Simon Sharwood

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ServiceNow visual task board

Misery loves company so ServiceNow's built anonymous chat-rooms for the recently p0wned

Cloud wrangling giant ServiceNow has announced the new stuff that will land in its next release. Code-named “Jakarta” and expected in June, the new release includes an intriguing new feature called “Trusted Security Circles,” which lets ServiceNow users share news of recent security incidents. The idea here is that when …
Simon Sharwood, 11 May 2017
Australian money at a crime scene

Plutus Payroll pledges to pay IT contractors' wages within 72 hours

Embattled payroll company Plutus Payroll will soon start paying ~1,000 contractors again after an almost-two-weeks hiatus. The company has written to those owed money, saying the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) “has agreed to allow the release of the wages owed to our contractors.” “The ATO has written to the Commonwealth …
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2017
Hippie peace, image via Shutterstock

OpenWRT and LEDE agree on Linux-for-routers peace plan

Competing Linux-for-routers distributions OpenWRT and LEDE will soon vote on a proposal to heal the schism between the two. OpenWRT is often used as firmware for small routers, largely SOHO WiFi kit. But in March 2016 a group of developers decided they didn't like the directions OpenWRT was taking and forked the project by …
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2017
Crocodile Dundee, 20th Century Fox.

IBM freezes contractor hires to keep full-time workers fully occupied

Updated More evidence that IBM is cutting costs in multiple ways: the company's Australian tentacle is making it very, very hard to hire contractors. The Register has viewed emails sent among organisations seeking to place contractors with IBM Australia. The thread explains that IBM has not replied to offers of new contractors because …
Simon Sharwood, 10 May 2017
ServiceNow CEO John Donahoe

ServiceNow's new CEO thinks IT can spare us from corporate re-orgs

ServiceNow's new CEO John Donahoe has introduced himself to the company's community at its Knowledge17 conference in Orlando, Florida. Along the way he introduced some new machine learning-fueled automation tech and offered his opinion that IT departments can put a stop to future corporate re-organization efforts. Donahoe came …
Simon Sharwood, 09 May 2017
MariaDB logo

European Investment Bank tosses €25m to MariaDB

The European Investment Bank has decided MariaDB Corporation is worthy of €25 million funding under the European Commission’s Investment Plan for Europe. The Plan is often referred to as the “Juncker Plan”, reflecting its status as a pet project of European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker, who wants more investment in …
Simon Sharwood, 09 May 2017
Cool dude with big hair and thumbs up like Arthur Fonzarelli

Opposable thumbs make tablets more useful says Microsoft Research

Microsoft Research has come up with an interesting idea – user interfaces designed specifically for thumb-plus-stylus use on tablet computers. The company's brain box likes this idea because when you use a stylus-capable fondleslab you devote your strong hand to the task of wielding the stylus while your weaker hand gets the …
Simon Sharwood, 09 May 2017
F-22 Raptor

US Air Force networks F-15 and F-22 fighters – in flight!

The United States Air Force has successfully networked its F-22 Raptor and F-15 Eagle aircraft under the “Talon HATE” program. The F-15 first flew in 1972 and has been in service since the late 1970s, while the F-22 entered service two decades later. The latter aircraft had some data networking capabilities, but the F-15's …
Simon Sharwood, 09 May 2017
An upset woman with an empty wallet

Plutus Payroll says deal with Australian Taxation Office may be close

Tech contractors left unpaid by the “suspension” of activities by Australian company Plutus Payroll finally have the prospect of good news, after the firm strongly hinted at conciliation with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and started talking to its customers again. In an email sent to affected contractors and shared to …
Simon Sharwood, 08 May 2017
Art of Fighting featured a story... of sorts

Partners? With them? No way, says HPE of Nutanix

HPE has taken the very unusual step of pointing out it is not partners with Nutanix. The hyperconverged upstart last week announced that it is now possible to run its software stack on HPE servers. That announcement took HPE rather by surprise, because it turns out Nutanix hadn't asked in advance. HPE's clearly a bit miffed …
Simon Sharwood, 08 May 2017
Giant burger

Servers as pets or cattle was 2012. Now it's McMansions or Hotels

Remember pets and cattle? CERN's 2012 metaphor to describe on-premises servers you name and care for lavishly versus virtualized cloud servers you never name, run in a herd and snuff out without a second's thought? Well the metaphor's evolved: VMware and Pivotal are now talking about McMansions and hotels to explain how they …
Simon Sharwood, 08 May 2017

Australian Taxation Office named as party preventing IT contractors being paid

Exclusive Plutus Payroll has named the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) as the party with which it is in dispute and ostensibly the reason it has been unable to pay hundreds of contractors owed weeks of pay, as The Register has reported earlier this week. An email sent to contractors and seen by The Register on Friday evening (Australia …
Simon Sharwood, 05 May 2017
Broken optical disk

User loses half of a CD-ROM in his boss's PC

On-Call Hello Friday! And hello also to On-Call, The Register's weekly reader-contributed tale of dirty data centre deeds done dirty cheap. This week, meet “Rick” who once worked for a non-government organisation as “both a software dev and part-time support-person.” One fine Friday afternoon, Rick “received a rather panicked call …
Simon Sharwood, 05 May 2017
China's first large passenger jet, the C919, starts its takeoff roll on its maiden flight

China's first large passenger jet makes maiden flight

China's first large passenger jet has successfully taken to the skies and then landed again. Just after 06:00 GMT, the first C919 rolled down and off a runway at Shanghai Pudong airport, to the sounds of applause of onlookers and plenty of senior officials who showed up to celebrate a milestone for Chinese industry.It touched …
Simon Sharwood, 05 May 2017
Devuan logo

systemd-free Devuan Linux hits RC2

Devuan Linux has released its second release candidate. Devuan was created by self-described “Veteran Unix admins” who find Debian's adoption of systemd abhorrent, because they want complete control over the packages that load when Linux boots. “Devuan decided to fork not only the base distribution, but also its governance,” …
Simon Sharwood, 05 May 2017
Man looks at his mobile - mildly surprised or shocked about something. Photo by shutterstock

Dell EMC to release Azure Stack in small, medium and Oh My!

Dell EMC has confirmed it's getting into the Azure Stack business. The company revealed its ardour for Microsoft's hybrid cloud caper in September 2016, when it showed off a PowerEdge R730xd rack server running Redmond's code. Now the company has emitted a curious non-announcement in which it pledged the devices would offer “ …
Simon Sharwood, 05 May 2017
his low-angle self-portrait of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover shows the vehicle at the site from which it reached down to drill into a rock target called "Buckskin." The MAHLI camera on Curiosity's robotic arm took multiple images on Aug. 5, 2015, that were stitched together into this selfie. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Curiosity Rover's drill is ill. But chill: we can dig Martian sand instead of rocking hard

The Curiosity Rover's drill is in trouble. NASA announced the instrument was “in hiatus” in late 2016 due to “an issue with a motor that moves the rover's drill.” Now we've learned that the rover is concentrating on scooping sand while the space agency tries to sort things out. “A balky brake appears to be affecting drill …
Simon Sharwood, 05 May 2017
Beware awkward moments next exit

FYI: World was warned FIVE years ago about flaw exploited in Google Docs phishing phrenzy

Google has known about the issue behind yesterday's wave of phishing attacks bearing links to Google Docs for at least five years. Sharp-eyed and long-of-memory security types have reminded world+dog of this 2011 post to an IETF mailing list by developer André DeMarre, who way back then speculated that client name application …
Simon Sharwood, 05 May 2017
The Xeon Scalable Family

Intel gives Xeon a makeover to bring us colour-coded clouds

Intel's giving its Xeon CPUs a makeover. Details of enhancements to the chips' architecture will be revealed soon – we think in early June – ahead of a "mid-year" launch, which is about when it's assumed Skylake Xeons will land with a 14nm manufacturing process. The Register doesn't think Kaby Lake silicon, or its successor …
Simon Sharwood, 04 May 2017

Nutanix consciously uncouples with move into software-only sales

Updated Nutanix has decided the time is right to sell more software, inking deals that will see its hyperconverged software-defined-everything stack sold with servers by HPE and Cisco. The company already has deals with Lenovo and Dell, but both involve selling ready-to-roll appliances. These new deals will see Nutanix sell just …
Simon Sharwood, 04 May 2017
Cutting ties

Rackspace CEO Taylor Rhodes quits to spend more time with his kids

Rackspace CEO Taylor Rhodes has decided to leave the company he's led since late 2014. He's blogged the reasons why, of course. And of course there's some phrases that could only come from a tech company, like “I’m proud to have led Rackspace through a hinge in its history”. A hinge? That's what Rhodes calls moving out of …
Simon Sharwood, 04 May 2017

Unpaid tech contractor: 'I have to support my family. I have no money for medicines'

Your correspondent's inbox has never seen anything quite like this: I've received more than 50 personal emails from tech contractors affected by the “suspension” of payments by Plutus Payroll, an Australian outfit that pays tech contractors. Register stories get lots of comments, but this level of mails direct to a journalist …
Simon Sharwood, 03 May 2017
Skull and Crossbones in the cloud

Big Blue to buy Verizon's cloud

In February 2016 Verizon told The Register it “remains committed to delivering a range of cloud services for enterprise and government customers and is making significant investments in its cloud platform in 2016." And today it announced IBM will acquire its cloud and managed hosting business, for an undisclosed sum. Verizon …
Simon Sharwood, 03 May 2017
Handshake, image via Shutterstock

Oracle links to LinkedIn so its salesware can sniff you out

Your LinkedIn profile just got a little bit more useful … for marketers, because Oracle has done a deal with Microsoft's social network. The arrangement means that Big Red's Marketing Cloud can now integrate their own data with in LinkedIn data, the better to “increase conversion rates and generate more sales by helping …
Simon Sharwood, 03 May 2017
Handshake, image via Shutterstock

Cloud and DevOps getting you down? Here's how IT teams can join the party

Promo Infrastructure and operations teams are copping criticism from two sources these days: developers want on-premises IT to behave and scale like a public cloud; line of business people expect all software to deliver an any-device, 50-more-users-NOW SaaS experience. The pressure comes because every organisation's customers have …
Simon Sharwood, 03 May 2017

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