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Amazon Key door-entry flaw: No easy fix to stop rogue couriers burgling your place unseen

Analysis Amazon has pushed out an emergency security update to its door-unlocking system called Key – which is used by couriers to let themselves into people's homes to drop off packages inside when folks are out. Delivery workers show up at a home, and use a smartphone to temporarily disable the lock on the front door so they can pop …
Kieren McCarthy, 16 Nov 2017

Internet of So Much Stuff: Don't wanna be a security id-IoT

Michael Dell, chairman and CEO of Dell Technologies, last month announced a $1bn investment in IoT R&D over the next three years. What does $1bn buy you in IoT? A new IoT division, to be run by VMware’s CTO Ray O'Farrell, a bunch of new IoT-focussed projects including Project Iris - an under wraps RSA security development - …

TensorFlow lightens up to land on smartmobes, then embed everywhere

Google's released an Android/iOS version of TensorFlow. The Chocolate Factory announced the developer preview of TensorFlow Lite in this Tuesday blog post. The post stated the release will initially target smartmobes, with later versions to target embedded devices. Google first revealed its desire for machine learning …
head of 50s-style robot

Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat, look out for must-have toys that are 'easily hacked' ?

Consumer advice outfit Which? has today published a report detailing how easy it is to hack some of the most popular "connected toys" on the market and has called on retailers to stop selling those with "proven security issues". The report found that of seven toys tested, the Furby Connect, I-Que Intelligent Robot, Cloudpet …
Richard Priday, 14 Nov 2017

80-year-old cyclist killed in prang with Tesla Model S

An 80-year-old man has died in County Durham, England, after being struck by a Tesla Model S. He was cycling along the A177 near High Shincliffe, when the car collided with him. After being struck by the Tesla at around 9.20am on November 10, the unnamed man was taken to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough where he …
Richard Priday, 14 Nov 2017
Robot wearing a business suit

IBM asks remaining staff to take career advice from HR-bot

IBM staff are being asked to eat the company's dogfood in the form of an AI-infused career advice chatbot named “Myca”. The Register understands that Myca – an acronym for “My Career Advisor” - was developed in a staff hackfest and is sold as the Watson Career Coach. Multiple IBMers of our acquaintance tell us that a great …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Nov 2017
Illustration of a "bitcoin" dissolving into numbers. Photo by SHutterstock

Your attention has value, personal cryptocurrency will advertise it

Cryptocurrencies open the door to a world where everyone has their price. To understand why, consider Ethereum, a cryptocurrency that rests on the distributed ledger tech described by Satoshi Nakamoto in his 2008 white paper but includes a scripting language. That makes it, quite literally, "smart money.’ The idea of smart …
Mark Pesce, 14 Nov 2017
silicon_valley_shutterstock_map_648

Bristol AI chip designer bags $50m from Valley VC

AI chip startup Graphcore has announced today a $50m deal with venture capital firm Sequoia Capital. This is in addition to the $60m the upstart, based in Bristol, UK, raised over the 18 months in previous funding rounds, from backers including Dell and Samsung. Sequoia has previously put money into some quietly successful …
Richard Priday, 13 Nov 2017
scrrengrab of iphone x face id from apple's website

Augmented reality: Like it or not, only Apple's ready for the data-vomit gush

This month's release by Apple of the iPhone X with FaceID begins the first wave of consumer products designed from the ground up for continuous awareness of space, place and face - crowning a half a century of research in augmented reality destined to fuse our rising sea of data onto the real world. Over the last few years, …
Mark Pesce, 13 Nov 2017
AI

Secret HPE AI chip, TensorFlow updates, neural networks writing themselves – and more

Roundup It's been an interesting fortnight, sorry, two weeks in AI. In addition to what we've already reported, we have news about HPE developing what looks like a neural network accelerator chip, TensorFlow updates, Google's effort to teach software to make software, and other bits and pieces. HPE’s ‘neural network processor’? The …
Katyanna Quach, 11 Nov 2017
Two execs in a server room. Has to have happened some time heh. Photo by Shutterstock

You wanted robo-butlers. Instead, you're getting robo-BOFHs

Interview Park Place Technologies for the past two years has been working with IT services biz BMC to develop a way to augment its data center service business with machine learning. Chris Adams, chief operating officer of the data center hardware-tending shop, based in Cleveland, Ohio, told The Register in a phone interview the way …
Thomas Claburn, 10 Nov 2017

UK Home Sec thinks a Minority Report-style AI will prevent people posting bad things

Comment The Home Secretary believes artificial intelligence will soon be used to stop people posting on the internet pre-emptively with a kind of Minority Report-style "precrime" unit. Amber Rudd made the call at an event hosted by the US think tank the New America Foundation. The Home Secretary castigated the platforms for taking " …
Andrew Orlowski, 10 Nov 2017

Metal 3D printing at 100 times the speed and a twentieth of the cost

Comment A new machine will print metal parts at a tenth of the cost of today's manufacturing systems, potentially launching a revolution in small part production, its creators claim. Desktop Metal, based in Boston, USA, has opened up pre-orders for its Studio System which uses inkjet-like technology, rather than laser-based techniques …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 Nov 2017

Online outrage makes Logitech drop a brick: Now it will replace slain Harmony Link gizmos

Logitech is now offering to replace free of charge the connected home hubs it will automatically brick early next year. In a hasty U-turn, the electronics slinger said it will exchange Harmony Link control hubs with a similar product, the Harmony Hub. Both units allow punters to set up remote controls for various connected …
Shaun Nichols, 09 Nov 2017

Boffins: We can identify you by your typing, and we're gonna sell the tech to biz, govt – yay!

Concerned that browser cookies fall short when it comes to tracking mobile devices and their owners on the internet, computer-science boffins believe they can recognize phone-toters using only their keystrokes and accelerometer data. In a paper presented this week through ArXiv, "Sequential Keystroke Behavioral Biometrics for …
Thomas Claburn, 09 Nov 2017

Alexa, please cause the cops to raid my home

We all assume that intelligent devices will either serve our every need, or try to kill us, but what if they just want to party? Well, it could work out pretty expensive as Oliver Haberstroh found out when his Amazon Alexa started its own early-hours party – waking up, and blasting music automatically, while its owner was out …
Kieren McCarthy, 09 Nov 2017
Flying car illustration. Pic by Shutterstock

NASA tells The Reg: For crying out loud. We're not building flying taxi software for Uber

NASA has smacked down reports that it is working with Uber on a flying car, or software for that flying car, or indeed, software for any firm after several announcements from the ride-hailing biz yesterday had the tech press aflame with excitement. Are you sure, chaps? Uber's chief product officer Jeff Holden spoke at the …
Andrew Silver, 09 Nov 2017
Bus jump from 'Speed'

Self-driving bus in crash just 2 hours after entering public service

A self-driving bus has been involved in a collision, barely two hours after being introduced into public service for the first time. The vehicle was reportedly hit by a human-driven lorry, according to the BBC, which adds that the lorry driver was given a ticket by police. Describing the accident with the bus as a “fender …
Gareth Corfield, 09 Nov 2017

Bitcoin drops SegWit2x hard fork after community objects

Bitcoin's contentious upgrade plan, known as SegWit2x, has been called off, sending the cryptocurrency price past $7,800 – an all-time high – and then down several hundred dollars as profit taking set it. Mike Belshe, CEO of Bitgo, a Silicon Valley blockchain security biz, announced the decision via a post to the Bitcoin- …
Thomas Claburn, 08 Nov 2017

Stop worrying and let the machines take our jobs – report

So, robots are coming to take your jobs after all* but techies shouldn't be scared, not in the slightest. This is the opinion of the Centre for Policy Studies, which today released the paper Why Britain Needs More Robots, a report that claims Britain doesn't have enough automatons in its workplaces yet – at least not of the …
Richard Priday, 08 Nov 2017

Facebook's send-us-your-nudes service is coming to UK, America

Facebook has begun conducting a pilot where it solicits intimate photographs of women – and it will soon offer the service in the United Kingdom as well as the US. Anxious exes who fear their former partner is set on revenge porn will be urged to upload photographs of themselves nude. A hash of the nude image is created and …
Andrew Orlowski, 08 Nov 2017

Logitech: We're gonna brick your Harmony Link gizmos next year

Updated One more reason to avoid cloud-reliant Internet of Things – as if you didn't have enough already. Owners of Logitech's universal remote controller have been told the product will stop working after March next year. Harmony Link is one of a range of home hub products offered by Logitech. Link owners have been offered a discount …
Andrew Orlowski, 08 Nov 2017
Drinks party at M3 day one

Machine learning? AI? How we learned to relax at MCubed

Events The machines are not taking our jobs any time soon, Prof Mark Bishop declared at the opening of MCubed, mainly because right now, computing is better suited to cementing artificial stupidity than creating true artificial intelligence. Prof Bishop, in the opening keynote of the Register and Heise-backed conference, also made …
Joe Fay, 08 Nov 2017
Vortrex VR shoes

Mythbuster seeks cash for roller skates to wear in virtual reality

Former Mythbuster Jamie Hyneman is seeking US$50,000 to build a prototype pair of roller skates to wear in virtual reality. Hyneman's pitch video points out that when one straps on goggles and gloves to enter virtual reality, your eyes are occupied and you therefore run the risk of bumping into stuff if you try to walk in …
Simon Sharwood, 08 Nov 2017
The Driven consortium is testing driverless car tech on a Ford Mondeo

Dumb autonomous cars can save more lives than brilliant ones

Autonomous cars only need to be good enough to reduce the number of road deaths to be worth permitting: eliminating fatal accidents can wait until later. That's the result of an analysis from military-industrial complex darling RAND Corporation. That idea isn't entirely new, since it was put forward by America's National …
Waymo self-driving minivan

Look, ma! No hands! Waymo to test true self-driving cars in US with Uber-style hailing app

Google stablemate Waymo has begun testing its self-driving cars on the mean streets of Phoenix, Arizona, without a single driver at the wheel. The organization ultimately wants people to request these fully autonomous vehicles on demand from an app, Uber-style. Chief exec John Krafcik today told the WebSummit conference in …
Kat Hall, 07 Nov 2017

American upstart seeks hotshot guinea pig for Concorde-a-like airliner

An American startup claiming to be building a modern-day Concorde is hiring a test pilot. Boom Supersonic, which, among other things, enjoys support from (who else?) Richard Branson, tech incubator Y Combinator, and a slack handful of venture capitalists, is recruiting a chief test pilot who will put its 1,451mph aircraft …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Nov 2017
Knightscope K7

Would insurance firms pay out if your driverless car got hacked?

AEV Bill "Pointy-headed technocrats" behind autonomous vehicles tech are worried that a proposed new law won't protect the public from huge financial claims if a mass hack of a driverless car fleet occurs. Expert submissions to the committee of MPs considering the Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill are full of concerns on a range of …
Gareth Corfield, 07 Nov 2017
robot

More expensive, takes longer than usual, not particularly brilliant. Yes, it's your robot surgeon

Robot-assisted surgery costs more time and money than traditional methods, but isn't more effective, for certain types of operations. Laparoscopic surgery, which involves one or more small incisions suited to a laparoscope rather than large cut, tends to preferable when it's an option because it's minimally invasive. For …
Thomas Claburn, 07 Nov 2017

How we fooled Google's AI into thinking a 3D-printed turtle was a gun: MIT bods talk to El Reg

Video Students at MIT in the US claim they have developed an algorithm for creating 3D objects and pictures that trick image-recognition systems into severely misidentifying them. Think toy turtles labeled rifles, and baseballs as cups of coffee. It’s well known that machine-learning software can be easily hoodwinked: Google's AI-in …
Katyanna Quach, 06 Nov 2017
Super-villain Dr Evil puts finger to lip in scheming manner, asks for one million dollars. Pic: New Line Cinema

'Qualcomm, we will buy you... for... one HUNDRED... BILLION DOLLARS' – Broadcom

Broadcom is channeling Dr Evil of Austin Powers fame, and considering blowing more than $100bn to buy Qualcomm, it was claimed on Friday. Apparently, Broadcom is planning to offer within the next few days about $70 a share in cash and stocks to acquire California-based Qualy. Right now, Qualcomm's shares stand at $62.71 apiece …
Chris Williams, 04 Nov 2017

Subsidy-guzzling Tesla's Model 3 volumes a huge problem – Wall St man

Stocks sleuth Toni Sacconaghi Jr. has shed some light on why the market reacted badly to Tesla Inc's financials this week. The protracted launch of the Model 3 sedan, unveiled 18 months ago, has already seen Tesla's stock repeatedly bashed. Founder Elon Musk boldly predicted that the company would sell 100,000 Model 3s this …
Andrew Orlowski, 03 Nov 2017
Ashlee Vance, Elon Musk: How the Billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla is shaping our Future

Tesla share crash amid Republican bid to kill off electric car tax break

Tesla's share price took a dive Thursday morning as Republicans in Congress revealed they were planning to kill off a US federal tax credit for electric vehicles. The proposed US House tax bill calls for an immediate repeal of the $7,500-per-vehicle credit: something that would have an immediate knock-on impact for Tesla given …
Kieren McCarthy, 02 Nov 2017

Cupboard of matrices looking a little... sparse? Have this delicious Taco

A bunch of clever folks have created an open-source compiler, dubbed Taco, that generates code optimized for performing calculations on sparse matrices – a useful but tricky concept in computer science. From studying interactions in particle physics and ranking search engine results, to training artificial intelligence systems …
Katyanna Quach, 02 Nov 2017

39 episodes of 'CSI' used to build AI's natural language model

A group of University of Edinburgh boffins have turned CSI:Crime Scene Investigation scripts into a natural language training dataset. Their aim is to improve how bots understand what's said to them – natural language understanding. Drawing on 39 episodes from the first five seasons of the series, Lea Frermann, Shay Cohen and …
Car crash

Slashing regulations literally more important than saving American lives to Donald Trump

The Trump Administration has literally put a reduction in regulations over the lives of Americans with a decision to drop a new car-to-car communication protocol. Last year, the federal government proposed that all new cars and trucks should be required to include new vehicle-to-vehicle communications (V2V) as a way to cut …
Kieren McCarthy, 01 Nov 2017

Biting the hand that feeds IT ? 1998–2017