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Lester Haines

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The Typhoon in Battle of Britain colours

RAF Eurofighter gets a Battle of Britain makeover

The RAF is commemorating this year's 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain with a fetching makeover for one of its Eurofighter Typhoons, repainted with the markings of 249 Squadron's Flight Lieutenant James Brindley Nicolson VC DFC. Flight Lieutenant James Brindley Nicolson VC Flight Lieutenant James Brindley Nicolson VC …
Lester Haines, 26 May 2015

LOHAN team preps PRATCHETT mission

The Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team is gearing up for one final test flight, codenamed PRATCHETT in honour of the late and great Discworld author Sir Terry. Reg reader Alex Carlton conjured up the winning name, and won himself a RockBLOCK Mk2 Iridium satellite comms unit from our mates at Rock Seven. Alex …
Lester Haines, 25 May 2015

Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Bog-standard boxty

"Really dad?" It was with a slightly exasperated raise of the eyebrow that my daughter Katarina greeted the news last weekend that we were about to tackle classic Irish spud-based nosh boxty, the better to increase her chances of acquiring a suitable husband* when the moment arises. In case you're wondering, as was Katarina, …
Lester Haines, 23 May 2015

Candlelit vigil planned to honour executed Newcastle cow Bessie

Tearful locals have convened a candlelit vigil to mourn the passing of Bessie the cow, gunned down on Sunday night by Northumbria Police marksmen after hoofing it from the Rising Sun Country Park in North Tyneside. The animal was taken out by firearms operatives "in the interests of public safety", following a chase involving " …
Lester Haines, 20 May 2015

Last flying Avro Vulcan, XH558, prepares for her swan song

The Vulcan To The Sky Trust has announced "with considerable sadness" that this summer will be the public's last chance to catch Avro Vulcan XH558 thundering through British skies, as the legendary V-bomber will be permanently grounded at the end of this flying season. The trust explains that the axe will fall because "three …
Lester Haines, 20 May 2015
Sir Terry Pratchett

LOHAN's final test flight set to honour PRATCHETT

Our search for a suitably snappy title for our forthcoming final Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) test flight has ended agreeably with a reader poll coming down firmly in support of PRATCHETT. Alex Carlton's "Planes Reactive Airborne Tests Checking Heuristically for Extreme Technological Tantrums" ran away with the …
Lester Haines, 19 May 2015

LOHAN's final test flight moniker: The people must decide

Poll As the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team prepares for a forthcoming final test flight, we've put together the poll which will decide which talented reader walks away with a RockBLOCK Mk2 Iridium satellite comms unit, courtesy of our chums at Rock Seven. The RockBLOCK Mk2 The RockBLOCK "allows you to send and …
Lester Haines, 15 May 2015

Drone penetrates Virgin's shapely space arse

Vid US UAV outfit 3D Robotics is about to unleash its much-anticipated Solo, and has prompted a bit a of a geekgasm with a vid showing the "the world's smartest drone" penetrating Virgin's shapely space arse. Yes indeed, that's the Virgin Galactic terminal/hangar at Spaceport America, a structure we described as "a huge pair of …
Lester Haines, 14 May 2015

RAF radar station crew begs public for cash to buy gaming LAN kit

Update We invite readers to spare a thought today for the operatives at the Royal Air Force's Remote Radar Head (RRH) Staxton Wold tentacle which, while forming a vital part of the UK's Air Surveillance And Control System (ASACS), is apparently no better suited to civilised living than when the Romans first planted a beacon there in …
Lester Haines, 13 May 2015

Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Cuy Chactado – Deep-fried guinea pig

We at the El Reg post-pub nosh team are taking a break from the kitchen this week, and bringing instead a report from deepest Peru on classic cuy chactado (deep-fried guinea pig), courtesy of my old pal Gavin Wright. Gavin has a penchant for tackling challenging routes worldwide atop his bicycle, and was recently in Bolivia and …
Lester Haines, 10 May 2015

Traumatised Reg SPB team barely survives movie unwatchablathon

The vital question as to whether it is humanly possible to watch celluloid trainwrecks Gigli, Pearl Harbor and Battlefield Earth back-to-back was answered last weekend when a crack El Reg Special Projects Bureau squad endured 403 minutes of continuous cinematic outrage and emerged alive, if somewhat shaken. As part of its pre- …
Lester Haines, 08 May 2015

It's beers and bacon all round for our Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse

Dietary normality has returned for the members of the El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse, who last Friday completed the Live Below the Line challenge to live for five days on just one pound sterling a day for food. Yes indeed, give it up if you will for Neil Barnes and Anita Wegner, Toby Sibley and Rosalind Griffin, Chris Wilkinson, …
Lester Haines, 06 May 2015

Bonny Scottish post-pub nosh neckfiller: Rumbledethumps

It's been far too long since we at the El Reg post-pub nosh team ventured north of the border in search of the very best wobbly dining haute cuisine, and indeed it was way back in 2012 that we served readers the very pinnacle of Scottish fusion cuisine – the quite remarkable haggis pakora. This simply won't do, so at the behest …
Lester Haines, 03 May 2015

Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse chap in 'desperate' cash shortage

As the El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse nears the finishing line of the Live Below the Line challenge, Stateside member Richard Jacob reports that he and his family are "desperately short of money", reduced to just $1.52 to fuel them to the finishing line. It's been quite an adventure for the Jacobs over the last week, and with a …
Lester Haines, 01 May 2015

El Reg merch tentacle mulls retro LOHAN T-shirt

The chaps and chapettes at El Reg merchandising tentacle Cash'n'Carrion have been strapping a few ideas to the apparel ducking stool to see if they float, and have just sent over a couple of pics of a proposed Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) T-shirt in a retro comic book stylee. It's pretty fetching, we reckon, …
Lester Haines, 01 May 2015

Heroic Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse tighten their belts

It's day four of the El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse's five-day Live Below the Line challenge, and while everyone is on course to triumphantly cross the finishing line tomorrow night, it's not all plain sailing. We've got 13 people tightening their belts in support of Malaria No More UK. I'm doing the challenge for the third …
Lester Haines, 30 Apr 2015

Brits send Star Wars X-wing fighter to the stratosphere

A couple of Brits have made a cheeky pitch for tickets to the premiere of forthcoming Star Wars flick The Force Awakens by sending a model X-wing fighter into the stratosphere. Essex boys Matt Kingsnorth and Phil St. Pier, of Project Helium Tears (motto "For Essex, for Earth, for all mankind") hit 36,190m with their diminutive …
Lester Haines, 30 Apr 2015

Anonymous benefactor to match today's Quid-A-Day donations

A Register reader who wishes to remain anonymous has said he will match all donations today to the El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse's 2015 Live Below the Line fundraising total in aid of Malaria No More UK, up to a maximum of £750. This piece of generosity was apparently prompted by the belief that other fans of Vulture Central have …
Lester Haines, 29 Apr 2015

Quid-A-Day kids chow down on foraged weed salad

We at the El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse headquarters received the first full report from team member Nathan Dennis yesterday afternoon, shortly after he got stuck into the Live Below the Line challenge in aid of Malaria No More UK. Regarding his basic line of attack as to how to survive on £1 a day for food, he said: "Given I do …
Lester Haines, 28 Apr 2015

Quid-A-Day veteran fuelled by vastly improved nosh stash

We're pleased to report that El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse member and 2014 Live Below the Line veteran Toby Sibley has resurfaced, fuelled by a vastly superior diet to that which saw him subsist on a meagre 780 calories per day last year. Toby did the challenge in the immediate run-up to his getting hitched to Rosalind Griffin, …
Lester Haines, 28 Apr 2015

Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse taunted with sausage sarnie snap

The El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse's Live Below the Line challenge got off to a provocative start today, as Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team member Paul "Lord Shax" Shackleton sent over a snap of what we certainly weren't getting our laughing gear round this morning. Paul Shackleton's sausage sarnie Careful not to …
Lester Haines, 27 Apr 2015

Quid-A-Day Nosh Challenge kicks off early for starvation veteran

The El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse has attracted two last minute members for the 2015 Live Below the Line challenge, and we're delighted to welcome back on board 2014 participant Toby Sibley, who's joined by his better half Ros Griffin. Readers who followed last year's budget nosh entertainment will recall that Toby survived on an …
Lester Haines, 26 Apr 2015
That executed Dell PC. Pic: Colorado Springs Police Dept

Fed-up Colorado man takes 9mm PISTOL to vexing Dell PC

A Colorado Springs man who decided he'd had just about enough of his cantankerous Dell PC took it into an alleyway and pumped eight 9mm rounds into its sorry case, according to the local Gazette. Lucas Hinch, 37, simply "got tired of fighting with his computer for the last several months", as the Colorado Springs Police …
Lester Haines, 22 Apr 2015

El Reg assembles mighty Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse

El Reg's participation next week in the 2015 Live Below the Line challenge – to survive for five days on one pound a day for food – is set to be more entertaining than ever as we've assembled a mighty Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse featuring no fewer than 11 brave souls. I first did the challenge back in 2013, in support of Malaria No …
Lester Haines, 22 Apr 2015

Flying giant octopus menaces New York

The New Statesman has pulled off a bit of a blinder by whipping out a giant octopus to helpfully explain to readers just how much a manhole cover weighs. The good burghers of Buffalo, New York, were recently menaced by a flying metal disk as the result of an underground explosion, apparently prompted by an electrical cable fire …
Lester Haines, 21 Apr 2015

High on bath salts, alleged Norse god attempts tree love

A 41-year-old Florida man is facing a pantheon of charges after allegedly getting hammered on bath salts, declaring himself to be Norse storm god Thor, attempting to commit "a sexual act on a tree", shrugging off two taserings, and assaulting a police officer. According to this report, Kenneth Crowder was spotted this month …
Lester Haines, 20 Apr 2015

Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Tortilla de patatas

As regular readers know, the Special Projects Bureau's headquarters is a mountaintop redoubt in a sleepy corner of rural Spain, so it was inevitable that we'd eventually turn our wobbly dining attention to the legendary "tortilla de patatas" (potato omelette). This no-frills classic – comprising just eggs, spuds and onion – is …
Lester Haines, 18 Apr 2015

Gwyneth Paltrow flubs $29 food stamp dare, swallows pride instead

A not particularly shamefaced Gwyneth Paltrow has admitted she failed to survive for seven days on $29 (20 quid) for food as part of the #FoodBankNYCChallenge, which invites participants "to walk in the shoes of 1.7 million New Yorkers who rely on SNAP (formerly Food Stamps)." At the behest of celebrity food-botherer Mario …
Lester Haines, 17 Apr 2015

SPB brews up fetching beer + bacon t-shirt design

Those who live by the motto Ad Astra Tabernamque ("To The Stars And The Pub") – with the possible addition of "...and then home for a bacon sarnie"* – should proceed forthwith to El Reg's merchandising tentacle Cash'n'Carrion to feast their eyes on our limited edition "SPB Equation" t-shirt. The artwork for our SPB Equation t- …
Lester Haines, 15 Apr 2015

Bloke hits armadillo AND mother-in-law with single 9mm round

A Georgia man who took a 9mm pistol to an armadillo also managed to pop a cap in his wife's mum after the round ricocheted off the animal, "hit a fence, went through the back door of his mother-in-law's mobile home, through a recliner she was sitting in, and into her back". According to cops, 54-year-old Larry McElroy pulled off …
Lester Haines, 14 Apr 2015

National Grid's new designer pylon is 'too white and boring' – Pylon Appreciation Society

The UK's National Grid has planted the first of its new "T-pylons" — an elegant alternative to the traditional steel lattice monsters currently straddling Blighty's green and pleasant land. The T-pylon was born from a 2011 competition won by Danish architects Bystrup, who came up with a 35 meter-high monopole base design, …

Iridium sat comms module comp goes completely TITSUP

Competition Inventive readers still have until 5pm UK time on Friday to brew up a suitably inspired acronym/backronym for our forthcoming final Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) test flight, and the best suggestion will earn its creator a spanking-new RockBLOCK Mk2 Iridium satellite comms unit, courtesy of our mates at Rock Seven …
Lester Haines, 08 Apr 2015

Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Deep-fried cheesy Hungarian

Last month, we ventured onto the streets of the Czech Republic to bring our wobbly dining fans smažený sýr – a deep-fried cheese delicacy entirely suitable for post-pub consumption. It didn't take long for a couple of Hungarian readers to flag up local classic flat bread-based lángos as an alternative nosh neckfiller, and given …
Lester Haines, 05 Apr 2015

WIN a RockBLOCK Mk2 Iridium sat comms unit

Competition As promised earlier this week, today we're giving readers the chance to win an all-new RockBLOCK Mk2 Iridium satellite comms unit, courtesy of our chums at Rock Seven. The RockBLOCK "allows you to send and receive short messages from anywhere on Earth with a clear view of the sky" via Iridium Short Burst Data (SBD), offering the …
Lester Haines, 03 Apr 2015

Tin-rattlers want to digitise lady engineers' historic exploits

The UK's Women's Engineering Society (WES) is indulging in some light tin-rattling aimed at digitising almost 100 years of the Women Engineer Journal. WES was formed in 1919 as a response to female exclusion from engineering's professional bodies, and quickly published the first issue of what would become the quarterly Women …
Lester Haines, 02 Apr 2015

El Reg lays claws on RockBLOCK Mk2 Iridium sat comms unit

Heads up Our chums at Rock Seven – supplier of Iridium satellite comms units to our audacious spaceplane ballocket mission – have announced the release of the RockBLOCK Mk2. The RockBLOCK MK2 In common with its predecessor, the new kit can "send messages of 340 bytes and receive messages of 270 bytes using Iridium Short Burst Data (SBD …
Lester Haines, 31 Mar 2015

NASA to take MARTIAN FLYING SAUCER for a spin

Vid NASA is promising a bit of live Martian flying-saucer action on Tuesday with a "spin-table" test of its Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD) – the future Mars payload delivery tech which may one day combine airbags and parachutes to safely place kit on the Red Planet's surface. From 1700 to 1800 GMT, you'll be able to watch …
Lester Haines, 30 Mar 2015

El Reg reforms the Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse

We're pleased to announce that we've reformed the El Reg Quid-A-Day Nosh Posse to tackle the 2015 Live Below the Line challenge to exist for five days on just £1 per day for food. Over the last couple of years, we've raised a good wedge of wonga in support of Malaria No More UK, and we hope to do the same from 27 April to 1 May …
Lester Haines, 24 Mar 2015

Layla enjoys a Sanskrit makeover: Clapton set to become one of several Gods

Indian musician Krish Ashok is pleasing ears worldwide with a Sanskrit version of Eric Clapton's classic Layla, dubbed लीला, or "Leela". However, while the track is an agreeable homage to the original, its linguistic reach is limited. According to the ever-reliable Wikipedia, while Sanskrit is a recognised language in India, …
Lester Haines, 23 Mar 2015
The finished hot chana masala

Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Chana masala

Regular readers will know that we at the Special Projects Bureau have a bit of previous form when it comes to chickpeas – from boiling enormous cauldrons of the things as part of the Live Below the Line challenge to creating rather more appetising winter-warmer stews – so it was only a matter of time before we turned our wobbly …
Lester Haines, 22 Mar 2015

Woman caught on CCTV performing drunken BJ blew right to privacy

Ofcom has rejected a claim that Channel 4 infringed the privacy of a pregnant Southampton woman by broadcasting CCTV footage of her administering drunken oral pleasure to a chap in a tower block lift. "Ms K" lodged a complaint of "unwarranted infringement of privacy" to the TV watchdog regarding the 9 June 2014 episode of CCTV: …
Lester Haines, 20 Mar 2015

LOHAN chap serves up 'tenner a week' e-cookbook

In response to reader demands following the recent release of his "Food For a Tenner a Week" cookbook, Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team member Neil Barnes is offering the same budget nosh tome in ePub format for a mere £2.99. Matt with Neil's cookbook As with the hard copy (seen above getting the once-over by …
Lester Haines, 20 Mar 2015

Blighty's 12-sided quid to feature schoolboy's posterior

A 15-year-old West Midlands lad has won the public competition to design the tails side of the forthcoming 12-sided British pound coin, the Royal Mint has announced. David Pearce's rose, leek, thistle and shamrock ensemble triumphed over 6,000 rival entries for the honour to grace the decidedly retro polygonal quid, which pays …
Lester Haines, 19 Mar 2015

Watchdog slaps American Apparel's youthful naked arse

The UK's Advertising Standards Authority has ordered US clothing outfit American Apparel to pull a snap from its website which featured a prominent pair of youthful buttocks promoting the "Lips Print Cotton Spandex Sleeveless Thong Bodysuit". A cropped version of the offending image The watchdog received a single complaint …
Lester Haines, 18 Mar 2015

LOHAN chap compiles 'tenner a week' cookbook

It's a tip of the chef's hat today to Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) chap Neil Barnes, who's released a cookbook inspired by his participation in the Live Below the Line challenge, with all profits going to Malaria No More UK. Neil Barnes in his flight suit with LOHAN patch Last year, paragliding aficionado Neil …
Lester Haines, 15 Mar 2015

LOHAN unleashes 'waiting for the FAA' collector mug

It's fair to say that waiting for US Federal Aviation Authority approval for our Vulture 2 spaceplane launch is a bit like sitting blindfolded in a room twiddling your thumbs while trying to imagine what paint drying on the wall of an adjacent room looks like. Suffice to say, we're doing our best to gee up the FAA snail - but in …
Lester Haines, 13 Mar 2015
Our playmonaut tries out a jetpack, watched by a circling vulture

LOHAN leaps aloft & ports into virtual flight logger

Last October, our US allies at Edge Research Laboratory sent up a Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) avionics package to determine just how our Vulture 2 spaceplane's servos and batteries would handle the cold way up in the stratsophere. Shortly afterwards, the chaps from "Drone Flight Logbook" outfit Exmaps got in …
Lester Haines, 10 Mar 2015

Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Smažený sýr

It's back to basics this time around for our post-pub nosh neckfiller, following an audacious leap into the challenging waters of English muffins and hollandaise sauce. Say hello, then, to classic Czech wobbly dining delicacy smažený sýr ("fried cheese") – aka "smazak" to its mates – which has for years been dispensed by street …
Lester Haines, 08 Mar 2015

Paul Allen hunts down sunken Japanese WWII super-battleship

Pics A team led by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen has located the final resting place of monster Japanese battleship Musashi, some 70 years after she was consigned to the depths off the Philippines during the 1944 Battle of Leyte Gulf. The discovery marks the end of an eight-year search for the sunken behemoth, according to Allen' …
Lester Haines, 04 Mar 2015

£280k Kickstarter camera trigger campaign crashes and burns

Backers of a Kickstarter campaign which raised a whopping £290k for the development of the Triggertrap Ada modular camera trigger have been left furious and seriously out of pocket after the company behind the product announced it couldn't deliver and would refund just 20 per cent of punters' cash. The Triggertrap Ada …
Lester Haines, 04 Mar 2015