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TERROR in the Chernobyl DEAD ZONE: LIFE - of a WILD kind - BURGEONS

The Chernobyl "Dead Zone": a terrible wasteland swept clean of life by a foolish humanity's meddling in things best left alone. Or is it? Not so much, it turns out. Not only were the consequences of Chernobyl relatively minor for human health* - they've actually been very positive for wildlife in the area around the abandoned …
Lewis Page, 06 Oct 2015
Artist's impression of how Fomalhalt b might look

THESE ARE THE VOYAGES of the space probe Discovery

NASA's scheme for reasonably priced space probes, the Discovery programme, has issued a new short list of ideas for its next economical science-shot. The idea is to choose a cunning lightweight mission which can be ready to go in no more than a few years, and get it out into space before it can snowball into a budgetary …
Lewis Page, 01 Oct 2015

FATTIES have most SUCCESS with opposite SEX! Have some pies and SCORE

Yet more great news today for those assessed as fatties by the now massively discredited Body Mass Index (BMI) system: you're probably more successful with the opposite sex than your undernourished contemporaries. We learn this from a new study by trick-cyclists in California, who surveyed 60,058 heterosexual men and women …
Lewis Page, 01 Oct 2015

MASSIVE GLOBAL COOLING process discovered as Paris climate deal looms

As world leaders get ready to head to Paris for the latest pact on cutting CO2 emissions, it has emerged that there isn't as much urgency about the matter as had been thought. A team of top-level atmospheric chemistry boffins from France and Germany say they have identified a new process by which vast amounts of volatile …
Lewis Page, 30 Sep 2015
iPhone explodes

WATERPROOF iPhone 6Ss? Old news. Check out the OTHER 7 SECRET FEATURES

We here at the Reg, as all our readers know, subscribe completely to the idea that people need a continual stream of iPhone related news-style content. We were especially impressed by the idea that the new iPhone 6S and 6S Plus might be "secretly waterproof". Some curmudgeons might suggest that this is merely a standard …
Lewis Page, 29 Sep 2015
The Mondoshawn, genetically perfect beings in <i>The Fifth Element</i>

NASA announcement of MAJOR MARS DISCOVERY imminent: WHAT can it be?

Poll The clock is counting down to NASA's imminent announcement as to just what the "major" discovery it has made on Mars could be. But there's still time left for us here at the Register to run one of our AI neural network bigdata analytics crowdsauce investigations, which should infallibly furnish the answer well beforehand. We …
Lewis Page, 28 Sep 2015

Robot Romeo gets its 'antenna' snapped off in attempt to 'charm' testy American

A robotic Romeo, attempting to "charm" or "distract" its target, suffered damage to its antenna during an altercation with a man in North Carolina, according to media reports. The machine was an "elite member" of a specialist local police unit. The Times-News of Hendersonville, North Carolina, has the story, in which sheriff's …
Lewis Page, 28 Sep 2015
A bee covered with pollen on a flower

Get ready for a grim future where BEES have SHORTER TONGUES

Humanity may have to live in a terrifying future where bumblebees have shorter tongues unless the menace of global warming can be abated, a new scientific study suggests. Ace bumblebee researchers reveal to a flabbergasted world today, courtesy of the learned journal Science: We found that in two alpine bumble bee species, …
Lewis Page, 25 Sep 2015

VW: Just the tip of the pollution iceberg. Who's to blame? HIPPIES

Comment Volkswagen, one of the world's biggest car groups, is in serious trouble this week as it turned out that millions of its diesel engines have been emitting vast, prohibited amounts of polluting nitrogen oxides (NOx). The fact is, however, that the Volkswagen story is only a small part of the NOx story – in which the human race …
Lewis Page, 25 Sep 2015
Apple iPhone 4s, 5s, 6 and 6 Plus

FOUR STUNNING NEW FEATURES Cook should put in the iPHONE 7

It's the eve of iPhone Day, the most magical time of the year, when fanbois' and fangurls' little faces light up as they tear open the packages tomorrow. It's the day that we celebrate the coming of a new Jesus Phone down to Earth to be seen amongst mortals yet again. But there are a lot of, pardon us for shooting straight …
Lewis Page, 24 Sep 2015

GLOBAL WARMING STOPPED in 1998? NO it didn't. If you say that, you're going to PRISON

In extraordinary developments, assorted scientists and other academics have waded into the debate over the widely-acknowledged absence of global warming seen over the last 15+ years. The various researchers, one group of whom are based at Stanford, say that actually the hiatus simply didn't happen. "There never was a hiatus, …
Lewis Page, 18 Sep 2015
The rebranded MPCV (aka Orion) participating in a Mars mission. Credit: NASA

SPACED OUT: NASA's manned Orion podule pushed back to 2023

NASA's plan to carry out manned space missions beyond Earth's low orbit has stalled to 2023. The American astro-boffins were aiming to deploy the Orion manned capsule in 2021, but the program has stumbled. A prototype Orion capsule has already made a brief unmanned test flight atop a Delta IV Heavy launch stack, in December …
Lewis Page, 17 Sep 2015

BLOOD-crazy CLIMATE mosquitoes set to GROUND SANTA's reindeer

Some say the menace of climate change has been overblown: but they couldn't be more wrong, as it has emerged that global warming is set to extirpate - or anyway, seriously annoy - the lovable arctic reindeer. This is because, according to a new climate model, a warming arctic will soon be overrun with bloodlusting mosquitoes …
Lewis Page, 17 Sep 2015
Sunset in the Arctic

Arctic summer ice cover is 31st HIGHEST EVER RECORDED

It's that time of year when the sea ice in the Arctic shrinks to its annual minimum, and it appears that this year's figure is most probably in. It's the 31st largest minimum extent on record, as it happens, which isn't especially newsworthy as reliable records only go back 35 years. It's a lot more fashionable to report this …
Lewis Page, 16 Sep 2015
Mare_Byrd_land Antarctica

Burn ALL the COAL, OIL – NO danger of SEA LEVEL rise this century from Antarctic ice melt

One of the world's most firmly global-warmist scientists says that even if humanity deliberately sets out to burn all the fossil fuels it can find, as fast as it can, there will be no troublesome sea level rise due to melting Antarctic ice this century. Dr Ken Caldeira's credentials as a global warmist are impeccable. He is …
Lewis Page, 15 Sep 2015

TREES tell SCIENTISTS: Sierra Nevada snow hasn't been this bad since 1500AD

You'll read it everywhere - there hasn't been so little snow in California's Sierra Nevada for FIVE HUNDRED years. But how do they know? The first people possessing written language to visit the Sierras got there less than two centuries ago. To be sure there will have been native Americans in the area back in the sixteenth …
Lewis Page, 15 Sep 2015


There hasn't actually been any global warming for the last fifteen years or so - this much is well known. But is this just a temporary hiccup set to end soon? A new report from the UK's weather bureau says it just might not be. The Met Office boffins believe that, yes, a long-expected El Nino is at last starting up in the …
Lewis Page, 14 Sep 2015

IoT/BYOD Topic of the Week: Which Channel 5 news minx was HOTTEST?

AI neural network Data Scoop Well, it's been something of a week: and one of the main tech news events, like it or lump it, has been the appearance of the Apple MaxiPad - aka the Apple Surface Pro, or even in some circles iPad Pro Air Beats. Naturally the forecast appearance of the strokable whopper led us here at the Register to speculate on the target …
Lewis Page, 11 Sep 2015
Ashes Cricket 2013

BORN to HURL: Man's shoulders are head and shoulders above apes, gorillas, chimps etc

Top-level bone fondlers delving back into humanity's remote past say that the key adaptation which lifted us from the ruck of other primates was a change to the shoulder permitting us - among other things - to play cricket by hurling balls and wielding bats. "These changes in the shoulder, which were probably initially driven …
Lewis Page, 09 Sep 2015

Apple hypegasm countdown. What will the new, big iPad ACTUALLY be called?

Neural Net AI (Poll) Much of the world is poised on the edge of its collective seat this week, awaiting the scheduled moment tomorrow when mighty Apple - the fruitchomp-branded love/hate Wall Street darling of the technology world - will unveil its latest offerings. But what will these be? Just how will the great brains of Cupertino seek to …
Lewis Page, 08 Sep 2015
Shows Henslow tree-planting in Cambridge.

TREE-HUGGER? Your WOODEN HAREM is much BIGGER than thought

Tree-lovers rejoice! It turns out there are really hugely more trees on planet Earth than anyone had thought. In fact, a new study just published says that there are no fewer than three trillion huggable woody trunks alive on the planet today – roughly seven and a half times as many as the previous best guess of just 400 …
Lewis Page, 02 Sep 2015
The solar powered patrol vehicle employed by the Fort Knox directorate of emergency services. Credit: US Army

Self-driving CARS? BORING. We want self driving, LIZARD dodging GOLF CARTS

Many jaded readers of the Register, noting on the interwebs the endless stream of stories about self-driving cars - being worked upon by such companies as Google - may have wondered whether in fact anyone at all is actually working on the real, genuine problems confronting the human race. Well wonder no more, my jaundiced …
Lewis Page, 02 Sep 2015

PALE BACKSIDE of lovely Luna flits past in imagery from 1 MILLION miles out

A million miles out in deep space far beyond the Moon's orbit, closer in to the Sun, lies the L-1 Lagrange point. Here sits the DSCOVR spacecraft with its EPIC instrument pointed back at Earth. NASA has just released some EPIC images, showing the moon zipping past in front of Earth. Here they are: Moon transit of Earth. …
Lewis Page, 06 Aug 2015

How much of ONE YEAR's Californian energy use would WIPE OUT the DROUGHT?

Analysis That California drought - it's terrible, isn't it? But there's nothing to be done. If it doesn't rain for a few years, and doesn't snow up in the mountains, Californians must just yield to Mother Nature and stop watering their lawns, stop washing their cars, maybe even stop growing those delicious but thirsty almonds. Or ... …
Lewis Page, 31 Jul 2015
Credit: Oren Schauble Licence:

Small number of computer-aided rifles could be hacked in contrived scenario

The internet is reeling today at the "news" that a rare make of computer-aided gunsight can under certain circumstances be hacked into, permitting a hacker to interfere with a suitably-equipped rifle's aim. The gunsight in question is the much-hyped but seldom purchased TrackingPoint kit, a system with a Linux machine at its …
Lewis Page, 30 Jul 2015
Credit: RodWey2004 Licence:

Hawking, Musk, Woz (and Riley): ROBOTS will KILL US ALL

+Comment Notables of the technology world including physicist Stephen Hawking, biz baron Elon Musk and techno-hippy Steve Wozniak have teamed up with saucy actress minx Talulah Riley to warn us all about the menace of killer robots. In an open letter and petition, the distinguished trio and their co-signatories warn: Autonomous …
Lewis Page, 27 Jul 2015
Credit: Popolon Licence:

Hurrah! Windfarms produce whopping ONE PER CENT of EU energy

The colossal, hugely expensive windfarms that are spread across huge areas of Europe's land and sea, which are projected to drive up household energy bills by more than 50 per cent in coming years, have achieved ... almost nothing in terms of reducing EU carbon emissions. We here on the Reg energy desk only noticed this …
Lewis Page, 27 Jul 2015

New study into lack of women in Tech: It's NOT the men's fault

A new study into causes of the scarcity of women in technical and scientific fields says that it is not discrimination by men in the field keeping the ladies away. Nor is it a repugnance felt by women for possibly dishevelled or unhygienic male nerds. No, the reason that young women don't train in Science, Technology, …
Lewis Page, 27 Jul 2015
Credit: Julius T. Cstonyi

Slippery, slimy find: LEGGY, WRIGGLY fossil shows SNAKES weren't legless. Or ARMLESS

A strange fossilised snake possessing four limbs which it could use for walking or gripping things has upset the applecart in the world of palaeo-snake boffinry. The fossil in question had actually been excavated some time ago in Brazil, which had been part of the ur-continent Gondwana at the time the leggy snake was alive, …
Lewis Page, 24 Jul 2015
Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/Caltech/D.Fox et al.; Illustration: NASA/D.Berry

SPLAT! STAR THWACKED, GUTS flung into space at 15 per cent of LIGHTSPEED

In perhaps the most violent punch that has ever been witnessed by humanity, a speeding pulsar has smashed right through a disk of matter bulging from the middle of a hefty star and blown a massive chunk of it guts into interstellar space at a significant fraction of light speed. That's according to top space boffins peering …
Lewis Page, 24 Jul 2015
The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) by night, under the Magellanic Clouds

Galactic BIRTH: ALMA peers THIRTEEN BEELLLION years into Dawn of Time Itself

Far back - quite literally into the earliest mists of time, when cold hydrogen fog cloaked the birth pangs of the early universe - the galaxies were born. Now, top boffins have pierced that fog and snapped a live action pic of one such galactic birth. Astronomers refer to this period, apparently, as the Epoch of Reionisation. …
Lewis Page, 23 Jul 2015
Exoplanet around a star

NASA briefing in HOURS: 'We are upon the CUSP of finding ANOTHER EARTH'

Updated Everyone knows the Kepler space telescope, whose six year mission (so far) has seen it discover many planets orbiting other stars - the task it was specifically built for, indeed. Now, it would seem, it has found something unusually important, as NASA has announced major press briefing on Kepler for later today. All the space …
Lewis Page, 23 Jul 2015

SPACE FARMER 'nauts arrive safely at International Space Station

Three fresh 'nauts have arrived at the International Space Station, bringing it up to its regular complement of six - and clearing the way for the first off-Earth farming. The arriving 'nauts are NASA astronaut Kjell Lindgren, Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko and Japanese astronaut Kimiya Yui. The trio took off from Baikonur …
Lewis Page, 23 Jul 2015
Reconstruction of past climate. Credit: Insititute of Geography, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz


The press is full of reports that Planet Earth is undergoing it's hottest year EVER - that the first half of 2015 is the hottest first half yet seen, according to the NOAA among others. Is it true? In fact the contiguous US saw the tenth hottest first half of a year since 1880, when the NOAA database begins. Only such recent, …
Lewis Page, 23 Jul 2015
Credit: Speedy Gonsales / Edward S Curtis CC 3.0 Attribution Share-Alike Unported

Were the FIRST AMERICANS really FIRST? MYSTERY of vanished 'Population Y'

A long-vanished race of humans, whose descendants now survive only among certain indigenous peoples in Australasia and in the Amazon jungles, may have been the true, original Native Americans, according to new genetics research. The clue to the existence of this mysterious "Population Y" has been found by boffins probing the …
Lewis Page, 23 Jul 2015

AI finally understands primitive sketches – aka marketing presentations

Artificial intelligence scientists have developed a neural-network that understands incomprehensible scrawled drawings of the sort created by children, marketing departments, architects, design creatives, and so on. The academic developers of the "Sketch-a-Net" software proudly boast that their brainchild is actually better at …
Lewis Page, 22 Jul 2015

Arctic ice EMBIGGENS, returns to 1980s levels of cap cover

The Arctic ice cap has not, contrary to the predictions of climate alarmists, completely disappeared: in fact it has been growing rapidly, increasing by an entire third just in 2013 and more since. "It would suggest that sea ice is more resilient perhaps. If you get one year of cooler temperatures, we've almost wound the clock …
Lewis Page, 21 Jul 2015
SpaceX plans for future launcher development. Credit: SpaceX

SpaceX's blast shock delays world's MOST POWERFUL ROCKET

Rocketry upstart SpaceX has said it's new "Falcon Heavy" launcher – which will be the most powerful on Earth when it comes into service – has been grounded by further delays. The news comes as part of a briefing given by SpaceX chief Elon Musk and other company executives outlining their plans following the explosion of a …
Lewis Page, 21 Jul 2015

An EPIC picture of Earth, sunny side up, from one MEEELLION miles out

NASA has released a splendid new pic from the DSCOVR satellite, newly arrived at point L-1 a million miles sunward from Earth. An epic e-pic from EPIC. DSCOVR's full name is the Deep Space Climate Observatory, so dubbed for its position at the Lagrange point one million miles away on a line from the Earth to the Sun, where …
Lewis Page, 21 Jul 2015

FEMALE BLOOD-SUCKERS zero in on human prey by smelling our BREATH

Deadly female blood-suckers have been shown to zero in on their living prey by sniffing out the CO2 emitted in exhaled breath, according to new experiments. The blood-drinking femme fatales in question are not, perhaps unfortunately, Kate Beckinsale style heavily beweaponed lady vampires clad in a variety of form-fitting …
Lewis Page, 17 Jul 2015
Credit: ESO/L. Benassi

Ideal solar system for SECOND EARTH found – and it's just 186 light-years away

There are hundreds of known exoplanets - worlds in orbit around other stars than our own Sun. The trouble is, because of the means used to detect them, that they tend to be big and very close to their faraway suns - and thus, sadly, not potential Earthlike habitable worlds. But that may have changed today. Excited astronomers …
Lewis Page, 16 Jul 2015
Bacon inhaler


There's disturbing and yet possibly uplifting news today on the science beat, depending how much you like eating bacon – and/or things grown in bubbling vats. That's because boffins in Oregon say they have managed to grow a kind of algae or seaweed in bubbling vats and that it is in every way as nice to eat as proper bacon …
Lewis Page, 15 Jul 2015

Cell division: The engine of life – and of CANCER. Now some of its secrets are revealed

We each begin our existence as a single cell, which divides into new cells which divide into new cells. Old tissues are replaced, wounds heal, our ears – not especially useful – keep on growing even once they're quite big enough, thank you*. Cell division is pretty much the miracle of life – and yet we still don't understand …
Lewis Page, 14 Jul 2015
A US C-130 Hercules equipped with skis takes off in the Antarctic using JATO. Credit: DoD

Natural geothermal heat under Antarctic ice: 'Surprisingly HIGH'

Geothermal heating from within the Earth's core – as opposed to the possibly warming air or sea – has been measured beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet for the first time ever. And, we are told, it is "surprisingly high." The West Antarctic sheet is the part of the Antarctic ice cap thought to be easiest to melt. Worries …
Lewis Page, 13 Jul 2015
Credit: PLoS One/Danielle Dufault

Wendi the horny dino named after Canadian fossil hunter. Charming!

Pics A very big-boned and horny-faced ceratopsian dinosaur has been dubbed Wendiceratops pinhornensis as a tribute to the work of Canadian fossil hunter Wendy Sloboda. The new dino was identified from fossilised bones found in Alberta, Canada. Boffins involved in the dig believe that W pinhornensis was roughly 20 feet long and …
Lewis Page, 09 Jul 2015

FLYING PIG crash-lands in Utah: Rider survives, bacon saved

Heartwarmingly, news has reached us here on the Register flying-cars-and-related-matters desk that a large flying pig has crashlanded in Utah. The airborne porker's rider suffered only minor injuries. The incident took place recently in the town of Provo, Utah, where locals were celebrating the anniversary of the Land of the …
Lewis Page, 09 Jul 2015

Bootnote: The Land of the Free - Ha!

*Slavery was shown to be untenable under English law (though not in other parts of the British empire) by the Somerset v Stewart case in 1772, some years before American independence. The triangular slave trade in which African slaves were shipped mostly to the Americas was outlawed by Britain in 1807, and thereafter the primary …
Lewis Page, 08 Jul 2015
Philae takes a first look at the surface of Comet 67P

Dormant ALIEN SLIME LIFE frozen in SPEEDING comet will AWAKEN - boffins

Top astrobiologists say that the approaching comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko could be loaded with slumbering alien organisms capable of living on Earth, which will wake up and become active as the frosty spaceball comes nearer and nearer to the Sun. Dr Max Wallace and Professor Chandra Wickramasinghe say that data from the …
Lewis Page, 06 Jul 2015

Florida cops cuff open-carry, balls-out pirate packing 'operational' flintlocks

A Florida pirate was arrested recently after allegedly firing shots at passing cars using his pair of "operational" black-powder pistols, presumably flintlocks. The Florida Keys Keynoter and Reporter has the story. It seems that Monroe County sheriff's deputies, responding to notifications of shots fired on the old Seven Mile …
Lewis Page, 06 Jul 2015

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