A Neuroscience Experiment You Can Perform On Yourself With Just A Mirror

There are lots of DIY scientific experiments you can put to the test, without needing so much as a lab protocol. Not all of them are just kitchen chemistry, though. In fact, here’s a strange experiment a neuroscientist gave us to try out right now, on yourself.

Source: A Neuroscience Experiment You Can Perform On Yourself With Just A Mirror

What if you have heterochromia iridum?

Sight is pretty interesting, but we understand very little of it sadly.  There’s an interesting theory about nearsightedness too…

DIY Prosthetics: The Extreme Athlete Who Built a New Knee

Brian Bartlett lost his leg at 24. Rose Eveleth hears how a man who just wanted to ski again invented a new kind of knee.

Source: DIY prosthetics: the extreme athlete who built a new knee

Necessity is the mother of invention!  I’m not surprised that amputees are driving the innovation of prosthetics, but am impressed with the results.

DIY: Bike Hanging Storage

Depending on how many bikes you have, and space, there’s various options.  What works best for you really depends.

For a single bike, lots of shops I know carry a nice hook setup that mounts on the wall.  Some are exposed hooks, which you can get at the local hardware shop for cheap.  You hang your bike by the front wheel…  But that means something someone could inadvertently run into when there’s no bike on the hook… Some of the nicer setups I’ve seen, the hook falls flush with the base plate.  Cleaner, more expensive, and if you’re injured – could be somewhat problematic if no one is around to give you a hand.

For multiple bikes, this video gives you two options:

The first option starts at 45 seconds in.  To recap, materials needed:

  • 1x 6ft/2 meter iron pipe
  • 2-3x heavy duty shelf supports
  • Heavy duty zipties
  • Husky hang straps: one per bike
  • s-hook: one per bike
  • o-ring: : one per bike
  • carabiner: one per bike

First the guy says it’ll cost $60, then he says $10… 😉

Super easy to setup:

  1. Mount the shelf supports
  2. Put o-rings on the bar, inside where the supports would be
  3. Put the bar on the supports
  4. Tie the bar onto the supports using the zipties
  5. Attach the s-hook, carabiner and hang strap to the o-ring

Similar to the hook on the wall, you run the Husky strap through the front wheel to hang the bike.  There’s nothing to hold the bikes steady, so while they can be turned on an angle to save space – there’s a chance of rubbing or scratching frames and expensive wheelsets.

Tips:

  • If you need to add o-rings to an existing setup – you’ll have to cut off the zipties that anchor the bar.  Or you could find carabiners large enough to get around the bar…
  • I looked at Ikea for shelving, but the highest maximum weight/load was 25 kg/55 lbs.  Depending on your bikes, but that’s not quite 3 20 lb bikes…  So I’d suggest Ikea shelving to compliment the iron bar, similar to how the Velo Grip has a shelf for helmets.

What the video doesn’t mention

Anti-theft.  While lots of condos/apartments dedicate bike storage, it makes for a one-stop location to steal bikes for the building.  Nothing will stop someone if they are truly motivated, all you can do is make it so difficult that it’s a combination of “not worth their time” and “time consuming enough to increase the chance of getting caught in the act”.A very low-cost means of securing bikes involves:

  • Sufficient length of chain
  • Old socks
  • U lock

Why the socks?  Simple – you cut the toes off and run the chain through to provide a buffer against scratches and rubbing on the frame and wheels.  Old towels would work too, if you cut them into strips for sewing into tubes.

I suggested a u lock because it’s more sturdy than a combination lock.  But realistically – none of this will stand up to someone packing an angle grinder.  So if you’re really concerned, lock bikes independently.  Anchoring the chain to the bar won’t do much once someone realizes the bar is tied down with a zip tie.

De-Stink Your Shoes with a Homemade UV Light Sanitizing Box

Someone posted a five step Instructables project to use germicidal UV lamps to remove odor from your shoes.  You mount the lamps on something to support them, then stick the lamps in your shoes and crank up the heat. The foil around the box will retain the heat and take care of most of the little nasties crawling around in your shoes.

If the women don’t find you handsome, at least they’ll find you handy… 😉

My cycling shoes have a bigger issue being wet than my running shoes, but that’s because I generally spend more time in the rain while cycling than running.  A trick I learnt was to have newspaper onhand for days like that.  Newspaper, not the glossy stuff like you get on some flyers.  Remove the insole if you can, and stuff the shoe with newspaper.  Check on the shoes every 3-4 hours, applying new/dry newspaper if necessary.  The cost to effectiveness ratio is staggering.  Newspaper is incredibly absorbent, and recyclable.  The local free paper is suddenly being delivered to me, but prior to that I’d grab a stack of free newspaper at the local grocery store on my way out.

DIY: Vegan Parmesan Alternative

Wouldn’t it be nice if we had some more options from time to time? Sure, we’ve got other cheeses like Pecorino Romano or a good aged ricotta salata, but they’re really just variations on a theme. What I want is something that can be used just like grated Parmesan, but brings a new set of flavors to the table. It’s something of particular interest to me during the month of February, when I maintain an entirely vegan diet (and I can tell you, cheese is the one thing I miss most). But I was after something that wouldn’t just carry me through February: I wanted something that I’d keep in my pantry all through the year and I’m afraid the common solution of cashews ground with nutritional yeast just ain’t gonna cut it.

Source: Better Than Parm? Dried Olive and Miso May Be the Ultimate Pasta-Topper

Parmesan – the worse it smells, the better it is.  So there can be benefits if you can’t have it 😉

Unrelated tip: Try nutritional yeast (nooch) on your popcorn.