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* Posts by Michael H.F. Wilkinson

2514 posts • joined 24 Apr 2007

‘Hyperspectral’ camera surprises aurora researchers

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Boffin

@MacGyver

Moire patterns (properly aliasing artefacts) occur when a semi-periodic pattern below the limit of resolution of the CCD occurs in the image, not in random noise patterns. Thus the signal needs some semi-periodic component to get these artefacts. I have seen hundreds of astronomical images taken below the resolution limit of the optics, and have never yet seen Moire-like aliasing artefacts.

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Neat images

Auroras are often magnificent, but this adds a whole new dimension (38 actually, from 3D RGB to 41D hyperspectral)!

I wonder if the airglow wave pattern is in some way similar to ionospheric waves seen by the LOFAR antennae. Those seem to occur at higher altitude, but I wonder if similar mechanisms trigger them (or that there is some coupling between ionospheric waves and the low altitude wave pattern seen here).

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Ready for ANOTHER patent war? Apple 'invents' wireless charging

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Re: Appl$

Should Appl$ not be Appl€

(yeah, wrong currency, but it does look better)

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BOFH: Cannot terminate PFY instance... ACCESS DENIED

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Nice one

Extra points for messing up the legal eagles!

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Crooks inject malicious Java applet into FOREX trading website

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

For a moment

I thought they had hacked the FourEcks trading site (operated from Didjabringabeeralong no doubt (or was that Bugarup))

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Annual reviews: It's high time we rid the world of this insanity

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Re: Should be mandatory declared

Good idea. Some appraisal systems I have seen could very efficiently be replaced by throwing darts. You simply take the score modulo 5 and there you are!

Some employees might prefer throwing darts at senior management, however.

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Re: Ironic

This might be taken as meaning that you are taking these badges FAR too seriously

OOH! Shiny!

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Belgian finds missus was born a MAN after 19 YEARS of marriage

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Hear, hear!

The tone of the comments is a good deal more measured than the tone of the article. Go commentards!

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Astrobioboffins seek funds to search for ALIEN HAIRSPRAY

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

But our future scaly lizzard overlords don't need hairspray!

do they now?

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Antarctic discovery: ALIEN LIFE may be FOUND ON MOON of Jupiter

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Re: Nasties from beyond

"But consider it in reverse: What's the likelihood that we discover something on a moon of Jupiter that turns out to be SIMPLY DELICIOUS?"

I thought they all tasted like chicken.

I bet some of them even taste more like chicken than some "chicken" sold by some elderly colonel here on earth.

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Badges for Commentards

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Quite simple

Nepotism

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: Oh bloody hell.

I allways ploof lead before hissing subvert!

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Second PAC-MAN orbiting SATURN: Local absence of dots explained

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Inspiring!!

I must write a grant proposal to search for a complete "space invaders" themed set of moons!!

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At LAST: The BRAIN-CONTROLLED helicopter

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Am I the only one?

Seeing the image of this odd-looking helicopter, I immediately got this image of some geek with the thing on his head as a very high-tech propellor-head

And, no I do not want one for my kids!!!

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Phone with Facebook hardware button lobbed out by Nokia

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

If they were really serious about the pink look, they would have labelled all the pink buttons in pink on a pink background and have a little pink light light up pink to show that you have pressed it.

(makes a changes from black in the Haggunenon battle cruiser)

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Acid oceans DISSOLVING sea life

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: They'll evolve

If the "earth system" is self healing, might it not want to get rid of us, like an immune system gets rid of pesky little parasites?

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Pirate cops bust LITTLE GIRL, take her Winnie-the-Pooh laptop

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Coat

Re: 9 years old

"9!

Pooh to the thugs from the Copyright Stazi."

I have never heard someone 9! = 362,880 years old referred to as a kid. A stiff, yes, a fossil, more likely

Please pass me the one with the elementary algebra book in th epocket

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'Mount Doom' rumbling ominously

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Coat

Did the warning read:

Cautioussss, my precioussss! Musssstn't risssssk our neckssess, musssst we?

Mine is the one with the three volume edition in the pocket

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Sellafield's nuclear waste measured in El Reg units

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Happy

Can you give the conversion from Swatch to Becquerel?

We need to know

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ALIEN DETECTION was SUPPRESSED by the BBC - top boffin

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Mushroom

Bureaucracy = Cult of Cowardice

'nuf said

Should get a T-shirt printed

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Cray scales to over 100 petaflops with 'Cascade' XC30 behemoth

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Happy

Hands up everyone who wants to over-clock this machine

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Edible iPhone case goes on sale in Japan

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Going there shortly. I will ask if there are similar cases for android phones, just for fun

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The genetic button that could turn a WOMAN into a CHIMPANZEE

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: Chimpanzees are not monkeys

Equally importantly, once the button switching a human being into an orangutan has been pressed, they result ape DOES NOT WANT IT TO BE SWITCHED BACK!!

EEEEK!!

as the librarian tends to say when this is suggested (either that or he bounces your head on the cobblestones a few times).

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KDE 'annoys the hell of' Linus Torvalds

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Featurism?

wasn't that creature feep?

Mine is the one with the "dyslexic's dictionary" in the pocket

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Apple must apologise for its surly apology on its website on Saturday

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Re: Contempt of court parts 2 and 3

So in addition to the entry

Recursion: see Recursion

we can now add

Apology: see Apology

to the IT dictionary

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El Reg acquires wildly dangerous laser cannon (with lightsabre option)

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Happy

Re: And I thought Q-Beam's were usefull...

Absolutely. The BOFH for one would love to wave one around in the boardroom.

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Where on earth can you still get a spare 500 MB drive?

If you want one like that, maybe you can also use my 8" floppy disk (128 kB storage!!) with CP/M2.0 on it (official copy).

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To Russia with Love? Georgia snaps 'cyber-spy' with his own cam

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Happy

Re: Sir

"Not much of a black hat if he still hasn't taped up his webcam ffs."

Unless he was wearing a Guy Fawkes mask

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Mysterious galactic glow caused by Hitchhikers' Krikkit style stars

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Coat

Or maybe these are stars surrounded by a fleet of black Haggunenon battle cruisers (the ones with the black instrument panels, with black buttons which are labelled in black on a black background, and whenever you press one of them a little black lamp lights up black to show that you have done it), which blot out the light of the star.

Either that or

Dark Matter = Hactar

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Surface tablet's touch cover is ZX81 REBORN

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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I must say I am curious, but the ASUS Transformer series still seems to fit my needs a bit better (that and a fast 13 or 14" notebook with good graphics grunt)

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ESO's nine-gigapixel galactic image has 84 MILLION stars

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: Asked in jest

Astronomers use FITS = Flexible Image Tape System. It typically uses 80 byte records called "card images". That alone shows its age.

We are just adapting our code to handle FITS. I would love to put our parallel code through its paces on this image (biggest we have done so far is 3.9 Gpixel).

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Noisy whales made FAR MORE oceanic racket than humans do

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Of course the whales were making a racket back then!

So would I if there were strange beings with harpoons chasing me

Mine is the one with "Moby Dick" in the pocket

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Publicity Stunt of the Week: Ten bizarre phone insurance claims

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Coffee/keyboard

Re: Tedium

Tedium? Well yes, I suppose. "Inserted into a cow's vagina" might well be the result of near terminal boredom (but not on the part of the cow, I presume)

I am somehow torn between to emotions, i.e.:

1. HOW ON EARTH DID IT GET THERE??!!

2. I DO NOT WANT TO KNOW how it got there

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Apple unsheathes MacBook 13-incher

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Games are not the only reason for wanting graphics clout. Physics simulation and 3D visualisation of medical data (MRI and CT scans) require more grunt. For many people the HD 4000 might be OK, but there are those whose work depends on graphics power.

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: The only snag...

"Most people use wifi or do not see an issue leaving a small and relatively cheap adapter on their Ethernet cable."

The problem is not that I mind having an adapter on my ethernet cable at home (though it is a potential problem when someone detaches it to use their native port, the adapter can get lost). My problem is when I want to use ethernet elsewhere (visiting other institutes, e.g.). It is just another thing to pack, no deal breaker, but still a bit of a hassle. If the things had a decent graphics card, I could certainly live with an ethernet dongle.

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: The only snag...

No nVidia = no CUDA = no use to me. I also MUCH prefer ethernet, as I routinely do need bandwidth. Real pity as this machine ticks a lot of boxes for me. It looks really nice, I love the high resolution, and light weight. My current lightweight (13", 1.69kg) really needs replacement, but I need a machine with nVidia graphics and ethernet. Using a dongle is a pain, in my view.

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Black hole spews out 2-million-light-year-long stream of WTF

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: 'kin huge Mach diamonds...

Should that not be macho diamonds?

Sorry, I'll get me coat

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Boffin

Largest things in the universe?

It depends on what you think is a single "thing," I suppose. Clusters of galaxies are larger than 2 million light years. Super-clusters are bigger still. These are organized in walls and filaments, and these in turn form the cosmic web. Quite a few people say the cosmic web is the largest thing.

Still an impressive jet.

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Gaping network port with easy-to-guess password? You ARE the 79%

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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A colleague of mine at first logged all (failed) attempts at getting through his router, but gave up full logging because the log file started to grow alarmingly fast. Generally attempts by script kiddies at that point in time, plus some more concerted efforts to break in (usually eastern Europe or Far East). And yes, neither his nor my home router's settings are the factory defaults, only the bare minimum of ports are open to allow internet access. And then there is still no reason for complacency.

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Big data to be normal by 2020

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Coat

Re: GiGo

Agreed, Steve, it is! it is fucking obvious

Somehow the fucking obvious escapes many people

Take politicians. How many projects are out there based on the premise that as long as we collect ALL the data we will be in a better position to find terrorists/paedophiles/other undesirables? Lets take fingerprints from everybody entering the country! Hooray!! We have struck a blow in the war on terror!!!

No, you are just showing the general public that you are doing something, by pissing them off big time every time they enter your country.

When will these guys learn that data is not the same as intelligence?

Mine is the one with the shiny new degree from the UFO (sorry, couldn't miss the chance to hijack that acronym for the University of the Fucking Obvious)

:-)

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: GiGo

Too true: "Adding hay does not make finding needles easier" is one of my favourite sayings when discussing pattern recognition. The key to successfully finding things is in reducing data by knowing exactly how to obtain all relevant information rather than just flinging more data at the problem.

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Astroboffins out FREAK 'BI' GALAXY

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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One of the coolest galaxies

just got even cooler! I just downloaded the paper and it is really fascinating. I am surprised to see such a well-defined spiral inside the galaxy.

I spotted this fella with 15x70 bins from down-under. I would love to see it through a bigger scope,

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Man rummaging for lost laptop in skip gets tipped into garbage truck

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

This should be called a "Near Darwin Award Experience"

he didn't happen to be from Darwin originally?

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Oldest unreadable alphabet yields to 'tablet' computer

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: TBottom image

Undoubtedly this was attached to a packet of peanuts

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Curiosity scoops up SHINY BITS from the RED SANDS of MARS!

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Re: Opal

Unless it is The Luggage, encrusted in opal. Be on the look out for lots of little legs!

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The hoarder's dilemma, or 'Why can't I throw anything away?'

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Happy

I was right to keep my old Tungsten T3

Still works, and my youngest (8) loves playing with it.

See, I knew there was a reason.

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Moon was formed when PLANET SMASHED INTO EARTH

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Boffin

Re: There are many ways to skin a cat...

Many astronomers now say the moon is not really a satellite of earth (hence "That is not a moon" ;-) ), because it is not many orders of magnitude lighter than the Earth. The Earth-Moon system is a double planet (much like Pluto and Charon is properly called a double dwarf planet).

Most moons formed in orbit around their planet, as mini solar systems (and can have a strikingly different composition from their parent planet, and even each other, depending on the distance to the planet). Some, like Phobos and Deimos of Mars, were probably captured asteroids.

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Re: Pah, nothing but liberal lies, I tell you!

That date is 15 minutes off (Pratchett and Gaiman, 1995).

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McKinnon case is NOT a precedent – says his own lawyer

Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Joke

Re: You used the wrong icon

I expect to hear black choppers in the distance when mocking certain governments

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Michael H.F. Wilkinson
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Black Helicopters

But it's not 'Merkin' justice!!!

As was said, it would be nice (if perhaps unrealistic) if the US showed the courtesy to respect the judicial system in other countries

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