04 March 2012


How to Build a Speech-Jamming Gun.  If you are human, you find it "almost impossible to speak when your words are replayed to you with a delay of a fraction of a second".  Two Japanese designers have built a directional play-back device containing a microphone and a speaker which returns incoming sound, with a 0.2 second delay.  If you've ever addressed an audience with a microphone, you'll know how disorienting it is to hear the echo of your voice, repeating what you've just said, usually while you are still speaking the same word or the following one.  With practice, one can overcome the impulse to pause or to stutter.  I'm not certain what legal uses this device might have, other than to interrupt the egotist who dominates conversation at a party.  Cause a person to stop snoring?  Alienate your boss or spouse or kids forever?  Pull a prank at the next Tea Party rally?  Any ideas?

How to brighten the decor in your home with Beautiful Bookshelves.  Some of these are so avant-garde that they belong in a modern art museum, but others have distinct possibilities.  My favorite for style is #9, and my favorite for combining style and function is #12 (see image above, click to enlarge).

How to broaden your vocabulary with Words From the Dictionary of American Regional English.  "The dictionary includes some 60,000 entries, based in part on thousands of interviews conducted from Hawaii to remotest Maine."  This is definitely going on my Barnes & Noble wish list.  The brief article includes an interactive quiz, so you can test your knowledge of the meaning(s) of wampus, a toe social, or a pinkletink.  What are you waiting for?

How to amaze friends and strangers with your arcane understanding of The Psychedelic Physics of the Lava Lamp's Hypnotic Goo.  Surprisingly easy to understand.  Now can someone please explain the physics of those Christmas tree lights with a bulb at the bottom, from which emerges a tube with constantly-bubbling colored liquid?  Where does the air in those bubbles go?

If you are into social media for chat with friends, you're familiar with Facebook.  If you are into social media for a higher level of discourse on science, the arts, or whatever your passion may be, you're becoming familiar with Google+.  Here is a recently-posted video demonstrating How to Animate Your Google+ Profile.  I haven't tried it out yet, but I shall.

How to Tie a Tie ~ four in hand, Pratt, half-Windsor, Windsor.  There you go.

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