Count the number of rats climbing this pole when the light is turned on

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Is this a restaurant? Bonus points for the unintentional Minecraft mobs sound effects. Read the rest

Magic-mushroom drug lifts depression in first human trial


Nature Magazine reports that researchers from Imperial College London gave psilocybin to 12 people with depression. All the patients showed "a marked improvement in their symptoms." From Nature:

Researchers from Imperial College London gave 12 people psilocybin, the active component in magic mushrooms. All had been clinically depressed for a significant amount of time — on average 17.8 years. None of the patients had responded to standard medications, such as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs), or had electroconvulsive therapy.

One week after receiving an oral dose of psilocybin, all patients experienced a marked improvement in their symptoms. Three months on, five patients were in complete remission.

“That is pretty remarkable in the context of currently available treatments,” says Robin Carhart-Harris, a neuropsychopharmacologist at Imperial College London and first author of the latest study, which is published in The Lancet Psychiatry.

The equivalent remission rate for SSRIs is around 20%.

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Peeling a thick layer of ivy from a building


"The physician can bury his mistakes, but the architect can only advise his client to plant vines." – Frank Lloyd Wright

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DYMO Label Maker for $10

The LCD display on our old label maker malfunctioned, so I picked up this new model, called the DYMO LabelManager 160, for $10 on Amazon. You can buy a variety of label tapes for it, including clear and neon colors. Read the rest

How to caramelize sugar without melting it

Image: Serious Eats/Vicky Wasik

Stella Parks of Serious Eats blows readers' minds twice in the first two paragraphs of her article.

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A mass of ants behaving like a fluid so they can get things done

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Here are side-by-side video clips comparing a bunch of fire ants with different kinds of liquid.

Fire ants use their claws to grip diverse surfaces, including each other. As a result of their mutual adhesion and large numbers, ant colonies flow like inanimate fluids. This film shows how ants behave similarly to the spreading of drops, the capillary rise of menisci, and gravity-driven flow down a wall. By emulating the flow of fluids, ant colonies can remain united under stressful conditions.

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Mom uses her kid to steal guy's parking spot

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This mom in Port Moody, BC is taking a chance by having her son block a car with his bike so she can swipe a parking spot. A road ragey driver would have bumped the kid out of the way.

Has this ever happened to you? After circling around endlessly for 20 minutes at a completely PACKED parking lot on a busy Saturday afternoon, I finally saw someone leaving, and patiently waited for the parking spot (blue car) for them to leave. Out of nowhere comes a punk kid and his mom, and I would guess the dad (driving the silver Corolla).

Apparently now you can sweet talk your way and reserve the spot if you just stand there and use a kid to block you with his bike. Your car was not even there. I waited a full minute before you even showed up. My turn signal was indicated at 0.06 of the video.

For what it's worth, the lady of the car leaving said to me, "they have been waiting here for a while, so they can have the spot". She seems clueless that I was there waiting for their spot way before they arrived and sided with them since they chatted moments earlier. SMH...

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Watch - unshielded padlocks are braindead simple to open without a key

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Lock expert Bosnian Bill shows the difference between shielded and unshielded padlock, by bypassing the tumblers with a simple tool. Read the rest

1970s magazine ads for cocaine paraphernalia


Buzzfeed collected a bunch of drug toy ads from the early 70s.

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Watch a fake head of cabbage and other fake food being made

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Watch this talented guy make realistic food by pouring melted wax in a water bath. He's making the samples seen in Japanese restaurant windows.

Gujo town in Gifu prefecture of Japan is the place where technology of making these ultra-realistic food samples used to show menu in Japanese restaurants began. These samples are made out of plastic, wax and other materials, and then painted. It is also possible to try making some simple samples by yourself.

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How to use sand to hold up a car

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This well-made video from Practical Engineering explains why soil is not a good building material, and then shows how to mechanically stabilize it so it can bear weight.

Dirt is probably the cheapest and simplest construction material out there, but it's not very strong compared to other choices. Luckily geotechnical engineers have developed a way to strengthen earthen materials with almost no additional effort - Mechanically Stabilized Earth (aka MSE or Reinforced Soil). If you look closely, you'll see MSE walls are everywhere. Thanks for watching, and let me know what you think!

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Yellowstone tourists put bison calf in car because they thought it was cold

Update: The bison was later euthanized.

Father-and-son tourists visiting Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming received a ticket for putting a bison calf in their rental car because they thought it was too cold.

Karen Richardson of Victor, Idaho, was one of several parents chaperoning a group of fifth-graders on a field trip to Yellowstone this week.

Richardson says on Monday, as students were being taught at Lamar Buffalo Ranch, a father and son pulled up at the ranger station with a bison calf in their SUV.

“They were demanding to speak with a ranger,” Richardson tells “They were seriously worried that the calf was freezing and dying.”

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Compilation video of oddly satisfying melting things

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The Let's Melt This YouTube channel put together a video of their most oddly satisfying clips, including Melting A Giant Jawbreaker, Melting A Sock With Sulfuric Acid, Melting A Light Bulb, Melting A Golf Ball With A Welding Torch, and Melting An iPad With A Mini Foundry. Read the rest

Video of dog trained to prevent knife attacks


This dog remains perfectly calm and alert until it sees a knife, then it instantly responds to disable the attacker. Amazing training. Read the rest

Guy gives a lifehacks tour of his apartment


Zeos Pantera gives a high energy tour of how he keeps his apartment humming. He's funny and the tips are pretty good! Read the rest

LA news show slut-shames weather forecaster during live broadcast


KTLA, a local TV channel in Los Angeles, slut shamed their weather forecaster on live TV by telling her to put on a sweater to cover her dress. When she asked why, the man who handed her the sweater told her, "We're getting a lot of emails." Read the rest

The Zen of Making: 13 Rules for Creating an Open Source Community


I was using Spotlight on OS X to find my Zen Desktop Cleaner app when "The Zen of Making" showed up. I forgot all about it, but I'm glad I came across it again.

Adapted from a talk by Massimo Banzi, co-founder of Arduino, presented at World Maker Faire 2011 in New York.

1. Don’t make something you don’t use yourself.

2. Know who you are making it for.

3. Know what you want out of it.

4. Make projects, not platforms.

5. Respect the intelligence of the beginner.

6. Experts are not the best advisors when you want to make tools for beginners.

7. If nobody complains you're doing something wrong.

8. Including people is hard (but necessary)

9. Good hardware, good software, good explanations, and generous users make a great project

10. If you're not prepared to have someone adapt, improve, clone, or trash your work, don't share it.

11. Open source software doesn't necessarily translate into a business model... open source hardware must.

12. Expect resistance... and conspiracy theories.

13. Don’t let the fact that you don't know what you're doing stop you.

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