The Week in Review: Fighting back against spam

Two bodies stepped up to the plate in the anti-spam battle, Wi-Fi came down to the pub, and Microsoft promised to send the DLL packing

Most Internet users are fed up with spam, and the marketing industry's self-regulatory body is finally taking this to heart, for what it's worth. New rules could have a big impact on stemming junk text messaging, but are less likely to make a difference to the flood of direct marketing filling your inbox. And an official Anti-Spam Research Group has been convened under the auspices of the Internet Research Task Force; it doesn't have policy-setting powers, but it could still prove influential.
UK advertising authority introduces anti-spam rules
Web standards group to tackle spam Surf as you sup. A company best known for connecting machines in bingo halls, motorway service stations and bookies is launching a 3,000-site Wi-Fi network in UK pubs, the biggest rollout of the wireless LAN technology so far in Europe. Can laptops be insured against beer spillage?
UK pubs get Wi-Fi Or if you want to avoid alcohol, Starbucks' free Wi-Fi trial will go the way of its coffee dregs -- to be replaced by a UK-wide commercial rollout. And T-Mobile says that proper billing (rather than pay-as-you-go) should not be far behind.
UK gets more Wi-Fi hot spots as T-Mobile expands Starbucks deal PowerPC processors may not generate the interest of Intel and AMD parts, but this one will run at up to 2.5GHZ, will be on show at CeBIT, and might even make it into Apple computers.
IBM pumps PowerPC up to 2.5GHz The Dynamic Link Library has a lot to answer for, and lately it has just started to get out of control. Now Microsoft is to destroy its own self-created monster.
Microsoft promises end to 'DLL hell' And, speaking of Microsoft... Which is the best tech company to work for in the UK? The result might surprise you: we just wish they would treat their customers a little more like the way they treat their employees.
The UK's best tech employers: and the winner is... Its bedside manner has kinks to work out, and it will never replace Hattie Jacques or Kenneth Williams, but the Companion robot may one day help the healthcare industry cope with burgeoning ranks of the elderly and ill.
Hospitals test out robots' bedside manner In an indication of the scale of mobile phone theft in the UK, around half a million stolen handsets have now been deactivated by the network operators. It's all thanks to a new joint database of phones, and it's about time; something like a third of all street crime in London is mobile-phone related.
Phone thefts near half-million mark The threat of network downtime and security breaches has led the EU to approve new laws for dealing with hackers and virus spreaders. There will be common definitions and sanctions for a number of online criminal activities. Here's hoping spammers get ten years.
EU sets jail terms for hackers

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