American troops in Iraq apparently use Silly String to reveal hidden trip wires that trigger bombs. From the Associated Press:
Before entering a building, troops squirt the plastic goo, which can shoot strands about 10 to 12 feet, across the room. If it falls to the ground, no trip wires. If it hangs in the air, they know they have a problem. The wires are otherwise nearly invisible.Link (Thanks, Gabe Adiv, who is growing a mustache for charity!)
In other cases of battlefield improvisation in Iraq, U.S. soldiers have bolted scrap metal to Humvees in what has come to be known as "Hillybilly Armor." Medics use tampons to plug bullet holes in the wounded until they can be patched up.
Also, soldiers put condoms and rubber bands around their rifle muzzles to keep out sand. And troops have welded old bulletproof windshields to the tops of Humvees to give gunners extra protection. They have dubbed it "Pope's glass" – a reference to the barriers that protect the pontiff.
David Pescovitz is Boing Boing's co-editor/managing partner. He's also a research director at Institute for the Future. On Instagram, he's @pesco.