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Biting the hand that feeds IT — sci/tech news and views for the world

Kill something, then hire cleaners to mop up the blood if you want to build a digital business

You live on a steaming dunghill of complexity, vendors want to keep you there and your CIO's way out is early retirement

Kill something, find a leader, stop thinking about apps and start thinking about products, get seriously good at agile development and realise there is no finish line.…

Posted on 24 July 2017 | 2:00 pm

systemd'oh! Everyone's favourite init tool kills Netflix

There's a workaround. Or you could just use a distro like Devuan

A few Penguinistas spent a weekend working out why they can't get to Netflix, because when they try, DNS fails.…

Posted on 24 July 2017 | 1:07 pm

Debian patches plenty in new version 9.1

26 security fixes for 55 packages. You know what to do!

Debian Linux has hit version 9.1.…

Posted on 24 July 2017 | 11:57 am

Sweden leaked every car owners' details last year, then tried to hush it up

Another day, another botched government contract

In a slowly-unfolding scandal in Sweden, it's emerged that the country's transport agency bungled an outsourcing deal with IBM, putting both individuals and national security at risk.…

Posted on 24 July 2017 | 10:31 am

Judge uses 1st Amendment on Pokemon Go park ban. It's super effective!

County had hoped to protect land from gamer stampede

Milwaukee County's rules to keep its parks from being overrun by augmented reality gamers have been suspended by a judge over concerns that they violate the First Amendment.…

Posted on 23 July 2017 | 1:08 am

Fan of FBI cosplay? Enjoy freaking out your neighbors? Have we got the eBay auction for you

Get this retired surveillance van for all your totally legitimate above-board activities

A rather unusual auction on eBay could appeal to aspiring spies and X‑Files fantasists alike.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 11:28 am

The Italian Jobs: Bloke thrown in the cooler for touting Apple knockoffs

Feds made Naples man an offer he can't refuse

A scammer who imported fake iPods, iPads, iPhones, and Sony hardware worth $15m into America was today sent down for 37 months.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 10:14 am

Intel is upset that Qualcomm is treating it like Intel treated AMD for years and years

Chipzilla takes number, joins queue to kick Snapdragon biz in the ball arrays

Intel has backed Apple in the iGiant's almighty scrap with Qualcomm – which is trying to ban sales of iPhones and iPads in America.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 9:55 am

DeepMind says it's given AI an imagination. Let's take a closer look at that

Google's machine-learning gurus see promise in simulated creativity

Google's AI boutique, DeepMind, known for dispelling human delusions of intellectual superiority by soundly beating the world's top Go players with computer code, has found that instilling its software agents with something like imagination helps them learn better.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 9:06 am

China censors drop the soap operas, sitcoms

That's the bad news. The good news is they've banned Bieber, too

Analysis  A disturbing trend toward ever-greater censorship in China has seemingly crossed a line with the banning and blocking... well, fun, basically.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 8:29 am

Andy Rubin's overhyped and underdelivered Essential phone out 'in a few weeks'

At this point does anyone still care?

After months of hype and missed deadlines, it seems as though Andy Rubin's new smartphone might actually make it onto the market.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 7:38 am

Silicon Valley IT biz boss cops to lying about Cisco H-1B jobs

Consulting firm fibbed about hirings to import more workers

The owner of a Silicon Valley tech consulting biz has pled guilty to making up job offers in order to obtain US H-1B visas for overseas workers.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 7:13 am

Google, Amazon, Apple, Facebook blow massive amounts lobbying Trump administration

You know what they say: Money makes the world go round

Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple are finding the Trump Administration a very expensive prospect, at least according to their newly released lobbying figures.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 6:32 am

Pull on yer wellies and let's wade through the week's storage news

But Muuuuuum...

A mudslide of storage news has mired Vulture Central and we're up to our waists in it. Alas, this seems to be becoming a weekly occurrence. We waded through it, sorted it out, tidied it up, and mopped the floors.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 3:04 am

Legal boffins poke holes in EU lawmaker's ePrivacy proposals

Recommend amendments on privacy, tracking and encryption

The European Commission's proposed ePrivacy law needs significant amendments, particularly on location tracking and keeping people's communications confidential, according to an in-depth study.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 2:08 am

What is this – some kind of flashy, 3-bit consumer SSD? Eh, Seagate?

Nytro new PC disk replacement line of SSDs

Seagate has a new line of Nytro consumer SSDs coming using 3-bits/cell flash.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 1:27 am

But how does our ransomware make you feel?

Psychology of ransomware threats unpicked

Ransomware crooks have become skilled psychological manipulators in their attempts to fleece victims of file-encrypting malware.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 12:58 am

Why you'll never make really big money as an AI dev

Artificial Intelligence? How the future was back in the '80s

Among the stupider things I said in the 1980s was a comment about Artificial Intelligence, including neural nets - or perceptrons as we called them back then - saying we needed "maybe a processor that worked at a hundred megahertz and literally gigabytes of storage".…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 12:23 am

I've got a verbal govt contract for Hyperloop, claims His Muskiness

World+dog: Oh no you haven't!

The world's best business self-publicist since Richard Branson reckons he has been given a "verbal contract" to build an unrealistic high-speed tube train system across America.…

Posted on 22 July 2017 | 12:04 am

Vodafone reports sliding revenues but customers don't hate them as much

And India still a mighty struggle

Vodafone's UK reputation is improving thanks to network improvements, the company said, pointing to a higher net promoter score as it revealed its results today.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 11:38 pm

Dump X of your crew, DXC Technologies UK told. Hundreds face axe AGAIN

'Please stop leaking info to The Reg,' says UK boss

Exclusive  Less than four months after DXC Technologies was created and the Frankenfirm is already embarking on a second round of jobs cuts, with hundreds of frontline support techies earmarked for the chop.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 11:26 pm

Shut up and take my money! AI luminaries go gooey for Graphcore's smart chip tech

Investors shove another $30m into Bristolian startup's mitts

Bristolian AI chip startup Graphcore has had a fast B-round 12 months after its $32m A-round funding was first revealed.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 11:03 pm

Volterman 'super wallet': The worst crowdsource video pitch of all time?

The cringe is strong with this one

Do you need a "smart" wallet with a built in front-facing camera and GPS? Of course you don't. Not even with a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot? Well, enough people do to make a success of an Indiegogo project promising just that.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 10:29 pm

Virgin Media broadband latency headaches still not fixed six months on

Promises firmware fix for superhub 3/Intel's Puma 6 'shortly'

Latency issues with Intel's Puma 6, used in gigabit broadband modems, have yet to be resolved for Virgin Media customers using the UK company's superhub 3.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 9:58 pm

Reg reader turns Geek's Guides to Britain into Geek's Map of Britain

Too lazy to plug GPS co-ords into satnav? Fear not, gypsythief has saved you

A forward-thinking Reg reader has put the entirety of our Geeks’ Guide series onto a Google Map, for your navigational and geographically organised reading pleasure.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 9:27 pm

Ten new tech terms I learnt this summer: Do you know them all?

Let's assume you've already heard of 'clickbait headline'

Something for the Weekend, Sir?  I'll never forget the day I found my children looking at Spam for the first time. My son was particularly perplexed, asking: "Is that what I think it is?"…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 9:11 pm

You can't DevOps everything, kids. Off the shelf kit especially

Waterfalling for the, er, 'boring' stuff

Comment  Hey, psst. Come over here, I have a secret to tell you. My fellow DevOps hoodwinkers would cement-shoe me for saying so, but you don't always need to do the DevOps. In fact, in many cases, it's likely a waste of effort. Let's start walking this way, briskly, now – I think I see some pink and chromatic blue fade-tipped Thought Lords and Ladies coming down the hallway towards us. They look like they're ready to do a blameful pre-mortem.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 8:34 pm

The lady (or man) vanishes: The thorny issue of GDPR coding

The Devil is in the enhanced data model

Europe's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is now less than a year away, coming into effect in May 2018, and any legal or compliance department worth its salary should already have been making waves about what it means for your organisation.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 8:03 pm

User filed fake trouble tickets to take helpful sysadmin to lunches

Reg reader was shouted at for a problem the customer created, but won his respect and apologies

On-Call  Hey, hey, it's Friday! Which means frolicsome weekend fun is just a day away … if you can survive work and this week's instalment of On-Call, The Register's weekly column in which we recount readers stories of jobs gone weird.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 7:33 pm

Boffins back bubbles for better bonding with beautiful belongings

AKA how to watermark 3D printed stuff with air bubbles

To mark and track 3D printed objects, boffins propose injecting them with air.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 7:01 pm

Q. What's today's top language? A. Python... no, wait, Java... no, C

Just learn them all and stop worrying about the popularity contest

Among developers, Python is the most popular programming language, followed by C, Java, C++, and JavaScript; among employers, Java is the most sought after, followed by C, Python, C++, and JavaScript.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 6:29 pm

Burglary, robbery, kidnapping and a shoot-out over… a domain name?!

When transfers go really, really wrong, allegedly

A home break-in that resulted in two men being shot – one of whom was later charged with burglary, robbery and kidnapping – was the result of a domain name dispute, cops have said.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 6:02 pm

Moneysupermarket fined £80,000 for spamming seven million customers

Go compare the original opt-out request, firm told

Price-comparison darling Moneysupermarket.com has been fined £80,000 for sending 7.1 million emails to customers who had opted out of receiving direct marketing emails.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 5:32 pm

Authorities go hard on coffee maker for stiff Viagra-powered brew

Is that a DIMM in your pocket or have you been at this banned bean again?

How's this for a stiff one to start the day? We now go live to America, where watchdogs have recalled a batch of coffee for containing an active ingredient very similar to Viagra.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 5:03 pm

Microsoft finally allows hosted desktops on multi-tenant hardware

Windows 10 enterprise licences to gain virtualization rights, plus roaming to personal devices

Microsoft's dispensed with a licensing oddity that saw it prohibit hosted virtual desktops running on multi-tenanted hardware.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 4:02 pm

Bluetooth makes a mesh of itself with new spec

Up to 32,000 nodes without routers in the middle and battery life measured in years

The Bluetooth Special Interest Group has released the spec for Bluetooth Mesh, a many-to-many extension of the technology.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 2:58 pm

ServiceNow stops over in Jakarta on its journey to AI-land

SaaS-y business process simplifier adds security chat rooms, cloud management and more to new release

ServiceNow's Jakarta release went live on Thursday, bringing with it plenty of new toys for IT departments and hints of artificially intelligent things to come.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 2:04 pm

They say we're too mean to Microsoft. Well, how about this... Redmond just had a stonking year. And only 8% tax. Whee!

Paid -17% tax rate for Q4 despite making $72m every day

In its final quarter of its fiscal 2017, Microsoft more than doubled its profits, saw massive cloud growth, and managed to get a rebate from US taxpayers at the same time.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 12:58 pm

So, FCC, how about that massive DDoS? Hello? Hello...? You still there?

Like trying to get blood out of a stone

Updated  America's broadband watchdog, the FCC, has declined to share any more details on the cyber-assault that apparently downed its website shortly after it announced its intent to kill net neutrality.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 10:27 am

US Homeland Sec boss has snazzy new laptop bomb scanning tech – but admits he doesn't know what it's called

Fscking nerds, Secretary John Kelly sighs

Flying into America? Don't worry about that crackdown on laptops and similar gear in your carry-on luggage. It's no longer happening. No, instead, the US has something else up its sleeve.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 10:01 am

Alphabay shutdown: Bad boys, bad boys, what you gonna do? Not use your Hotmail...

...or the Feds will get you ♪

Analysis  The alleged owner of dark-web marketplace AlphaBay was tracked down by FBI because he was stupid enough to include his real Hotmail address in the content management system used to run the site.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 8:28 am

Death to strap-ons, says Intel, yet thrusts its little AI stick into us all

Behold, the neural network gizmo Chipzilla will quietly kill in two years, like its wearables

Intel, having accepted the inevitable, has dropped out of the wearables and fitness band game, and canned the teams working on that strap-on tech.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 8:14 am

Second one this month: Another code bootcamp decamps to graveyard

'Unable to find a sustainable model' complains crashed programming crash course

The Iron Yard, a four-year-old coding bootcamp based in South Carolina, USA, said on Thursday that it is shutting its doors.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 7:48 am

UK uni warns students of phishers trying to nick their tuition fees

♪ You shall have a phishy on a little dishy when the hack comes in

Foreign students looking to experience the stochastic joys of a year at Newcastle University in England are being warned that phishers are after their cash – using an unusually well-crafted attack.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 7:18 am

Huawei reckons it can strong ARM its way into AI world with new chips

We're assuming Chinese giant will use ARM in ML processors. It probably will, right?

Chinese systems colossus Huawei claims it is developing chips optimized for artificial-intelligence tasks.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 6:32 am

Toshiba's spat with WDC over chip biz is now a song of strife and ire

Court orders only prolong bid process, and winter is coming

Toshiba regained a right to lock WDC (SanDisk) employees from their joint-venture fab in Yokkaichi, Japan, reversing WDC's court-obtained Temporary Restraining Order, which was won earlier this month.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 4:33 am

White boxer is a white racker: Supermicro touts Rack Scale Design

VBlock-like converged systems

Building servers, switches and storage are a good racket for ODM Supermicro but building Vblock-like rack scale systems is an even better one.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 4:04 am

Cops harpoon two dark net whales in megabust: AlphaBay and Hansa

Tor won't shield you, warn Feds

Two of the largest dark net marketplaces - AlphaBay and Hansa - have been shut down following an international police operation.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 3:38 am

Just look at our cloud sales, beams profit-sapped SAP

Boost to 2017 cloud guidance as revenue rises 29%

SAP has reported revenues of €5.8bn in the quarter ending June 30, up 10 per cent on the previous year’s figure.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 3:17 am

The eyes have IT: TSB to roll out iris-scanning tech for mobile banking

Biometrics, certificates combo to shore up security

TSB has announced plans to roll out iris-scanning technology for its mobile banking app from September.…

Posted on 21 July 2017 | 2:56 am