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Biting the hand that feeds IT — sci/tech news and views for the world
Updated: 58 min 57 sec ago

How's this for customer service: Comcast calls bloke an A**HOLE – and even puts it in print

12 hours 15 min ago
All because his wife asked to cancel their TV package

A Washington woman in the US has revealed how Comcast made her husband the butt of a joke – by changing his name to "Asshole" on their account.…

How's this for customer service: Comcast calls bloke an A**HOLE – and even puts it in print

12 hours 15 min ago
All because his wife asked to cancel their TV package

A Washington woman in the US has revealed how Comcast made her husband the butt of a joke – by changing his name to "Asshole" on their account.…

ZX81 BEATEN at last as dev claims smallest Chess code crown

12 hours 47 min ago
Boot Chess needs just 512 bytes of memory, beating 1982's 1K ZX Chess

Developer Olivier Poudade claims he's beaten a 33 year-old record for the smallest working Chess program.…

Does Big Tech hire white boys ahead of <i>more skilled</i> black people and/or women?

13 hours 10 min ago
If it did - opportunity!

Worstall on Weds (on Thurs)  I've been watching with some amusement a little story about Pinterest noting that it's got a user base that leans heavily female. It's doing the rounds as the company thinks, well, it would be nice to be stuffing men full of ads as well (when it actually starts slinging ads) so, umm, why don't we go out and try and find some male customers?…

Telstra: we don't collect the metadata the government wants now

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:53am
So much for A-G Brandis' 'this'll be easy for telcos to collect' argument

Yet again, the coaching that spooks and bureaucrats have given Australia's Attorney-General George Brandis has proven to be at odds with the realities of the telecommunications industry.…

Windows 10 heralds the MINECRAFT-isation of Microsoft

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:35am
Redmond is building a stack of visualisation tools for the generation that grew up with clickable everything

Until last week, Microsoft’s $2.5 billion purchase of Mojang AB made no sense to me. Undeniably popular in the current generation of kids, at some point, Mojang’s Minecraft will fade, like every other fad before it. Mojang doesn’t even have a follow-up to its breakthrough first title. Back in 2013, Minecraft creator Marcus ‘Notch’ Perrson shelved 0x10C, a space game set in the distant future, leaving Mojang looking like a one hit-wonder.…

Charles Townes, inventor of the laser and friend to both science and religion, dies

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 6:02am
Coherent light, coherent thinking

Obituary  Charles Hard Townes, one of the winners of the 1964 Nobel Prize in Physics for developing the laser and a pivotal player in astronomy and reconciling science and religion, has died at the age of 99 after a brief illness.…

Mozilla dusts off old servers, lights up Tor relays

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:28am
Worst outcome means 50 percent capacity hit

Mozilla has given the Tor network a capacity kick with the launch of 14 relays that will help distribute user traffic.…

Big Switch pitches third fabric iteration in six months

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 5:05am
Adds network analytics, VMWare support

Big Switch Networks is sticking to its start-up sprint, announcing the third iteration of its virtual networking environment since it initial release in July 2014.…

Microsoft's Ignite gabfest includes just ONE session about Windows Server

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 4:34am
Devices and clouds in the spotlight, Servers nowhere to be seen for now

Microsoft has just released the session catalog for its May Ignite event, the new gabfest that mashes TechEd and several other product-specific enterprise software conferences into one. And at this stage it looks like Windows Server will hardly make the agenda.…

Trans-Pacific trade treaty close to signoff says USA

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 3:57am
Japan offers America a side of rice, but nasty copyright provisions remain

The US Trade Representative Michael Froman has tried to reassure the country's lawmakers that the interminable negotiations over the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) will conclude during 2015.…

Cisco says GHOST is more Casper than Sleepy Hollow

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 3:02am
Borg exorcised GHOST years ago when it sent IPv4 to the nether realms

Cisco has put forward at least a partial response to 2015's first branded bug, GHOST, saying that in The Borg's world, the glibc vulnerability is probably of relatively low severity.…

Researcher says Aussie spooks help code Five Eyes mega malware

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 2:42am
QWERTY keylogger code alleged to name Defence Signals Directorate

The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) has refused to comment on allegations it had a hand in the creation of a keylogging module used by global spookhauses and considered almost identical to parts of the complex Regin malware.…

FCC will vote to cut off 41 million broadband users this Thursday*

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 2:35am
* This headline brought to you by the cable companies

US internet tinkerer the FCC will likely vote tomorrow to change its definition of "broadband" connections from 4Mbps to 25Mbps – effectively moving 13 per cent of the American population outside the envelope of "fast" internet access.…

Who's afraid of a virtual switch? Not big bad Brocade

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 2:02am
Vyatta now available on free trial license, routers get port crypto

The burgeoning market for bare-metal Ethernet switches isn't bothering Brocade, according to A/NZ senior director Gary Denman.…

Facebook's mobile ad bonanza brought it record returns in 2014

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 1:33am
Social network Zucked up more cash than ever

Facebook finished the best quarter and the best year of its history on December 31, with its latest earnings report showing record annual revenues of $12.47bn for its fiscal 2014, up 58 per cent from 2013's haul.…

Facebook kills pic of Mohammed weeks after Zuck's <i>Je suis Charlie!</i>

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 12:58am
Don't harm the profit, I mean, prophet. No, wait, profit

Earlier this month, in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg proclaimed that his social network, used by millions, was a free-speech zone.…

Will Amazon's WorkMail for enterprise be another Fire dud – or a Kindle?

Thu, 29/01/2015 - 12:15am
If there's one thing we all really need, it's another enterprise mail service, right Exchange?

Amazon Web Services is touting a cloud-based webmail system to the world of big business.…

Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 CPU dumped from flagship smartphone

Wed, 28/01/2015 - 10:56pm
While China woes rumble on: Watchdog on one hand, deadbeat partners on the other

Qualcomm reported record revenues for the first quarter of its fiscal 2015 on Wednesday, but the mobile chipmaker warned investors that it's still struggling to make headway in the all-important China market.…

Man trousers $15,000 domain name for $10.99 amid registry cockup

Wed, 28/01/2015 - 10:25pm
Nice little earner once he flogs it – before everyone gets real tired of gTLDs

Bruce Marler could hardly believe his luck.…