Top Twenty Stories
Geek's Guide to Britain 'If this nerve centre didn't exist, neither would I' says Reg man
For staff at the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) in Cheltenham, there’s an air of Fight Club about the place. The first rule about GCHQ is you don’t talk about GCHQ. It’s a well observed tradition, even though there are road signs and a bus route directing you to this highly secret establishment, the nerve centre …
Panic on the streets of Sydney, as US says printed guns 'unstoppable'
The New South Wales Police Force, guardians of Australia's most-populous state, have gotten themselves into a panic over the Liberator, the 3D-printable pistol. The Force's Commissioner Andrew Schipione today appeared at a press conference to denounce the Liberator and urge residents of the State not to download plans for the …
Game Theory Microsoft’s new Xbox - and more
How else to start a Game Theory column other than with the Xbox One? With the dust starting to settle on news reports, I’ve gone for a rather more devil’s advocate approach to Microsoft’s unveiling. There’s also room for a review of Metro: Last Light, and a quick look at the splendid The Last of Us to whet the appetite for next …
Revealed: The digital monster that ate Shepherd's Bush
The BBC has suspended its chief technology officer on full pay - after it spunked almost £100m on a "tapeless" digital content management system that didn't deliver. The £98.4m figure attributed to the failed Digital Media Initiative (DMI) may be a conservative estimate: the BBC Trust has commissioned an external technical …
One in 10 UK Facebookers: I quit this... bitch
Facebook's popularity is slumping in the UK as users become fed up with being bombarded with advertising, a YouGov survey has revealed. In a report examining social media use among web-savvy Brits, the market research firm found a 9 per cent drop in Facebook usage since April 2012. Among the people who had quit Facebook, 23 …
Episode 3 So you deleted my advice? By accident? THREE times?
"I just need you to go through it for me once," the user whines down the line at me. "You mean once more?" I reply. "Once more?" he snivels. "Yes, as I already went through this with you a few weeks ago. You said you understood, you even wrote something down." "Really - are you sure that was me?" "Positive." "How can …
Updated The cost of your cloudy new console
Microsoft has been quite cagey about its plans for games licensing on the new Xbox One, but multiple reports now suggest there's going to be very little incentive for a second-hand games market anymore, and buyers could get stung with extra charges. On Thursday Consoledeals.co.uk received a note from a senior member of a UK …
First space rocket of humanity, used to bomb London
Ex-Microsoft gazillionaire Paul Allen has acquired a V2 rocket for his Flying Heritage Collection. First human artifact into outer space ... en route to London or Antwerp with a one-tonne warhead The Microsoft co-founder stumped an undisclosed amount for the Mittelwerk GmbH Vergeltungswaffe 2, having found himself with a …
Microsoft escapes $4bn payout
The International Trade Commission (ITC) has denied an attempt by Google to impose a US-wide sales ban on Microsoft's Xbox by rejecting the claim that might have cost Redmond $US4bn in royalties. "This is a win for Xbox customers and confirms our view that Google had no grounds to block our products," David Howard, Microsoft …
Support for new devices put on ice as well
The HTC First "Facebook phone" is not coming to the UK after its frigid reception in the US, and the social networking company is going back to work on the app after mass user apathy. Neither EE or Orange plan to offer the HTC First, Mobile News reported on Thursday (and El Reg subsequentially confirmed), which begs the …
Ex-veep lifts lid on homeless fondleslab maker's finances
Apple has been operating practically tax-free in Ireland since 1980, a former exec has claimed. The ex-Cupertino veep spoke out as the fruity firm was accused of being a "tax resident nowhere in the world" by Senator John McCain (R-AZ) during a hearing of the US Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations. The iPhone …
Can one ever escape the Choc Factory, FTC 'ponders'
Ad giant Google is facing an antitrust probe intended to establish whether it exploits its dominance in the advertising trade to steer customers away from rivals' products. According to a Bloomberg report, the US Federal Trade Commission is in the preliminary stages of an investigation, which may not develop into a full-blown …
Gonna offer anything less than $1bn? No Waze, Jose
Ad giant Google is also considering snapping up mapping software firm Waze, which could spark a bidding war with Facebook over the business. Sources whispered to Bloomberg that Google was interested in the navigation firm - which is, of course, seeking a price tag of more than $1bn. What kind of tech company are you these days …
Nickel and diming customers because it can
US subscribers to AT&T's mobile network are getting an extra 61¢ "Mobility Administrative Fee" on their bills beginning in May. That's not a lot of money for individual users, but it adds up to over $40m a month in additional revenue for AT&T – around half a billion each year. The company has reportedly said its administrative …
Alternative Android store now in nearly 200 countries
Looking to woo more app publishers to its Android Appstore and away from Google Play, Amazon has announced new tools that allow developers to track user engagement with their apps. The new Engagement Reports announced on Friday provide a variety of metrics, including daily and monthly average revenue per device, average …
QuoTW Plus: 'Apple execs, I apologise for this theatre of the absurd'
This was the week when the tax row shifted into high gear, with politicos on both sides of the pond railing at Google and Apple, while respective chiefs Eric Schmidt and Tim Cook presented defences that amounted to yelling "If you don't like it, you fix it" and running away. Schmidt started it off with an op ed at the start of …
Wretched hives 'harm more people than do good'
Having solved all of the state's other problems, the Ohio legislature has passed a bill outlawing that most foul of societal ills: the internet café. As reported by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, House Bill 7, which passed the State Senate with a bipartisan vote of 27 to 6 on Wednesday, effectively cuts off the main source of …
What? You don't agree? What are you, a terrorist?
Nick Clegg has been warned that his opposition to the controversial Communications Data Bill could leave Britain "at risk" after a soldier was beheaded in Woolwich, London. The deputy prime minister is coming under increased pressure to rethink his stance on the draft law, dubbed the Snoopers' Charter. The bill, if passed by …
Pull out your pagers and your Hammer pants, we're going back to the '90s
Twitter is the latest major web service to beef up its security two-factor authentication (2FA). The security feature is a pretty simple and effective approach - and one the notorious Mega kingpin Kim Dotcom claims today to have invented back in the '90s. Two-factor auth is a simple process for verifying that the user …
Something for the Weekend, Sir? Too sexy for my (night)shirt
Since being allowed back into public places without causing the skin of those nearby to melt or for Jurassic sealife to shuffle out of the Pacific and sneeze fire at Tokyo Tower, Half Life Wife has enjoyed several evenings out at the theatre with yours truly. My love for theatre has only recently returned, having been beaten …
- Geek's Guide to Britain INSIDE GCHQ: Welcome to Cheltenham's cottage industry
- 'Catastrophic failure' of 3D-printed gun in Oz Police test
- Game Theory Is the next-gen console war already One?
- BBC suspends CTO after it wastes £100m on doomed IT system
- Peak Facebook: British users lose their Liking for Zuck's ad empire