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Saturday Morning #2 (2 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 15-November-2008  03:58:10 (GMT +10) - by Agg

This one from Matt:

A computer crash at ANZ left retailers unable to use credit cards. Retailers across the country were demanding cash-only sales for three hours today after a computer crash at ANZ rendered them unable to accept credit or debit cards. Franklins supermarkets across NSW were unable to process the cards from around 1pm today, financial director Roni Perlov said.

The US is in the top 5 countries when it comes to IPv6 use...thanks to Apple. It turns out that no less than 52 percent of all IPv6 users have a Mac and use 6to4. Apparently, those users have an Airport Extreme Wi-Fi base station / home router, which has the 6to4 tunneling mechanism enabled. (6to4 creates IPv6 addresses from an IPv4 address and "tunnels" IPv6 packets in IPv4 packets.) In fact, no less than 2.44 percent of Mac OS users are IPv6-capable, compared to 0.93 percent for Linux and 0.32 percent for Vista.

If your email account seems empty that's because a major spam ring was shut down in America. Two US internet service providers have pulled the plug on the firm McColo following an investigation by the Washington Post newspaper. Anti-spam firm Ironport has seen junk mail levels drop by 70% since McColo was taken offline on 11 November. But, it warned, it will be a temporary respite from the menace of spam.

The annual meteor shower Perseids surprised NASA this year. Typically, the event isn’t particularly spectacular with few bright fireballs for stargazers to view. Bill Cooke, a meteor expert from NASA says that this year the meteor shower was surprisingly dramatic. Cooke operates the Sentinel camera system that studies the sky for signs of meteors.

But they were more surprised by the Mars Rover. NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Spirit communicated via the Mars Odyssey orbiter today right at the time when ground controllers had told it to, prompting shouts of “She’s talking!” among the rover team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. “This means Spirit has not gone into a fault condition and is still being controlled by sequences we send from the ground,” said John Callas of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., project manager for Spirit and its twin, Opportunity.

The digital arms race in Australia took its first casualty when Kevin Rudd's Twitter page crashed. A spokeswoman for Mr Rudd said the Prime Minister had 670 Twitter followers late last night, but he lost most of them when the page crashed due to high demand. Mr Rudd effectively used internet profiles on MySpace and Facebook and his slick Kevin07 website during last year's federal election but, since becoming Prime Minister, he hasn't had much time for the web.

Verizon has announced the Blackberry Storm. In case you haven’t been paying attention, the touchscreen-based Storm is shaping up to be the first serious competitor to the iPhone, which is probably not particularly helpful to RIM. While yes, both are touchscreen devices, but the iPhone’s software is what helps set it apart from every other smart phone on the market, and frankly, I’m a bit skeptical that RIM will be able to pull off that kind of sophistication.

Google is updating its search software for the iPhone. The new version works much like the old one, letting users query Google outside of the mobile Safari Web browser, as well as search through contacts and narrow down results by their current location. The big change is the addition of search-by-voice, which lets you skip the keyboard entirely.

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All original content copyright James Rolfe. All rights reserved. No reproduction allowed without written permission.