Episode 137

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GLENN’S SHOWNOTES

 

ISPs escape copyright trap | Australian IT
ISPs escape copyright trap

 A group of copyright holders pursuing iiNet for copyright breaches put the claim before the court last month as part of a case against the ISP.
 
However lawyers representing the group dropped the component from its claim in an unscheduled hearing early today.
 
iiNet was awarded legal costs for any legal fees it  incurred addressing parts of the claim AFACT has withdrawn.
 
The Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT), which is coordinating the legal action on behalf of the copyright holders, had claimed that by providing “the intermediate and transient storage of, or further or alternatively, the caching of copyright material”, iiNet was the primary copyright infringer rather than just encouraging illegal activity.

The claim which has been described by some industry observers as “exotic” relied on a common law concept of conversion which makes illegal the alteration of property in a manner detrimental to its owner

A spokeswoman for AFACT said that the claim was dropped to stop any further delays in progressing the matter to a full hearing.
 
“Just for expediency and ensuring that the case went ahead on the scheduled date, we dropped it,” the spokeswoman said.

Hackers taking advantage of Windows 7: Microsoft | Australian IT
Hackers taking advantage of Windows 7

 MICROSOFT said cybercriminals are already hawking booby-trapped versions of just-released Windows 7 operating system software.

Microsoft decried software piracy as a pervasive problem that costs the world economy more than $US45 billion annually and exposes users to risks of identity theft, system crashes, and data loss.
Mr Williams said Microsoft research shows that as many as a third of the company’s customers worldwide may be running counterfeit copies of Windows.

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ACCC takes Dodo to task for ‘false’ ads | Australian IT
ACCC takes Dodo to task for ‘false’ ads

ACCC takes Dodo to task for ‘false’ ads | Australian IT

THE consumer watchdog has blown the whistle on multi-service telco reseller Dodo over its mobile and broadband cap advertisements.

Dodo has agreed to refund customers who were enticed to subscribe to bundled mobile and broadband plans by advertisements offering “free gifts” including Eee PCs, handsets, and cash and fuel.

The Australian Competition Consumer Commission (ACCC) took umbrage with the ads on grounds that Dodo was offering equivalent bundled plans for cheaper prices.

The ACCC was concerned that claims contained in the ads — that the items were free — would mislead consumers as the cost of the items was reflected in the higher price for subscription plans.

Dodo has accepted court enforceable undertakings to refund customers and ensure that they receive their gifts free.

“After being fully informed of the ACCC’s concerns, Dodo promptly ceased to publish the advertisements of concern and undertook to take action to ensure its affected customers will receive the goods and cash for free, as advertised,” the ACCC said in a statement.

IBM Australia is first to crack $4bn revenue | Australian IT
IBM Australia is first to crack $4bn revenue

 IBM achieved the feat in the 12 months ending December 31, with revenue of $4.08 billion, up about $12 million from a year ago.

New contracts and renewals with GM Holden, Downer EDI, Queensland Motorways, the federal Department of Finance and Medicare boosted the bottom line.

Key areas of growth were climate change, water, e-health and transport, in which technology had a critical role, Mr Boreham said. IBM had many clients in the financial sector, including Commonwealth Bank and Westpac, but business opportunities with financial players remained healthy, he said.

As part of cost-cutting measures, IBM will replace free coffee and tea with vending machines.
Mr Boreham declined to reveal specifics when asked if this would save $500,000 a year. The move was far better than cutting jobs, he said.

`The bill for coffee and tea was a surprisingly large amount.”
IBM employs more than 15,000 people in Australia and New Zealand. It added more than 1500 recruits last year, plus 300 graduates, Mr Boreham said.

Web users skeptical about paying for content – CNN.com
Web users skeptical about paying for content

Web users skeptical about paying for content – CNN.com
News Corp.’s Rupert Murdoch says Web sites will begin charging within 12 months
Newspaper industry threatened by falling circulations, advertising slump
Analyst: “We are in a free media, free news, free information environment”

Sol’s last amigo walks – Telecommunications – iTnews Australia
Sol’s last amigo walks

 

Telstra has announced that the last remaining American executive brought into the fold by departing CEO Sol Trujillo will fly home at the end of the financial year.

The carrier announced that its senior vice president of ‘Transformation’, Tom Lamming, will leave the company on June 30, the same day Sol Trujillo heads home to the United States.

First Windows 7 bug discovered – Operating Systems – iTnews Australia
First Windows 7 bug discovered

 

Microsoft is warning customers downloading the Release Candidate of its long-awaited Windows 7 operating system that its first bug has been detected, potentially causing application failures.

In a post on the firm’s Help and Support site, Microsoft said the problem affects the 32-bit (x86) English-language version of Windows 7 build 7100, which incorrectly sets access control lists (ACLs) on the root.

It’s unclear just how dangerous this bug could be but Microsoft has already issued a hotfix, available through Windows update.

The x64 version of Windows 7, however, seems to be unaffected.

iTWire – AVG releases malware solution for Linux
AVG releases malware solution for Linux

 Announcing the release of AVG 8.5 for Linux, AVG says the solution is available in both server and free workstation editions, and offers “streamlined scanning capabilities, new anti-virus filtering and improved performance and ease of use for Linux-based users.”

iTWire – Atari goes into bat for Ashes Cricket 2009
Atari goes into bat for Ashes Cricket 2009

 According to Atari:  The Ashes, the most exciting and thrilling confrontation in international cricket, will be brought to game screens this July as Codemasters in partnership with Atari Australia, today announced it will publish Ashes Cricket 2009 as the official game of this year’s tournament for the PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system, Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft® and PC; a Nintendo Wii version will be released later in the year.

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Windows 7 chokes interweb tubes
Windows 7 chokes interweb tubes

 Australian Internet traffic spiked when Windows 7 RC became available earlier in the week. Overall traffic was up 12% with Akamai (Microsoft’s download partner) traffic up by 10% to 50%. After the initial surge, and struggles for Microsoft Servers, things are now back to normal

WARNING: diabolical fine print in Optus’ new “monster caps”
WARNING: diabolical fine print in Optus’ new “monster caps”

 

$680 worth of calls for $49 looks like a great deal, but Optus is again using dodgy fine print to cheat customers.

World of Warcraft goes down the toilet – Technology – smh.com.au
World of Warcraft goes down the toilet

 The WoW Pod and, inset, the schematics.

a self-contained World of Warcraft pod that includes a computer, toilet and kitchen for the 24/7 gamer.

Created by boffins at Massachusetts University of Technology (MIT), the contraption is described as “an immersive architectural solution for the advanced WoW (World of Warcraft) player that provides and anticipates all life needs”.

 

The role playing game’s long quests encourage players to slog it out for hours at a time, and when playing in groups, one player leaving for a toilet break can throw off the rhythm for everyone.

Enter the WoW pod, which is entirely self-contained and is designed to resemble a hut featured in the game. Inside, the throne doubles as a toilet, while next to the computer sits a cooking pot and automated stove top.

Within reach is water and pre-packaged food with names such as “Crunchy Spider Surprise” and “Beer Basted Ribs”. All the player has to do is select a food item and a seasoning pack.

“By scanning in the food items, the video game physically adjusts a hot plate to cook the item for the correct amount of time,” wrote one of the creators, MIT researcher Cati Vaucelle.

“The virtual character then jubilantly announces the status of the meal to both the gamer and the other individuals playing online: ‘Vorcon’s meal is about to be done!”‘

The pod, which has a wooden frame and skin and fur inside, is so well integrated with the game that when the player resumes playing after eating, their character is affected by the food.

 

In 2005, a South Korean man died after playing Starcraft, similar to WoW, for 50 hours straight at an internet cafe with no sleep and few breaks.

Back in the groove – Home Entertainment – Digital Life – smh.com.au
Back in the groove Greg Borrowman, the editor of Australian Hi-Fi magazine, thinks we’re yearning for what was lost when analog music yielded to digital. “CDs have no personality; they’re set and forget,” he says. “With vinyl, it’s ritual. You slide the LP out of its sleeve, then deftly remove it from the inner dust jacket, making sure not to touch the playing surface. You place it on the platter with both hands, like an offering. You clean the record’s surface and perhaps the stylus. Only then do you lower the tone arm to be rewarded with the music.”

“Two-channel amplifiers also sell strongly. People with home cinemas and iPods aren’t happy with how they handle music and want to get back to hearing it reproduced faithfully.”

END SONG: Goodbye by Noel Miller link  http://bit.ly/ACKZC

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