Is This You?

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Cool idea for a website.

we’ve been collecting these pictures for some years now. they come from photobooths and pavements all over the UK.

the isthisyou project was born out of a simple question: is it possible to reunite these images with their owners?

you can help by e-mailing this url to people you know.

then, perhaps, one day, someone will recognise themselves on isthisyou

Apparently they have been able to track down a few of the people already.
(via All Things Christie)

Home Built CD Changer Contraption

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Cool hack but a bit too elaborate for changing a cd.

My first thought was to come up with something extremely simple, with no electronics. Ideally, the motion of the cd tray would trip some sort of mechanism that would eject the CD from the tray and insert the next one. After months of thinking, I still hadn’t thought of a mechanism that had a hope of actually working.

The next idea was to pick up the CD, but how to pick it up? Vacuum came to mind, but that would get complicated, vacuum pump, solenoid valves, and all. Finally I decided to just pick up the CD by the hole, with an expanding finger, shown at right. The finger’s end consists of a cone that inserts in the CD hold up to the shoulder. The whole finger is cut in half, and pivoted. The pivot is just to the right of the blue rubber band. Its a nail, which rests in a grove in either half. The rubber band is the only thing holding it together. The solenoid on the right pulls the pieces together on the back, which spreads the front of the finger, and holds the CD by friction fit. The shape of the cone is a bit tricky. It has to be made in such a way that it will hold one CD securely, but never a second.

The Worst Jobs in History

A list and explanation of some of the more less desirable jobs throughout history. For example, would you want to be a Saltpetre Man?

Seeking Rough Ralphs and Welsh Wills. The Saltpetre Company – whose slogan you will no doubt be aware of: ‘We’re taking the piss’ – are recruiting door-to-door collectors in your area.

The position requires you to force your way into premises to collect as much urine as possible. The homes of friends, family, neighbours and even the clergy can be broken into if needs be and the precious urine extracted for the manufacture of saltpetre, which in turn will be used to make gunpowder.