hoverboards
French Inventor Hoverboards Across the English Channel, Manages Not to Crash This Time

We all know that age-old adage: if you don’t succeed, try, try again. Sometimes you’ve just got to pick yourself up by your bootstraps, get back on your hoverboard, and give crossing that English Channel another go. Read More >>

weapons
France Announces Plan to Launch Satellites With Defensive Lasers, Possibly Submachine Guns

An inventor buzzing around on a flyboard clutching a rifle  and subsequently borking an attempt to cross the English Channel isn’t the only mildly science fiction-y development concerning the French military lately. In the past week, French Defence Minister Florence Parly said that the country would launch miniature surveillance satellites brimming with defensive weaponry in the next few years, with options including spacecraft-mounted lasers and submachine guns under consideration, according to French newspaper Le Point (via Task & Purpose). Read More >>

technology
French Inventor Touts Rifle While Flying Turbine-Powered Flyboard at Bastille Day Celebrations

European leaders including French President Emmanuel Macron were treated to a demonstration of the Flyboard Air, a sort of gas turbine-powered jetpack/hoverboard/flying platform originally invented by jetski champ Franky Zapata, during Bastille Day festivities in Paris on Sunday. Read More >>

facebook
Facebook Agrees to Hand Over Hate Speech Data to French Courts

France just scored what it’s characterising as a major victory in the battle to curb online hate speech—one that potentially carries significant implications for privacy and free speech online. Read More >>

wtf
Mayor Gives Out Viagra to Citizens: Start Having Sex or The School Gets It

A small village in France, about 50 miles southeast of Paris is facing a population decline that has put the future of the town’s schoolhouse at risk. And the mayor has proposed a simple solution – everyone should just have more sex. Read More >>

science
There’s Microplastic Blowing in the Wind, Study Suggests

Some peaks throughout the Pyrénées Mountains of France stand more than 10,000 feet tall. Across the mountains’ ridges and valleys, adventurous visitors may spot a brown bear or a yellow lily, one of the wildflowers of the Pyrénées. But this mountain range is home to something else too, something not always visible to the human eye. And that’s plastic. Read More >>

booze
Booze Runs to France are Still a Thing With the Glass-o’-Wine Set

People in the parts of the UK that are near enough to France to get the car over and back in a day are still doing exactly that, as booze runs that take advantage of cheap French wine warehouses are very much still happening – even as those very same people in those very same Vauxhall Merivas try to stop anything foreign entering the country via their lovely old Brexit. Read More >>

technology
France Is Getting a New, Algorithmically Designed Keyboard Layout

French and English share the same 26-character alphabet, but additional accents, symbols, and punctuation make it challenging for Francophones to use keyboard layouts designed for English speakers. The solution so far has just been to learn to adapt, but researchers led by Aalto University in Helsinki, Finland, developed an algorithm that helped create the first French-optimised keyboard layout. Read More >>

streaming
Now French Broadcasters are Skipping Netflix et al to Earn The Streaming €€€ Themselves

A few years ago streaming was a pretty small industry, and only a few companies had bothered to set up a library of content people could pay to access. These days it's a whole different story, with almost every broadcaster trying to muscle in on the territory carved out by the likes of Netflix and Amazon. The latest development comes from France, where broadcasters have just struck a deal to pull their content from existing services in favour of their own. Read More >>

climate change
France’s Fuel Tax Disaster Shows We Can’t Save Earth by Screwing Over Poor People

France has turned into a bubbling cauldron of unrest over the past month as the so-called yellow vest movement has put up roadblocks and taken to the streets to protest a fuel tax. Last week’s protests turned violent and facing a crisis, the government of Emmanuel Macron decided today to drop the tax. However, there is much to be learned from the fiasco. Read More >>

news
Paris’ Solution to Its Public Urination Problem Is Open-Air Piss Boxes

Paris officials are hoping to curb public urination by encouraging slightly less-public urination. Read More >>

internet
French Government Seizes France.com Domain, Gets Sued

Ever since the mid-90s, the website 'france.com' has been owned by the same man, French-born US citizen Jean-Noel Frydman. Or at least he did, until the French Foreign Ministry seized the domain following a lawsuit. So he's suing. Read More >>

piracy
French Minister is Calling for a National Blacklist to Block Streaming Piracy

Governments have been tackling torrent-based piracy for years, trying to come up with ways to penalise repeat offenders and stop them downloading content they haven't paid for. These days piracy is less about the torrents and more about the streaming, which makes it a lot harder for anti-piracy types to catch offenders. So they need to get creative, and after France was criticised for seemingly not doing enough to combat piracy Minister of Culture, Françoise Nyssen, wants to tackle the problem with a national blacklist. Read More >>

quorn
wtf
France Can’t Handle Quorn, Bans Veggie Products From Masquerading as Alt-Meat

The French aren't exactly known for being open-minded when it comes to the evolving nature of cuisine, but its latest attempt to safeguard the world of French food is taking things a bit too far. Basically it's banned vegetarian products from using words commonly associated with meat, which means no more veggie sausages, veggie 'bacon' and so on. Read More >>

twitter
France’s Favourite Crypto-Fascist Could Face Three Years in Prison for ISIS Tweets

Marine Le Pen, the leader of France’s crypto-fascist National Front party, could be required to pay a $90,000 (£65,324) fine and spend up to three years in prison for tweets she sent in 2015 that showed images of executions by ISIS, according to the Associated Press: Read More >>