Iain Thomson

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Someone in an Uber ride

Uber jams Arizona robo-car project into reverse gear after deadly smash

Uber has confirmed that it's shutting down its self-driving car operation in Arizona – without waiting for the conclusion of the official investigation into the death of a pedestrian in the US state in March. The taxi tech upstart employs about 500 people in Arizona working on self-driving cars and trucks. On Wednesday, staff …
Iain Thomson, 24 May 2018
gun

Blood spilled from another US high school shooting has yet to dry – and video games are already being blamed

Comment Once again, a mass murderer has opened fire at a school in America – this one is Santa Fe High School in Texas – and video games are already being blamed. Rather than, oh, say, gun control, or the lack thereof. Details are still coming in. The attack happened just a few hours ago. At this stage, it appears nine students and …
Iain Thomson, 18 May 2018
Curiosity

NASA fix for Curiosity rovers's damaged drill: hitting it, repeatedly

NASA's top engineers think they've figured out a way to get the Curiosity rover's drill back to work holing the rock faces of Mars. Back in 2016 the nuclear-powered rover's rock-sampling drill broke down after a motor failed. As 225 million km (140 million miles) is too far to make an on-site visit, the men and women of NASA …
Iain Thomson, 18 May 2018
vaping

Off with e's head: E-cig explosion causes first vaping death

A forensics report has reported the first known death from the use of electronic cigarettes after a Florida man was killed when his device exploded and drove itself into his cranium. Tallmadge D’Elia was vaping at home on May 5 when the vaping device, manufactured by Philippines-based Smok-E Mountain, exploded. An …
Iain Thomson, 16 May 2018
europa

Decades-old data reveals shows Jupiter’s moon sprayed alien juice over Galileo probe

Space scientists have just figured out that an unusual anomaly from over 20 years ago was the equivalent of a space probe being squirted in the face. Back in 1997 the Galileo Jupiter probe skimmed the watery moon of Europa and now it appears it got a faceful from a water plume 1,000km (621 miles) wide. Flying at 6km (3.7 …
Iain Thomson, 14 May 2018
spacex

First SpaceX Falcon 9 Block 5 rocket lobs comms sat into orbit

After a day's delay, Bangladesh's first satellite was today successfully launched atop the first SpaceX Falcon 9 Block 5 rocket. The satellite, named Bangabandhu Satellite-1, lifted off at 1614 EDT (2014 UTC) from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA. The bird detached from the second rocket stage, and is now maneuvering …
Iain Thomson, 11 May 2018
closed

Zero Tech Emitted: ZTE halts assembly lines after US govt sanctions cripple mobile maker

US sanctions against Chinese mobe maker ZTE have forced the company to go into zombie mode as it can’t get the electronic components it needs from American suppliers. In a filing on the Hong Kong stock exchange on Wednesday, the mobile maker, ranked sixth or seventh in the world by volume depending on whose figures you trust, …
Iain Thomson, 9 May 2018
linux

Can't wait for Linux apps on Chrome OS? And you like stability? We'll see you in December, then

Google IO On Tuesday, Google told developers at its IO conference in Silicon Valley that Linux applications and command lines are coming to Chrome OS, showed off a few demos – and then shut up about it and published an information-light blog post. So, we decided to dig a little during the event today. Google has been developing a system …
Iain Thomson, 9 May 2018
Robot taxi

Waymo robo-taxis to accept fares in Arizona in 2018

Google IO Alphabet's self-driving car outfit Waymo has announced it will start an autonomous taxi service in Phoenix, Arizona, USA, later this year. Waymo has been doing extensive testing in the city by loaning out cars to beta testers and letting them travel without anyone behind the wheel. Speaking at the Google I/O developer …
Iain Thomson, 9 May 2018
TPUpod

Meet TPU 3.0: Google teases world with latest math coprocessor for AI

Google IO The latest iteration of Google’s custom-designed number-crunching chip, version three of its Tensor Processing Unit (TPU), will dramatically cut the time needed to train machine learning systems, the Chocolate Factory has claimed. Google CEO Sundar Pichai revealed the third version of the Google-crafted matrix math processor …
Iain Thomson, 9 May 2018
Pichai

Google's socially awkward geeks craft socially awkward AI bot that calls people for you

Google IO Google today opened its annual I/O developer bash with details of how it’s going to lob machine-learning software at everything you do online and offline, and it truly means everything. CEO Sundar Pichai took to the stage in Silicon Valley to explain how artificial intelligence will make life easier, safer, and more fun for …
Iain Thomson, 8 May 2018
Laser

Pentagon in uproar: 'China's lasers' make US pilots shake in Djibouti

The US military has formally complained to China after blinding lasers were fired at Uncle Sam's aircraft coming in to land at the American airbase in Djibouti. Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said two US military pilots suffered minor eye damage from lasers hitting the cockpit of their C-130 transport airplane landing at Camp …
Iain Thomson, 4 May 2018
bezos

I've got way too much cash, thinks Jeff Bezos. Hmmm, pay more tax? Pay staff more? Nah, let's just go into space

Comment Poor, poor Jeff Bezos. The Amazon chief executive has complained he has so much money, the only thing he can think to blow it on is his Blue Origin space tourism project. Bezos was in Germany last month to pick up the Axel Springer Award for being such an innovative person, and gave an extensive interview to the German …
Iain Thomson, 3 May 2018
prison

Autonomy ex-CFO Hussain guilty of fraud: He cooked the books amid $11bn HP gobble

The former chief financial officer of British software shop Autonomy was today found guilty of fraud – after helping convince HP to splash out $11bn for the upstart back in 2011. HP later had to write down $8.8bn when it realized what it had acquired was worth nowhere near the large pile of dosh it had stumped up. Sushovan …
Iain Thomson, 30 Apr 2018

Did you guess 2019 for Intel's 10nm chip ramp up? Congratulations

Meltdown? What meltdown? Intel's 50th birthday in July should be a hell of a bash as the chipmaker is flush with cash and reckons 2018 might well be a record-breaking year. Just don't mention two very little words: ten and nanometre. In a conference call with Wall St analysts on Thursday, to mark the release of Intel's Q1 …
Iain Thomson, 27 Apr 2018
AMD CEO Lisa Su speaking at the firm's 2015 financial analyst day

AMD CEO Su: We like GPU crypto-miners but gamers are first priority

AMD CEO Lisa Su was in ebullient form on Wednesday when her company reported better-than-expected growth in the first quarter of 2018, and forecast a strong year for the chip design firm. "This is our third straight quarter of revenue growth," she told financial analysts on a conference call. "Our strong first quarter …
Iain Thomson, 26 Apr 2018
panic

Cloud-surfing orgs under attack, Microsoft antivirus for Chrome, Windows 10 S bypass, non-RSA gigs, and more

Roundup Here's a roundup of this week's security news, beyond what we've already covered. Besides RSA: BSides and OURSA Sunday saw the start of the two-day BSides SF conference, which caters more for hackers – white, gray, and black hat – rather than this week's RSA Conference, which is aimed more at sales and marketing execs, and IT …
Iain Thomson, 21 Apr 2018
An IBM office

One of IBM's latest financial figures was off by four cents today – so down go its shares

Revenues for IBM have risen for its second successive financial quarter – after more than five years of declining sales – but only on a constant currency basis. Profit, however, dropped and Wall Street hammered Big Blue's stock price in after-hours trading. The venerable tech titan reported $19.1bn in global sales in the first …
Iain Thomson, 17 Apr 2018
Lisa Su

Car-crash television: 'Excuse me ma'am, do you speak English?' 'Yes I do,' replies AMD's CEO

Some of us love watching Formula One for the prangs and crashes – but we don't really expect them to happen before the race even begins. Yet, that's the only way to describe a live TV interview at the Chinese Formula One Grand Prix on Sunday, which went embarrassingly wrong. Former Formula One driver and Sky Sports telly …
Iain Thomson, 16 Apr 2018
Password

Android apps prove a goldmine for dodgy password practices

Bsides SF An analysis of free Android apps has shown that developers are leaving their crypto keys embedded in applications, in some cases because the software developer kits install them by default. Will Dormann, software vulnerability analyst at the CERT Coordination Center (CERT/CC), told the BSides conference in San Francisco that …
Iain Thomson, 16 Apr 2018
money

So you’ve got a zero-day – do you sell to black, grey or white markets?

Bsides SF Barely a decade ago the mere idea of selling vulnerabilities was highly controversial. Today the market is mature, but increasingly complicated - researchers can now choose between making lots of money, being moral and making less, or going fully black. The 2015 pwning of Italian surveillance-ware-for-governments vendor …
Iain Thomson, 15 Apr 2018
casino_security_648

Router ravaging, crippling code, and why not to p*ss off IT staff

Roundup It has been a busy week for security, with the CYBERUK 2018 conference in the UK and the industry gearing up for BSides and the RSA conference in San Francisco next week. But there have been a bunch of smaller stories that may have slipped under your radar, plus all the other bits and pieces we've covered this week. Wreckin' …
Iain Thomson, 14 Apr 2018
prostitute

Backpage.com swoop: Seven bods hit with 93 charges as AG Sessions blasts alleged child sex trafficking cyber-haven

After the Feds swooped on the Backpage.com website on Friday, they promised to outline why. Now on Monday, they have unsealed a 93-count indictment of seven of the dot-com's staff and investors, as well as seizing the domain name. Backpage carried classifieds for things like jobs and cars as well as adverts for people of …
Iain Thomson, 10 Apr 2018
man peers at mobile/cell with bewildered expression

T-Mobile Austria stores passwords as plain text, Outlook gets message crypto, and more

Roundup While Facebook caught most of the security-related flak this week, there were other infosec stories out there. Here's a summary of stuff happening, beyond what we've already covered. Don't get pwned. Word. Dude Microsoft, which used to be a byword for insecure software until Bill Gates' trustworthy computing memo that turned …
Iain Thomson, 7 Apr 2018
QueSST

What's silent but violent and costs $250m? Yes, it's Lockheed Martin's super-quiet, supersonic X-plane for NASA

Vid Supersonic air travel over land has been stymied since the 1960s due to the rather annoying sonic booms generated by speedy airplanes. Now, NASA, having given it some thought, has ordered a new airframe that could reduce the noise levels down to those of standard street traffic. If successful, Uncle Sam's boffins want to …
Iain Thomson, 3 Apr 2018

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