Author Archives: Nick Farrell

Tech firm paid IT workers $1.21 an hour

Oliver_Twist_-_Samhällsroman_-_Sida_005A San Jose based outfit, Electronics for Imaging paid several employees from India as little as $1.21 an hour to help install computer systems at the company’s Fremont headquarters.

The highly skilled workers, who could have earned more cash by sitting with a cup and dog on a string in the high street, worked up to 122 hours a week between September 8, 2013, and December 21, 2013. more»

Microsoft says it is still researching

2007_7young-frankensteinMicrosoft has not given up on research and development, despite closing its Silicon Valley lab.

Writing in his bog, Harry Shum, Executive Vice President, Technology & Research said that the recent shuttering of the Silicon Valley lab really hurt.

He said that no one at Microsoft felt good about the fact that a significant number of friends and colleagues were laid off. more»

Microsoft bricks Scottish FTDI clones

kirkhillyard2Hardware hackers building interactive gadgets based on Arduino microcontrollers are finding that a recent driver update that Microsoft deployed over Windows Update has bricked fake FTDI chips.

The Scottish outfit FTDI makes USB-to-serial chips.  They are very popular and every microcontroller and embedded device out there that can communicate over a serial port uses one. more»

Microsoft soothsayers say “beware of zero day”

soothsayer-resized-600Software giant Microsoft is warning its users about a new zero-day vulnerability in Windows that is being actively exploited in the wild.

The vulnerability is a risk to users on servers and workstations that open documents with embedded OLE objects.

It is currently being exploited via PowerPoint files as some companies are still trying to use these in meetings to bore staff to death without actually helping the company develop. more»

Lufthansa sells IT infrastructure to Big Blue

lufthansa-history-1German airline Lufthansa is about to sell its IT infrastructure unit to IBM as part of an outsourcing agreement for the services.

Europe’s largest airline by revenue is undergoing restructuring and cost-cutting efforts to better position itself to compete with low-cost carriers and Arabic rivals

It earlier this year said it was seeking a buyer for the unit, which provides data centres, networks and telephony. more»

Oracle, Microsoft and Ask.com accused of copying Apple’s cartel ways

1159_tnOracle, Microsoft and Ask.com have been accused of treating their staff in exactly the same way as the fruity cargo cult Apple.

The suit against Microsoft filed by former employees Deserae Ryan and Trent Rau charges, among other things, that Microsoft and other companies entered into anti-solicitation and restricted hiring agreements without the consent or knowledge of its workers. more»

American gamers tell Aussie women to get back to the kitchen

aussie minersCorrection: Sarkeesian cancelled a planned speech at Utah State University (USU), which is in Logan, Utah and is a different university than the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Apologies.

Women video game developers and critics in Australia are being threatened with rape and murder by American and Canadian gamers as the dispute that has gripped the global gaming community  goes global. more»

Medical gear hacked

hacking-medical-devicesThe US Department of Homeland Security is investigating two dozen cases of suspected cybersecurity flaws in medical devices and hospital equipment.

Under investigation is an infusion pump from Hospira , implantable heart devices from Medtronic and St Jude Medica.

There is no indication that hackers have been attacking patients through these devices, but the agency is concerned that malicious people may try to gain control of the devices remotely and create problems, such as instructing an infusion pump to overdose a patient with drugs, or forcing a heart implant to deliver a deadly jolt of electricity. more»