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Brilliant Brit bloke builds breakfast-belching BACON DRONE

In what is described as "a breakthrough moment for humanity", a British bloke has constructed a tricopter designed to remotely deliver a full English breakfast of bacon, egg, sausage, mushroom and tomato ketchup. Joel Veitch's Bacon Drone Joel Veitch's cutting-edge design of "sticks and tape and coat hangars" is controlled by …
Lester Haines, 16 Dec 2013

Teary-eyed snappers recall the golden age of film

Interview For those readers with a tendency to get teary-eyed over the golden age of film, and the days before digital swept physical photographic media into the cutting room bin of history, we're delighted to take a trip down memory lane today with professional photographer Phil Houghton. Portrait of Phil Houghton holding mighty Nikon …
Lester Haines, 10 Dec 2013

LOHAN embraces handsome young autopilot

We invite fans of our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) project to raise a glass or two today to UAV specialist 3D Robotics, which has very kindly agreed to offer our Vulture 2 spaceplane a brain transplant in the form of the mighty Pixhawk autopilot. Two views of the 3D robotics Pixhawk As LOHAN regulars know, our …
Lester Haines, 4 Dec 2013

Sick to death of Xmas? Try these explosive gift ideas

Yule picture special It's that time of year again when whining children and relentless TV advertising attempt to persuade honest, hard-working folk to empty their wallets, hammer their credits cards and reduce themselves to penury in a glorious Yule orgy of unfettered capitalism. Ah, Christmas - a pagan festival hijacked by bible-bashers and now …
Lester Haines, 2 Dec 2013

LOHAN buffs body for sizzling vinyl wrap

Our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission continues to attract enthusiastic and expert support from around the world, and following the welcome news last week that we're getting a bit of help with the Vulture 2 spaceplane's autopilot, we're delighted to announce that said rocket ship is poised to get the sizzling …
Lester Haines, 25 Nov 2013

3D printing: 'Third industrial revolution' or a load of old cobblers?

Feature Readers of The Register with their fingers on the throbbing technopulse of innovation will have noticed that - if the hype is anything to go by - 3D printing is about to redefine paradigms, rewrite/defenestrate/burn textbooks and give the unwashed masses the power to print iPhone covers at will, thereby shaking the whole notion …
Lester Haines, 20 Nov 2013
The APM mounted in the Vulture 2

Autopilot guides Texan plane home from a dizzying 30,000m

In some highly encouraging news for The Reg's Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team, a Texan high-flyer recently used the ArduPilot Mega (APM) 2.6 to guide a glider back to base from a heady 30,780m (101,000ft). A still from the onboard camera during the flight of NTNS 4 Larry Grater's North Texas Near Space 4 ( …
Lester Haines, 19 Nov 2013
A group shot of the tasting team

The ULTIMATE cuppa showdown: And the winner is...

Cue the traditional fanfare of trumpets and thunderous drumroll as we reveal today the winner of our ultimate cuppa showdown. Mug with our Vulture logo This cha-tastic adventure – the aim of which was "not to examine the hundreds of possible tea type/brewing permutations, but rather establish a set of basic rules which can …
Lester Haines, 18 Nov 2013
The Panono team snapped from an airborne Panono

Flying 360° panoramic camera poised for lift-off

Three Berlin-based inventors are rattling the tin to raise funds for their Panono camera – a throwable photoglobe delivering "incredible full-spherical images". The Panono The 300g Panono packs 36 cameras, capable of delivering a 360°x360° 72 megapixel panorama. When launched heavenwards, an onboard accelerometer detects …
Lester Haines, 15 Nov 2013
The painted nose of the Vulture 2, with its yellow upper and led underside

El avión Buitre 2 rinde homenaje a nuestros amigos españoles

Hoy queremos rendir homenaje a los miembros españoles del equipo de la misión Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) - un avión de alta tecnología que pretendemos lanzar a la estratosfera con un motor de cohete. Sumario grafico de la mision LOHAN Hace tres años, con el apoyo de estas personas desinteresadas, lanzamos el …
Lester Haines, 14 Nov 2013

Huge Antarctic iceberg: 1 Singapore? 8 Manhattans? This is CHAOS

The Register's standards soviet is today calling for an international symposium of iceberg experts and builders with really, really long tape measures to settle once and for all just how to quantify titanic Titanic-busting ice mountains. In a report this week on a massive lump which has detached itself from Antarctica's Pine …
Lester Haines, 14 Nov 2013
The painted nose of the Vulture 2, with its yellow upper and led underside

LOHAN sees bright red over Vulture 2 paintjob

It's been a week of tin-rattling and seeing red here at the Special Project Bureau's mountaintop headquarters as we finally knuckled down to slapping some paint on our Vulture 2. We threw the matter of our magnificant spaceplane's livery over to you, our beloved Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) fans, and you responded …
Lester Haines, 13 Nov 2013

Mixed bag of motors lifts India's budget Mars shot

India's budget* Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) last week thundered heavenwards from Sriharikota spaceport atop a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), en route to a rendezvous with the Red Planet in September 2014. PSLV-C25 blasts off. Pic: ISRO PSLV-C25 blasts off. Pic: ISRO Weighing in at 500kg, plus 850kg of fuel, the MOM …
Lester Haines, 12 Nov 2013
The RoboRoach with its backpack. Pic: Backyard Brains

Right royal rumpus over remote-control 'RoboRoach'

The makers of a cockroach electronic "backpack" which allows humans to control the movements of the insect via a mobile phone have unsurprisingly come under fire for what some see as a pseudoscientific way to mistreat animals. Backyard Brains' "RoboRoach" is a $99.99 Kickstarter-funded project, described as "an innovative …
Lester Haines, 11 Nov 2013

Boffins build R2-WEE-2: The urine-powered robot with a human-like heart

Scientists have taken one step closer to creating a truly autonomous waste-driven robot by building an artificial heart capable of pumping urine into the machine's bacterially-driven "engine room". The "EcoBot" is powered by "electricity-generating microbial fuel cells that employ live microorganisms to digest waste organic …
Lester Haines, 8 Nov 2013
A detail of the Vulture 2's nose structure

Vulture 2 spaceplane STRIPPED to the bone

The Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team is preparing the Vulture 2 aircraft for its eye-catching paintjob, and while we rattle tins of primer and fiddle with wet-and-dry, we thought you might enjoy some intimate bare-bones views of our magnificent spaceplane. Here's the beast in its naked form (more photos here …
Lester Haines, 6 Nov 2013
Clint O'Connor's pinhole camera. Pic: Clint O'Connor

Inventor whips lenscap off 3D-printed pinhole camera

The photography aficionados among you who still recall with teary-eyed nostalgia the days before digital domination might appreciate an agreeable return to the old school, albeit with a hi-tech twist: a 3D-printed pinhole camera... Clint O'Connor's pinhole camera. Pic: Clint O'Connor Inventor Clint O'Connor promises "magical …
Lester Haines, 5 Nov 2013

LOHAN's mighty thruster poised for hot coupling

As the Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) team preps our Vulture 2 spaceplane for a quick paintjob, we're still mulling just how best to connect the aircraft's rocket motor heater to its external battery supply. To rewind for those of you who may have inexplicably missed the LOHAN hot coupling excitement, we've got a …
Lester Haines, 4 Nov 2013

Funds flung at 9-inch fan-built Raspberry Pi monitor

It's hats off today to Alex Eames of RasPi.TV and Dave Mellor from Cyntech, who've Kickstarted their way in spectacular style to an "affordable 9-inch high-def screen for the Raspberry Pi". Responding to popular demand, the enterprising duo set out to build a "small and portable" screen to take advantage of the fruity …
Lester Haines, 4 Nov 2013
Two Amanita caesaria

Need an internet antidote? Try magic mushrooms

Picture special Autumn has wrapped its frosty claws around the Special Project Bureau's Spanish mountaintop headquarters, and as we prepare to hunker down for the winter, there's a final opportunity to spend some quality time away from the internet, and stock the larder with nature's bounteous harvest. This year's cornucopia verily runneth over …
Lester Haines, 1 Nov 2013
REID index

Ahhh, SATISFACTION: Watch while we set a NAS on FIRE

A vendor has made the silly mistake of claiming its kit is fireproof, prompting a certain El Reg hack to ponder where he'd left his matches... The vendor in question is IOsafe, whose products have been reviewed on El Reg before. Last time, its single-disk unit survived being dunked in a well for far longer than originally …

Vulture 2 paintjob: Four-year-old nipper triumphs

It has been emotional, but we reckon we've finally got a Vulture 2 livery which satisfies all the requirements for a spaceplane paintjob. For those of you who've inexplicably missed all the excitement, we recently invited readers to suggest liveries for our beautiful vehicle, seen here in its raw state with Low Orbit Helium …
Lester Haines, 25 Oct 2013

Oz racehorse shod with 3D-printed titanium hoofwear

Oz boffins have used 3D printing to produce a custom-made set of titanium shoes for a Melbourne racehorse - an example of the "endless possibilities" of the technology. A team from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) used a handheld scanner to image the horse's hooves, ran the result through …
Lester Haines, 24 Oct 2013

Vulture 2 paintjob: Kim Jong-un battles flag-waving Brits

It's hats off to all those Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) fans who took time to present proposed liveries for our Vulture 2 spaceplane. Following a first round of submissions, we asked stragglers to get their act together, and behold they did verily deploy the crayons. Here are the last suggestions, and for your …
Lester Haines, 24 Oct 2013
Picture by Afonso Lima

LOHAN's vital statistics splashed across fruity display

Our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission has just been served an extra slice of Raspberry Pi in the form of an all-singing, all-dancing balloon chase system. Hydrogen helium head honcho and electronics wrangler Dave Akerman decided haring around the countryside in pursuit of mighty orbs would be a whole lot easier …
Lester Haines, 22 Oct 2013
Gordan Ugarkovic's view of Saturn

Amateur image-wrangler reveals stitched snap of Saturn's splendour

An amateur image processor has stitched together raw images from NASA's Cassini spacecraft to produce a stunning image of Saturn, seen from above on 10 October. Gordan Ugarkovic's view of Saturn Gordan Ugarkovic constructed the view from "12 image footprints with red, blue and green filters from Cassini's imaging science …
Lester Haines, 18 Oct 2013

Reg reader's nipper takes felt pens to Vulture 2

We're progressing nicely towards selecting a lively livery for our Vulture 2 spaceplane, although following publication earlier this week of the first batch of reader suggestions, Stelios Zacharias got in touch to insist "my four-year-old can design better than that". The Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) fan wrote: …
Lester Haines, 17 Oct 2013
Twente at Alice Springs

So you want to be a solar racer? You'll need a laptop and some string

World Solar Challenge On Sunday, Mark Winterbottom, Jamie Whincupp and Craig Lowndes stood on the podium after Australia's epic Bathurst 1000 race and waxed lyrical about the importance of their teams, and well they might: nobody driving against any kind of competition, whether race or challenge, goes far without their team. Out on the road, at the …

Reg readers rise to Vulture 2 paintjob challenge

Fans of our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission have outdone themselves in offering suggestions as to just how we should paint our magnificent Vulture 2 spaceplane. Given that the world's first 3D-printed, rocket-powered vehicle is currently a bit lacking in the visibility department, as you can see from this …
Lester Haines, 14 Oct 2013
The finish line of the 2013 World Solar Challenge

Google peered through Glass during solar race

World Solar Challenge Vulture South is preparing a round-up of the 2013 World Solar Challenge and in the process something interesting has come up: Google. During the race, Solar Challenge officials whispered to Vulture South that they had an inkling Google observers were discretely talent-spotting as the caravan rolled on. At the Adelaide finish …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Oct 2013

Raspberry Picam magic: More snaps from LOHAN's fruity eye in the sky

Picture special A Sony factory in South Wales churned out its millionth Raspberry Pi this week, so we thought it would be a good moment to bring readers more from our "Pi In The Sky" camera rig, which has performed to spectacular effect during test flights for our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) mission. Click here for a bigger …
Lester Haines, 11 Oct 2013
Solar Team Eindhoven's Stella

Australian solar challengers lead two race classes

World Solar Challenge Four of Australia's five entries in the 2013 World Solar Challenge remain in contention after day five of racing, with two in contention for higher honours. The best-performing Australian car is that of Aurora Vehicle Association, which made it to Port Augusta last night and therefore leads the Adventure class. It's also ahead …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Oct 2013
Close-up of the new SunCat module

SOLAR SECRETS of WSC winner team Nuon

World Solar Challenge Although the World Solar Challenge is intended to be a challenge rather than a simple “race”, the quest to be first is one of the things that drives innovation. And, just as F1 gave the world disk brakes, some of the innovations helping to drive the World Solar Challenge will probably end up giving lessons and technologies to …
World Solar Challenge Route

Nuon on the brink of another World Solar Challenge win

World Solar Challenge The “Dutch oven”, Nuon Solar Team, is tantalisingly close to claiming Challenger-class line honours from its shadow since Darwin, Team Tokai from Japan. Passing the Atfinish of timing of the World Solar Challenge at 10:03 am Darwin time, at Angel Vale in Adelaide's suburban north, Nuon maintained its lead over Tokai. The …
Coober Pedy warning sign

Rumoured rain can't dampen sun-racers' spirits

World Solar Challenge Day five of racing in the 2013 World Solar Challenge will bring different challenges to participants. At the head of the field, leading teams will make it to the finish line today in the city of Adelaide, a cosmopolitan metropolis where they can expect to find any comfort they desire. At the rear of the field teams camped out …
Team BlueSky's flipped box

Canuck truck stuck in muck

World Solar Challenge The car-sized box containing tools and equipment for Canadian team Blue Sky Solar Racing's entrant in the World Solar Challenge today fell off its trailer and flipped over in the middle of the remote Australian desert. The Reg happened upon the scene not long after the accident, in which nobody was hurt, although team Blue Sky …
Michigan celebrate in Adelaide. Pic: World Solar Challenge

Australian teams burn up the road on solar car race

World Solar Challenge Video Four of Australia's five teams in the World Solar Challenge are still rolling towards Adelaide. Australia's leading contender is Team Arrow, which is now in seventh position among the Challenger class. The University of New South Wales' Sunswift is running second in the Cruiser class. Both spent last night somewhere south of …
Nuon Day Two

Nuon, Tokai maintain six-race rivalry

Day Two of the World Solar Challenge has ended with only a handful of the vehicles reaching the checkpoint at Ti Tree, north of Alice Springs. The leading vehicle remains Nuon from the Netherlands (1,340 km covered), followed by Tokai University (1,332 km) and Team Twente (1,295 km). Stanford and the University of Michigan round …
Team Nuon Day One

Dutch oven overcooked in World Solar Challenge

After a stellar start to the World Solar Challenge, the fancied Nuon team from Delft has had to cop a ten minute penalty for breaking speed limits, while Japan's Tokai University entrant has been given a more serious 30 minute penalty. The penalties will probably put Solar Team Twente (also from The Netherlands) in the lead at …
The University Malaysia Pahang team world solar challenge car

Wacky racers – The Reg's guide to 2013's Solar Challengers

World Solar Challenge The World Solar Challenge kicks off today, with 36 solely-solar-powered cars about to attempt a 3,000km journey across Australia from the northern city of Darwin to Adelaide in the south. The Reg is following the race – and making some odd side trips you'll learn about soon – but with the cars on the starting line we felt it …
Artist's rendering of Resolution in the Outback. Pic:  Cambridge University Eco Racing

Cambridge withdraws from World Solar Challenge

World Solar Challenge Cambridge University Eco Racing (CUER), Britain's sole entrant in the trans-continental World Solar Challenge starting tomorrow in Australia, has withdrawn its “Resolution” vehicle from the race. CUER entered the race with an innovative design featuring tilting solar panels, the better to catch the maximum amount of solar energy …
Artist's rendering of Resolution in the Outback. Pic:  Cambridge University Eco Racing

Unknown Aussie and Dutch family car spring solar surprise

World Solar Challenge Fancied teams have been shaded by dark horse entries at the time trial prologue to the 2013 World Solar Challenge. Professor John Storey, the event's Chief Scientist, told The Reg the USA's University of Michigan, Japan's Tokai University, Italy's Onda Solare and Sweden's Jönköping University as teams to watch. Yet None featured …