Danes come up with a beer for everyman
Vores 01 is the world's first open source beer. It will have its recipe registered under a "creative common licence" that allows people to brew and sell it anywhere in the world, providing they distribute the method and ingredients online. Speaking the universal language of students, the beer's Danish creators said, "We all like beer. We think it is interesting to see if our beer one day becomes the Linux of beers."
Unlike the real Linux, Vores 01 promises more downtime, not less, and is likely to slow data traffic in any system it is loaded in.
Virtual Earth airbrushes out the competition
Microsoft is well known for harbouring a desire to wipe the competition off the map. Now an eagle-eyed netizen has found the software behemoth taking the approach a little too literally. Anyone visiting the headquarters of Microsoft's arch-rival Apple will enjoy the leafy 11-building campus nestling in Silicon Valley. But refer to Microsoft's new Virtual Earth website for a bird's-eye view of Apple's corporate headquarters and you will see only a grainy overhead photograph of what appears to be a single, nondescript warehouse and a deserted parking lot. Perhaps the US government could use Virtual Earth to create a world view more in line with its foreign policy, rather than deal with the real planet.
Utility firms Aligned up to dig up a road near you
How come road users seem to encounter road works-induced traffic jams on almost every journey? There must be an answer. Build more roads. Extend the Congestion Charge zone.
Apparently Transport for London is planning to deploy Symphony Gazetteer software from Aligned Assets to co-ordinate road works to reduce congestion. We'll seeÉ
Every one a winner with no chance you will fail
US IT consultants struggling to survive on normal salaries were delighted to hear of plans to extend daylight-saving time by four weeks. Plenty of reprogramming work to take account of the changes, they might think. But no one is predicting a repeat of the chaos whipped up by the millennium bug. However, one was optimistic. In a post to a technology website, he wrote, "If there is no real threat, there is no danger you will fail."
Payroll system just got a little more expensive
Some people have all the luck. For one health worker, life certainly looked rosy after a cock-up in a new payroll system put £700,000 in his monthly pay packet... and no one noticed.
It's true. Not all bugs are bad. The cost of the IT system, already believed to have been £83m, is expected to rise by a further £69m - especially if it keeps on paying out massive salaries by mistake.
Journalists get better IT than astronauts
Nasa is providing a more powerful network to visitors to the Kennedy Space Center than to the
crew of the Discovery. While the astronauts struggle with the space shuttle's 20-year-old IT
systems, hacks covering the mission from Florida get to use the Space Center's new wireless
network. Rumours that the astronauts have asked for a copy of Elite for their off-duty hours are
This was first published in August 2005