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PostgreSQL puts the pedal to the metal with some smart indexing tweaks in version 12

Open-source database darling PostgreSQL emitted a new version of its eponymous database last night with more nods to standard SQL and a performance boost. The performance gains can be attributed to improvements in the indexing system as well as to partitioning. Frequently modified B-tree indexes have been optimised and the team claims a 40 per cent reduction in space utilisation. The performance of adding data to partitioned tables via…

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TalkTalk says WalkWalk if you’ve got a mouldy Tiscali email address, or pay £50 a year to keep it

TalkTalk will start charging £50 a year for its legacy email accounts unless you sign up as a broadband customer of the breach-scarred telco. And if you don’t pay, it’ll delete your account. Presumably sick of ex-customers with ancient Tiscali and TalkTalk Mail addresses talking to The Register about why TalkTalk customer service is so painfully slow to shut them down when things go wrong, the company will kill…

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HP polishes the redundancy cannon, prepares to fire 16% of workforce

HP Inc’s incoming CEO kicked off his reign of terror at the hard-pressed organisation by doing what so many old-world tech company bosses do these days: chopping thousands of jobs and buying back shares. The plan is to lay off up to 16 per cent of the 55,000-strong workforce, shedding between 7,000 to 9,000 jobs via redundancy and voluntary early retirement. HP will also fork out $5bn on shares…

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The immovable object versus the unstoppable force: How the tech boys club remains exclusive

Comment For a generation we’ve wrung our hands and wondered why so few women have taken up careers in technology. Could it be, as Harvard President Lawrence Summers publicly mused 15 years ago, that women just don’t have the brains for such analytic tasks? (That gaffe cost Summers his job.) Or perhaps those hobbyist “microcomputers”, exclusively advertised to boys (and manchildren), cut women out of the fun? Even in…

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Watch out! Andromeda, the giant spiral galaxy colliding with our own Milky Way, has devoured several galaxies before

Andromeda, a massive spiral galaxy, has swallowed several galaxies within the last few billion years before setting its sights on the Milky Way. “The Milky Way is on a collision course with Andromeda in about four billion years,” said Dougal Mackey, co-author of a new study published in Nature and a research fellow at the Australian National University. “So knowing what kind of a monster our galaxy is up…

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DXC has picked a brand new people person: Finch lands as freed Mason departs

The HR head at DXC Technology who according to a former staffer cut up former CEO Mike Lawrie’s steak during a business dinner, has left the business. The company issued a statement this week to confirm the hiring of Mary Finch as exec veep and chief human resources manager, a role that Jo Mason held at DXC and at CSC, prior to its spin merger with HPE Enterprise Services,…

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Devs getting stuck into Windows 10X on Surface Neo will have to tussle with UWP

Wonderbar: Compatibility issues ahoy Surface Neo with Windows 10X, showing the ‘wonderbar’ Microsoft has gone public on a new range of Surface hardware, the most intriguing being two foldable devices – one an Android phone and the other running a new variant of Windows, Windows 10X. The devices are prototypes, with general availability planned for late 2020. Windows 10X is not exclusive to Surface. Microsoft’s own hardware line-up has…

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Cassini may be dead – but its data shows basic building blocks of life spewing from Enceladus

It’s another encouraging sign that Saturn’s most interesting moon could be habitable An artist’s impression of Enceladus’ inner structure and its hydrothermal vents blasting plumes. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech Hydrothermal vents on Enceladus, one of Saturn’s moons, are blasting out organic compounds that could provide the right ingredients to make amino acids, the building blocks of life as we know it. Amino acids, considered an essential for life, are used…

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You only need to click once, fool: Gaming rig sales up as Trump presses continue on trade tariff tussle

Shipments of gaming rigs staged something of a comeback in the second quarter of 2019 as retailers sought to avoid potential trade tariffs on machines bought in China and imported to the US. Globally, desktops, notebooks and monitors sales-in to channels leapt 16.5 per cent year-on-year to 10.4 million units, albeit against an “abysmal 2018”, said analyst IDC. Heavy-duty notebook shipments into the channel were up 12.7 per cent…

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When one of NASA’s sun-studying satellites went down, AI was there to fill in the gaps

Neural networks have helped scientists monitor the Sun’s extreme ultraviolet outbursts after an instrument on NASA’s Solar Dynamic Observatory suffered an electrical malfunction, making it difficult for scientists to monitor a portion of extreme ultraviolet energy (EUV) being spewed by our star. EUV rays ejected from solar flares are particularly worrisome. The surge of highly energetic particles bombarding Earth can cause radio communication blackouts, knock satellites out of place,…

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