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El Reg

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Biting the hand that feeds IT — sci/tech news and views for the world
Updated: 45 min 53 sec ago

Virgin Media suspends 4 staff over misreporting connections

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 9:20am
Shakes up top brass after 142k misrepresented in £3bn Project Lightning

Virgin Media has admitted to overstating its £3bn Project Lightning superfast broadband rollout by 142,000 premises – a move that has led to the suspension of four staff and a reshuffle of its top brass.…

UK's 'homebrew firmware' Chinooks set to be usable a mere 16 years late

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 9:05am
After burning hundreds of millions into the bargain

The Ministry of Defence has started replacing the flight control software on its all-but-useless Chinook Mk.3 special forces helicopters, a mere 16 years after bungled attempts to bake its own software without involving manufacturer Boeing.…

The evolution of ransomware: How a nuisance turned into a business menace

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 8:31am
As ransomware rapidly evolves, defenders look for help keeping up

Promo  To many Internet users it must look as if ransomware arrived out of the blue. Pioneers such as Cryzip started circulating at very low levels in the UK as early as 2006 and yet it wasn’t until 2013 that this type of malware suddenly spiked with the appearance of its first big global superstar, CryptoLocker.…

ZX Spectrum Vega Plus backers complain of months-long refund delays

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 8:03am
But mouthpiece then denies they're a spokesman

Backers of the troubled ZX Spectrum Vega+ handheld gaming console have told The Register of long delays and seemingly ignored messages when requesting refunds from the company behind the project, Retro Computers Ltd.…

Inside Intel's Optanical garden

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 7:33am
What you see and what you might actually get could differ

Analysis  Intel has now had its brace of Optane P4800X SSD and M.2 2280 motherboard card releases and we’ve learned there is no straightforward performance comparison with equivalent flash product – Intel is eschewing that on the grounds of Optane being a significantly different storage product.…

Microsoft wants screaming Windows fans, not just users

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 7:03am
And it might be winning them: Windows Insiders program has cracked the ten million mark

Microsoft's revealed it doesn't just want Windows users, it wants Windows fans. As in queue-all-night, constantly-offer-unsolicited-feedback, faint-at-the-sight-of-pop-stars fans.…

ESA picks final two ExoMars landing site candidates

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 6:28am
Welsh corner of Mars makes the final list, along with once-wet Oxia Planum

The European Space Agency has narrowed its candidate list of landing sites for the ExoMars rover to two choices.…

'Trash-80' escapes the dustbin of history with new TRS-80 emulator

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 6:02am
Run the classic Model III on Windows

Antique Code Show  If you get misty-eyed over the expression 20 IF N=1 GOTO 10 (or reach for the pen to correct me), there's another open source TRS-80 BASIC emulator available.…

FBI secures guilty plea from Russian bot-herder

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 5:27am
Ebury infections for fun and profit, sentencing in August

A Russian citizen behind “tens of thousands” of Ebury trojan infections has entered a guilty plea in the US and will face sentencing in August.…

ETSI widens scope of mobile edge standard

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 5:02am
Mobile base stations to be treated as computers in their own right

The European Telecommunications Standards Institute has decided its Mobile Edge Computing (MEC) effort needed a bigger brief, so it's renamed it as Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC).…

What a time to be alive: drone pooper-scoopers are a thing now

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 4:26am
Who needs a plastic bag and civic pride when two drones can do the job?

Finding dog poo in public places and picking it up before it can besmirch a sole probably isn't high on the list of things humanity needs to get better at, but that hasn't stopped Dutch folk throwing two drones at the problem.…

Boffins give 'D.TRUMP' an AI injection

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 4:02am
A statistical model for cluelessness named after the president. Because why not?

Let's give this points in the Academic Sense of Humour stakes for 2017: the wryly-named Data-mining Textual Responses to Uncover Misconception Patterns, or D.TRUMP, looks to automate the process of working out just how confused someone might be, from how they answer open-response questions.…

It's ESXi time for critical VMware patches

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 2:55am
Three to do, pronto, unless you like guest-host escape mirth

VMware's reported three bugs that probably deserve your urgent attention.…

Pirate of the Caribbean to play Hacker of the Caribbean

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 2:04am
Johnny Depp to play John McAfee in biopic depicting A-V man as Colonel Kurtz

POLL  Nobody's confirmed anything except Big Mac himself, but John McAfee reckons he's going to be played by Captain Jack Sparrow himself, Johnny Depp.…

Alabama joins anti-web-smut crusade with mandatory opt-out filters

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 12:50am
Republican politico has something of an obsession with onanism

Yet another American state has seen legislation introduced to include mandatory anti-pornography filters on any internet-capable device – or else.…

As a shock to absolutely no one, Uber is mostly pasty, male at the top

Wed, 29/03/2017 - 12:01am
Rain is wet, sky is blue, Oracle is expensive, etc

Uber has published its first ever diversity report today, revealing that the car-hailing biz is, unsurprisingly, dominated by white males like most major American technology companies.…

Court smacks Telstra over wholesale pricing

Tue, 28/03/2017 - 11:06pm
No NBN revenue top up for you, says regulator

Australia's Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is crowing today after the nation's Federal Court agreed with its ruling on how much dominant telco Telstra can charge for wholesale services on its fixed line networks.…

Press 1 for bill shock, 2 for outages... AWS touts call-center management-as-a-service

Tue, 28/03/2017 - 10:45pm
All your calls are belong to us

Amazon Web Services on Tuesday introduced Amazon Connect, a hosted contact center service that allows any business to consign customers to voice jail with minimal effort.…

Robots are killing jobs after all, apparently: One droid equals 5.6 workers

Tue, 28/03/2017 - 10:22pm
So much for the utopian techno future, according to this study

Industrial robots are depressing wages and increasing unemployment, according to a paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, a private, non-profit, non-partisan research organization in America.…

US Customs sued for information about border phone searches

Tue, 28/03/2017 - 9:47pm
Would you mind telling me what you're doing with my phone?

US Customs and Homeland Security are being sued to get them to hand over the rules by which people have their electronic devices seized and searched at the border.…