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Rocket Lab's Peter Beck with a model of Rutherford

Kiwi Rocket Lab to build SUPER-CHEAP sat launchers (anyone know 30 rocket scientists?)

A new outfit launched in Auckland, New Zealand, believes that by next year it'll be ready to sling satellites spacewards for as little as $5m. The only hitch is its need to recruit a few rocket scientists – ah, about 30 – who are prepared to relocate to New Zealand. Rocket Lab has just kicked off an American presence to help the …
borg_cube

Resistance is not futile: Here's a cookie sheet of luke-warm RRAM that proves it

Boffins devising Resistive RAM (RRAM) have found that using porous silicon oxide makes the devices easier to manufacture, longer lasting and less power hungry. The researchers, at Rice University, Texas, stumbled upon silicon oxide RRAM five years ago. The stuff works as computer storage by having differing resistance levels …
Chris Mellor, 29 Jul 2014
Virgin Media Satellite acquisition

Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?

Feature On 18 September, the people living in Scotland will vote in a referendum to decide if we should to slice the top off Great Britain and create a separate country. If that happens, and once the locals sober up, Scotland could be a country with universal broadband, a publicly owned postal service and mobile coverage which would be …
Bill Ray, 29 Jul 2014
alertme review energy meter monitor

Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart

Opinion Wouldn’t it be great if you knew how much your gas and electricity were costing you minute by minute by looking at a smartphone app, visiting a website or glancing at a wall display? You’d be in a much stronger position to reduce your energy bills and switch suppliers if you could. Thankfully, this data will soon be accessible …
Adam Afriyie MP, 29 Jul 2014
The BladeSystem c7000 Platinum edition chassis populated with blades

No more sprawl: Let us consider the benefits of blade servers

Live webcast Register now for this webcast on the role of blade systems in simplifying data centre administration. Watch this event today at 11:00 BST - if you can't make it, just sign up and we will email you when the recording is available. Blade servers can help you establish control over sprawl while simplifying the administration of …
David Gordon, 29 Jul 2014
Blood image

14 antivirus apps found to have security problems

Organisations should get their antivirus products security tested before deployment because the technology across the board dangerously elevates attack surfaces, COSEINC researcher Joxean Koret says. COSEINC is a Singapore security outfit that has run a critical eye about 17 major antivirus engines and products and found …
Darren Pauli, 29 Jul 2014

Microsoft says 'weird things' can happen during Windows Server 2003 migrations

Microsoft has started issuing increasingly stern warnings to move from the soon-to-be-unsupported Windows Server 2003, but has also just found an obstacle to migrations away from the operating system. The problem manifests when users run Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2012 R2 domain controllers serving the same domain. …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2014
android tongue

Malware gets your Android blabbering to HACKERS

Researchers from the Chinese University of Hong Kong have developed bizarre malware that dictates contacts, emails and other sensitive text data in order to steal it. In the novel attack a seemingly innocuous app that required no permissions called a bad guy's phone number and blabbered the stolen data out of the speakers and …
Darren Pauli, 29 Jul 2014

Indian techies-in-training face down MAN-EATING LEOPARD - and WIN

You've heard of the tiger that came to tea, but what about the leopard that came to lessons? That's exactly what techies-in-training at the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay had to deal with when a big cat invaded their campus. After a leopard was spotted by the metallurgy department last week, the local forestry …
Jasper Hamill, 29 Jul 2014
Microsoft's Sharks Cove

Microsoft bakes a bigger Pi to cook Windows slabs

Microsoft is looking for a footprint in the mini-single-board-computer market dominated by the Raspberry Pi, with the launch of the Intel Atom-based 'Sharks Cove' machine it hopes will attract developers with an interest in tablets. That's an interesting move: the tablet market is hotly contested, with vendors entering and …
Cisco 6324 fabric interconnect

Cisco to reveal UCS for small businesses

Cisco has quietly released details of a new version of its UCS servers and associated kit dubbed the UCS Mini”. Detailed by blogger Justin Paul and described in several Cisco documents, the new UCS also gets its very own version 3.0 of Cisco UCS manager. That package runs on a new piece of kit, the 6324 Fabric Interconnect, …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2014
opportunity selfie

NASA Mars rover FINALLY equals 1973 Soviet benchmark

The plucky Opportunity rover-droid, whose wheels first touched the red Martian dirt back in 2004, has trundled past the 25 mile mark for the first time and in so doing claimed humanity's off-world long distance driving record. NASA records that Opportunity went for a 48 metre trundle on July 27th and in so doing saw its odometer …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2014
Candle in the dark

Flamewars in SPAAACE: cooler fires hint at energy efficiency

Video A fire on the International Space Station (ISS) – intentional of course – has provided hints at the kinds of research needed to make engines on Earth cleaner and more fuel efficient. Surprisingly, the experiments turned up flames burning at lower temperatures than thought possible. In the research, astronauts set fire to large …
Doom

Bitcoin on ATM? Pfft! We play DOOM on ours

Back in January, a Register commentard recalled a magazine cover of days of yore, depicting Doom as if it were running on an ATM: now an Aussie tinkerer has brought the vision to life. As shown in the YouTube video below, the hardware hackers obtained a presumably-retired NCR Personas ATM – one that runs Windows XP – and got id …
Google Chocolate Factory

Google Maps community competition falls foul of Indian regulations

Google has found itself in hot water in India, with the country's Central Bureau of Investigation launching a formal investigation into Google Maps for allegedly publishing the location of sensitive military bases. The problem arose because of a community competition held last year - Google's Mapathon 2013 - in which the …
arrow3china

Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers

A Chinese hacking team previously accused of being behind raids against US defence contractors has been accused of a new data heist: plundering the tech behind Israel's Iron Dome missile defence system. Beijing's infamous Comment Crew hacking group is thought to have executed the intrusions into the corporate networks of top …
Darren Pauli, 29 Jul 2014
Apple iPhone 4 (left) and Samsung Galaxy S 4G (right)

Apple stops caring about Samsung kit everyone else stopped caring about years ago

Apple has ended its attempt to ban nearly two dozen old Samsung mobile models from import into the US. The iPhone maker on Monday filed a motion for dismissal of its appeal against the 2012 decision by Judge Lucy Koh, which awarded Apple a $1bn damages payout for patent infringement but blocked an injunction against Samsung …
Shaun Nichols, 29 Jul 2014
Windows Phone 8

Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes

The website wranglers at Microsoft appear to have accidentally let slip some details about the forthcoming update to Windows Phone 8.1 – as well as some hints at what we can expect from future handsets running Redmond's mobile OS. A page on the software giant's site – first spotted by the Windows Phone watchers at WPCentral on …
Neil McAllister, 29 Jul 2014
MacPaint 1.0

CAPTCHA challenges you to copy pointillist painter Seurat's classic

A chap called Guy Abbott has created a CAPTCHA that asks you to take a swing at imitating pointillist painter Georges-Pierre Seurat. The CAPTCHA is available on the Contact Form on Abbott's site, which depicts an excerpt of Parade de Cirque, a painting in Seurat's famed €œpointillist style comprised of small dots of colour that …
Simon Sharwood, 28 Jul 2014

Cloudy CoreOS Linux distro declares itself production-ready

The developers behind the stripped-down CoreOS Linux distribution have pushed version 367.1.0 to the Stable release channel, marking the first time the project has delivered a production-ready release. Unlike other Linux distros, CoreOS is a minimal OS that ships each new version as a single unit, rather than updating individual …
Neil McAllister, 28 Jul 2014

FTC to mobile carriers: If you could stop text scammers being jerks that'd be just great

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has urged mobile carriers to crack down on scams that lure people into receiving expensive texts. The commission has published a "cramming" report [PDF] that states that American networks are failing to protect subscribers from unfair or deceptive premium service charges, levied by sleazy …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Jul 2014

OKCupid: OK, STUPID, YES we set you up with BAD DATES. On purpose

The recent uproar from users who had discovered Facebook was meddling with their minds is overblown, according to Christian Rudder, co-founder of dating site OKCupid. Facebook's academic study into manipulating the moods of its users by fiddling with their news feeds has sparked an FTC complaint and a lot of outrage – …
Iain Thomson, 28 Jul 2014
Great Wall of China

Microsoft in Chinese burn ENIGMA: Anti-trust agents' 'sudden visit' to offices

Four of Microsoft's offices in China were "visited" by antitrust regulators on Monday, but neither the software and devices giant nor the Chinese government has explained why. "We aim to build products that deliver the features, security and reliability customers expect, and we will address any concerns the government may have …
Neil McAllister, 28 Jul 2014

What FTC lawsuit? T-Mobile US touts 10GB, $100 family-of-4 plan

T-Mobile US reckons it has undercut its larger rivals with a discounted family plan to give four lines and 10GB of shared mobile data for $100 monthly. The carrier claims its new family plan will be $60 cheaper than those of AT&T, Verizon and Sprint. The $100 package gives each user 2.5GB per month and includes T-Mob's unlimited …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Jul 2014
Mozilla's new CEO Chris Beard

Mozilla keeps its Beard, hopes anti-gay marriage troubles are now over

Mozilla has confirmed that Chris Beard, who was appointed as interim CEO three months ago as a replacement for controversial Brendan Eich, will stay at the helm for the foreseeable future. "Chris has a keen sense of where Mozilla has been – and where we’re headed," said Mitchell Baker, executive chairwoman at Mozilla. "He has …
Iain Thomson, 28 Jul 2014
Dr Dre Beats Solo

Forgot About Dre? Not us. Euro bods give nod to Apple and Beats deal

The European Commission has given its official blessing to the $3bn acquisition by Apple of headphone manufacturer Beats. After considering whether the link-up fitted in with merger regulations, the antitrust regulators decided the two firms were sufficiently different that there was no concerns about competition. In a …
Jasper Hamill, 28 Jul 2014
Ultrastar_SSD1600MH

HGST polishes Ultrastar SSD whoppers, stuffs with denser Intel flash

HGST has refreshed its Ultrastar enterprise SSD line, using denser 20nm NAND to replace the previous 25nm flash, doubling capacity, upping read performance but lowering write performance a tad in the process. The starting point was a three-product Ultrastar SSD800 line-up, maxing out at 800GB and coming in MH (write-intensive), …
Chris Mellor, 28 Jul 2014

Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY

Review The idea of a new version of Firefox will sound like a bad joke to some. To others, it’s a yawn – Firefox comes at the blistering pace of one new version every six weeks. How can there be anything significant in the latest edition? Well, Firefox 31, released last week, is a significant update with new tools for web developers. …
Screenshots of the Samsung Z smartphone running Tizen

Samsung Z Tizen OS mobe is post-phoned – this time for good?

Samsung has postponed the launch of its new Samsung Z smartphone yet again, and given no indication of when we'll ever see the Tizen OS mobe on sale. The move delays the Samsung Z's world debut in Russia. The Linux-powered Z has been doing the rounds of developer conferences and events, but has yet to be spotted in the wild. …

LOHAN's stirring motto: Ad Astra Tabernamque

It's official: The stirring motto for our audacious Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) ballocket mission is Ad Astra Tabernamque. The public vote came down firmly in favour of us heading both to the stars and the pub, and we're not going to argue with that. Per Cervisiam Ad Astra ("Through Beer To The Stars") and …
Lester Haines, 28 Jul 2014
By Gary Knight CC 2.0

KDE releases ice-cream coloured Plasma 5 just in time for summer

Review Plasma 5, released last week, is a major redesign of the Unix KDE desktop environment and underlying frameworks. Perhaps the most notable difference is the visual changes, which see KDE embracing a more streamlined, "flat" interface, but it's also the first version of KDE to be powered by Qt 5 and the recently released KDE …
By Frank Wouters, licensed under CC 2.0

Russia: There is a SPACECRAFT full of LIZARDS in orbit above Earth and WE control it

It's all systems gecko up in space, after the Russians finally regained control of a spacecraft packed full of horny lizards. The world's eyes anxiously turned towards Russia last Friday as it was revealed its space scientists had lost control of the satellite Foton-M4, which was on a mission to shoot the world's first zero- …
Jasper Hamill, 28 Jul 2014

Swell. Apple buys 'Pandora-for-talk-radio' app... for $30 meeellion

Can you hear that message crackling over the airwaves? No? Perhaps you need to stop using that rusty old radio and replace it with a gleaming iThing from Apple. That could be an option soon if rumours that Apple is preparing to buy "Pandora-for-talk-radio" service Swell are to be believed. The fruity firm is thought to have …
Jasper Hamill, 28 Jul 2014
Blade Runner

Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series

Ridley Scott has signed on to make Philip K Dick’s Nazis-in-America story The Man in the High Castle for Amazon Studios, according to industry mag Deadline. Blade Runner screenshot Ridley Scott's Blade Runner Scott’s production firm Scott Free and X-Files writer Frank Spotnitz will make the alternate reality tale in which the …
Scotland

'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter

Blundering Scottish cops have interrogated a prolific tweeter hours after he tweeted a few innocent comments about the Commonwealth Games. Neil Cooper, who tweets under the handle @DasBomber, wrote a number of tweets during the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games week that appeared to attract the attentions of the lawmen …
Jasper Hamill, 28 Jul 2014

Blighty will be BIGGER and BETTER than Germany, confirm beancounters

Britain's teamsters may not be setting the sporting stage alight this summer but the local tech economy is heating up as it sprints to Euro glory. Figures from Chancellor George Osborne late last week showed that overall UK economic output is some two per cent larger than pre-financial crisis levels in 2008, after rising 0.8 per …
Paul Kunert, 28 Jul 2014
Lightning

AWS hell no: Can Microsoft Azure sales beat Amazon's cloud?

Comment There's a prospect coming into view of Microsoft’s Azure cloud offering passing Amazon's AWS in cloud revenues. Fancy that. Azure grew its commercial cloud services revenue 147 per cent on an annual basis in the second quarter of 2014, and has an annualised run rate of $4.4bn. So says financial analyst Aaron Rakers, the MD of …
Chris Mellor, 28 Jul 2014
Chubby Checker performing in 2012

HP settles suit with popstar Chubby Checker over todger tester app

HP has settled its trademark suit with '60s popstar Chubby Checker over a software application of the same name intended to estimate the size of a man's member. The former pop sensation, whose real name is Ernest Evans, sued the tech firm for naming its todger totter-upper after him last year. The app, which was available to …
Team Register, 28 Jul 2014

Arcserve on split-up with CA Technologies: 'We’re a startup now. We’re really hungry'

Analysis Arcserve execs are insisting that the business's recent spinout from software giant CA to Marlin should help it compete better in the market. While CA may have decided to invest the money from the sell-off of arcserve elsewhere, the data protection biz says its product has a bright future, as VP worldwide sales Chris Ross was at …
Chris Mellor, 28 Jul 2014
Asus MeMO Pad 7 Android tablet

You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad

Review What’s the best affordable 7-inch tablet? Surely it’s got to be either the Nexus 7 or the LG G Pad 8.3 or if the pair of them are too dear, the Hudl – right? Wrong. Asus MeMO Pad 7 Android tablet Asus MeMO Pad 7 Android tablet Asus’s new £120 MeMO Pad 7 may not be better than the Google, LG and Tesco devices in all areas but …
Alun Taylor, 28 Jul 2014
Siats eating an iguanodontian and intimidating early, small-bodied tyrannosauroids.

Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins

The dinosaurs would have survived the asteroid that smashed into Earth and wiped them all out had it not been for the rather poor – from their point of view – timing with which it arrived. The demise of these scaly – or indeed, even feathery – overlords may not have happened if the space rock hit a few million years later or …
Jasper Hamill, 28 Jul 2014
LG 77EC980V Ultra HD 4K OLED TV

Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE

Only 6 per cent of broadband homes are "moderately" or "highly likely" to buy a 4K TV, and 83 per cent of consumers are completely unfamiliar with the term Ultra HD. LG 77EC980V Ultra HD 4K OLED TV LG's 77EC980V Ultra HD 4K OLED TV... pricey but beautiful These are the major findings from a new report from The Diffusion Group …
Faultline, 28 Jul 2014