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Running girls

Now YOU can build apps for Google's all-seeing gadgets for fat losers

Developers can now download an early version of the software development kit (SDK) for Google Fit, the Chocolate Factory's forthcoming health data platform that was announced at this year's Google I/O conference, although not all of the components are fully baked yet. When it launches this fall, Google Fit will include APIs for …

Awooga: August Patch Tuesday incoming – with two remote-code exec bugs in IE, Windows

Microsoft has published advance notification for what it says will be a total of nine security update bulletins for its products – two of which are rated critical. The company said that the latest patch batch, set to arrive on August 12, will bundle critical Internet Explorer and Windows fixes with seven other tweaks for issues …
Shaun Nichols, 7 Aug 2014

Microsoft throws old versions of Internet Explorer under the bus

Microsoft has confirmed that it's ending support for old versions of Internet Explorer, and it's giving you just shy of 18 months to get up to date. Roger Capriotti, director of the IE team, blogged on Thursday that beginning on January 12, 2016, only the most recent version of IE on any supported version of Windows will …
Photo of a US Passport

Flying United Airlines? If you could just scan your passport with your phone, that'd be great

United Airlines is testing a passport-scanning feature in its phone app that could speed up the check-in process for international flights. The biz's iOS and Android software will allow passengers to upload an image of their passports within 24 hours of their departure and access their boarding pass. United said the system is …
Shaun Nichols, 7 Aug 2014

Amazon 'adware' laden Ubuntu passes ICO's data smell test

The Amazon "shopping suggestions" feature built into Ubuntu desktops does not violate consumer protections under European and UK privacy law. That’s according to the Information Commissioner following a complaint lodged by a Ubuntu blogger over Ubuntu’s controversial Shopping Lens. Introduced in Ubuntu 12.10, the Amazon Lens …
Gavin Clarke, 7 Aug 2014
padlock

HTTP-Yes! Google boosts SSL-encrypted sites in search results

Google plans to reward websites that always use secure, encrypted HTTPS connections to transmit pages and exchange data – with a boost to their search rankings. The change is designed to promote improved online security in particular by encouraging developers to implement SSL/TLS (Transport Layer Security) to encrypt website …
John Leyden, 7 Aug 2014

Zero-day hits Symantec endpoint products

Get patching, sysadmins, there's a zero-day in Symantec Endpoint Protection (SEP). This US-CERT advisory is alerting anyone who ignored Symatec's note about the issue. CVE-2014-3434 is a local access vulnerability with a public exploit. A client buffer overflow can cause a blue-screen-of-death on the client, which could also …

Chinese 'linkfarms' propel Microsoft to web server crown

Netcraft has updated its analysis of web server market share and found that Microsoft is now the world's dominant provider of such software, albeit with plenty of caveats. The traffic-watching firm says Apache is the leader in terms of active sites, with 91 million compared to Microsoft's 21 million. But Microsoft is all over …
Good riddance to bad Java

Now even Internet Explorer will throw lousy old Java into the abyss

Internet Explorer will soon join its rival browsers by automatically blocking old, insecure add-ons – and it's got its eye set squarely on Java. Microsoft said on Wednesday that starting on August 12, Internet Explorer will begin alerting users when web pages try to launch ActiveX controls that are considered out-of-date and …

OK Google: Gobble chat app Emu. OK Google, now shut down Emu

Google has confirmed that it has opened up its wallet to acquire the development team behind the mobile chat app Emu. The web giant has not said what Emu's developers will work on at the Chocolate Factory, but we do know that the new jobs will not include maintaining any of the startup's products. Members of the Emu team posted …
Shaun Nichols, 6 Aug 2014

Speaking in Tech: 'I think Ballmer tried to DERAIL MICROSOFT', says ex-Redmond man

Podcast speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise It's another episode of El Reg's weekly tech podcast, stuffed with news and views on everything that's happened in our world this week. Join your hosts Greg Knieriemen and Sarah Vela with their guest, ex-Microsoftie and long lost podcaster Marc Farley, who has since joined …
Team Register, 6 Aug 2014

Google's 'right to be forgotten': One rule for celebs, another for plebs

Celebrity names won't trigger a Google right to be forgotten disclaimer notice, but yours will. A Google of most of our names will throw up this disclaimer – which makes us appear rather shady – but Stephen Fry needn't worry Google is covering its back following the so-called right to be forgotten ruling in the European Court …
Dev Ittycheria

NoSQL startup MongoDB names BladeLogic founder as new CEO

MongoDB has appointed venture capitalist and former entrepreneur Dev Ittycheria as its new chief executive, adding fuel to speculation that the NoSQL database firm may be planning to go public soon. Ittycheria, who most recently served as managing director of Openview Venture Partners, replaces outgoing CEO Max Schireson, who …

Microsoft KILLS Windows 8.1 Update 2 and Patch Tuesday

Microsoft has at last revealed the date when its second major update to Windows 8.1 will ship to customers: never. Despite months of speculation that the software giant has been planning to push out another major update roll-up for its latest OS this year, much like it did with the oddly named Windows 8.1 Update in April, …

Oracle cold bath shrinks Larry Ellison's pay package

Oracle's Larry Ellison, one of the world’s richest men and best-paid CEOs in the US, is getting his pay cut by more than half. The database giant's chief executive has been awarded just 3 million stock options by its compensation committee in its annual review process. That’s down from 7 million the year before and every year …
Gavin Clarke, 5 Aug 2014
RFID_snail_trio

Tiny steps: HTTP 2.0 WG looks for consensus

The long-awaited HTTP 2.0 protocol has inched a step further towards completion, with the IETF issuing a last call on the two key documents of the spec, with comments to end on 1 September. The two drafts in question are the core HTTP 2.0 document, and the HPACK header compression format. It's been a long road to get to HTTP 2. …

Meet Solaris 11.2, where SDN means 'Software-Defined Net profit'

Analysis Larry Ellison’s Oracle bowled out Solaris 11.2 last week – and what does this member of the Unix family give us? Cloud computing, yes, but also a stab at a datacenter-in-a-(large)-box. It's not too far off the database-as-a-box idea Larry's been banging on about since 1998. Oracle’s Solaris 11.2 announcement is larded with the …
Gavin Clarke, 5 Aug 2014
Zombie cloud

Shuffling Zombie Juror – aka Linux kernel 3.16 – wants to eat … ARMs?

The Linux kernel has been updated, again. On Sunday, Linux Lord Linus Torvalds announced version 3.16 of the kernel is now good to go. Torvalds says “3.16 looked a bit iffy for a while” but “things cleared up nicely, and there was no reason to do extra release candidates like I feared just a couple of weeks ago.” You'll be …

65 patches later and Java STILL breaks stuff

Software tool vendors are complaining that recent updates to Java are breaking their environments. The problem seems to be in JVM's bytecode verification, in Java 8, Update 11 and Java 7, Update 65. According to InfoQ, developers running into the bug include JRebel (from ZeroTurnaround), the Groovy programming language, the …

Factory-fresh delivery: Get your OpenSUSE fix daily

Open-sourcers running OpenSUSE’s development have adopted a browser-based model of development for their beloved distro. From now on, daily builds of new versions of OpenSUSE are to be developed and released for immediate testing. SUSE Linux was owned by Novell, which opened distro development to outside contributors in 2005 …
Gavin Clarke, 4 Aug 2014
A fake iPhone with electric shock capabilities

Surfing the web from Android? We KNEW it – sorry, iOS fanbois

Google's Android has slipped past Apple's iOS to become the top mobile operating system for the first time, in terms of online usage. Figures from Net Marketshare show that devices powered by Android were detected browsing the web more than iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touch devices running iOS throughout July 2014. Net Marketshare …
Jasper Hamill, 4 Aug 2014
EMET

Microsoft hacks out new EMET, spits out Adobe Flash

Microsoft has emitted a new version of EMET – its Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit. Redmond often recommends deployment of EMET as a frontline defence against attacks, so the release of a new version is noteworthy. The big two enhancements that Microsoft is talking up the loudest are an improved Attack Surface Reduction ( …

'Big data' predicts stock movements, boffins claim

Researchers from the Warwick University's business school reckon they can predict the next crash, by watching Google searches and Wikipedia. The supposed power of Google as a predictive tool has been popular in academia ever since The Chocolate Factory unveiled Google Flu Trends back in 2008. Its usefulness for real-world …
chalk outline of  human body at crime scene

Windows 8 market share stalls, XP at record low

Windows XP's demise is finally starting to accelerate, but Windows 7 and not 8 appears to be picking up the slack. Those are the conclusions we draw from Netmarketshare's latest monthly dump on desktop computer operating system market share. Here's the company's counts of what's what on the desktop, going back to October 2013 …

What the FLOCK? Addictive 'Flappy Bird' is back – and it's coming for your family

Pic Infuriating yet stupidly popular crapp Flappy Bird has officially returned, it appears – and it's now a multi-player game called Flappy Birds Family. It's available for free for Amazon's set-top box, the Android-based Fire TV. According to its app store listing, the software was built by Dotgears Studio, aka Flappy Bird creator …

Microsoft: IE11 for Windows Phone 8.1 is TOO GOOD. So we'll cripple it like Safari

The forthcoming Windows Phone 8.1 Update will include plenty of tweaks and fixes for Internet Explorer 11, and while many of them are designed to improve the browser's web standards compliance, Redmond says others are designed to do exactly the opposite. The problem, to hear Microsoft tell it, is that IE11 on Windows Phone is …
BlackBerry Messenger (BBM)

BlackBerry lands feature-light BBM on Windows Phone

The wait for BBM on Windows Phone is over. BlackBerry has brought its pioneering and much-imitated messaging app to Windows, following launches on Android and iOS last year, albeit with the "Beta" label. BBM for Windows looks a lot more like a native app than other BBM ports: it uses Windows Phone pivot views and includes …

Quicker, easier to fly to MOON than change web standards ... OR IS IT?

Programming the Web, Pt. II It took the United States eight years to put a man on the Moon. That was time between John F Kennedy’s call to Congress in 1961 and Neil Armstrong getting his boots dirty on the lunar surface, in July 1969 – 45 years ago this month. Yet it took 17 years, from the start of CSS, to get widespread support for custom fonts in HTML …
PHP

What's that? A PHP SPECIFICATION? Surely you're joking, Facebook

A group of Facebook developers has decided to break with 20 years of tradition and release a formal specification for the PHP programming language. The initial draft of the spec was released on Wednesday and is available via a Git repository hosted on PHP.net. Language specs, in and of themselves, are nothing new. Many of the …
Firing squad

Call off the firing squad: HP grants stay of execution to OpenVMS

In a surprise move, HP has granted OpenVMS a new lease on life, effectively reversing last year's decision to mothball the venerable server OS. HP hasn't changed its mind about its latest OpenVMS roadmap, which has it ending standard support for some versions of the OS next year and pulling the plug completely by 2020. Rather, …
Neil McAllister, 31 Jul 2014
Apple MacBook Air 11-inch 2013

POW! Apple smites Macbook Air EFI firmware update borkage

Apple has released an urgent fix for a problem that temporarily bricked a number of fanbois' Macbooks. Apple customers wailed last week after an update hobbled some users' machines. People using Macbook Airs from mid 2011 claimed the update wrought havoc on their pride and joy, turning that expensive silver machine into a …
Jasper Hamill, 31 Jul 2014

PEAK LANDFILL: Why tablet gloom is good news for Windows users

Analysis "Everything points to a boom in the landfill business" – The Register, 2012 Are tablets the new netbooks – a flash in the pan? Or perhaps even the new picture frames - a one-season fad? I don’t think so, but sales are flat, and the numbers look ominous for any global technology company hoping they’ll provide a long-term money …
Andrew Orlowski, 31 Jul 2014
Random numbers

Fiendishly complex password app extension ships for iOS 8

AgileBits wants more apps to use 1Password's strong passwords, and has released an extension on github to that end. The idea is that app developers can grab the extension, write a few lines of code into their apps, and allow their app users to create strong passwords during registration. Naturally, this would also push users …

Oracle: That BUG in our In-Memory Option will be fixed in October

After much back-and-forth on blogs, Twitter, and online forums, Oracle has admitted that there is a bug that can cause its new in-memory database option to be reported as being in use when it's not, although the actual risk it poses remains unclear. As reported by The Register last week, database pro Kevin Closson was the first …
Neil McAllister, 31 Jul 2014

AMD dangles 64-bit ARM code developer kit over, well ... developers

AMD has been promising shipments of its 64-bit ARM-based server chips, code-named "Seattle", for the end of the year but now you can get hold of one with the firm's latest developer kit release. From Wednesday those with the cash can hand over $2,999 to AMD and in return get the AMD Opteron A1100-series developer kit …
Iain Thomson, 30 Jul 2014
Partnership

Red Hat rallies hardware makers with 64-bit ARM server partner program

Red Hat has upped its commitment to support servers based on the ARM processor architecture, with the formation of a new partner program specifically for vendors of 64-bit ARM hardware for the data center. The Red Hat ARM Partner Early Access Program is aimed at both chipmakers and server builders, and its early members include …
Neil McAllister, 30 Jul 2014

Microsoft rolls up more Windows Server 2012 R2 updates

Microsoft has issued a new “rollup” of enhancements and fixes to Windows Server 2012 R2. The new rollup is the third for the OS and, as is described here, offers downloads for more than 40 issues. Perhaps the most notable addition is the Office 365 management pack, as it gives Windows Server admins the chance to “monitor the …
Simon Sharwood, 30 Jul 2014
LG Optimus 2X

Android busted for carrying Fake ID: OS doesn't check who really made that 'Adobe' plugin

Google Android allows malware to masquerade as legit, trusted apps thanks to weaknesses in the way the operating system checks digital certificates of authenticity. The flaw, dubbed Fake ID by its discoverers at Bluebox Security, affects all versions of Android from 2.1 (released in 2010) up to Android 4.4. Although Google …
Iain Thomson, 29 Jul 2014
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 …
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

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
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