9 Strange Bizarre DIY Projects

9 Bizarre DIY Projects

1. This Woman Designed - And Texts - Her Own Pancreas

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Dana Lewis texted her pancreas on Thursday. Of course, the text was not the typical "Hey, what's up?" or "You free tonight?" Instead, it was a command to give her blood's glucose level a little boost. She needed to give herself a bit of a butter ahead of a big speech. As you might have guessed, Lewis's pancreas is not typical, either. It's a DIY model that the health communications professional built in 2013 and has been refining since. It uses hardware to help her insulin pump and glucose monitoring device work together. It communicate with her phone, too. But here's the real innovation: her "pancreas" can mostly take care of her insulin without her intervention. Meaning she does not have to continually fiddle with shots or check her insulin levels. She can just live her life.

"You can build an algorithm to predict, in the future, what your blood sugar is going to be," Lewis told the audience at the Collective Intelligence conference, hosted by the New York University Tandon School of Engineering. The goal of the conference: to hear from a diverse set of innovators on how technology can drive public good. Lewis has started a movement to improve glucose management, connecting her insulin pump to computer devices that constantly record and predict blood glucose levels.


2. Despite Warnings, There is a DIY Brain Stimulation Community

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October 2017, Matt Herich was listening to the news while he drove door to door delivering pizzas. A story came on the radio about a technology that sends an electric current through your brain to possibly make you better at some things like moving, remembering, learning. He was fascinated. The neurotechnology is called transcranial direct current stimulation, or tDCS for short. At its simples, the method involves a device that uses little more than a 9-volt battery and some electrodes to send a low-intensity electrical current to a targeted area of the brain, typically via a headset.

More than 1,000 studies have been published in peer reviewed journals over the last decade suggesting benefits of the technique. Maybe regulating mood, possibly improving language skills. But its effects, good or bad, are far from clear. Although researchers see possibilities for tDCS in treating disease and boosting performance, it is still an exploratory technology, says Mark George, editor in chief of Brain Stimulation, a leading journal on neuromodulation. And leading experts have warned against at home use of such devices.

"If we can figure out safe long term applications, it's so inexpensive we might be able to use it to boost tons of things,"says George, a professor at the Medical University of South Carolina. "But I have to underline might. We do not know yet." When Herich finished his shift delivering pizzas, he raced home and began googling. He found a thriving community on Reddit and other online forums dedicated to discussing ways to self administer tDCS.


3. This Woman Made A Robot That Makes Breakfast

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For any fan of Pee-Wee's Big Adventure the idea of a machine that makes breakfast instantly conjures up a Rube Goldberg-esque delight that results in a talking pancake begging for more Mr. T cereal in its face. Simone Giertz's breakfast making machine is not like that at all. Instead, it's a robotic arm programmed via complex coding to pour cereal and milk into a bowl, pick up a spoon and feed it to Giertz while she's otherwise occupied.

It's a genius way to make sure that even the busiest robotics engineers eat the most important meal of the day. The only problem is that the robot doesn't seem to be up to the task, failing miserably at every step. While Giertz may need to make a few modifications to her robot, on the bright side, if a robot can not get Cheerios in a bowl, it's unlike to become sentient, hook up with SkyNet, and take over the world any time soon.


4. The Coffin Club, Elderly New Zealanders Building Their Own Caskets

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Quilting, lawn bowls and bridge it is not. Elderly people in New Zealand are enthusiastically embracing a new pastime: coffin construction. Scores of retirees across the country have formed clubs so they can get together and build their own coffins. They say the activity is cost saving and helps to combat loneliness. The original coffin club was founded in Rotorua in 2010 by former palliative care nurse Katie Williams, 77. Since then the model has spread around the country, and there are now a dozen coffin clubs operation in both the North and South Island.

"Because of my work and my age I had become a perpetual mourner, " says Williams. "I had seen lots of people dying and their funerals were nothing to do with the vibrancy and life of those people. You would not know what they were really like. That they had lived and laughed and loved. I had a deep seated feeling that people's journey's deserved a more personal farewell." Williams initially launched the Kiwi Coffin Club in her garage, with no tools, no volunteers and no idea how to construct a coffin. But after a host of handy local men came on board, she calls them "the darlings". The club took off, and soon moved to a larger facility to cater to its swelling numbers.


5. Man starts dating app where he is the only guys available

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The world of dating apps can be a demoralising place. It's hard enough to stand out while competing against so many other potential love rivals, let alone land a date when you've finally matched with someone. But an enterpreneur from London has come up with the ideal solution to that problem by creating a dating app where he is the only man availble. Shinder users have the options of choosing betwwen Shed Shimove and Shed Shimove. Maximising the chances the 45 year old has of landing a date. That means women who don't feel the app's creator is the one for them will hit the end of the road when they swipe left.

Instead, they will be given the option to sign up to Shed's mailing list and told they have 'dodged a bullet'. Swiping right will bring up another message stating: 'You clearly have exquisite taste. You'll be notified if you're a match. Men who swipe right will be told: 'Sorry, Shed is currently a full blown heterosexual, but keep in touch. The 45 year old told the Mirror he had no luck with dating apps in the past.

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6. The man who assembled his own iPhone 6S from used parts

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American Scotty Allen was fascinated by the secondhand iPhone parts market in Shenzen. He wondered if he could buy all the parts and assemble an iPhone 6S himself? After a couple of months, he was successful in his endeavor and said it was easier than he thought and that anybody with enough patience could do it.


7. The man who made a $1500 sandwich literally from scratch

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Andy George made a sandwich. That in and of itself wouldn't be strange, but he decided to make this sandwich entirely from scratch, which included milking a cow for cheese and killing a chicken. It took him six months, cost him $1500, and made him think twice about wasting food again.


8. The "Performance artist" who drew his own money

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To some, JSG Boggs was an artist, to others (particularly governments), he was a counterfeiter. Boggs would hand draw elaborate but clearly fake bills (they were all one-sided) and attempt to use them for everyday transactions; his first, in 1984, was given to a waitress for a cup of coffee. Then, he would take the change, ask for a receipt, and write the date and details on the back of the note. He would then sell the change and receipt to art collectors as "performance art"; the collectors would then contact the owner of the note directly to purchase it.


9. Royal Mail: man makes own 'silly' stamps featuring his own face and sends letters for free

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Angus McDonagh, 64, says he has duped Royal Mail with over a hundred of his designs on letters posted all over the world. Many feature his own face in the Queen's traditional side profile complete with a comic eye patch or weird hat. He objected to what he felt was a decline in the design and detail of official Royal Mail stamps and the demise of posted letters because of email. Mr McDonagh said: "When I started I wanted them to be deliberately silly, so I had a fake moustache or beard or eye patch, that was very obviously drawn on very crudely. "I started it as a bit of a protest. It seemed as if stamps were disappearing due to everyone going online all the time. "The Queen's head, it seemed to me, was going to disappear from stamps and be replaced with lots of other images and I felt I had to act. "I just kept going and it has become more and more farcical. It's gone undetected for so long now it is just silly."

Angus has created 50 individual stamp designs and printed them on his home computer and stuck them to envelopes with glue. All stamps have a fake value of 50c - his own invented currency - and are franked with a location mark by Angus before he posts them. He makes special edition stamps, but instead of commemorating real life events they celebrate his own fantasy occasions such as 'Upside Down Day'. One stamp is simply a black and white snap of him as a six-year-old boy, while another is a sweetly-posed portrait of him and partner Jo Purvis, 52. He has successfully sent over 100 letters to France, Hong Kong, Australia, Canada and Italy - as well as all over the UK - and only one has ever been detected as a counterfeit. Angus, of Bridgwater, Somerset, claims he never meant to evade payment and has even tried to send Royal Mail a number of cheques for the total costs, but they were all returned.

He said: "I'm actually a great fan of Royal Mail. I think the local postmen in our rural community are very important people who do a great job. "But Royal Mail has been sold for many billions of pounds when it seems to me that the system in place just doesn't work. "I have records of everything I have sent with my own stamps. "The critical thing is I have never intended to defraud the Post Office from any money. "My solicitor has sent a few cheques for around £200 with a letter saying it is for unpaid postage, but they are always returned." The Royal Mail has confirmed they are investigating. A spokeswoman said: "We would like to make it clear that it is a crime to create or use counterfeit stamps. "We will take the necessary steps to protect the integrity of stamps on behalf of the 29 million households and businesses we are honoured to serve."

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