Patented plastic-free tech from Choose Packaging
Paragon of packetry HP has acquired Choose Packaging, inventor of a zero-plastic paper bottle.
Choose’s patented tech can hold a variety of liquids and represents an alternative to plastic bottles. “There are more than 150 million tons of single-use plastics produced each year,” said the printer and laptop maker, “and HP intends to disrupt this market with fiber-based, 100 per cent plastic-free packaging.”
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, although a glimpse at the Edinburgh-based company’s website shows it considers its products both “biodegradable” and “sustainable.”
We’re delighted to see HP make its move. The company, after all, has form when it comes to packaging. Who can forget the whole “mouse on a pallet” incident or a shipment of 17 boxes in order to keep 32 bits of paper crisp and well-protected? Not the recipients, that’s for sure.
Still, that was a long time ago, and HP has never been the only offender when it comes to exuberant use of packaging materials. This hack well remembers an IBM PS/1 turning up at the beginning of the 1990s, perched on a pallet and encased in a cardboard box sufficient to house a medium-sized family. Dell also sought to cement its place in the ranks of the big boys with its own big cardboard box. This one containing a License Key Certificate.
- HP breaks Japanese excessive packaging record
- HP shatters excessive packaging world record
- Mozilla founder blasts browser maker for accepting ‘planet incinerating’ cryptocurrency donations
- Semiconductor-flinger SK Hynix raises $1bn to green up its act
- Instant Ump: HP Inc’s subscription ink services hiking prices from next month
Still, while times might have changed for some of the tech giants, if there’s one thing we’ve learned during the pandemic, it’s that the cardboard habit can be a tough one to break. Witness one individual who made the mistake of ordering a bottle of vinegar from an online retailer last year, only to receive a box with more empty space than a socially distanced work event.
So, it’s commendable news for HP and Choose Packaging. While HP is already a consumer of recycled plastic for its products, we anxiously await the arrival of plastic-free, reusable ink cartridges. Any time now. ®
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Absolutely fabless: Chip startup funding reaches record $20bn in 2021
America focuses on AI and emerging tech, China on the gaps left by US sanctions
Wed 2 Feb 2022 //
23: 55 UTC
Chip startups raked in a record $19.4bn in funding last year in a boom market driven by semiconductor shortages and trade wars.
In numbers shared with The Register, S&P Global Market Intelligence said the funding for chip startups grew by 8 per cent from 2020. It was a historic high since the research firm started tracking the numbers in 2000.
The funding to startups came from venture capital firms and governments. A larger industry shift to a fabless model, in which chip IP can be licensed from vendors, is opening the door for startups, said John Abbott, a research analyst at S&P Global.
Right to repair laws proposed in the US aim to make ownership great again
Bills seek to legalize digital lock breaking when mending stuff, ensure farmers can fix their machines
American farmers may soon be able to repair their agricultural equipment without paying the maker of their machinery for the privilege. And owners of other products may also see fewer repair barriers, depending upon how two new pieces of federal legislation are received.
The Agriculture Right to Repair Act [PDF], a US Senate bill introduced on Tuesday by Senator Jon Tester (D-MT), aims to force farm equipment makers to provide parts, documentation, software, and tools for repairs to third parties on reasonable terms.
The Freedom to Repair Act, introduced to the House of Representatives on Wednesday by US Representatives Mondaire Jones (D-NY) and Victoria Spartz (R-IN), promises to “legalize repairing what you own or taking it to the repair shop of your choice” by revising copyright law.
Another Massive Display as AMD hails ‘outstanding’ 2021, teases Genoa and Bergamo chips
Semiconductor giant sees growth across the board
AMD has hailed 2021 as an “outstanding” year with each of its business units growing significantly, thanks to strong sales of its Epyc server chips and data centre GPUs. The firm is hoping to continue this with its Genoa chips this year and Bergamo in 2023.
In a conference call to disclose AMD’s Q4 and year-end financial results, president and CEO Lisa Su said the firm had exceeded its growth goals and delivered a record year. In particular, she claimed that data centre revenue had more than doubled year-on-year.
In servers, Su said revenue had more than doubled year-over-year and increased by a double-digit percentage sequentially, driven by demand across both cloud and enterprise customers. She also picked out data centre graphics revenue as more than doubling year-on-year, driven by HPC wins for AMD’s latest Instinct MI200 accelerators, with platforms coming this quarter from Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo, Supermicro, and others.
Remote code execution vulnerability in Samba due to macOS interop module
The vuln is being tracked as CVE-2021-44142 and received a CVSS rating of 9.9.
Samba is a FOSS implementation of Microsoft’s Server Message Block (SMB) network protocol. SMB is how Windows (and DOS and OS/2) share drives. These days Microsoft likes to call it the “Common Internet File System” instead, or CIFS [PDF] for short, but the name exceeds the company’s ambition – in Unix land, SMB has never really displaced Sun’s Network File System (NFS).
Telecoms consulting outfit Sentaca disappears inside IBM’s Hybrid Cloud Services
Big Blue wants to ‘bring edge and 5G to life for enterprises’
IBM has acquired Sentaca, a telecoms consulting services and solutions provider, with the aim of boosting its own hybrid cloud consulting business in the communications service provider space.
According to IBM, Sentaca will join Big Blue’s Hybrid Cloud Services business to solve strategic and technology challenges for clients, as well as address opportunities including 5G, IoT, and streaming that can accelerate the creation and delivery of new services.
“Our goal is to help modern networks thrive in an open, hybrid cloud environment that will bring edge and 5G to life for enterprises and consumers,” IBM Consulting’s senior veep John Granger said in a statement.
UK think tank proposes Online Safety Bill reviewer to keep tabs on Ofcom decisions
Terror watchdog is a bad model to follow, though
Even think tanks with close links to the UK’s Conservative government are now criticising the Online Safety Bill, with the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) describing it today as “a significant threat to freedom of speech, privacy and innovation.”
The IEA, which tends to side with free-market conservatives, said today that the controversial legislation needs an independent reviewer to prevent it (ironically) causing harms to people using the internet in Britain.
Comparing it to the existing Government Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation post, the IEA argued in a report titled “In Harm’s Way” that an online harms reviewer could monitor Ofcom’s social media censorship orders as well as scrutinising new codes of conduct and statutory instruments before they are passed into law by Parliament.
European watchdog: All data collected about users via ad-consent popup system must be deleted
Decision to affect Google’s, Amazon’s and Microsoft’s online ads biz
All data collected through the Transparency & Consent Framework (TCF) must now be deleted by the 1,000+ firms that pay international digital marketing and advertising association IAB Europe to use it. This includes Google’s, Amazon’s and Microsoft’s online advertising businesses.
This is according to a decision handed down today by the Belgian data protection authority [PDF] finding that the “consent solution” fails to properly request consent, and relies on a lawful basis (legitimate interest) that is not permissible because of the severe risk posed by the online advertising tracking under Article 5(1)a, and Article 6 of the GDPR.
The DP watchdog also cited additional GDPR breaches, namely that: consent was not “properly requested”; there was not enough “transparency about what will happen to people’s data (articles 12, 13, and 14)”; there was a failure to “implement measures” to ensure data processing was compliant with the GDPR (article 24); and that IAB failed to respect the requirement for “data protection by design” (article 25).
50 lines of Bash to bring a Wordle fan out of their shell
Solved today’s in two? Now try and exit Vim
We are delighted to note that a version of the word game the New York Times bought for seven figures can now be played via a 50-line Bash script.
GitHub user “huytd” uploaded the code initially as “less than 50 lines of Bash”, although once others got stuck in the script size stood at the magic half century. By our reckoning, that works out at about $20,000 per line, assuming the seven-figure sum is in the region of $1m.
Of course, those 50 lines do not include all the gubbins required to render things on a browser nor the hooks to send a smug little post out to social media so your friends can see how clever you are. However, the requisite colours are present and correct, as is the frustration factor as the attempts mount up without success.
Court of Appeal ruling offers hope for UK umbrella firm workers chasing holiday pay
Plumber’s right did not lapse ‘but carried over and accumulated until termination of the contract’
A former worker for Pimlico Plumbers has won a case in the Court of Appeal over the right for backdated holiday pay in a case set to help employees of umbrella companies in all sectors, including information technology.
Gary Smith won the right to have paid holiday backdated following a ruling from the Civil Division of the Court of Appeal, which found that as an employee he had the right to paid leave and that right could be carried over.
Working for Pimlico Plumbers from August 2005 until May 2011, Smith had previously taken the company to court over his employment rights. An earlier ruling had concluded he was an employee and entitled to holiday pay.
UK to splash another £1.4bn on protecting non-existent ‘national interests in space’
But what of the domestic launchers?
Updated The UK government is to spend an extra £1.4bn on space defence on top of the £5bn allocated to upgrade the Skynet satellite communication system.
The Defence Space Strategy, intended to “bolster our national interests in space,” according to the UK’s Ministry of Defence, was accompanied by a speech from Chief of the Air Staff Sir Mike Wigston in which the usual bogeymen were trotted out.
“Russia and China have tested anti-satellite weapons creating debris fields that will linger for decades,” warned Wigston, adding: “Russian satellites continually make close approaches to other satellites, what we call rendezvous and proximity operations, possibly an indication of espionage activity, or possibly rehearsing something much more sinister.”
Brocade wrongly sacked award-winning salesman who depended on company insurance for cancer treatment
‘Global benefit’ chief: Broadcom buyout means pay your own way
Brocade sacked a former Sales Manager of the Year who was suffering from cancer when the company was bought by Broadcom – a decision that led to the man’s health insurance being cancelled.
The details emerged when former sales engineer Mr M Richards won his case for unfair dismissal against Brocade. Reading Employment Tribunal ruled last week that managers adopted a “meaningless” redundancy consultation process.
Despite Richards suffering a heart attack when he heard about the buyout, HR personnel not only selected the 13-year company veteran for redundancy but cancelled his health insurance – despite knowing he relied on it to treat his cancer.