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Will rising CO2 damage the world's oceans? NOT SO MUCH – new boffinry

Those who fear that the oceans and their ability to support life on Earth may be doomed by rising CO2 – take heart! A recent scientific study shows that one of the basic engines of the ocean, namely the life cycle of phytoplankton, will probably not be disrupted by the rising levels of carbon dioxide to be expected later this …
Lewis Page, 03 Jul 2015
University of Chicago press-release picture. Credit: Giant Screen Films LLC

Boffin: Will I soon be able to CLONE a MAMMOTH? YES. Should I? NO

Poll It will definitely be possible within the foreseeable future to bring back the long-extinct woolly mammoth, a top geneticist has said. However, in his regretful opinion such a resurrection should not be carried out. The assertion comes in the wake of a new study of mammoth genetics as compared to their cousins the Asian and …
Lewis Page, 03 Jul 2015

Original LIZARD JESUS is found in Wyoming

Rejoice! For the Lizard Jesus (or jesus lizard if you prefer) has been found hidden smack bang in the middle of the United States of America (or Wyoming to be a little more precise). Yes – it's true. And this is the original jesus lizard, mind you, not any later imitation. We are told: Modern relatives of the Jesus lizard live …
Lewis Page, 02 Jul 2015
Vulcan bomber bomb bays, photo Phil Holding

Goodbye Vulcan: Blighty's nuclear bomber retires for the last time

Visit a British air show before September and it's possible you’ll get the opportunity to witness the last Vulcan bomber in flight - and this is definitely the last year you'll get the chance, this time. Alongside the staple leather-clad wing-walking ladies, the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, simulated Apache attack-chopper …
Bill Gates. Pic: DfID

Gates: Renewable energy can't do the job. Gov should switch green subsidies into R&D

Retired software kingpin and richest man in the world Bill Gates has given his opinion that today's renewable-energy technologies aren't a viable solution for reducing CO2 levels, and governments should divert their green subsidies into R&D aimed at better answers. Gates expressed his views in an interview given to the Financial …
Lewis Page, 26 Jun 2015
Earth

THIS TIME we really are ALL DOOMED, famous doomsayer prof says

A professor famous for predicting the imminent demise of the human race at regular intervals since the 1970s has predicted the imminent demise of the human race. Paul Ehrlich, who is the Bing Professor of Population Studies at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, says it's definitely on this time. In a tinned …
Lewis Page, 22 Jun 2015
ianatlas_robot_648

Police robot duo storm Colorado house, end four-day siege

A pair of police robots are being hailed as heroes in Colorado, after they stormed a house in which a possibly drug-addled, armed man had barricaded himself. Officers seem likely to be enjoying celebratory doughnuts and battery charging back at the station after a four-day siege ended in the town of Greeley, Colorado, on …
Lewis Page, 22 Jun 2015
Holy Hand Grenade, Monty Python

Climate change alarmism is a religious belief – it's official

So there you have it. The climate debate is over. Or it is, provided you accept that the highest authority of the human race is Pope Francis. The long-awaited papal encyclical "Laudato Si" is now officially published, and it says pretty much what it had been expected to say. Planet Earth is described as "like a sister with whom …
Lewis Page, 18 Jun 2015
Man drinking through a straw CC2.0 attribution Bradley Gordon https://www.flickr.com/photos/icanchangethisright/

Sharing Economy latest: Women's BREAST MILK is the new 'liquid GOLD' of the internet

Perhaps you don't think that there's a massive and highly lucrative trade in human breast milk on the internet, much of the milk apparently being quaffed by adult men? Perhaps you need to pull your head out of the "real" world, get back online and get up to speed, my friend. To be fair, we here on the Reg breasts-and-related- …
Lewis Page, 18 Jun 2015
Short animated gif from the film Tango and Cash

Noshing moth menaces misled into male-on-male mating

Crafty museum curators in London, outraged by lepidopterans gobbling their well-stuffed exhibits, have fought back with a sinister plan that has seen the noshing attackers tricked into orgies of male-on-male sex and hence unable to reproduce. We learn of the scheme from the Telegraph, reporting on a mysterious London institution …
Lewis Page, 17 Jun 2015
Reconstruction of past climate. Credit: Insititute of Geography, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz

The 'echo chamber' effect misleading people on climate change

Trick-cyclists in America have come out with research which could explain why the debate on climate change continues to rumble on, even though there is a solid consensus on the facts of the matter. Essentially, according to the researchers, people tend to live in "echo chambers" as far as climate matters go, seeking out …
Lewis Page, 28 May 2015
Monty Python foot UHDTV

Pavegen: The Company that can't make energy out of crowds tries to make money out of them

A company selling floor tiles which extract tiny, pointless amounts of energy from crowds walking across them is seeking fresh investment through the medium of crowdfunding. The company in question is Pavegen, which we've covered before. The firm is the brainchild of Laurence Kemball-Cook, who describes himself in a press …
Lewis Page, 26 May 2015

Attack of the possibly-Nazi clone parakeet invaders

The various waves of invading parakeets currently sweeping the world are "genetically identical" and all come from a small remote region in Latin America, scientists say. We are told: The parakeets that have invaded Europe and North America over the last forty to fifty years, creating massive nests in many urban areas, seem to …
Lewis Page, 13 May 2015

Massive police 'heavy equipment' robot drags out suspect who hid inside television

A hefty police robot described by its human colleagues as "heavy equipment" charged into a besieged house through a barrage of stun grenades and choking riot gas at the weekend, before finding and forcefully apprehending a wanted man who had somehow managed to conceal himself inside a television. The robot belonged to the …
Lewis Page, 12 May 2015
Star Wars: Force Unleashed II

Boffins' ball barrage bombardment biffs bumbling bimble biped-bot

Morning Vid For your amusement this morning we have this video of a walker robot being attacked by a gang of boffins in a park: The machine was built at Oregon State University, is known as the ATRIAS and - you guessed it - is funded by Pentagon warboffin bureau DARPA. It's to be a contender at the DARPA Robotics Challenge in California …
Lewis Page, 05 May 2015

US Navy robot war-jet refuels in air: But Mav and Iceman are going down fighting

A US Navy X-47B unmanned aircraft demonstrator has successfully carried out air-to-air refuelling from a tanker, the last of the feats the X-47B project was intended to accomplish. The two robot jets will now be retired, either to museums or the Pentagon's famous desert aircraft boneyard in Arizona. The test took place yesterday …

Apple Watch: We ROUNDUP the ROUNDUPS. Yes, Roundup-squared

FOUR THINGS ye must know about the Apple Watch: First, it is from APPLE. Second, it is a bit like a WATCH. For instance, it goes on your wrist. Third, without an iPhone 5 or 6 it is USELESS. Actually maybe that should have been first. Sorry. Fourth, the world's media are now publishing many, many reviews and commentaries on …
Lewis Page, 09 Apr 2015
The reverse cowgirl

Watching porn makes men BETTER in bed, say trick-cyclists

It's widely believed that watching more porn tends to be a bad thing for a man's performance in real-world boudoir athletics: but a new study by trick-cyclists in Montreal suggests that in fact the reverse may be true. The study involved 280 Montreal men, who were asked how much porn they viewed in a week (with some apparently …
Lewis Page, 18 Mar 2015
Google Street View penguins

PENGUINS are just TASTELESS, say boffins

Penguins may be immaculately tailored but it seems they may be a bit tasteless in other areas; specifically that of, erm, taste. This is according to new genetic research which indicates that the smartly turned out flightless birds of the Antarctic have the genes to detect only two of the five tastes (which are sweet, sour, …
Lewis Page, 17 Feb 2015
A still from Eppendorf's epMotion video

Want to find LOVE online? Make sure your name is high up in the alphabet

A scientist, sickened by repeatedly getting turned down when seeking a date online, roped in a colleague and carried out extensive research through scientific literature so as to develop a set of foolproof methods for finding love on the internet. He now has a girlfriend, with whom he spent last week in Rome. The boffin in …
Lewis Page, 16 Feb 2015
Artist's conception showing the inner four planets of the Gliese 581 system. GJ 581g, potentially habitable, is in the foreground. Credit: Lynette Cook/NSF

ATTENTION SETI scientists! It's TOO LATE: ALIENS will ATTACK in 2049

Today, top experts on aliens will debate one of the most pressing issues of modern times: to wit, should the human race send out signals with the aim of letting any possible extraterrestrial beings know we are here? But the brainboxes assembled in San Jose for the annual shindig of the American Association for the Advancement of …
Lewis Page, 13 Feb 2015

UN negotiations menaced by THOUSANDS of TOPLESS LADIES with MAYONNAISE

Sensitive international negotiations on arms control taking place in Geneva could be menaced by mobs of screaming, topless women throwing mayonnaise, according to one of the delegates. Mr Ivan Grinevich, representing the nation of Belarus, made the remarks on Tuesday during a meeting of the United Nations Conference on …
Lewis Page, 13 Feb 2015
Reconstruction of past climate. Credit: Insititute of Geography, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz

'Giving geo-engineering to this US govt is like giving a CHILD a LOADED GUN'

An official US government report just has recommended that further research should be carried out into various methods of "geoengineering" the climate so as to combat global warming. But one of its authors disagrees with himself, saying that giving such technology to the current US leadership would be "like giving a loaded gun …
Lewis Page, 11 Feb 2015
A person's chubby legs are seen above a scale. Photo via Shutterstock

SWINGBELLIES! Take heed! Drinking WINE is good for your LIVER

Great news today for those who haven't seen their feet lately and who enjoy a slurp of red wine: chemicals in dark grapes have been found to protect the liver from the harmful effects of being a fatty. Glugging red wine - or munching actual grapes, should that be your bag - doesn't prevent or reduced actual embulgement. What is …
Lewis Page, 09 Feb 2015
Virtual journalist files another scoop

Major US news organisations to develop ROBOT JOURNALISTS

In a development whose potential sinister consequences would be difficult to exaggerate, a number of major US new organisations have banded together in an alliance for the purpose of developing news-gathering robots. Nor is this some sort of HuffPost blogswarm news aggregation scrap-o-matic system: this plan would see actual …
Lewis Page, 06 Feb 2015
Concept art depicting the lights of an ET civilisation on an exoplanet. Credit: David A Aguilar (CfA)

ALIENS are surely AMONG US: Average star has TWO potentially Earth-like worlds

Boffins in Australia have applied a hundreds-of-years-old astronomical rule to data from the Kepler planet-hunting space telescope. They've come to the conclusion that the average star in our galaxy has not one but two Earth-size planets in its "goldilocks" zone where liquid water - and thus, life along Earthly lines - could …
Lewis Page, 05 Feb 2015

LICKED: Behold my TOAD-PROOF ERECTION, boasts Aussie boffin

An Australian scientist says that he has succeeded in mastering one of mankind's deadliest enemies: invading toads which sweat toxic hallucinogenic drugs. "This is the first study to demonstrate long-term control of cane toads," says Professor Mike Letnic of New South Wales uni. 'This is a cane toad with a tracking device …
Lewis Page, 05 Feb 2015
Game of Thrones Season One Blu-ray disc set

Spent the weekend watching Game of Thrones? You're a FAT LONELY SADDO

You thought it was harmless, didn't you? Settling down on the sofa, firing up your trusty smart TV, stream-o-dongle or similar - or for the retro types, unwrapping your new boxset of DVDs - and getting ready to burn up a day or two watching an entire telly series end to end. Well brace up, my sessile friend, because there's news …
Lewis Page, 02 Feb 2015
German shepherd guard dog standing in flood water

'LOOK into my EYES: You are feeling very worried about the climate ... SO worried'

Comment A trick-cyclist who promised several years ago to use a new form of mass hypnosis to get the public motivated to fight climate change claims that he's done it. In fact the claim is bogus: it is itself part of his attempt to carry out his plan of manipulating public opinion. The trick-cyclist is, as regular readers of these pages …
Lewis Page, 29 Jan 2015
Doomsday clock

Doomsday Clock says 3 MINUTES to MIDNIGHT. Again

+Comment The famous Doomsday Clock, which has been showing anywhere between 17 and two minutes to midnight since 1947, has advanced to three-minutes-to for the third time – on this occasion due to a perceived increase in the menace from human-driven climate change. The organisation which runs the Clock, the Bulletin of the Atomic …
Lewis Page, 23 Jan 2015
Press photo Credit: E. Brun

SECRETS of the LOST SCROLLS unlocked by key to HEALTHY BOOBS

Carbonised scrolls from a Roman library destroyed in a volcanic eruption are being read using a cunning X-ray technique more commonly employed in medical screening for breast cancer, boffins have announced. The scrolls in question are the famous Herculaneum library ones. Herculaneum was a Roman resort located on the Bay of …
Lewis Page, 21 Jan 2015

SCIENTIFIC CONSENSUS that 2014 was record HOTTEST year? NO

+Comment So the results are in. The main US global-temperature scorekeepers - NASA and the NOAA - say that last year was definitely the hottest year on record. But they've been contradicted by a highly authoritative scientific team, one actually set up to try an establish objective facts in this area. On the face of it, there's no …
Lewis Page, 19 Jan 2015

DVRs at the ready tonight: El Reg's motor Vulture is on the tellybox

Keen Reg readers will doubtless wish to line up one of their TV tuners* tonight to capture Inside Out at 19:30 on BBC1 (sadly only in London). The programme is to feature our own Simon Rockman, mobile and motoring correspondent, expounding on the experience of driving an electric car in the nation's capital. Here's a short clip …
Lewis Page, 19 Jan 2015
Lake Tahoe

FERTILISER DOOM warning! PESKY humans set to WIPE selves out AGAIN

The human race's profligate use of fertilisers may be about to breach "planetary boundaries" and render our planet unable to support civilisation, an American limnologist has claimed. “We’re running up to and beyond the biophysical boundaries that enable human civilisation as we know it to exist,” says Stephen Carpenter, …
Lewis Page, 16 Jan 2015

'We will SNORT UP CRYSTAL DUST and then do a MAJOR software update'

NASA boffins are planning to pulverise a dried-up deposit from the surface of Mars and then snort up and "ingest" the resulting crystalline dust before performing a major software update, they have announced. The crystal snorting will of course be done by robotic means, through the agency of the nuclear powered, raygun-armed, …
Lewis Page, 15 Jan 2015

Professor's BEAGLE lost for 10 years FOUND ON MARS

The long-lost, dustbin-lid sized British Mars lander Beagle 2 - whose fate had been unknown since it departed from its Mars Express mothership in orbit above the red planet on Christmas Day 2003 - seems likely to have been found at last. The UK Space Agency has scheduled a press briefing on the Beagle for Friday and is refusing …
Lewis Page, 13 Jan 2015

Preserve the concinnity of English, caterwauls American university

New words get added to the English language all the time: we're bombarded, inundated, overwhelmed by press releases from dictionary publishers in which such excrescences as listicle, clickbait and neckbeard are added to the collective vocab. But who ever spares a thought for the various excellent old words being pushed onto the …
Lewis Page, 13 Jan 2015

ALIEN EARTH: Red sun's habitable world spotted 470 light years away

The discovery of new planets likely to be able to support life along Earthly lines has been announced, with one of the most promising candidates for alien and/or human habitability located just 470 light-years away. The new exoplanets have been discovered by analysis of data from the Kepler space telescope, and bear the tags …
Lewis Page, 07 Jan 2015

Alien Earths are out there: Our home is not 'unique'

New research suggests planets similar to our Earth are much more common across the galaxy than previously thought. And the boffins behind this revelation have also come up with a simple chemical recipe for creating habitable worlds suitable for use by advanced super-powered intelligences and/or deities etc. "Our solar system is …
Lewis Page, 06 Jan 2015
Openstack log

Symantec becomes Gold OpenStack member - while suing it

Symantec has been announced as the newest Gold member of OpenStack, a status the open source effort says means it “pledge[s] strategic alignment to the OpenStack mission.” But Symantec is also behind patent litigation against other OpenStack members, and is claiming ownership of some of the project's code. Symantec's tossed …
Lewis Page, 22 Dec 2014

'Turn to nuclear power to save planetary ecology from renewable BLIGHT'

+Analysis Sixty-six heavyweight boffins active in the field of biodiversity conservation have pleaded with the world's greens to get over their objections to nuclear power, pointing out that renewable energy means terrible losses of endangered animals and plants. "Biodiversity is not only threatened by climate disruption arising largely …
Lewis Page, 16 Dec 2014
Wheel of a sunken ship,  covered in barnacles

GERONTIC 'Ghost ship' prowled the undersea cables of the 1940s

A "ghost ship" which helped develop the world's network of undersea cables - and worked for the former British Cable & Wireless firm, nowadays renowned as partner to the Five-Eyes spook alliance under the secret codename GERONTIC - has been discovered deep beneath the waves near Hawaii. The ship in question is the Dickenson, …
Lewis Page, 09 Dec 2014

Technology quiz reveals that nobody including quiz drafters knows anything about IT

A terrifying new quiz has indicated that the state of knowledge among Americans regarding IT topics is abysmally low: but the questions are such as to indicate that even the drafters of the quiz didn't know much. The quiz in question is one from Pew Research, intended to find out "What Internet Users Know about Technology and …
Lewis Page, 26 Nov 2014

MI6 oversight report on Lee Rigby murder: US web giants offer 'safe haven for TERRORISM'

A Parliamentary report into the murder of off-duty British soldier Lee Rigby by Muslim extremists last year has pointed the finger of blame squarely at "the major US Communications Service Providers", saying that the only organisation which could have prevented the attack was one such internet-media giant. The new report was …
Lewis Page, 25 Nov 2014

Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers

Comment Two highly qualified Google engineers who have spent years studying and trying to improve renewable energy technology have stated quite bluntly that renewables will never permit the human race to cut CO2 emissions to the levels demanded by climate activists. Whatever the future holds, it is not a renewables-powered civilisation …
Lewis Page, 21 Nov 2014
A person's chubby legs are seen above a scale. Photo via Shutterstock

FORGET the CLIMATE: FATTIES are a MUCH BIGGER problem - study

Data Journalism* The BMI-fuelled "obesity epidemic" bandwagon continues to rumble along, with the latest ridiculous report claiming that swingbellies are now twice as serious a menace to human prosperity as climate change. No, really. The giant brains of the McKinsey Global Institute have assembled this authoritative graph, which ranks the …
Lewis Page, 21 Nov 2014
Lightning

ZZZAP! Climate change means getting HIT BY LIGHTNING is likelier

Lightning strikes are set to become more frequent if global warming resumes, according to a new study by climate scientists. In an extreme scenario where temperatures climb by 4 degrees Celsius, the increase could be as much as 50 per cent. "With warming, thunderstorms become more explosive," explains David Romps, climatology …
Lewis Page, 14 Nov 2014
Pistol cartridges and a pistol

3D PRINTED GUNS: THIS time it's for REAL! Oh, wait – no, still crap

So, hype notwithstanding, it's now pretty well acknowledged that you cannot in fact make a useful gun out of plastic in a consumer-grade 3D printer. But wait! Hold everything! There's a new "Bullet That Could Make 3-D Printed Guns Practical Deadly Weapons"! Holy Cow! Oh dear. The ".314 Atlas" from designer Michael Crumling is …
Lewis Page, 06 Nov 2014

Robot deputy blasts possibly explosive Mexican beans with CANNON in 'controlled explosion'

A robotic deputy from the San Diego Sheriff's Bomb and Arson Unit took no chances with a suspicious parcel full of potentially exploding Mexican beans yesterday, blasting the package with a "cannon" in a "controlled explosion". Local police spokesman Lieutenant Greg Koran told media that a postman making his rounds noticed that …
Lewis Page, 06 Nov 2014
A storm is brewing (Mali, Sahel). Foto: F. Guichard & L. Kergoat, AMMA project, CNRS copyright.

Met Office: 2014 was FIFTEENTH WARMEST UK SUMMER on record

The UK experienced its fifteenth hottest summer since 1910 this year, according to the latest Met Office figures, with the raging heat unsurpassed except in the years 1911, 1947, 1955 and eleven other years over the past century. "People are not adapting their homes, particularly in cities, to make them cooler. For vulnerable …
Lewis Page, 05 Nov 2014