2, the £30 ARMv7 computer board produced by the Cambridge-based Raspberry Pi Foundation. The version of Windows 10 for the Pi (which is also available for the Intel Atom MinnowBoard Max) is called Windows IoT Core, one of three Windows 10 IoT editions. The other two …
Tim Anderson, 21 May 2015
spy_eye_648

Choose Deutsche Telekom for all your bargain spying needs

An Austrian newspaper has published what it claims is evidence that Deutsche Telekom spied on Vienna for German spooks for the miserly sum of just €6,500 a year. On Tuesday, Peter Pilz publicly accused Deutsche Telekom of listening in on telephone and internet lines from Vienna, Luxembourg, Prague, Moscow and Ankara and passing …
Jennifer Baker, 21 May 2015
New World Computing Inc, King's Bounty

King's Bounty (1990): Enter the kleptomaniac dragon

Antique Code Show So as Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt stakes its claim as RPG of the millennium, I figured it’s time to look back on a turn-based fantasy questing classic of yesteryear, which definitely doesn’t feature any stuffed unicorn sex. New World Computing Inc, King's Bounty Hunt the sceptre: King's Bounty makes a splash King’s Bounty is a …
Lucy Orr, 21 May 2015
Doug Bowser (left) and Bowser

NINTENDO assigns BOWSER to run North American sales. No, really

Nintendo has announced it has hired Bowser as its new veep of North American sales. Before Mario-playing readers wonder why the company has hired a fire-breathing mutant turtle to run sales, they should know that the Bowser in question is one Doug Bowser, former veep of Global Business Planning at Electronic Arts. Bowser also …
Simon Sharwood, 21 May 2015
Rows of washing machines in shop aisle

Dell inserts Hyper-V smarts into its DL backup boxen

Dell has added two new back-up appliances to its range, top-and-tailing its existing DL1000 product and adding neat features such as virtual standby VMs. The DL series range is for small and medium businesses and are PowerEdge servers running AppAssure software. The 1U DL1000, with 2TB-3TB of capacity, was announced in July 2014 …
Chris Mellor, 21 May 2015
NASA PhoneSat by https://www.flickr.com/photos/jurvetson/ cc 2.0 attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

NASA plots interplanetary cubesat swarms

NASA has revealed it is working on CubeSat Application for Planetary Entry Missions (CAPE), a plan to use small satellites to explore the solar system. As Lori Keesey of the agency's Goddard Space Flight Center details, cubesats are proving very useful around Earth. So useful that the 10cmx10cmx10cm craft could be used to …
Simon Sharwood, 21 May 2015

Hacker launches ransomware rescue kit

Security bod Jada Cyrus has compiled a ransomware rescue kit to help victims decrypt locked files and avoid paying off crooks. The kit sports removal tools for common ransomware variants along with guides for how to perform the necessary tasks. Cyrus recommends users not pay ransoms as doing so sustains the criminal business …
Darren Pauli, 21 May 2015
Container meltdown

Intel wants containers to be alone again, naturally

Intel's taken its turn trying to advance containerisation technology by announcing a new approach to container security. Chipzilla'ss new idea is called “Clear containers”, which rely on the VT-x extensions in its chippery to enhance security and scalability. VT-x adds virtualisation support to silicon, the better to let CPUs …
Simon Sharwood, 21 May 2015
classroom_shutterstock_648

Mobiles at school could be MAKING YOUR KID MORE DUMBER

Restricting smart watch and mobile phone use can be a low-cost policy to reduce educational inequalities. This is the conclusion of a report by Louis-Philippe Beland and Richard Murphy working at the London School of Economics Centre for Economic Performance (pdf) and Louisiana State University. The survey looked at a number of …
Simon Rockman, 21 May 2015
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Delphix offers a mask for your data

Data virtualisation outfit Delphix is looking to the acquisition of Axis Technology Software to let enterprise developers work with real data, while protecting the personal information that data represents. Announcing the acquisition, the data-as-a-service (DaaS) outfit notes that the “data masking” technology it'll get from …
Anthony Hopkins as Odin in Marvel's Thor

Odin (formerly Parallels) bets big on Docker and OpenStack

Junior virtualiser Parallels has split into two companies. One company retains the Parallels name and will continue to sell desktop hypervisors for the Mac. The other is called Odin, a reflection of CEO Berger Steen's Norwegian heritage but a brand he says was chosen because it represents wisdom and longevity. Odin gets the …
Simon Sharwood, 21 May 2015

Andreessen tips spare change into sensor startup Samsara

The founders of Cisco-acquired Meraki have resurfaced with their next venture, an Internet of Things sensor outfit called Samsara. Accompanied by the usual rapturous applause from the financial press, the outfit, set up by Sanjit Biswas and John Bicket after they sent Meraki off to the Borg for US$1.2 billion, has funding from …
Cash on scales. Pic: Images Money, Flickr

HP looks set to ditch 3Com-spawn H3C Tech

H3C, a networking business that started life as a joint venture between 3Com and Huawei but is now owned by HP, is to become a majority-owned subsidiary of the state-controlled Tsinghua Unigroup. A remnant of what was once a titan of the networking business, H3C Tech was created in 2003. It was originally a badge-engineering …
A large hand flicks an icon of a little red man. Image via shutterstock (Lasse Kristensen)

Extreme Networks restructures again, promises SDN pivot

The indifferent revenue growth and ongoing losses announced earlier this month are having the usual effect on vendor Extreme Networks: it's announced a restructure. On May 6 the sixth CEO to pass through Extreme's C-level rotating door in nine years, Ed Meyercord, called the latest quarter's results “disappointing”, a pretty …

Google DOG WHISTLING fails to send URLs across the room

Google has released an experimental plug-in for Chrome that does something odd: sending URLs around the room using sound. The Tone plugin puts a button in Google's browser that, when clicked, makes a sound that other Tone-using Chrome browsers within earshot will interpret as an instruction to open the URL in the Chrome tab you …
Simon Sharwood, 21 May 2015
Huawei HQ

Huawei announces tiny 10 KB IoT kernel

Huawei has offered up a good look at its Internet of Things strategy, using its Network Congress 2015 to show off a microkernel that will be the bedrock of its future efforts in the field. LiteOS certainly is “micro”: the kernel is 10 kilobytes but nonetheless able to support “zero configuration, auto-discovery, and auto- …
Game of Thrones

The Internet of Things becomes the Game of Thrones in standards war

There is an "internet of things" standards war coming and Z-Wave will emerge triumphant, at least according to two of its leading advocates. Despite a number of high-profile setbacks in recent weeks, interim chair of the Z-Wave Alliance Raoul Wijgergangs and Alliance Board member Avi Rosenthal are (as you'd expect) confident …
Kieren McCarthy, 21 May 2015
Rand Paul

Rand Paul stages Senate filibuster against Patriot Act

Update Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) is currently four hours into a filibuster on the Senate floor over plans to renew sections of the Patriot Act that allow mass surveillance of American citizens. Exclusive video that answers the question: why a filibuster? https://t.co/4HxwQn0IEw — Dr. Rand Paul (@RandPaul) May 20, 2015 "There comes a …
Iain Thomson, 21 May 2015
India's ASTROSAT

India plans space telescope launch in second half of 2015

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) says it is ready to launch its first “mission aimed at studying distant celestial objects.” Dubbed “ASTROSAT”, the craft packs four X-ray instruments, an ultraviolet telescope and a charge particle monitor. ISRO says all payloads have been integrated into the satellite and that a …
Simon Sharwood, 21 May 2015
Alix Tichelman has plead guilty to involuntary manslaughter charges

Call girl gets six years for Googler's drug death

A former call girl has plead guilty to felony charges in the death of a senior Google executive from a heroin overdose. Alix Tichelman received a six year sentence for charges of involuntary manslaughter and drugs possession. She is expected to serve around three years behind bars, given her time served in jail already. "Alix …
Shaun Nichols, 21 May 2015
FTC building

Robocalling Americans? That'll cost you $1.7 MEEELLION

A pair of US companies have been fined $1.7m by the FTC for violating federal laws on robocalling. The US trade watchdog said that Universal Processing Services of Wisconsin and HES Merchant Services Company would have to split a $1,734,972 bill for their role in a robocall scheme advertising credit card interest rate reductions …
Shaun Nichols, 20 May 2015
Car crash

Get off the phone!! Seven out of ten US drivers put theirs and your lives at risk

Over two-thirds of drivers are dangerously distracted by their smartphones. That's according to a survey of over 2,000 US road users quizzed about their activities while piloting a ton or so of metal down the freeway at high speed. In all, 61 per cent of drivers admitted to sending or reading text messages while behind the …
Iain Thomson, 20 May 2015

Google, Twitter search deal: Did micro-blabbing site gag racy tweets to satisfy ad giant?

Comment Google will start displaying real-time tweets on its search pages after a deal was struck with Twitter. The change is currently only in the US and, at the moment at least, only on mobile devices. But in order to have access to its real-time feed Google is seemingly paying Twitter a standard flat licensing fee. If you search on …
Kieren McCarthy, 20 May 2015
ULA Atlas launch

US Air Force launches not-so-secret space plane. Thanks Russia

The US Air Force's not-so-secret space plane, the X37-B, has been successfully launched into low-Earth orbit along with an array of interesting test products. The rocket lifted off, after a 20 minute delay, at 1105 EDT (1505 UTC) from Cape Canaveral, Florida on Wednesday and delivered the space plane into orbit with its …
Iain Thomson, 20 May 2015
Two dollars

Altice to buy controlling stake in Suddenlink for NINE BEEELION dollars

Patrick Drahi's telecommunications firm Altice is set to make its first foray into the American telecommunications market after acquiring a controlling stake in Suddenlink for over $9bn. The Wall Street Journal first reported that Drahi was in "advanced talks" to capture Suddenlink Communications, one of the United States' ten …

EU parliament pushes for Dodd-Frank style conflict mineral laws

European electronics manufacturers will have to double check where the minerals in their products come from in future, according to a draft EU law approved by MEPs on Wednesday. The law, adopted by 402 votes to 118, is part of an effort to clamp down on so-called conflict minerals, so that European companies and consumers do not …
Jennifer Baker, 20 May 2015
The US White House. Pic: Roman Boed

Google Maps gets hit with racist White House listing

Google is once again scrambling to clean up bad behavior by Maps users after a couple of mortifying pieces of online graffiti were found. An unknown user has tagged the listing for The White House with a racial slur, causing the presidential residence to show up when the phrase "N****** House" is searched. A second remark tagged …
Shaun Nichols, 20 May 2015
Nexenta_logos

Nexenta flies over the Edge into the object storage bearpit

Nexenta's hypercale block and object storage software has hit the streets, pitting Nexenta competitively against all the other object storage suppliers. NexentaEdge was introduced last August and now it's generally available, two quarters later than its then-schedule. We're having it described as "the first software-only scale …
Chris Mellor, 20 May 2015
Uber launch party by https://www.flickr.com/photos/5chw4r7z/ CC2.0 sharelalike attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Why does Uber keep its drivers' pay so low? Ex-CFO: 'Cos we can'

In an interview on Sunday's episode of Wall Street Week, Mike Novogratz, principal and director of investment firm Fortress Investments, who was speaking about corporate greed and income inequality, explained his thoughts with an anecdote about former Uber CFO Brent Callinicos. Callinicos, who had previously been a bean-counter …
Mohne_Dam_Breached

Cunningham exits EVault, pauses, then takes controls at Springpath

Comment Hyper-converged systems are set to pour through the breach established by Nutanix in the networked storage dam. Terry Cunningham – the man who ran EVault before Seagate bought the cloud back-up biz in-house – has joined start-up Springpath, following a funding round, and aims to capitalise on Nutanix' groundbreaking work …
Chris Mellor, 20 May 2015
container_ship_hamburg_shutterstock_648

US plans to apply export controls to 0-days put out for comment

US proposals for export controls for zero-day vulnerabilities and malware have finally been pushed forward, re-opening the fault lines of a long-running argument among security experts in the process. The proposals (pdf) from the US Department of Commerce would introduce the Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) – an international …
John Leyden, 20 May 2015
Lego lumberjack

Average enterprise 'using 71 services vulnerable to LogJam'

As many as 575 cloud-based services have been left at risk to the newly discovered LogJam crypto vulnerability, according to cloud security specialists Skyhigh Networks. LogJam creates a means for hackers to weaken encrypted connections between a user and a web or email server. The vulnerability was discovered as part of …
John Leyden, 20 May 2015
Glorious future of China

China megacorp Tencent parrots Communists' 'Internet Plus' edict

Chinese megacorp Tencent is pushing ahead with an edict from China's Communist Party to improve the country's internet connections by upping its investment in software-defined networking. Tencent is most well known for its WeChat messaging and payments app, which the company says has 500 million active users. In March, China's …
Kat Hall, 20 May 2015
storage arrays superimposed on cloudy sky

Speaking in Tech: How come everyone's stopped doing private cloud on OpenStack?

Podcast speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise Hosted by Greg Knieriemen, Ed Saipetch and Sarah Vela. This week Ed and Greg are in Vancouver, BC for the OpenStack Summit with Amy Lewis filling in for Sarah. This week we talk about the Apple TV, hacked planes, barista DJ's, OpenStack and containers. Our special guest this …
Team Register, 20 May 2015
Alarm clock

Manage your internet performance

Live Regcast Register now to join a few experts for a special three-part Regcast on June 11, at 11:00 BST. Here we will give you the information you need to take control of your network traffic, starting today. If you can't make the live show, then you can register for the on demand version here, and we'll let you know once it's available to …
David Gordon, 20 May 2015
BT Openreach van

BT's taxpayer-funded broadband monopoly may lock out rivals, says independent report

BT’s monopoly in supplying Blighty’s national broadband scheme may have permanently locked out future competition – according to an independent report card on the £780m public purse project. The evaluation, by economics consultancy Oxera, was required by the European Commission, following its decision to grant the scheme state …
Kat Hall, 20 May 2015
Titanic sinking

IaaS is OVER, ladies. Time for OpenStack to jump clear

Data. Was ever such a single word filled with such promise – and heartbreak – for IT firms? In the cloud, succeeding in getting hold of people’s data means these people are incentivized through inertia to stay with you. That’s the promise, at least. The rub? Actually making a successful business from people’s data. The act of …
Gavin Clarke, 20 May 2015
Cloud security

Cloud Security Temperature Check

Survey Results It is increasingly common for users and business groups to drive their own adoption of cloud services. But even where IT is involved, as organisations ramp up their use of cloud, activity is often uncoordinated. Pulling the threads together across service silos to manage risks effectively can be a challenge. The right strategy …
Dale Vile, 20 May 2015

Boffins have devised TERMINATOR style LIQUID METAL – for an antenna

Boffins have made a liquid metal device which can alter its shape through voltage alone, removing the need for clunky external pumps previously used to arrange such material. In a breakthrough which brings humanity much too close to the development of functioning T-1000s, boffins from North Carolina State University (NCSU) have …