back to article What can you do with adult VR, some bronze gears and a robotic thumb? On a Friday?

A VR headset is pressing down on the bridge of my nose. The strap is pulling out strands of hair from the back of my head. I have bruised shins after walking into a coffee table. This, apparently, is "the closest thing to real sex". I must be doing it wrong. VR, that is. Or sex. Or both. Perhaps not expecting to get bruised …

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"Sex was invented by the ancient Greeks, but it took the Romans to introduce it to women" goes the old joke...

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Anonymous Coward

Sappho of Lesbos would disagree.

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> "Sex was invented by the ancient Greeks..."

Well, it did help them keep a tight phalanx...

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Anonymous Coward

No doubt someone will provide a VR texture of cracks in the ceiling.

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Windows

"No doubt someone will provide a VR texture of cracks in the ceiling."

.... painted beige of course

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Joke

Lazeeva?

I fancy a cup of coffee.

It's one of the stranger perversions.

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Re: Lazeeva?

To go proper extreme, you need a cup of covefee

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Anonymous Coward

"the Antikythera mechanism is the world's oldest computer for which physical remains exist"

Shit, I thought I had that record with a Dragon 32 that's in my loft. Somewhere.

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Anonymous Coward

I fully expect to hold my own

appreciate it, thanks! Sorry didn't have the ear for the rest! ;)

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For those of interested in the Antikythera, or machining, or general geeky-ness, I suggest checking out Clicksping on you tube, who is making a replica in his home machine shop.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLZioPDnFPNsHnyxfygxA0to4RXv4_jDU2

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There is a limerick, concerning the inventive prowess of a young man named McClean which highlights the folly of such devices (automated sex toys that is, not the Antikythera mechanism which is definitely int the top 5 of my awesome things catalog), but, even given the liberal and relaxed attitude of El Reg, I'm a little reluctant to post it. It's a proper limerick.

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Joke

Oh the hell with it - I'll post it and hope that Vulture Central does not send a hit squad.

There was a young man called McLean

Who invented a f**king machine.

Concave or convex,

It would fit either sex,

And was perfectly simple to clean.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Re: Oh the hell with it - I'll post it and hope that Vulture Central does not send a hit squad.

on the forty fourth stroke

the bloody thing broke

and whipped his balls to a cream

Was the slightly less pleasant version I knew...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Oh the hell with it - I'll post it and hope that Vulture Central does not send a hit squad.

Given the build-up, that was a lot less dirty than I was expecting. El Reg won't bat an eyelid.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Oh the hell with it - I'll post it and hope that Vulture Central does not send a hit squad.

Ah, now that's more like it.

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Happy

Re: Oh the hell with it - I'll post it and hope that Vulture Central does not send a hit squad.

Sorry, but I can't resist posting:

There was a young man from Torbay,

Who set sail for China one day.

He was lashed to the tiller

By a sex-crazed gorilla.

And the Far East's a very long way...

As for Mr Dabbs article, I only have two words to say: Oooooooh Matron!

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Re: Oh the hell with it - I'll post it and hope that Vulture Central does not send a hit squad.

Rather than post all nine verses, you can look this up:

http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/navysong/Data%20Song/B0011.htm

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"Historians reckon the device was designed to calculate a variety of astronomical positions."

Was that one you intended?

Feynman, inevitably, had his own story about the Antikythera mechanism. Back in the days before the museum had realised just what they'd got he was visiting Athens and introduced to the director. Being Feynman of course the mechanism, stored somewhere in the reserve collection, was the one thing he asked about. The director couldn't understand why, given all the beautiful art objects he wanted to see some dirty old bit of metal junk.

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Not a computer , nut a similarly old clever clockwork gizmo:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South-pointing_chariot

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I'd not heard of that before - what a fascinating device. Have an upvote.

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Linux

And for us Linux lovers we have the south-pointing penguin:

http://www.stirlingsouth.com/richard2/south_pointing_penguin.htm

You can never have too many penguins =>

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Coat

Unlike windows. Too many of them will mean you are living in a greenhouse! And cost a fortune in curtains! (Unless you have nothing to hide, of course)

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Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

If squirrels get hold of that we are doomed.

DOOMED!

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Re: Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

At ease, private Frazer!

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Re: Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

f squirrels get hold of that we are doomed.

I'm just thankful that the cats haven't got the hang of this technology thing. Having opposable thumbs is my one advantage..

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Re: Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

Here is a link to your nightmare fullfilled: linky to Youtube

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

"Having opposable thumbs is my one advantage.."

Only for opening the cat food tins as their humble servant.

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Re: Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

Hmm... If an extra thumb is all that great, why don't we all have one already by default?

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Re: Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

Actually we already do have one, more or less.

The pinky finger is far stronger than it needs to be just to pick noses.

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Re: Prosthetic Controllable Thumb

I thought the extra thumb was marvellous. I loved that it appeared to be managed by sensors on the other fingers to provide a degree of independent movement in lieu of actual never connections. Genius, imo.

Shame it had to be accompanied by the inevitable pan-pipe and drum machine soundtrack, mind you.

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Gimp

"Let me introduce the Sex Gauge"

Now you'll have to think up an El Reg unit of measurement for it.

I am sure commentards will be along to lend a helping hand ...

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Re: "Let me introduce the Sex Gauge"

Well El Reg already has already invented the "kilowrist" as a unit of bandwidth:

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/11/12/arizona_boffins_grasp_fat_pipes/

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Re: "Let me introduce the Sex Gauge"

im sure british rail would be happy to adopt it.

sex gauge, bit more interesting than standard or narrow i would think

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This post has been deleted by its author

Thenkyou for the video clip at the end

It was truly awful.

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I mean, just 2,000 years ago, we were practically savages.

Which reminds me of :

If our forefathers had invented foreplay,

Do you think they used their forehands or their foreheads.

I just can't remember where it's from...

Just think, by the time VR Porn is useful, it'll probably be a criminal offence in the UK.

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Coat

The Antikythera Mechanism...

"even came with instructions embossed onto a plaque mounted inside the wooden lid."

But they never did find the EULA.

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Surely that would have been on the hide wrapping which had to be shredded to open the box and included the phrase that damaging the wrapping is considered acceptance of the EULA

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It was three times as long as the instructions, also embossed onto bronze and thus sank without trace.

Almost certainly clause DCLXVI stated something along the lines of "The manufacturers cannot accept liability for wrath of Gods if used to predict divine events including eclipses"

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Anonymous Coward

But...

Did the ancient Greeks ever get Windows 95 booting on it?

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Re: But...

No but it plays Crysis. At 0.0000000001fps

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What have the Romans ever done for us?

The Antikythera Mechanism dates, I believe, from shortly before the Romans took over Greece and enslaved most of the intelligentsia. The Romans weren't interested in metal things unless they were good for stabbing, slicing or preventing someone doing the stabbing and slicing to them.

But for the Romans, the Babbage equivalent might have happened in the 1st century BCE, and history might have been enormously different. The Greek problem was a lack of fuel making it difficult to manufacture large metal objects. If only they had access to oil, they could have had an industrial revolution by the 1st century.

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Re: What have the Romans ever done for us?

"If only they had access to oil, they could have had an industrial revolution by the 1st century."

probably a good job that they didnt otherwise we'd all be computing on waterproof submersible tablets by now

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Re: What have the Romans ever done for us?

"If only they had access to oil, they could have had an industrial revolution by the 1st century."

Not that fast. You have to do a lot to the crude oil first until you have something really useful. They'd have to come up with a bit of petrochemistry. And to do that at a large scale, you'd need at least a budding metal producing and processing industry to build the infrastructure. It's less complicated if you start with coal.

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Re: What have the Romans ever done for us?

"Not that fast. You have to do a lot to the crude oil first until you have something really useful."

Not if all you want to do is produce enough heat to produce a fair bit of bronze and other copper alloys. It's worth remembering that when the first petrol cars appeared, the fuel was bought from pharmacists by the quart. I suspect that the Greeks, who had already discovered how to use naptha to annoy enemy ships, would quickly have worked out basic petroleum distillation, since they were able to make vessels of both ceramic and bronze.

Coal is convenient because it burns nicely in lumps, but the substance that really caused American expansion (and US/UK involvement in the ME) was oil. It's hard to believe that if oil supplies had been plentiful, locomotive makers would quickly have seen the opportunity to eliminate the fireman. Cutting out the coal phase could have speeded up development.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: What have the Romans ever done for us? (sorry for the late reply)

Well, it was not so much the lack of fuel, the greek civilization was doing quite well technologically, but having become more complacent, they did something very modern... They outsourced!

They outsourced one of the most important professions of the time, the profession of warrior...

True to history, after a couple hundred years, the Eastern Roman Empire was practically greek... and lasted another thousand years...

Anonymous Centurion

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With one of these robotic thumbs on each hand you'd be able to count to 4095.

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Mr. Dabbs has revealed to us, The Future

...and it frightens me! :P

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Anonymous Coward

"Historians reckon the device was designed to calculate a variety of astronomical positions."

Reminds me of the motif that was on lots of seaside souvenirs in the 1970s. Each sign of the Zodiac was represented by a silhouette of a couple - errr coupling***. Each was a different position loosely based on the Karma Sutra.

There were matchboxes for each position with black silhouettes - and T-shirts with all twelve in shocking pink. Apparently no longer PC to wear in the street.

Like the tattered one I have with a single picture - above which is "69" - and below it "Try it - you'll like it". That caused a neighbour to express puzzlement - until her 14 year old daughter went "oh mum!" and enlightened her.

Wearing it even twenty years ago I did get harangued in the street by a woman basically saying "think of the children". To which I replied "if they can see the meaning then it's a bit too late".

Nearest (NSFW) example picture is less subtle than the 1970s ones in the UK. Same shapes but with explicit delineation that removes the humour of the delayed reaction tease of observers.

***obligatory Frankie Howerd reference from the film "Up Pompei"..

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