The Register Columnists

Gareth Corfield

Contact Mail Follow Twitter RSS feed

Shooting org demands answers from Met Police over gun owner blab

Following The Register's report on the Metropolitan Police breaching its own data protection statement by handing the addresses of tens of thousands of London firearms owners to a marketing agency, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) has written to the force demanding the decision be investigated. On …
Gareth Corfield, 21 Apr 2017

Ministry of Justice scraps 'conviction by computer' law

The controversial "conviction by computer" Parliamentary Bill has been scrapped ahead of June's general election, according to reports. The Prisons and Courts Bill has been dropped by the government as it starts winding down legislative activities, reported the Law Society Gazette. David Lidington, leader of the House of …
Gareth Corfield, 21 Apr 2017
Poster for the movie Cable Guy. Copyright:  Columbia Pictures Corporation,

Ofcom chisels away at BT Openreach's cold, dead hands

Ofcom has set out exactly how it plans to prise open BT's grip on the UK's telecoms infrastructure, in a move designed to make it easier for competing telcos to install fibre broadband connections. "Ofcom wants to ensure all providers can lay fibre in BT's ducts as easily as BT itself," said an Ofcom statement. "So we intend …
Gareth Corfield, 20 Apr 2017

Tesla hit by class action sueball over autopilot software updates

A class-action lawsuit has been launched against Tesla on the basis that updates to its cars' autopilots are "vapourware." The three sample claimants say that they all paid for a variety of extra features and updates to their Tesla Model S cars, including updates to version 2 of the Enhanced Autopilot, AP2.0, at $5,000 each. …
Gareth Corfield, 20 Apr 2017

Can you make a warzone delivery drone? wants to give you cash

The Ministry of Defence is looking for drone startups to throw their hats into the ring for a Just-Eat-for-bullets ‘bot competition. The two-stage competition being run by the MoD focuses on “last-mile supply” systems. As the camo-wearing Sir Humphries put it: “Last-mile resupply involves delivery of combat materials from a …
Gareth Corfield, 20 Apr 2017
Metropolitan police image via Shutterstock

30,000 London gun owners hit by Met Police 'data breach'

London gun owners are asking questions of the Metropolitan Police after the force seemingly handed the addresses of 30,000 firearm and shotgun owners to a direct mail marketing agency for a commercial firm's advertising campaign. The first any of the affected people knew about the blunder was when the leaflet (pictured below) …
Gareth Corfield, 19 Apr 2017

Game authors demand missing ZX Spectrum reboot royalties

Suppliers of Retro Computers Ltd are calling for the company to pay the royalties they claim it owes for bundling their games with its ZX Spectrum Vega console. Half a dozen rights-holders, from individuals to companies, have told The Register that RCL has failed to come up with royalties due on their games it has used. RCL's …
Gareth Corfield, 19 Apr 2017
Boeing's concept illustration of a Deep Space Transport at Mars

New satellites could cause catastrophic space junk collisions

Broadband satellites could lead to an explosion in the volume of space junk, a British scientist has said. Dr Hugh Lewis, a senior lecturer in aerospace engineering at the University of Southampton, said that the rise in orbital traffic could create a 50 per cent increase in the number of collisions between satellites. Such …
Gareth Corfield, 18 Apr 2017

Infosys says it'll hand shareholders $2bn

Infosys, Asia's second biggest software exporter, has promised shareholders it will increase its dividends and stock buybacks to $2bn this year. Bloomberg reports that the company will start distributing as much as 70 per cent of its annual free cash flow. Infosys predicts revenue growth of between 6.5 and 8.5 per cent for the …
Gareth Corfield, 14 Apr 2017

Deeming Facebook a 'publisher' of users' posts won't tackle paedo or terrorist content

Comment The Times is campaigning to brand Facebook a "publisher" under British law. While an understandable reaction to the horrible content shared by users of the world's most popular social networking website, trying to make it subject to publishing laws would open a whole Pandora's box of trouble. Yesterday the newspaper published …
Gareth Corfield, 14 Apr 2017

ZX Spectrum reboot project's Great Ormond Street charity cash questions

Exclusive Tens of thousands of pounds destined for Great Ormond Street Hospital from ZX Spectrum Vega firm Retro Computers Limited appears not to have been paid. Retro Computers Limited (RCL) had promised to pay 10 per cent from proceeds of sales of its Vega console to Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) in London, England, under the …
Gareth Corfield, 13 Apr 2017
Hermes' delivery drone, provided by Starship Technologies. Pic: Hermes

Parcel bods Hermes become latest London drone delivery droogs

Parcel delivery biz Hermes has become the latest company to roll out self-driving robots in London, promising autonomous deliveries in the borough of Southwark. The company is partnering with Starship Technologies, whose coolbox-on-wheels delivery drone has become a familiar sight for a handful of households on the city's …
Gareth Corfield, 12 Apr 2017

HMRC beer duty bungle leaves breweries struggling to pay online

The UK's taxmen have scuppered several piss-ups after brewers discovered the Government Gateway's online duty calculator can't calculate the latest beer tax hikes. "It would have been sensible if, prior to announcing the change, the Chancellor established whether HMRC and the businesses impacted were capable of administering …
Gareth Corfield, 12 Apr 2017

Blighty's £1.2bn space industry could lend itself to tourism – report

The British aerospace industry could carve itself a niche in “space tourism,” according to a new report. “Space tourism is a new, highly sought-after sector in the emerging ‘New Space’ industry,” said manufacturing trade organisation EEF’s Aerospace Bulletin report. So far just one nominally British company, Virgin Galactic, …
Gareth Corfield, 12 Apr 2017

Qualcommotion: Sueball return alleges Apple 'pay-to-play' deal

Qualcomm has hit back at Apple over claims it overcharged the fruity firm for IP licensing, revealing that it had a pay-to-play deal to get its chip technology into iThings. The claim comes as part of a 139-page court filing made as part of the ongoing worldwide legal dispute between the two tech titans. “Qualcomm seeks, …
Gareth Corfield, 11 Apr 2017
Chicken eggs, photo via Shutterstock

T-Mobile US CEO offers kid a year's supply of chicken nuggets for switching from AT&T

The chief executive of T-Mobile US has offered a random teen on the internet a year’s supply of chicken nuggets if he switches from AT&T. Carter Wilkerson, 16, of Reno, Nevada, had previously asked American burger joint Wendy's how many retweets he would need for a year's supply of chicken nuggets. "18 million," replied Wendy …
Gareth Corfield, 10 Apr 2017

Utility company picks NB-IoT, actively spurns rival techs' USPs

A utility company has opted for Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) connectivity technology for its IoT deployment, crapping all over competing connectivity techs in the process. "We looked at proprietary technologies in the early days because NB-IoT didn't exist. We came to the realisation that we wanted to stick to our …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Apr 2017
Boaty McBoatface being lowered from RRS James Clark Ross

Boaty McBoatface sinks in South Atlantic on her maiden deployment

Boaty McBoatface has slipped beneath the icy waters of the Antarctic on her first operational deployment. Happily, the little yellow submarine resurfaced again after 30 hours following a pre-programmed route devised by scientists from the University of Southampton and the National Oceanography Centre. Lowered into the Weddell …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Apr 2017
Samsung UE65JS9000 65-inch UHD TV

Murdoch will get EU green light for full Sky takeover – reports

Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox will gain EU clearance for its full takeover of Sky, according to sources who whispered to Reuters. The newswire reported that two people familiar with the matter told it that EU regulators will approve the £18.5bn takeover. Back in December shareholders agreed the takeover of the British pay …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Apr 2017

Boeing-backed US upstart reckons it'll be building electric airliners

A naïve American startup run by "dreamers" claims that its electrically powered airliner concept will magically sweep away all of the world's existing problems with air travel. Zunum Aero, based in Washington state, wants to build a fleet of what it calls hybrid electric jets for service on short and medium-haul airline routes …
Gareth Corfield, 06 Apr 2017
A Fokker Triplane replica at Old Rhinebeck airfield, America, in September 2016. Pic: Shutterstock

Crafty Fokker: Norfolk surgeon builds Red Baron triplane replica

A German orthopaedic surgeon in Norfolk has spent £70,000 building himself a flyable full-size replica of the Red Baron's Fokker Triplane. Dr Peter Brueggemann built the First World War-era aircraft by hand – even though when he started he couldn't fly, as ITV News reported. The bright red Fokker Dreidecker I (German for " …
Gareth Corfield, 06 Apr 2017
The Royal Courts of Justice in London

Huawei faces UK sales ban if it doesn't cough up 4G patent tithes

Huawei may be barred from flogging its smartphones in the UK after Unwired Planet International chalked up a convincing win in a long-running patent infringement lawsuit. The High Court of England and Wales today ruled that Huawei must pay Unwired licensing fees for using Unwired's patented intellectual property in 4G handsets …
Gareth Corfield, 05 Apr 2017
Peter Sage, principal of Space Energy, giving a talk in 2012. He is currently imprisoned for contempt of court

Jailed biz coach accused of $17.5m HPE fraud writes to fans saying 'join me'

The jailed motivational speaker accused of diddling HPE out of 42,000 servers in a fraud spanning several years has been writing letters from prison to his "dear and amazing" fans inviting them to "join me on the journey". Peter Sage, who in January was committed to HM Prison Pentonville, in London, England, for contempt of …
Gareth Corfield, 05 Apr 2017
RUN FOR YOUR LIFE - driverless car on the loose. photo by shutterstock

Londoners will be trialling driverless cars in pedestrianised area

Around a hundred Londoners will travel in Blighty’s first public driverless cars over the next few weeks, it was announced this morning. The trials, which will take place over a largely pedestrianised area around London’s O2 Arena in Greenwich, are being run by the UK’s privatised Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) and …
Gareth Corfield, 05 Apr 2017

Andreesen Horowitz tips $10m into American AI drone upstart

Technology investment firm Andreesen Horowitz has poured $10.5m into an artificial intelligence drone upstart, buying itself a place on the board of directors into the bargain. Shield AI is an American startup making drones which “find people and threats inside buildings without a remote pilot,” according to a company …
Gareth Corfield, 04 Apr 2017

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2017