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Lester Haines

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Optimus Prime goes under the hammer

Film buffs with deep pockets and a really big garage should consider moseying on down to the forthcoming Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale auction, where the 1992 Peterbilt 379 Optimus Prime tractor will go under the hammer. The Optimus Prime Peterbilt tractor The custom rig appeared in three Transformers movies playing the …
Lester Haines, 14 Jan 2016

Boffins tentatively fire up grav wave sniffer

European Space Agency (ESA) scientists have begun to fire up systems aboard the LISA Pathfinder spacecraft - designed to "test the technology needed to develop future space-borne gravitational wave detectors". The LISA (Laser Interferometer Space Antenna) Pathfinder is now on its way to its final destination orbiting Lagrange …
Lester Haines, 13 Jan 2016

Brit 'naut Peake gears up for spacewalk

European Space Agency astronaut Tim Peake is gearing up to exit the International Space Station (ISS) on Friday on his first spacewalk. Tim Peake tries his spacesuit on for size Flying the flag: Tim Peake tries his spacesuit on for size. Pic: Tim Peake He'll be joined by the orbiting outpost's other Tim - NASA 'naut Kopra …
Lester Haines, 13 Jan 2016

Human cost of California gas well leak revealed

The BBC has published an entertaining analysis of the emissions of a blown-out natural gas well near Los Angeles, which is releasing so much methane that LA county supervisor Mike Antonovich was moved over the weekend to describe the disaster as "a mini-Chernobyl". For those of us wondering just how much is "so much", Auntie …
Lester Haines, 12 Jan 2016

Boffins switch on pinchfist incandescent bulb

Scientists at MIT have been dabbling with some tech which could see the incandescent lightbulb make a comeback at energy efficiencies far exceeding current LED and compact fluorescent (CFL) alternatives. The venerable incandescent bulb simply uses electricity to heat a tungsten filament to around 2,700°C, at which temperature …
Lester Haines, 12 Jan 2016

Cops stuff Mumbai thief with 48 bananas

Mumbai cops have chalked up another success for their preferred method of retrieving swallowed stolen goods: obliging the thief to eat bananas until the booty is expelled. According to the Hindustan Times, one Gopi R Ghaware was cuffed last Wednesday after snatching a 25g gold chain from a woman in a fish market in the east of …
Lester Haines, 11 Jan 2016

Anyone using M-DISC to archive snaps?

Since I've been at El Reg since it was all fields round here, readers can imagine I've accumulated quite a photo/video/misc rubbish collection over the years, and the time has arrived to address the issue of a proper permanent archive. My present system is as follows: photos and vid first land on the desktop PC, and are …
Lester Haines, 11 Jan 2016
Sir Terry Pratchett

Discworld fans stake claim to element 117

Campaigning Terry Pratchett aficionados have followed the lead of Lemmy fans in demanding that one of the four new elements recently admitted to the periodic table be named in honour of their hero. Last week, we reported that an online petition is calling for either element 113, 115, 117 or 118 to be dubbed "Lemmium". Cue …
Lester Haines, 11 Jan 2016

Chinese unleash autonomous airborne taxi

The "where's my bloody flying car?" protesters among you should take heart that the world may be a 23-minute autonomous flight closer to the reality of personal airborne transport with the unveiling of the EHang 184 "autonomous aerial vehicle". The 200kg EHang 184 promises to "achieve humanity’s long-standing dream of easy, …
Lester Haines, 08 Jan 2016

Catalan town hall seriously downsizes monarch

Representatives of a Catalan town hall have been ordered to appear before a judge after fulfilling their legal obligation to display a portrait of the reigning monarch ... using a passport-sized portrait of King Felipe VI. The 17-strong council in Torredembarra, Tarragona, voted unanimously to downsize Phil the Sixth on the …
Lester Haines, 08 Jan 2016

Live-streaming paper plane drone takes to the skies

For an example of just how far paper plane and drone tech have come since the historic launch of our Vulture 1 aircraft back in 2010, look no further than the PowerUp FPV - described as the "first ever paper airplane drone with a live streaming camera". Various configurations of PowerUp The chaps behind the PowerUp FPV have …
Lester Haines, 08 Jan 2016

Foetuses offered vaginal music streaming service

Mums to be who subscribe to the idea that a few choice tunes have a positive effect on their unborn nippers*, and who don't mind having a bit of Mozart piped directly into their vaginas, should check out Babypod – described as "the only device that has demonstrated to stimulate vocalisation of babies before birth with music …
Lester Haines, 07 Jan 2016

Fans demand 'Lemmium' periodic table tribute

Inevitably, and agreeably, an online petition is demanding that one of the four heavy metal elements coming soon to an engorged periodic table near you be named "Lemmium", in honour of recently departed Motörhead frontman Ian Fraser Kilmister, aka Lemmy. The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) has …
Lester Haines, 06 Jan 2016

HPE's London boozer dubbed the 'Hewlett You Inn?'

It's official: Hewlett Packard Enterprise's private London drinking club has been dubbed the "Hewlett You Inn?" in a reader poll which saw the name pip "The DrinkJet" to the post by a single vote. To recap for the benefit of those who inexplicably missed what was the single most significant IT-related boozer scoop of 2015, it …
Lester Haines, 06 Jan 2016

Curiosity Rover eyes Mars' creeping dunes

NASA's Curiosity rover has delivered a fine panoramic postcard of a Martian sand dune, snapped as the trundling explorer ascends the Red Planet's Mount Sharp. The full dune panorama as snapped by Curiosity A distant Mount Sharp rises above the Namib Dune. Pic: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS (big version here) The four-metre-high " …
Lester Haines, 05 Jan 2016

Periodic table enjoys elemental engorgement

The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) has announced it's satisfied that elements 113, 115, 117, and 118 really do exist and can take their places on the periodic table. Element 113 (going under the temporary name and symbol ununtrium, Uut) was discovered in 2012 by the Japanese research institute RIKEN …
Lester Haines, 04 Jan 2016

Brit cuffed for Kyrgyz 'horse penis' sausage quip

A British man is facing a possible five years in a Kyrgyz jail after ill-advisedly comparing local horse meat sausage chuchuck to a stallion's todger. Welding superintendent Michael McFeat was celebrating New Year's Eve at the Kumtor open-pit goldmine in eastern Kyrgyzstan when he posted photos on Facebook of a "fantastic …
Lester Haines, 04 Jan 2016
Error 500 on BBC News website

BBC News website takes New Year's Eve break

Updated The BBC News website evidently decided earlier today that it'd had enough of 2015, and took a New Year's Eve break which extended to several hours. Error 500 on BBC News website In solidarity with the hard-working site, we at El Reg knocked off for a few lunchtime liveners ahead of welcoming in 2016 tonight. We'll be back …
Lester Haines, 31 Dec 2015

Aroused Lycra-clad cyclist prompts Manchester cop dragnet

Manchester cops swooped on a city centre tram stop on Tuesday after a concerned woman reported a man sporting both Lycra cycling shorts and an erection, the Manchester Evening News reports. In a nail-biting blow-by-blow account on Twitter, Greater Manchester Police first confirmed they were moving to investigate... Call from …
Lester Haines, 30 Dec 2015

Would sir care to see the post-pub nosh menu?

We trust that readers have recovered from the annual Yule Orgy of Excess, where faces are stuffed with mince pies and turkey, all washed down with prodigious quantities of booze. Of course, you won't be done giving your liver a righteous kicking just yet, and with a hard-drinking New Year's Eve in prospect, it seems like an …
Lester Haines, 30 Dec 2015
Hungry goat licks lips. Pic: David Goehring

Oklahoma bloke cuffed for Chrimbo caprine coupling

An Oklahoma City man was detained at gunpoint on Christmas Eve by a goat owner who claimed he'd discovered the alleged zoophile in flagrante delicto with one of his animals. According to local KOKH Fox 25, 53-year-old Darryl Gene Scoggin was caught on surveillance camera in a barn in the west of the city at around 10.30PM, " …
Lester Haines, 29 Dec 2015

NASA books second Boeing space taxi

NASA reckons it's well on the way to restoring US human spaceflight capabilities with confirmation of the second booking for Boeing's CST-100 Starliner. Boeing - along with SpaceX and its Crew Dragon spacecraft - is moving towards establishing space taxi services to the International Space Station as part of the Commercial …
Lester Haines, 21 Dec 2015
Neil Cardy's massive bacon sarnie from a cafe on the A90

Brit 'naut Tim Peake tucks into space bacon sarnie

European Space Agency astronaut Tim Peake has pushed the orbital nosh envelope by enjoying a bacon sarnie as his first meal aboard the International Space Station. What makes a good leader? @StationCDRKelly having a hot bacon sarnie waiting as my 1st meal on #ISS. Boy that tasted good! #Principia — Tim Peake (@astro_timpeake) …
Lester Haines, 18 Dec 2015

Drunk? Need a slash? Avoid walls in Hackney

London's Hackney council is targeting male revellers' time-honoured practice of necking a skinful, and then relieving themselves against walls, with a hydrophobic coating designed to send steaming streams straight back to the piss-taker. According to the BBC, the authority spends £100k a year cleaning up after al fresco …
Lester Haines, 17 Dec 2015

Launch embiggens Galileo satnav fleet

Europe is now two satellites closer to firing up its Galileo satnav system following the launch today of Galileos 11 and 12. The pair blasted off from the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, atop a Soyuz rocket at 11:51 GMT. While the Russian lifter hoisted the satellites into low orbit, the final task of getting …
Lester Haines, 17 Dec 2015

Vote now to name HPE's London boozer

POLL The moment has arrived for you, our beloved readers, to name Hewlett Packard Enterprise's private London drinking club - a members-only establishment in the computer outfit's new HQ at 1 Aldermanbury Square. Here's the building last month, before HPE moved in, and when we spotted a licence application taped to the facade …
Lester Haines, 17 Dec 2015

Grim-faced cosmonaut in ISS manual docking nail-biter

European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Tim Peake, NASA 'naut Tim Kopra and cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko safely boarded the International Space Station yesterday following a tense manual docking of their Soyuz TMA-19M spacecraft with the orbiting outpost. The trio blasted off from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 11:03 GMT. …
Lester Haines, 16 Dec 2015

Lettuce-nibbling veggies menace Mother Earth

In most agreeable news for those of us who prefer wrapping our laughing gear round a solid bacon sarnie to nibbling a light salad, US boffins have concluded that switching to a vegetarian diet might actually increase "energy use, water use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions". That's according to a team from Carnegie Mellon …
Lester Haines, 15 Dec 2015
The Soyuz launch this morning. Pic: ESA

Brit 'naut Tim Peake thunders aloft

European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Tim Peake, NASA 'naut Tim Kopra and cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko blasted off this morning from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan en route to a six-month stay aboard the International Space Station. Tim Peake, Yuri Malenchenko and Tim Kopra See you in six months: Tim Peake, Yuri …
Lester Haines, 15 Dec 2015

Kids' TV show Rainbow in homosexual agenda shocker

A pastor has revealed that legendary UK kids' TV show Rainbow may have attempted to "homosexualise all children". In a shock YouTube vid, "Pastor D" of the End Times News Ministry questions the true meaning of the show's title song, which explicitly states the programme makers' plan to "paint the whole world with a rainbow …
Lester Haines, 14 Dec 2015

Brit 'naut Tim Peake preps for Space Station launch

European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Tim Peake is gearing up to blast off to the International Space Station tomorrow from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The former army helicopter and test pilot will join NASA 'naut Tim Kopra cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko atop the Soyuz-TMA19M for a scheduled departure from terra firma at …
Lester Haines, 14 Dec 2015
Kjell Lindgren of NASA (left), Oleg Kononenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos, center) and Kimiya Yui

ISS 'naut trio return to snowy terra firma

NASA's Kjell Lindgren, cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko and Kimiya Yui of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency are back on terra firma following their departure from the International Space Station earlier today. The Soyuz capsule departs the ISS. Pic: Scott Kelley The Soyuz TMA-17M departs the ISS. Pic: Scott Kelly The trio's …
Lester Haines, 11 Dec 2015

NZ unfurls proposed new flag

The days of New Zealand's flag bearing the Union Jack may be numbered after citizens voted in favour of a new design featuring the silver fern. The remodelled "black, white and blue" banner, by architect Kyle Lockwood, narrowly topped a poll offering five alternatives, according to the New Zealand Herald. The preliminary …
Lester Haines, 11 Dec 2015

Spanish village mounts Playmobil extravaganza

PICS We're delighted to report that the first Playmobil expo in the Spanish village of Tivissa turned out to be a bit of a blinder. We were alerted to last weekend's miniature celebration - forming part of the IV Fira De Natal (Fourth Xmas Festival) - by expat reader Neil Tragham (and yes, that's his real name). Poster for the …
Lester Haines, 11 Dec 2015

Name that HPE boozer: Last orders please

Our call for potential names for Hewlett Packard Enterprise's private London drinking club has prompted the expected rush to the bar from readers. The paradigm-busting green rectangle formerly known as HP or Hewlett Packard or whatever will serve up booze and music to punters at its new City of London HQ at 1 Aldermanbury …
Lester Haines, 11 Dec 2015

ISS trio set for televised taxi ride home

NASA TV will this morning offer live coverage of the departure from the International Space Station of astronaut Kjell Lindgren of NASA, cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, and Kimiya Yui of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. The trio are due to seal the hatch on their Soyuz TMA-17M spacecraft at 06:00 GMT, undocking from the …
Lester Haines, 11 Dec 2015
ISS

International Space Station braces for pre-Christmas rush

Crew aboard the International Space Station are preparing for a busy run-up to Christmas, with a Cygnus space truck to unload, three new residents due to arrive next week, followed by a Russian resupply mission slated to launch to the orbiting outpost shortly after. Cygnus approaches the ISS yesterday. Pic: NASA TV Cygnus …
Lester Haines, 10 Dec 2015

Enraged Brits demand Donald Trump UK ban

Updated Enraged British citizens in their thousands are rushing to sign an e-petition demanding US presidential wannabe and blow-dried rabble-rouser Donald Trump be barred from darkening the UK's doors. As won't have escaped your notice, Trump has got himself into a bit of bother by suggesting "a total and complete shutdown of Muslims …
Lester Haines, 09 Dec 2015

ISS 'nauts prepare for Cygnus space truck consensual grappling

International Space Station residents Scott Kelly and Kjell Lindgren are preparing to grapple the Orbital ATK Cygnus cargo truck, which blasted off for the orbiting outpost on Sunday evening. The pair will grab Cygnus using the ISS's Canadarm2 robotic limb and dock it with the ISS's Unity module at around 11:10 GMT this …
Lester Haines, 09 Dec 2015

HPE's private London drinking club: Name that boozer

Our recent shock exposé on plans by Hewlett Packard Enterprise to open a private drinking club in its new City of London HQ led to speculation as to what exactly the boozer might be christened. To recap, a Reg reader spotted a licence application attached to the front of 1 Aldermanbury Square, on which the-then HP signed a 15- …
Lester Haines, 09 Dec 2015

Brit 'naut Tim Peake will run the London Marathon – in space

Brit astronaut Tim Peake will participate in next year's London Marathon – albeit at an altitude of 400km and travelling at 28,800 km/h, relative to his fellow competitors. Tim Peake, Yuri Malenchenko and Tim Kopra Peake, along with Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and NASA astronaut Tim Kopra, is scheduled to blast off …
Lester Haines, 07 Dec 2015

Spanish village celebrates Playmobil nativity

We're obliged to expat reader Neil Tragham for alerting us to a forthcoming Playmobil Christmas celebration in his home village of Tivissa (Pop.: 1,500 + cattle). Poster for the Playmobil event in Tivissa Locals are invited to present "dioramas" featuring our fave figurines, and Neil says he'll be on hand over the weekend …
Lester Haines, 02 Dec 2015

Europe launches search for Einstein's space-time ripples

The European Space Agency's LISA Pathfinder spacecraft is due to blast off tomorrow from Kourou, French Guiana, on its mission to "test the technology needed to develop future space-borne gravitational wave detectors". The launch date is not arbitrary. It celebrates the 100th anniversary of the publication of Albert Einstein's …
Lester Haines, 01 Dec 2015

US gourmets sizzle in bacon-scented underwear

It may be a couple of rashers too far, but we feel obliged to alert readers to the immediate availability bacon-scented undies, courtesy of purveyors of all things pork J&D's Foods. The bacon-scented underwear The $19.99 hand-crafted his'n'hers smalls feature "state of the art moisture-wicking, scent-emission technology …
Lester Haines, 26 Nov 2015

HPE to open private London drinking club

It has come to our attention that megacorp Hewlett Packard Enterprise is planning to open a private drinking establishment in its new London nerve centre, for the benefit of "employees, officers, guests and persons attending bona fide private functions". Earlier this year, the then-HP signed a 15-year lease on 1 Aldermanbury …
Lester Haines, 26 Nov 2015
Terminator

UK gov sinks £25k into Pi-powered cyberdesk

A London furniture design outfit has trousered a £25k Innovate UK grant to prototype "the office desk of the future". "Open-making" champion Opendesk - which offers downloadable designs you can knock up yourself or hand to a local manufacturer* - is tasked with hewing a customisable cyberdesk from the living plywood. …
Lester Haines, 25 Nov 2015

Thai women drugged punters 'with Xanax-spiked nipples' – cops

NSFW Two Thai women were cuffed yesterday and charged with drugging and robbing two tourists in the beach resort of Pattaya.* According to this local report, Iranian Gholamreza Azizollah, 52, and Israeli Yakov Beri Reznik, 65, rolled up at the police station claiming they'd been incapacitated and fleeced by Pattanawan Sawangcheun …
Lester Haines, 25 Nov 2015

Suck it, Elon – Jeff Bezos' New Shepard space rocket blasts off, lands in one piece

Pics and vid The was much whooping and popping of champagne corks yesterday at Amazon supremo Jeff Bezos' space outfit Blue Origin: the company's New Shepard rocket successfully performed a VTOL flight – a vertical takeoff and landing. It's the organization's second attempt at bringing a rocket back to Earth in one piece. The technology …
Lester Haines, 24 Nov 2015

TV broadcast vans drive ESA from Perth

Urban sprawl and interference from TV broadcast vans have obliged the European Space Agency (ESA) to shutter its Perth station in Western Australia, which until now has been handling initial tracking of spacecraft soaring aloft from Kourou, French Guiana. Perth station "hosts a 15-metre antenna with transmission and reception …
Lester Haines, 24 Nov 2015

Science Museum trumpets Da Vinci expo

London's Science Museum is trumpeting its forthcoming exhibition Leonardo da Vinci: The Mechanics of Genius, which opens its doors on 10 February next year. A view of the da Vinci exhibition Right now and for £10 (£7 concessions), you can grab a ticket for the "visually stunning" extravaganza which "highlights the immense …
Lester Haines, 24 Nov 2015