Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Donations

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


freak last won the day on February 14 2017

freak had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

1,032 Excellent


About freak

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Not Telling

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. Harry Jones, a 76-year-old veteran, was arrested after the police found a hoard of firearms, including a missile, at his home. More than 40 prohibited weapons were seized. Many of them could date back to the First and Second World Wars.
  2. Ballon Bombs - Yes, you're reading that correctly - according to the 1898 Hague Convention, it is against international law to drop bombs from balloons. Japan famously sent scores of balloon bombs to the American Pacific Coast during WWII, with the purpose of causing forest fires. While most landed harmlessly, one did cause casualties - a balloon that landed in a forest near Bly, Oregon, that exploded and killed a Sunday school teacher and five children. The practice of shooting a rifle or dropping a bomb from a balloon is still technically forbidden to this day. 1[/size] Bat Bombs - In the second world war, Americans experimented with a secret weapon designed to decimate Japanese cities. At the time, most of Japan's cities were made of wood and paper. The idea was to release a bomb filled with sleeping bats (captured from caves in New Mexico), wearing collars containing a napalm-like incendiary. Upon release at dawn, the bats would disperse and roost under the eaves of Japanese homes up to 40 miles away. The project, code-named "X-Ray," was tested in 1944, but the war effectively ended with the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It might sound funny today, but testing showed these unusual weapons to be tremendously effective...some say even more so than the A-Bomb. Today, bat bombs would certainly be prohibited under Protocol III of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons. 2[/size] Bio-Weapons - Believe it or not, bio-weapons are some of the oldest terror weapons known to man. They date back to at least the days of the Mongols, who would catapult rotting, infected bodies over castle walls in order to spread disease and sickness. It's also been suggested that the Black Plague, spread by fleas on the back of rats, and originating from Asia, was the lingering result of a primitive bio-terrorism attack from centuries before. 3[/size] Blinding Laser Beams - This might sound like one of those sci-fi things that would never happen, but the technology's been around for 40 years. "Blinding" laser beams don't refer to the laser "dazzlers" that police and special ops teams use; those are low-powered beams that aren't designed to cause permanent blindness. This ban refers to lasers powerful enough to cause permanent blindness, which is amazingly easy to do, as most juvenile delinquents with laser pointers have been warned. The prohibition against deliberately blinding weapons goes way back to some of the first weapons bans passed in the 19th century. 4[/size] Dirty Bombs - Bombs laced with radioactive material are forbidden under international law, though most countries wouldn't bother with them anyway. The point of a dirty bomb is to irradiate an area and make it uninhabitable -- which means that the "winner" of the war can't go there either. That aside, the amount of radioactive material necessary to make a dirty bomb effective could just as easily be used to build a full-on nuclear bomb. 5[/size] Flamethrowers - According to Protocol III of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons, flamethrowers aren't explicitly forbidden on the battlefield, provided the battlefield is nowhere near civilians. Mostly, this protocol refers to incendiary devices in and around civilian areas. It doesn't necessarily prohibit the use of flamethrowers in, say, an open tank battle or clearing caves in Afghanistan. But most guerrilla fighters hide behind or within civilian areas. If they're using human shields or might have captives flamethrowers are a no-go. 6[/size] Hollowpoint Bullets - Hollow-point bullets (aka "expanding ordinance") were explicitly outlawed for use in international warfare by the Hague Convention of 1899, which was, in fact, only a continuation of the St. Petersburg Declaration of 1868. This declaration forbade the use of exploding or expanding projectiles of less than 400 grams, which drew a clear line between "bullets" and "artillery shells." The concept behind the ban was to avoid using bullets that "made death inevitable." Which, some might say, is the whole point of shooting someone in the first place. 7[/size] Locust, Fleas and Rats - It's been done, and to sometimes devastating effect. The Black Plague is theorized by some to be the result of a lingering bio-terror attack from Asia. Today, using hordes or plagues of animals carrying disease in war would be completely illegal. 8[/size] Microwave Lasers (limitation) - Yes, laser cannons are a real thing, and they've been around for quite some time now. Today, the Air Force uses massively powerful laser cannons mounted to aircraft and battleships, which can use them to shoot down incoming missiles from up to 250 miles away. Hypothetically, they could be mounted to tanks and used to incinerate human targets on the ground - but such use of directed energy weapons is currently forbidden, in large part because too low a dose from too great a distance might not kill the target so much as cook their eyes, which would be a violation on the ban against blinding lasers. 9[/size] Mustard Gas - The terror of the trenches in World War I, mustard gas gets its name from its yellow-brown color and its odor, which is apparently similar to horseradish. Because it's heavier than air, mustard gas proved particularly effective in clearing trenches, and was almost single-handedly responsible for the 1928 Geneva Conventions. When inhaled, the gas causes the lungs to fill with fluid, essentially drowning the victim in their own fluids. 10[/size] Napalm - You might love the smell of napalm in the morning, but the same Protocol III (passed after Vietnam) that restricts the use of flamethrowers also limits the use of napalm. It can't be used anywhere near civilian targets, nor can it be used to burn down forests unless the trees are being used to conceal military combatants or vehicles. So, napalm isn't banned, exactly, but more often than not, it can't be used on today's battlefields. 11[/size] Nerve Gas - Nerve gases of all kinds have been systematically outlawed by both the Hague and Geneva from 1899 all the way up to 1993. All nerve agents (like Sarin, VX, Tabun, and Soman) work in the same basic way: By blocking blocking the enzyme that normally destroys a very important neurotransmitter. Basically, nerve agents cause your entire nervous system to malfunction, like an electrical system full of short circuits. Death generally comes as a result of a shutdown of the respiratory system, but not before painful blisters, boils, and internal hemmorrhaging occur. 12[/size] Non Self Destructing Landmines - Since the Vietnam war, decades-old unexploded landmines have been a deadly menace in Southeast Asia. Cambodia has one of the highest rates of amputees in the world, as some 40,000 in its population have stepped on land mines planted during the Cambodian Civil War in 1970. In 2013 alone, some 111 people were killed by land mines buried more than 40 years before. For that reason, as of 1980, mines placed outside of fenced and cordoned areas must use some sort of self de-arming device or self-destruct mechanism set to go off after a certain period of time. Standard land mines may still be used, but can only be employed inside of fenced-in areas, away from civilian populations, and must be removed or destroyed when the conflict ends. 13[/size] Phasers - There are all kinds of directed energy weapons on the table, from "death ray" lasers to sonic cannons to real life plasma rifles. However, as of right now, directed energy weapons with enough power to kill human targets are forbidden in war. This doesn't apply to de-powered non-lethal microwave emitters like the Active Denial System currently in use. ADS puts out enough energy to cause an intense sensation of heat on a large crowd, but it's not enough to cause actual burning. The sensation has been compared to standing a few feet away from a large oven with the door open. It is possible to set the ADS on "kill," but that is illegal for the time being. 14[/size] Plastic Landmines - According to Protocol I of the 1979 Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons, weapons that use non-metallic fragments not detectable by X-Ray are prohibited in war. The rationale is pretty obvious, since field surgeons can't remove fragments they can't locate within an injured body. This doesn't prohibit the use of plastic and undetectable materials in weapon design, it just means that weapons can't be designed to use undetectable fragments as a primary damage device. 15[/size] Poisoned Bullets - The world's oldest known arms agreement, the Strasbourg Agreement of 1675, explicitly outlawed the use of poisoned bullets. The first guns used in warfare weren't terribly accurate, so soldiers would often supplement the lack of accuracy by soaking their bullets in some kind of poisonous or infectious substance. It was not unheard of for legions of soldiers to stow their bullet caches inside rotting corpses, though the bottom of a latrine pit worked just as well. When France and the Holy Roman Empire went to war, they initially experienced a massive wave of casualties not from gunshot wounds, but from subsequent infection. More than 250 years would pass before Geneva once again addressed chemical and biological weapons. 16[/size] Salted Bombs - Salted bombs are very similar in concept to dirty bombs, but are true nuclear weapons created specifically for the purpose of shorter-term area denial. A "salted" nuke contains an isotope of another substance like cobalt, gold, zinc, or sodium. During a nuclear blast, these elements become a huge cloud of fallout. These types of weapons are the same type used in the Soviet "Doomsday Device" from Dr. Strangelove. Small, one kiloton salted nukes could be used tactically and made so that the radioactive fallout decayed in a year or two, thus denying large swaths of land to enemy forces for a time. But radiation is invisible, and these weapons are generally prohibited because of their potential lethality to civilians. 17[/size] Smallpox Blanket - While America in general has avoided the use of biological and chemical weapons, many historians agree that we did make at least one attempt at genocide through bio-weaponry. America's "manifest destiny" meant getting rid of the original inhabitants of the continent. Many were killed by bullets and blades, but far more were wiped out as a result of diseases introduced by Europeans. Coming from a center of worldwide trade, Europeans developed at least partial immunity to many diseases, while themselves remaining carriers. Where Europeans went, plague almost always followed, helping to exterminate native populations and assisting in conquest. 18[/size] Spiked Pits - These old fashioned death traps are technically prohibited or regulated by Protocol II of the 1979 Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons. Pits with sharpened bamboo spikes maimed thousands of soldiers in Vietnam and in the Pacific during WWII. Adding insult to injury, the Vietcong and Japanese would routinely roll those spikes in human or animal feces first, causing secondary infections after even the smallest scratch. That, in itself, is a direct violation of the 1907 Hague convention on biological weapons and might even violate the 1675 Strasbourg Agreement. 19[/size] Tear Gas - Believe it or not, the tear gas that police routinely shoot into crowds in America is technically outlawed for use in war by the Hague Convention. Even though it's generally non-lethal, tear gas is still an inhalant chemical weapon that obstructs breathing, that puts it in the same legal class as mustard gas. So: legal to shoot at protesters in Missouri, but not legal to drop on a machine gun nest in Afghanistan. Go figure. 20[/size] Unexploded Bombs - Protocol V of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons prohibits the use of "explosive remnants of war," such as unexploded bombs and artillery shells. This protocol came about in the 1990s, when the newest crop of Middle Eastern jihadis began assembling roadside bombs from unexploded Soviet ordinance from the Afghanistan conflict. IEDs are remain a source of terror in that part of the world. 21[/size]
  3. Corner Shot Grenade Launcher Sharp shooters trapped in corners and other closed environments won’t need to engage in blind fire to save their ass anymore. The Corner Shot sports a hinged frame that extends the grenade launcher barrel horizontally at a 60-degree angle, along with a digital camera under the barrel and a video screen that provides sneak-peak viewing and accurate targeting. It’s capable of firing single 60mm rounds, tear gas, and less- and non-lethal explosives, and has a target range of 150 meters as well. Why didn’t anyone think of this before? 1[/size] Quantum Stealth Remember the movie Predator? Remember how the Predator was able to use invisible stealth technology to blend into the jungle environment around him, and how when he moved it looked like the jungle itself was moving? Well, that technology is now in the advanced stages of development by the U.S. military. Called Quantum Stealth, this technology camouflages people by bending light around the object it is hiding. And the result is that people and objects literally turn invisible to the naked eye. The images of Quantum Stealth available on the Internet are downright freaky. The hope is that the invisible cloaks provided by the Quantum Stealth technology will enable soldiers to infiltrate enemy territory without being detected, as well as launch surprise attacks and carry out assassinations. Sounds pretty farfetched, but the future is here and this technology is real. 2[/size] Matador Rocket Launcher Specifically designed for urban warfare, the Matador was built to destroy brick walls and vehicle armor. It uses a warhead with minimum blast back that works best in confined and indoor settings, and features a switch that alters the time intervals between the two detonation charges contained in the projectile. There are two firing modes. Short Interval Mode sets off the second detonation immediately after the first to create a passageway through a wall and Blast Mode can trigger the second explosion inside a building after the first breaks through the wall by increasing the time intervals between both detonations. 3[/size] PHASR Developed by the U.S. Department of Defense, the Personnel Halting and Stimulation Response Rifle (PHASR) is a non-lethal weapon designed to disorient and stun enemies rather than kill them. A light-based gun, the PHASR has been designed for use by both soldiers and U.S. law enforcement officials (police). The gun temporarily blinds enemies with focused laser beams. The laser lights, which operate at alternating wavelengths, serve to disorient people who look at them, rendering them unable to stand let alone fight. The good news is that the laser light used in this weapon does not inflict any permanent damage to people’s eyesight. 4[/size] The Active Denial System Another non-lethal weapon developed to help disperse crowds, the Active Denial System transmits an invisible electromagnetic radiation beam that creates a burning sensation on people’s skin—sending them running. Called the “goodbye effect” by senior military officials and a “heat ray” by scientists, the Active Denial System can heat up water molecules on a person’s skin to 130 degrees Fahrenheit from a distance of 500 yards. Controversial in some circles and dubbed a form of torture by some people, the Active Denial System has proven extremely effective. Security experts expect that the system will eventually be used alongside other non-lethal crowd control methods such as tear gas, water cannons and rubber bullets. 5[/size] Digital Revolver The Armatix Digital Revolver looks like something out of a science fiction movie, and a version of it was featured in a recent James Bond film. This futuristic pistol has a digital safety mechanism that can only be disabled if the operator is also wearing a special wristwatch that sends the unlock signal to the gun. The wristwatch itself only becomes active once the user unlocks it with their fingerprint. This means that the gun can only be fired by the owner—preventing the gun from being used by people who may steal it. It also means that the revolver cannot be used against its owner. Many gun experts claim that this approach is the way of the future and a great means of ensuring gun safety. How widespread this digital revolver gets used remains to be seen. 6[/size] XM25 Smart Grenade Launcher The programmable grenade launcher carries four tiny warheads and can fire 25mm. shells up to 2,300 feet (almost half a mile). But the X25’s slickest feature is the ability to program the shell to explode at any given point. It also sports different sight, sensor, and laser functions, as well as a short barrel that’s “the size of a cannon”. No wonder soilders refer to it as “The Punisher”. 7[/size] Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit With the help of several universities and high-tech companies, the U.S. Special Operations Command has developed a Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit (TALOS) for soldiers to wear in combat. It is essentially a robotic exoskeleton that soldiers wear when fighting in a combat zone. It enables soldiers to withstand bullets and fire, monitor their vital signs, and see in the dark. The Pentagon has dubbed the project the “Iron Man Suit.” There are even reports that the next generation combat suit will be made of liquid metal that can solidify into an impenetrable suit on command. The suits are also expected to increase each soldier’s strength and do pretty much everything but fly. Several prototypes of the suit have been developed, and a first-generation of the suit is expected to be operational with American soldiers in 2018. 8[/size] Tracking bullets Technologically, a bullet is pretty boring. It’s just a slug of metal that flies through the air at high speeds and hopefully kills somebody. Leave it to DARPA to try to jazz up simple munitions by making them able to adjust their course in mid-air. The agency’s Exacto program has constructed .50 caliber shells with inbound computer guidance systems that manipulate small fins on the bullet’s surface that allow it to make course corrections during flight to take environmental factors into account. They even work to home in on moving targets, which is pretty scary to see in action. 9[/size] Meshworms One of the tiniest robots in development — about the size of a fingertip — the Meshworm moves and acts like a small earthworm. It propels itself inch by inch, using artificial muscles that mimic the way an earthworm moves, by stretching one part of itself forward, then pulling the rest of its body along behind it. The Meshworm can move silently into the tiniest places to report back data, such as temperatures inside a confined space. It can also record audio and maybe even video in future versions. Made entirely of synthetic fibrous material, it’s nearly indestructible. You can step on it or hit it with a hammer and it will keep going because the fibers are not damaged by impact. 0 #10[/size]
  4. Ingo is a shepard dog and his best friend is an owl named Poldi. The cute twosome was caught on camera by photographer Tanja Brandt and it is heart-warming to see.
  5. 1. The most ejaculatory orgasms ever recorded in 1 hour for a man is 16. 2. The farthest a woman has been recorded to ejaculate is about 9'29" (3 metres) 3. The greatest distance attained for a jet of semen that has ever been recorded is 18'9" (5.71 metres) which was achieved with a "substantial" amount of seminal fluid by Horst Schultz. 4. The average speed of a man's ejaculation is 28 miles (45.05kmh). The average speed of a city bus is 25 miles (40.22 km). 5. Having swallowed the most amount of semen ever officially recorded Michelle Monaghan had 1.7 pints (0.96 litres) of semen pumped out of her stomach in Los Angeles in July 1991. 6. The female gangbang world record is owned by a woman named Houston who had intercourse with 620 men in one day! A video was made of this historic event. As it took about 10 hours (with a few very brief breaks) to do it, the average time of intercourse was less than 58 seconds. 7. Women hold the record for having the most orgasms. The biggest amount of orgasms enjoyed by a woman in 1 hour ever recorded is a pussy shattering 134! 8. The male gangbang world record goes to porn actor Jon Dough who worked himself over 55 women in one day. He had 5 to 6 ejaculations. Actually, he was supposed to have had intercourse with at least 101 women, but he did the other 46 two weeks later. 9. The record of the man who has had intercourse the most frequently goes to a man who was recorded to have had intercourse about 52,000 times over a period of 30 years. This means he had intercourse on average 33.3 times a week! 10. Youngest Father - Sean Stewart, of Sharnbrook, England, became the father of a healthy 6 lb. baby boy on January 20, 1998, at age 12.
  6. freak

    Hair Removal

    I found this on another site, thought I needed to share My night began as any other normal weeknight. Come home, fix dinner, play with the kids. I then had the thought that would ring painfully in my mind for the next few hours: 'Maybe should pull the waxing kit out of the medicine cabinet.' So I headed to the site of my demise: the bathroom. It was one of those 'cold wax' kits. No melting a clump of hot wax, you just rub the strips together in your hand, they get warm and you peel them apart and press them to your leg (or wherever else) and you pull the hair right off. No muss, no fuss. How hard can it be? I mean, I'm not a genius, but I am mechanically inclined enough to figure this out. (YA THINK!?!) So I pull one of the thin strips out. Its two strips facing each other stuck together. Instead of rubbing them together, my genius kicks in so I get out the hair dryer and heat it to 1000 degrees. ('Cold wax,' yeah...right!) I lay the strip across my thigh. Hold the skin around it tight and pull. It works! OK, so it wasn't the best feeling, but it wasn't too bad. I can do this! Hair removal no longer eludes me! I am She-rah, fighter of all wayward body hair and maker of smooth skin extraordinaire. With my next wax strip I move north. After checking on the kids, I sneak back into the bathroom, for the ultimate hair fighting championship. I drop my panties and place one foot on the toilet. Using the same procedure , I apply the wax strip across the right side of my bikini line, covering the right half of my hoo-ha and stretching down to the inside of my butt cheek (it was a long strip) I inhale deeply and brace myself....RRRRRRIIIIPPP!!!! I'm blind!!! Blinded from pain!!!!.... OH MY GAWD!!!!!!!!! Vision returning, I notice that I've only managed to pull off half the strip. CRAP! Another deep breath and RIPP! Everything is spinning and spotted. I think I may pass out...must stay conscious...must stay conscious. Do I hear crashing drums??? Breathe, breathe..................OK, back to normal. I want to see my trophy - a wax covered strip, the one that has caused me so much pa in, with my hairy pelt sticking to it. I want to revel in the glory that is my triumph over body hair. I hold up the strip! There's no hair on it. Where is the hair??? WHERE IS THE WAX??? Slowly I ease my head down, foot still perched on the toilet. I see the hair. The hair that should be on the strip...it's not! I touch. I am touching wax. I run my fingers over the most sensitive part of my body, which is now covered in cold wax and matted hair. Then I make the next BIG mistake ...remember my foot is still propped upon the toilet? I know I need to do something. So I put my foot down. Sealed shut! My butt is sealed shut. Sealed shut! I penguin walk around the bathroom trying to figure out what to do and think to myself 'Please don't let me get the urge to poop. My head may pop off!' What can I do to melt the wax? Hot water!! Hot water melts wax!! I'll run the hottest water I can stand into the bathtub, get in, immerse the wax-covered bits and the wax should melt and I can gently wipe it off, right??? *WRONG!!!!!!!* I get in the tub - The water is slightly hotter than that used to torture prisoners of war or sterilize surgical equipment - I sit. Now, the only thing worse than having your nether regions glued together, is having them glued together and then glued to the bottom of the tub...in scalding hot water. Which, by the way, doesn't melt cold wax. So, now I'm stuck to the bottom of the tub as though I had cemented myself to the porcelain!! God bless the man who had convinced me a few months ago to have a phone put in the bathroom!!!!! I call my friend, thinking surely she has waxed before and has some secret of how to get me undone. It's a very good conversation starter 'So, my butt and hoo-ha are glued together to the bottom of the tub!' There is a slight pause. She doesn't know any secret tricks for removal but she does try to hide her laughter from me. She wants to know exactly where the wax is located, 'Are we talking cheeks or hole or hoo-ha?' She's laughing out loud by now...I can hear her. I give her the rundown and she suggests I call the number on the side of the box. YEAH!!!!! Right!! I should be the joke of someone else's night. While we go through various solutions. I resort to trying to scrape the wax off with a razor. Nothing feels better than to hav e your girlie goodies covered in hot wax, glued shut, stuck to the tub in super hot water and then dry-shaving the sticky wax off!! By now the brain is not working, dignity has taken a major hike and I'm pretty sure I'm going to need Post-Traumatic Stress counseling for this event. My friend is still talking with me when I finally see my saving grace....the lotion they give you to remove the excess wax. What do I really ha ve to lose at this point? I rub some on and OH MY GOD!!!!!!! The scream probably woke the kids and scared the dickens out of my friend. It's sooo painful, but I really don't care. 'IT WORKS!! It works !!' I get a hearty congratulation from my friend and she hangs up. I successfully remove the remainder of the wax and then notice to my grief and despair.... THE HAIR IS STILL THERE.......ALL OF IT! So I recklessly shave it off. Heck, I'm numb by now. Nothing hurts. I could have amputated my own leg at this point. Next week I'm going to try hair colour...... ======== There are plenty of hilarious reviews of Veet for Men Hair Removal Gel Cream 200 ml on Amazon (89 pages of them). DO NOT PUT ON KNOB AND BOLLOCKS Being a loose cannon who does not play by the rules the first thing I did was ignore the warning and smear this all over my knob and bollocks. The bollocks I knew and loved are gone now. In their place is a maroon coloured bag of agony which sends stabs of pain up my body every time it grazes against my thigh or an article of clothing. I am suffering so that you don't have to. Heed my lesson. DO NOT PUT ON KNOB AND BOLLOCKS. (I am giving this product a 5 because despite the fact that I think my bollocks might fall off, they are now completely hairless.) GOOD RESULTS AT FIRST INTERROGATION Excellent product. Most prisoners confessed within five minutes of the first application. Can recommend. PLEASE DILUTE BEFORE USE I recommend diluting before use. Personally I diluted it with Deep Heat and Oven Cleaner and the resulting pain in my balls was far more bearable. Do NOT get this stuff on your bell-end. http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/B000KKNQBK
  7. The largest vessel the world has ever seen Climbing onto the largest vessel the world has ever seen brings you into a realm where everything is on a bewilderingly vast scale and ambition knows no bounds. Prelude is a staggering 488m long and the best way to grasp what this means is by comparison with something more familiar. Four football pitches placed end-to-end would not quite match this vessel's length - and if you could lay the 301m of the Eiffel Tower alongside it, or the 443m of the Empire State Building, they wouldn't do so either. In terms of sheer volume, Prelude is mind-boggling too: if you took six of the world's largest aircraft carriers, and measured the total amount of water they displaced, that would just about be the same as with this one gigantic vessel. Under construction for the energy giant Shell, the dimensions of the platform are striking in their own right - but also as evidence of the sheer determination of the oil and gas industry to open up new sources of fuel. Modules weighing 5,500 tonnes are lifted onto the vessel by huge cranes Under construction in South Korea, Prelude is destined for a gas field off the coast of Australia Painted a brilliant red, Prelude looms over the Samsung Heavy Industries shipyard on Geoje Island in South Korea, its sides towering like cliffs, the workforce ant-like in comparison. Soon after dawn, groups of workers - electricians, scaffolders, welders - gather for exercises and team-building before entering lifts that carry them the equivalent of ten storeys up. On board Prelude, amid a forest of cranes and pipes, it is almost impossible to get your bearings. Standing near the bow and looking back, the accommodation block that rises from the stern can just be made out in the distance. The yard, one of the largest in the world, is a mesmerising sight with around 30,000 workers toiling on the usually unseen infrastructure of the global supply of fossil fuels: dozens of drilling ships, oil storage tankers and gas transporters. Park and produce Prelude is not only the largest of all of these to take shape in this hive of activity - it also pioneers a new way of getting gas from beneath the ocean floor to the consumers willing to pay for it. Until now, gas collected from offshore wells has had to be piped to land to be processed and then liquefied ready for export. Usually, this means building a huge facility onshore which can purify the gas and then chill it so that it becomes a liquid - what's known as liquefied natural gas or LNG - making it 600 times smaller in volume and therefore far easier to transport by ship. And LNG is in hot demand - especially in Asia, with China and Japan among the energy-hungry markets. To exploit the Prelude gas field more than 100 miles off the northwest coast of Australia, Shell has opted to bypass the step of bringing the gas ashore, instead developing a system which will do the job of liquefaction at sea. Hence Prelude will become the world's first floating LNG plant - or FLNG in the terminology of the industry. In Shell's view, this means avoiding the costly tasks of building a pipeline to the Australian coast and of constructing an LNG facility that might face a long series of planning battles, and require a host of new infrastructure on a remote coastline. So Prelude will be parked above the gas field for a projected 25 years and become not merely a rig, harvesting the gas from down below, but also a factory and store where tankers can pull alongside to load up with LNG. The Samsung Heavy Industries shipyard on Geoje Island is one of the world's largest Prelude is 488m long and its processing modules dwarf the workers The computer animations make it look easy. In practice, the engineering challenge is immense. To speed up construction, the key elements of the processing system are being assembled on land before being installed on the vessel. During our visit, we witnessed the extraordinary sight of a 5,500-tonne module being winched into position on the deck. Like a massive jigsaw piece, it was a tight fit - given that Shell is planning to squeeze the LNG plant into one quarter of the space you would expect on land. This was the third of 14 modules. The installation took less than a day and was successfully completed but there's clearly a lot of work still to do, which is why Shell officials are coy about committing to a date for when Prelude will actually start work. It looks like being several years at least. Bridge too far? The Shell pitch is that gas, as the cleanest of the fossil fuels, is set to become more important in the coming decades as a far more climate-friendly alternative to coal. And as China tries to clean up its polluted air, largely caused by coal-burning power stations, as I reported in January, switching to gas would surely make a difference. Only up to a point, however: the gas-is-cleaner argument only works if the new supplies of gas actually replace coal rather than become an additional source of fuel. And the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concludes that while gas would be a welcome "bridge" between coal and low-carbon energy for the next 20 years or so, in the long term it will need to be phased out, like all fossil fuels, unless a way is found to capture the carbon dioxide that burning it releases. Shell is banking on gas being in such demand that prices will remain high enough to justify Prelude's cost - which has not been stated but must run into billions. Obviously there are risks. The gas price might collapse, if China's economy dips, or Japan restarts its nuclear power stations, closed since the Fukushima disaster, and suddenly needs less gas. Shell wants the enormous vessel to collect and liquefy gas at sea for 25 years About 30,000 people work in the shipyard Shell's ambition is to launch a fleet of future Preludes to pioneer a new chapter in the story of fossil fuels by opening gas fields previously thought to be too tricky or expensive to tackle. As our lift brings us back down to the quayside, the winter sun bathes the dockyard in golden light and convoys of buses ferry the multitude of workers home. During the night, specialist teams will check for the strength of the welds and the quality of the work. A project of this kind has never been tried before and, like all firsts, Prelude is something of a gamble.
  8. Week in pictures: 13-19 December 2014 Our selection of some of the best news photographs taken around the world this week. A Maasai warrior does the high jump, in which athletes must touch a high line with the top of their heads, at the annual Maasai Olympics in the Sidai Oleng Wildlife Sanctuary near Kilimanjaro, in southern Kenya. President Vladimir Putin has insisted Russia's under-fire currency, the rouble, will stabilise, but warned the economic crisis could last two years. Mr Putin insisted the nation's currency reserves were sufficient to keep the economy stable, saying the central bank should not "burn" its $419bn reserves. Adama Tarawallie is seen with her husband Ibrahim, 31, a suspected Ebola victim, as they wait to be transported from Devil Hole, west of Freetown, Sierra Leone. The country has overtaken Liberia to have the highest number of Ebola cases, World Health Organization figures show. Pope Francis celebrated his 78th birthday as he arrived to lead his general audience at the Vatican. Prince Harry shows children a photograph he has taken during a visit to a school constructed by his charity, Sentebale, in Mokhotlong, Lesotho. Chinese soldiers endured freezing temperatures of about -30C (-22 F) during a training session in Heihe, Heilongjiang province. More than 140 people, most of them children, were killed when Taliban gunmen stormed a school in Peshawar, Pakistan. Here, women mourn their relative Mohammed Ali Khan, 15, one of the students killed in the attack. Two people died, along with the gunman, after commandos stormed a cafe in Sydney, Australia, to bring a 16-hour siege to an end. Prime Minister Tony Abbott questioned why the gunman was not on the country's terror watch list. An oil spill from a crashed tanker in Bangladesh's Sundarbans waterways is threatening a rare dolphin sanctuary and part of the world's largest mangrove forest. Villagers have been collecting oil from the rivers using pots and pans, some of which is sold on. Members of the Winchester Cathedral Choir skated on the cathedral's ice rink to mark its opening.
  9. James Rose was a married father of three for many years but left his wife four years ago to live out his true personality. Having never felt comfortable as a man, James became Ruth and started living as a woman, receiving hormone therapy. In a surprising decision, Ruth elected to have gender realignment surgery to complete the transformation at 81 years old making her the oldest person to ever undergo the procedure.
  10. British police were chasing 34-year-old Tabraiz Hussein when he attempted to throw his drug stash out the window. Stupidly, the window was closed and he ended up spilling $25,000 worth of heroin all over his car and the sidewalk.
  11. A New Zealand design team has come up with this cardboard table concept called “Refold” that acts as a very portable desk for people on the move.
  12. Sumo Wrestler’s actually go to Sumo school for six months where they train in the sport but also get an education at the same time.
  13. Columbus Day is celebrated in the US in honor of Christopher Columbus but he was not really a nice person at all.