* Posts by HeyMickey

51 publicly visible posts • joined 30 Mar 2010


Asleep on the job: Students dream of GROPING RACKS after darkness falls


how "their" enforced?

s/their/they are/

Dell under fire for labour rights abuses at China plants


Meaningless statement is meaningless

"Such factors led to a turnover of workers at some plants of up to 40 per cent"

40% turnover over what time period? A week? A month? A year? Since the factory opened?

The last one wouldn't be that bad...

Animal Liberation drone surveillance plan draws fire

Big Brother

Re: "<group> with nothing to hide have nothing to fear"

If someone trots out this tired old line, just ask them if they would be so kind to post their credit/debit card details including CVV, together with the last 3 years tax returns/bank statements. Also, every photo in the family album.

Or ask them if they mind you coming around and installing CCTV in their bedroom/bathroom...

Or ask for all their forum passwords...

Usually shuts them up.

Experts agree: Your next car will be smarter than you


Re: LGV drivers

"If you're trying to tell me that these "truck heroes" really have to even attempt passing when one truck's limiter is 1 mph off you failed all the way."

-Good point, although you would be lucky to get a whole mph speed differential most of the time.

"Oh really? You obviously haven't figured out that that leads to all LGVs driving at the speed of the slowest one (which is what you can see when they're not allowed to overtake at all)."

-But the suggestion was not NO overtaking, just that it is inconsiderate to overtake when speed differential << 1mph. If you allow yourself to slow down by <1mph to match the speed of the truck in front it won't significantly affect your journey time. If the vehicle in front of you slows further because the vehicle in front of the vehicle in front's limiter is even slower, then congratulations you now are capable of generating >1mph speed differential and overtaking both in the time it would have taken to overtake one, thereby leading to less obstruction of traffic overall as two or more manoeuvres become one, with the double overtake occurring in the time previously taken by a single overtake.

Of course, this would never happen in the real world because it would mean that truck drivers would have to (shock horror) actually have to put some effort into controlling their own speed like the rest of us, rather than driving around with foot to the floor the whole time...

"And another thing: tailgating is never a good idea. Tailgating a heavy vehicle is a remarkably bad idea-"

- True, but yet LGVs/HGVs seem to be the worst offenders at this - they wait until they are about 1 metre away from the one in front before braking/changing lanes (often with indicators on only after commencing the manoeuvre)

"And if you have been paying attention to your driving (as everyone in these comments claim they do), you should know when a lorry is about to overtake even before they start indicating"

- Yes you can tell they are about to indicate by the fact that they have already started to change lane yet still haven't seen the car/bike overtaking in their blind spot. The indicators usually come on 1-2 seconds after the car/bike toots the horn to stop themselves from getting sideswiped.

Keyboard, you're not my type


Editor gone down the pub already?

WTF the first two paragraphs are repeated!?!?

Yes, I know there is a 'corrections' link but it's much more fun to mock the Reg in public...

Ubuntu for smartphones aims to replace today's mobes, laptops

Paris Hilton

Because it uses the same device drivers as Android - Accelerated X?

Does this mean that Canonical have written an accelerated X server which runs on top of a generic OpenGL ES stack? Or are they just expecting everyone to put up with framebuffer X?

Littlest pirate’s Winnie-the-Pooh laptop on the way home


The dad lacks backbone

See title - every time someone caves in to a demand like this by settling, it helps to validate the business model leading to more occurrences of the same.

Drone security project to go open source


Not sure if want

If we close all the security holes in the drones, how will us meatbags hope to survive/fight back when Skynet takes over?

Terminator icon obviously...

Privacy group damns Ubuntu's Amazon search marriage


New level of Reg proofreading fail

How the fuck do you manage to take the initial letters of Electronic Frontier Foundation and end up with EEF?

British IT consultant talks of his three years as an Iraqi hostage

Black Helicopters

Not a democracy

The US isn't really a democracy anymore insofar as there is no longer any way to prove the votes have been correctly counted any more...

Better luck next time Blofeld! Five Bond plot myths busted


'We asked our expert – we are forbidden to name him by the Official Secrets Act'

So that'll be Lewis Page then?

Chinese e-cars to turn London cabs green


Re: Where will the power come from?

all the beer will come from a proper hand pump....

If only it were so. Unfortunately the fizzy piss is dispensed by use of gas pressure, not electric pump. Even more unfortunately, the inline chiller won't be working, so it will be warm fizzy piss too...

Renault Clio IV and R-Link Android console hands-on preview



Bloody hell the price of a base spec Clio has gone up a bit hasn't it? I bought a base spec Clio in 2005 and it cost me 5,995 brand new. That means the price has almost doubled!

Sharp punches out über-retina phone screen


Re: Has applications for viewfinders and head-up displays

Sounds like this panel would be ideal for a HMD.

Occulus Rift with one of these in, anyone?

Investor pulls out of Facebook, pumps cash into pork-printing joint

Thumb Up

Finally, an opportunity to deny PETA some campaign funding...

Hopefully the scientists behind this will claim the $1million off PETA:


Anything that takes money out of the pockets of those nut-nuts gets my thumbs up. Maybe they could even take the million dollars and give it to a real animal charity. Like, you know, one that doesn't keep hundreds of dead dogs in a meat locker then throw some of them in a neighbor's bin when that gets full...

Greens wage war on clean low-carbon renewable energy


Re: Water contamination and fracking

Sure, but doesn't most of this new "Hot Dry Rock" geothermal power rely on performing frac jobs on granite which is undergoing/had recently undergone radioactive decay? You know, the kind that evolves Radon gas as it decays...

PS: It's _frac_ not frack, there is no 'k' in 'hydraulic fracturing'.

US flags from the 1970s SEEN ON MOON

Black Helicopters

Re: Hubble

Of course, one of these might do the job:


as they have adjustable focal length optics, what with being originally designed for spying. Might cost you $500M or so to fit it out and launch it. Or you could just try asking the NRO nicely - I'm sure they probably already have a couple of similar/better models in orbit. Wouldn't surprise me if they can actively track a fast-moving object in orbit too - I can't see the US not having spent the extra cash to have the ability to image other countries' space assets as well as their ground assets...

SpaceX Dragon freed to push off home


Re: hmmm

Nonsense you are both wrong. He is actually Dr. Evil:


SpaceX Dragon chokes at the last second


@imanidiot Re: Maybe...

There is already a company doing air-dropped rocket launches - Orbital Sciences' Pegasus rocket is dropped from an old L1011 airliner. Only does 445kg to LEO though - a fraction of what Falcon 9 can do.

Mobile fee dodgers will get away with enough cash to bail out Greece


@ everyone saying use a different crypro algorythm

A5 is the GSM crypto standard. If you introduce a new crypto standard, you would have to convince the handset manufacturers to support it. By supporting another kind of crypto, the handsets would no longer be standards compliant, so they wouldn't get certified elsewhere meaning you would have created your own proprietary 1 country/operator system that doesn't work/may be illegal anywhere else.

Mobile net filters block legit content too – campaign group


Vodafone blocked a supplier of engineering plastics and a automation systems supplier we use amongst others, and no-one at customer support was even able to tell me who administered the block list/who to send complaints to. They claimed they used a third party blocklist, but the supplier of the block list claimed vodafone was not a user of their list, and confirmed none of the sites I had issue with were on their blacklist. All vodafone did when challenged with this was offer reapeatedly to enable adult content for us - something we do not want on our business accounts for understandable reasons!

Grab your L-plates, flying cars of sci-fi dreams have landed


@ Steven Roper

In the words of Wolfgang Pauli, Das ist nicht nur nicht richtig, es ist nicht einmal falsch!


Not for the city anyway

Flying cars will never see use in the city. As others have pointed out, public transport/cycling is the answer for that particular problem. City centres are no place for aircraft, and only multi-engine types are allowed to fly over London anyway (safety reasons, SE helicopters allowed as an exception along the approved helicopter routes where you are always in auto-rotate range of somewhere landable). I presume other cities have similar rules, if they don't they should!

Here's a suggestion - maybe flying cars will nicely fill the role of long point to point journeys >200miles once we are all driving battery electric cars for our daily commutes and don't want to stop to recharge along the way? In other words, 2 cars: one electric for short journeys and city use, and one flying IC engined car for long journeys...


Re: Power requirements

Just because most A/C achieve crap MPG figures doesn't mean that flight inherently requires more power than land transport. You need to consider:

1) The car's mileage is measured at a speed of ~50mph or so, the plane's is measured at ~100kts which is ~120mph. I challenge you to get much more than 15-20MPG from a car travelling at 120mph.

2) The example aircraft in your link (Cessna 172) was designed in the 1950s. Aerodynamics have come a long way since then.

3) The engine in that aircraft (Lycoming O-360) was also designed in the 1950s. Using 1930s car engine technology. Engine technology has come a long way since then. The brake specific fuel consumption of an O-360 is .43lb/hp.hr whereas a modern diesel car engine achieves 0.32lb/hp.hr i.e a 34% improvement in fuel consumption. More modern, efficient aircraft engines are available - but they generally only get put in new design aircraft.

Take a modern aircraft with a modern engine e.g Pipistrel Virus with a Rotax 912S as a better example. That combination achieves ~40MPG at a 135kt cruise i.e ~150mph! Doubt you'll beat that with a car...

'Super rogue wave' scuppers Lego pirate


Re: So... _how_ did they do it?

Turns out Physical Review X is an open access journal, so PDF link to the full article (as opposed to some crappy press release) here:


Arizona bill makes it illegal to 'annoy or offend' online





Misleading article is misleading

Notice the use of the work 'and' in the following sentence:

"It is unlawful for any person, with intent to terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend, to use any electronic or digital device AND use any obscene, lewd or profane language or suggest any lewd or lascivious act, or threaten to inflict physical harm to the person or property of any person."

i.e You can still intend to annoy and offend so long as you don't resort to profanity or threats of physical violence. Pretty sensible IMHO, and hopefuly will result in a higher intellectual standard of trolling...

Terrafugia flies first prototype: Flying cars 'within a year'



Well I'll be blown! I had to double-check the date wasn't yesterday on that one - I always assumed that the PAL-V was blatant vaporware, what with nothing but CG renders on the website when I last checked a few months ago. Now they have pictures of the prototype up and everything.


Where to start?

@PaulW: Eight minutes is the duration of the test flight _NOT_ the endurance. An aircraft with 8 minutes endurance would never be legal, as you need 30 mins fuel/endurance in reserve on top of your anticipated fuel for the journey before taking off for a VFR Flight (and Light Sport Aircraft are all VFR only) or you are breaking the law.

@AC 16:18: Agreed, TB10's are quite fragile, what with being made by the French out of wafer thin aluminum and all. At least if you prang a transition you can most likely still drive it home - if you make a boo-boo with the Socata you're stuck at some remote airfield, either at the mercy of the resident maintainence contractors (if there are any) or facing a huge bill for de-rigging (can you even take the wings off without killing it?) and transportation back to your preferred CAMO. Of course the transition is also built of gel-coated composites, so will have a much better tolerance for minor dings/scrapes than the TB10. The usage case also makes a lot more sense in the USA where it is quite common for light aircraft owners to use them for business travel for intermediate length (300-500 miles or so) journeys. I'm guessing you live in the UK and mainly use your A/C for bacon butty runs/bimbling rather than serious travel?

@Bruceld:So how exactly does being roadable make it easier for terrorists than using any other existing light aircraft?

@Ian McNee: Yep the thought of this terrifies me too. Luckily the level of intelligence/effort involved in learning to fly tends to filter out the kind of numpty who would think to try this.

@Aaron Em: I'm pretty sure they have already taken quite a few pre-orders - probably more than enough to make this financially viable without further sales. Although it's a lot more expensive than your typical car, it's really not that expensive compared to most other LSAs.

@Ru: Well said - i don't think anyone who buys this is going to use it to do the weekly shop. As for the comment on no LSA equivelent in the UK/EU, there is, at least on the aircraft certification side - it's called VLA, and it's less restrictive than LSA (no 120kt speed limit, no restriction on VP props, extra 100kg of MTOW), yet very few aircraft have been certified under it. In fact introducing VLA is one of the few (only) good things EASA have done IMHO. There is also a reduced license in the works (LAPL) which will be somewhat akin to a light sports pilot's certificate when it is introduced in 2014.

Now for my two penneth: IMHO the Transition is hideously ugly as both a car and an aircraft and I can only shudder at the thought of how it most likely handles - any aircraft with a ballistic recovery chute as standard makes me wonder about likely spin characteristics! If a flying car it must be, I'd rather have a vintage Taylor Aerocar any day of the week - much classier.

ALL Visa cards blab punters' names - not just Barclaycards


Sony are just as bad as Amazon

A recent experience with the PlayStation Network shows that Sony don't even check the CVV - I entered the wrong number by mistake, and the transaction authorised anyway - and this was the FIRST use of this card on the PSN!

Planet-hunting Kepler hits EXOPLANET JACKPOT


JPEG for a drawing? Really?

^ See title

That is all.

Boffins quarrel over ridding world of leap seconds



If the Earth stopped rotating completely, you would be mercilessly crushed under the devastating impact of a whole 0.03ms-2 of additional effective gravitational force...

LG calls up 720p IPS screen smartphone for Verizon


Android 3.2 Gingerbread???

Reg Fail

Facebook shoves your face into creepy 'sponsored stories' in 2012


Not just facebook

Direct Line car insurance have been sending me creepy personalised mailshots for years... eg. Stock photo of your make/model/colour outside a stock photo house, but with your numberplate on the car and your house number/name on the house, and a road sign with your road name also in shot. I always make a point of letting them know just how creepy I find it each renewal, as i'm sure do others, but they keep doing it anyway..

Iran displays video footage of captured US spy drone


So now this thing is in the wild, when do we get to see the teardown on iFixit???

Also, what's the odds this thing runs Linux somewhere - maybe they should run 'strings | grep GPL' over the fimware before sending a source request to L-M (Does someone flying something into your airspace count as 'distribution'?).

Seems to be the first thing most hackers do when acquiring a new shiny...

UK space radar satellite project gets funding kickstart


Re: Animal Health

Nah, it's probably to fund some proper biocontainment at Pirbright so they can keep the all the foot & mouth disease from getting out...

Pay-by-wave: At least it's better than being mugged


MITM Anyone?

As well as mugging, what's to stop you using 2 NFC smartphones to conduct a man in the middle relay attack - hold one phone up to someone else's card/back pocket, and the other up to the card reader in a shop. Wifi, bluetooth or UMTS links the two phones which act as a dumb bridge. Someone else ends up paying for your purchase and if the phones were purchased anonymously there is no traceability and no merchant account required... No card account required either, just two SIM free phones with NFC...

Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S Android smartphone


Not Fake

Generating a stereo image pair from a panorama is a well known trick and is simple as taking two copies of the image and offsetting them a small amount. Not 'fake' in any way...

Lancs shale to yield '15 years' of gas for UK


@Steve Hosgood

Nah, everyone in the oil/gas industry still uses imperial units apart from the French. Even when I come across non-imperial units they are often CGS (centimeter, gram, second) as opposed to SI.

If you think cubic feet are bad, how about:

ppg = pounds per gallon (of additive)

ppb = pounds per barrel (and not parts per billion as you would expect)

mDft = mili Darcy-feet

or mixed units like pounds per square _centimeter_?

all of these are units I have dealt with in the last week at work...

Samsung offers eco-econo green DRAM


Reg units fail

See title...

Ofcom sets out airport fees


Out by a factor of 10^3

I think that should be 8.33/25 Kilo Hertz not Mega Hertz, since the whole VHF Airband is only ~29MHz wide...

David Attenborough dino doc shows limits of 3D TV

Dead Vulture

The irony of it all...

... Illustrating an extinct flying beastie next to a form of aviation which will also be as good as extinct pretty soon if EASA and Eurocontrol get their way with the new European Rules of the Air!

Tombstone to lament the slow painful death of my favorite weekend pastime.

Windows Phone 7 unlockers let off with a warning


Title Schmitle

Q) And for that matter, why on earth are they putting financial barriers in the way of people who want to develop for their mobile platform anyway?

A) Maybe to discourage the casual coders from filling the app store with 10,000 fart and wobbly boobs apps?

Canadian flyboy prangs CF-18 Hornet


Strange Coincidence

It is a strange coincidence that I have been up at my local airfield (Lasham) training to recognise and recover from stalls/spins all weekend, only to come in to work on monday morning and see this. Definitely looks like a mushing stall, followed by a wing drop and the beginnings of a spin entry. If there was more distance to the ground, then a proper spin would probably have followed.

For anyone blaming an engine failure, I would just like to point out that I have never found such things (engines) necessary in the first place, having had several 1hr+ flights this weekend without one. My suspicion is that the engine just runs a big fan to keep the pilot cool - you can tell this because when the fan stops, the pilot starts sweating...

OK, I'll get my coat then. It's the one with the copy of 'A glider pilot bold' by Wally Kahn...

Secret sub tech hints at spooks' TEMPEST-busting bugs


Done by Acoustic Coupling eh?

I'm not sure that I buy this: Surely any kind of acoustic through-hull transmission is a no-no on a submarine, what with them trying to hide from sonar and all? I mean, if the sound resonates through the hull, then it will couple into the water too right?

The only way I can see that an acoustic method would work would be if they have used a frequency which is attenuated _drastically_ more by water than it is by metal/glass.

ARM chippies cooperate on Linux


@Mike Flex

You could indeed use Debian ARM, but it is built targeting ARMv4 and above. The current revision of the ARM architecture is ARMv7. This means it misses out on all of the potential optimisations for modern hardware (NEON SIMD, VFP etc) in order to maintain backwards compatibility. This results in crap performance compared to what is possible with a distro targeting a more modern ARM chip such as OE/Angstrom/Maemo/Android/Meego/Ubuntu etc.

Tesla Motors: Elon Musk's divorce won't sink us


Never mind Tesla what about Elon Musk's other startup?

Why no story on the register about Falcon 9 today? SpaceX are planning to launch this afternoon between 1500-1900UTC, and there's a live webcast:

http://www.spacex.com/updates.php <- For news

http://www.spacex.com/webcast.php <- Webcast

Atlantis bows out with Kennedy touchdown



I wouldn't exactly call any space launch system reliable:

Space Shuttle:

131 missions with 2 total losses

14 people killed

Most recent death in 2003


105 missions with 1 total loss, 1 life support fuckup leading to death of crew (capsule re-entered and landed normally)

4 people killed

Most recent death in 1971

Get ready for the revolution: internet TVs



Don't know about the others, but the Samsung TV's run Linux + Busybox, so at least in theory you can skip all the manufacturers crap and just use VLC/mplayer or something.

See http://samygo.sourceforge.net/