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Dog's backside and tail

Amazon AXES try-before-you-buy AppStore TestDrive facility from shopfront

Amazon customers can no longer preview apps via the online retail giant's TestDrive service before making a purchase, after the firm quietly killed the function on Wednesday. The try-before-you-buy feature was introduced by Amazon in March 2011 and was considered at the time to be a clever way to drum up more sales of apps. …
Kelly Fiveash, 18 Apr 2015
Wolfenstein 3D

Let’s PULL Augmented Reality and CLIMAX with JISM

Something for the Weekend, Sir? “Augmented Reality is a terrible expression,” says the AR demonstrator. “It’s a pity it doesn’t have a better name. So we call it XXooming. With two Xs.” Oh dear, I can tell this is about to be a presentation involving a string of brand-new made-up terms designed to mask the abject failure of the technology in question to have …
Alistair Dabbs, 18 Apr 2015
Windows 10 Phone build 10051

Windows Phone 10: Less stuff that does more – plus IE-killer Project Spartan

Hands On Microsoft recently released its Windows 10 Technical Preview for phones, build 10051, as part of its Windows Insider series. This is by no means a stable build, especially on a low-end phone like our Lumia 635. The built-in apps crash from time to time and sometimes the entire OS freezes. Another common problem is chopped-off …
Tim Anderson, 17 Apr 2015
CLion logo

JetBrains releases CLion - new cross-platform IDE for C/C++ users

Developer tools company JetBrains has released CLion, a new cross-platform IDE for C and C++. JetBrains is a survivor in a product area dominated either by vendor-specific tools (such as Microsoft’s Visual Studio and Apple's Xcode) or free open source projects (Eclipse and NetBeans). The core JetBrains product, IntelliJ IDEA, …
Tim Anderson, 17 Apr 2015

Sysadmins, patch now: HTTP 'pings of death' are spewing across web to kill Windows servers

The SANS Institute has warned Windows IIS web server admins to get patching as miscreants are now exploiting a flaw in the software to crash websites. The security bug (CVE-2015-1635) allows attackers to knock web servers offline by sending a simple HTTP request. Microsoft fixed this denial-of-service vulnerability on Tuesday …
Iain Thomson, 16 Apr 2015

Google: Go ahead, XP stalwarts, keep on using Chrome safely all YEAR

Even though Microsoft quit supporting the wildly popular Windows XP last year, Google has decided to give XP users a break by promising to ship updates and security fixes for its Chrome browser on the aging operating system for a few more months. Wayyyyy back in 2013, the Chocolate Factory told Chrome users that they had better …
Neil McAllister, 16 Apr 2015
Cyanogen

Microsoft set to penetrate Cyanogen, promises app-y ending

Perverse as it might seem for mighty Microsoft to be courting geek-niche Android developer Cyanogen, the inclusion of Microsoft Apps on future distributions of the Cyanogen flavour of Android is an important win for Microsoft. The deal has been a while coming. We reported in March that it was pending despite Microsoft having …
Simon Rockman, 16 Apr 2015

Bluetooth SIG launches dev studio to encourage development

A new software tool aimed at promoting Bluetooth development has been launched into Beta by the Bluetooth SIG. It spans a broad range of skill sets, from those people who’ve never used Bluetooth but want to incorporate it into their apps, to experts who want to generate and distribute plug-ins. With The Internet of Things (IoT) …
Simon Rockman, 16 Apr 2015
Google handwriting recognition app

Google's new scribble-tab-ulous handwriting interface for Android

First Look Google has popped the lid off its Google Handwriting Input, new Android software that lets you input your text longhand in any 'droid app. The Chocolate Factory's research arm says handwriting recognition is needed because touchscreen keyboards remain modestly effective and while “Voice input is an option, but there are …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Apr 2015

Exchange Server 2016 will be mostly Cloud Exchange ported back on-premises

Microsoft has let it be known that it has a preview of Exchange Server 2016 ready to see the sun at its May Ignite conference. Along the way it's also said that the on-premises version of Exchange isn't getting much more than stuff it's already built for, and proved in, the cloud version of the server. Here's what the company …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Apr 2015
Paper clips by Ross Elliott https://www.flickr.com/photos/ross_elliott/ CC 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Boost your attachment size with this one weird trick

Microsoft has increased the maximum attachment size accessible to users of Outlook Web Access (OWA) under Office 365, with 150MB of digital baggage now able to hop aboard emails. Admins worried about blowing storage allowances and congested networks needn't worry: Microsoft makes it possible to dial permitted total attachment …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Apr 2015
troll

Cram my freebies into Android phones and get a royalty discount, says Microsoft (allegedly)

A new report claims Microsoft hasn't been offering Android device vendors any money to bundle its mobile apps on their phones and slabs; rather, it has offered to reduce the tolls it collects from the mobe-makers. Citing sources among supply chain players in China and Taiwan, DigiTimes Research says Redmond has offered to cut …
Neil McAllister, 16 Apr 2015
What Linus Torvalds thinks of NVIDIA

Nvidia's GTX 900 cards lock out open-source Linux devs yet again

The Linux community's on-again, off-again relationship with Nvidia appears to have soured once more, amid reports that the GPU maker is back to its old tricks – and worse – when it comes to open source hardware drivers. Nvidia does release Linux drivers for its graphics cards, but they are proprietary and ship in binary-only …
Neil McAllister, 15 Apr 2015
Android icon desktop toys

Android lands on Microsoft's money-machine island fortress

Banks have a new option for finally unhitching from Windows XP on tens of thousands of ATMs – Google’s Android. NCR, the country’s largest supplier of cash machines, was today due to unveil a Linux-powered cash-machine running Google’s smartphone operating system. Called Kalpana*, NCR has developed a secure, customised version …
Gavin Clarke, 15 Apr 2015

Finally, Mozilla looks at moving away from 'insecure' HTTP. Maybe

Calls to finally move away from HTTP and on to HTTPS are, like grumbles to oust an aging dictator, finding themselves encouraged by the public square/echo chamber of Mozilla's developers' platform. Posting to the Mozilla dev platform, security engineer Richard Barnes said: "In recent months, there have been statements from IETF …

NASA to put the stars in your hands with coming-soon-now API portal

NASA has let it be known its working on an API portal so it can put more data into developers' hands. “Data is one of the most important assets at NASA,” writes Dan Hammer, a presidential innovation fellow at the agency. “”We have data on comets, measurements of mars, and real-time imagery of earth. But what good is data if you …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Apr 2015

It's 2015 and a RICH TEXT FILE or a HTTP request can own your Windows machine

Microsoft has delivered its latest monthly batch of security updates to address flaws in Windows, Office and Internet Explorer. Redmond's latest Patch Tuesday payload includes 11 bulletins, four of which are rated critical as they allow attackers to execute malicious code on victims' computers from across the internet. The full …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Apr 2015
Microsoft on Android

Microsoft cramming free stuff into Galaxy S6es? Not so fast – US telcos

Microsoft has been working with smartphone makers to get its mobile apps onto more customers' phones, but as long as carriers have a say in it, Redmond might not be able to obtain the broad reach it's hoping for. Samsung announced in March that its new Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge flagship phones would ship with Microsoft's …
Neil McAllister, 14 Apr 2015
Good riddance to bad Java

Chrome version 42 will pour your Java coffee down the drain: Plugin blocked by default

The latest release of the Chrome web browser, version 42, will block Oracle's Java plugin by default as well as other extensions that use the deprecated NPAPI. The Chrome 42 – available now – brings about the end of official support for NPAPI, a move that will render various plugins incompatible with the browser. Among those …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Apr 2015
Handshake

MySQL maestro Percona makes NoSQL play with Tokutek gobble

MySQL consulting and services outfit Percona has acquired Tokutek, makers of a commercial, transaction-safe distribution of the open source MongoDB NoSQL database. "TokuMX, a fully functional transactional, document (row) level locking NoSQL derivative of MongoDB, will now be serviced, supported and remotely managed by Percona's …
Neil McAllister, 14 Apr 2015

Selfie sticks BANNED by Apple: No hipster tools' tools allowed at WWDC

Apple is selling tickets to this year's Worldwide Developers Conference – though if you get hold of one, leave your selfie stick in the hotel room. Those wishing to attend have until Friday to register for Cupertino's lottery system. The confab will be held between June 8 and 12 in San Francisco's Moscone West conference center …
Iain Thomson, 14 Apr 2015

Docker preps on-prem container store, hungry investors give it the D

Linux container-wrangling outfit Docker, flush with cash from a fresh round of funding, says it will release its first commercial product to general availability this quarter. The software, an on-premises version of the firm's hosted container repository called Docker Hub Enterprise (DHE), was launched as a private beta program …
Neil McAllister, 14 Apr 2015
Microsoft Lumia 640 Windows Phone

Life after Nokia: Microsoft Lumia 640 budget WinPho blower

Review Is the Nokia Microsoft Lumia 640 an Office subscription with a free phone, or a phone with a free Office subscription? Either way, it's likely to be the biggest mobile device for Microsoft since the days of Zune and Kin – and the company is getting more aggressive with its marketing. Microsoft Lumia 640 Windows Phone Office …
Andrew Orlowski, 14 Apr 2015

This open-source personal crypto-key vault wants two things: To make the web safer ... and your donations

An open-source hardware project aimed at making the internet "a little bit safer" needs an influx of cash to continue its work. The Cryptech effort was created following revelations from NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden that the US government and its pals are exploiting standards and weak crypto algorithms to gain access to …
Kieren McCarthy, 14 Apr 2015

Radio 4 and Dr K on programming languages: Full of Java Kool-Aid

Poll Radio 4 has dipped a toe into Lake Geek with a five part series looking at computer languages. Or more accurately the history and reputation of four computer languages: Fortran, Cobol, Basic and Java. Presented by soi-disant girl geek* Aleks Krotoski Aleks Krotoski, the series ("Codes that Changed the World") emphasises the …
Simon Rockman, 14 Apr 2015
Game of Thrones Season One Blu-ray disc set

Dev gives HBO free math tips to nail Game of Thrones pirate leakers

Developer Bruno Cauet has offered HBO a series of mathematical equations that could have tracked the Game of Thrones season five leaker, or even killed the leak completely. The massively popular series thought to be HBO's most profitable production was rocked over the weekend when a leaker, thought to be a translator with an …
Darren Pauli, 14 Apr 2015
Brando wooden cross Flash drive

Aussie priest BLESSES an APP – and the sacred iPad it runs on

The Catholic Archdiocese of Adelaide has claimed a world first by blessing an app and the iPad it runs on. The app is no mere piece of code, but instead serves as a heavenly guide to the life of St Mary of the Cross MacKillop, Australia's first saint. The app guides users along a righteous path through Adelaide, retracing the …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Apr 2015
MIT 3D heads from 2D pics

MIT shows off machine-learning script to make CREEPY HEADS

Don't write code when you can re-use code is a well-known principle in writing software, but using it to replace thousands of lines of code with 50 seems positively parsimonious. That's what MIT is claiming with an upcoming demonstration of what it calls “probabilistic code”, an approach which it says it's applied to the field …
Apple iPhone 6 and 6 Plus

Got iOS 8.3 installed? Pssh, you are SO last week… version 8.4 is out

Apple has released beta builds of the iOS 8.4, now the latest version available for registered developers. The Cupertino idiot-tax operation announced the release of the build on Monday. Among the reported features being previewed in the iOS beta is an overhaul to the Music app. Early screenshots of the player suggest Apple is …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Apr 2015
Snake oil salesman

Seriously, stop claiming your two-buck photo app can detect cancer

The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has reached a final settlement with an app developer accused of misleading people into believing its software could detect skin cancer. The commission said Health Discovery Corporation, the makers of the $1.99 MelApp application for iPhones, will no longer be able to claim that it can either …
Shaun Nichols, 13 Apr 2015
Linux kernel development

Linux 4.0 debuts with the usual no fanfare

Linux 4.0 is upon us. Linux Lord Linus Torvalds made it official with a typically brief post and slightly longer explanation to the Linux kernel mailing list. The new number isn't a sign of a major upgrade. As we've chronicled, Torvalds thinks that it looks a bit silly when version numbers go beyond x.19. He therefore decided …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Apr 2015

Nokia may tell struggling HERE Maps division to get lost – report

Nokia may not be done selling itself off in pieces, with sources claiming the Finnish firm may be looking to unload its HERE Maps division. Bloomberg reports that Nokia has been shopping the unit to a number of potential buyers, among them some private equity firms, a group of German automakers, and even unlicensed taxi app …
Neil McAllister, 11 Apr 2015
windows 10 microsoft one windows

Wanna run Windows 10 Preview on your Lumia? Of course you do. Now 33 mobes supported

Microsoft has issued another build of the Windows 10 Technical Preview for phones, around two months since the last build was released. The new version, Build 10051, is only being made available to members of the Fast release ring of the Windows Insider program for now, so you can bet it has a few rough edges. The most striking …
Neil McAllister, 10 Apr 2015
Grand Theft Auto Lindsay Lohan lookalike

Daniel Radcliffe to feature in GTA biopic flick. Well, it's work at least

Former Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe is reported to be in line to play the co-founder of Rockstar Games, publisher of the violence-fest Grand Theft Auto game series. According to Hollywood Reporter Radcliffe is in negotiations with BBC Films to star in the true-life account of Sam Houser, and his fight with a Miami lawyer …
Kat Hall, 10 Apr 2015
Amazon's Dr. Matt Wood, speaking at AWS SFO Summit 2015

Artificial intelligence, filesystems, containers ... Amazon showers cloud gold on devs

AWS Summit Amazon piled on the new cloud features at its AWS Summit event in San Francisco, including new services for file storage and machine learning and updates to features that debuted last year. Speaking at Thursday morning's keynote, AWS boss Andy Jassy described cloud computing as "the new normal" for businesses of all sizes and …
Terminator head

Oh, hi there, SKYNET: US military wants self-enhancing software that will outlive its creators

The US military's nerve-center of secret-squirrel boffinry DARPA wants to write software capable of running for a full century without becoming obsolete. Dubbed "Building Resource Adaptive Software Systems" (BRASS), the project [PDF] will look into the creation of a new software stack that can automatically make use of hardware …
Shaun Nichols, 9 Apr 2015
One Windows: Windows 10 will be delivered on multiple device types

Microsoft uses Windows Update to force Windows 10 ads onto older PCs

Microsoft is installing an update on Windows 7 and 8 machines which will push users to upgrade to Windows 10. The update – KB 3035583 – is vague about its purpose. The official description states: This update enables additional capabilities for Windows Update notifications when new updates are available to the user. It applies …
Tim Anderson, 9 Apr 2015

Do your switches run Cumulus Linux? Puppet will pull your strings

Cumulus Networks, home of a Linux-of-choice for white-box switches, has linked arms with Puppet Labs and joined its Puppet Supported Program. While it's “just another” certification from one angle, Puppet's Carl Caum told The Register it's important to the company. He said while there are plenty of tools to manage equipment in …

Apple Watch: We ROUNDUP the ROUNDUPS. Yes, Roundup-squared

FOUR THINGS ye must know about the Apple Watch: First, it is from APPLE. Second, it is a bit like a WATCH. For instance, it goes on your wrist. Third, without an iPhone 5 or 6 it is USELESS. Actually maybe that should have been first. Sorry. Fourth, the world's media are now publishing many, many reviews and commentaries on …
Lewis Page, 9 Apr 2015

Fsck those new emojis! Install iOS 8.3, OS X 10.10.3 NOW to squash all these security bugs

Apple has released software updates to add features to and fix many bugs in its OS X and iOS operating systems. The iOS 8.3 overhaul will correct dozens of programming blunders, including glitches and dropouts with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Users reported problems with establishing and maintaining connections to wireless networks and …
Shaun Nichols, 9 Apr 2015
Intel headquarters, Santa Clara

Intel woos the Internet of Things with firmware factory for Atom, Quark

Intel has released a new GUI tool that allows developers to generate custom firmware images for Intel-powered gizmos without touching any source code. The Intel Firmware Engine, which debuted on Tuesday at the Intel Developer Forum conference in Shenzhen, China, automatically builds firmware binaries for Intel chips based on the …
The Black Knight, defeated

Microsoft goes cloud KERR-AZY, chops Windows Server to bits

Updated Microsoft has taken wraps off its latest tools for the modern data center, including a new application container tech for Windows and a micro-sized version of Windows Server that's tailored for cloud deployments. We first heard rumors of Microsoft's so-called Nano Server in March, when a leaked slide deck suggested that Redmond …