We here at Lone Iguana always display much respect for the people like us who obsess over finding every single trick and neat tip anywhere and everywhere. So when we heard of MacRecipes, we began salivating. Every single trick MacGyver has ever used. What are you waiting for?! Click and see all the wonderful MacGyverness. [via Gizmodo]
Need to destroy a document in a pinch? With just water and a plastic bag, a document can quickly and easily be reduced to a wet, droopy, unreadable pile of muck. While it’s messy and a bit impractical, it works, and is great if you find yourself in a situation where you don’t have access to any better alternatives. [Editor’s side note: while shredding and burning documents can leave readable traces, this method creates virtual unreadable remains.]
Need a document disposed of, but not shredder? Do your best to rip up the papers, put them in a plastic bag and fill it with just a little bit of water. Slosh, roll, squeeze and or crumble the paper into a big, sloppy mess. When you’re finished, you should be left with a waterlogged ball of incomprehensible pulp!
Here’s a surprisingly simple trick for opening a locked suitcase from Lifehacker: simply plunge a ballpoint pen into the zipper, which separates the teeth and allows you to open the suitcase. The pull can than be run around the zipper once again, resealing the suitcase and leaving no evidence of tampering. Check out the video at the link to see it in action.
Watch the video above to see how a pen can be turned into a suitcase-cracking tool. In the demonstration they use a ballpoint pen to exert pressure on the zipper of a suitcase. The pressure causes the teeth to separate, effectively opening the suitcase.
The secret sauce in this hack of dubious ethics, however, isn’t the pen (you could always slice a suitcase open with a knife if you wanted in that badly after all) but in the zipper mechanism itself. Zippers are self healing and if you run the zipper pull (still securely locked to the other pull, we might add) along the zipper track you’ll reseal the suitcase as though you were never there.
Dave Lord also gives some advice for defending against this trick in the comments:
I use a “clam shell” style suitcase made of ABS. Obviously this trick won’t work with that type of luggage.
You can buy a tamper proof tie that will secure the case. There are a few different brands, but they all work something like a cable tie. Each one has an unique serial number.
After it is applied, there is no way to open the case without breaking the tie. As an extra security measure, I photograph the serial number on the tie at the baggage check-in on my camera phone, with myself in the photo. The phone automatically uploads the pic to dropbox, complete with all exif data, including GPS position. It is not hard evidence, but every bit of evidence helps if you are wrongly accused.
Staying cool under extreme circumstances can be key to your survival. This list from Zen Habits contains some rather surprising tricks for relieving daily stress and tension, so that you can stay composed and levelheaded when things get out of hand.
As we move through our daily routines we are often faced with obstacles and challenges which can lead to some degree of stress and anxiety. So to become more relaxed and free of tensions it is important to break away from your ordinary routine and find ways to de-stress. This process can be very simple or more in depth, but why not try something new and different? Here are 8, not your everyday ordinary, ways to de-stress and release tensions.
The latest episode of Random with Tim Ferriss and Kevin Rose featured some great tips on knives. Here’s the list of knives mentioned, but I encourage you to also watch the episode (begins at 17:18) for more information:
- Kershaw Leek knife
- The Grayman Warrior
- Boeker fixed blade (suggested by Yvon Chouinard)
- ESEE-5 Randall
Tim also mentioned an Evasive driving and Special Ops training that might be of interest to readers.
(If you’re interested in subscribing to the podcast, you can do so here.)
The coin toss is the go-to solution for whenever a decision needs to be left to chance. But according to a study done at the University of British Columbia, it’s much easier to influence the outcome than you’d think. Participants were able to raise their chances of flipping a heads to 68% after just a few minutes of instruction. The technique involves trying for a specific number of flips in the air in order to catch the coin with the preferred side up.
Do the flipping. You need to know which side of the coin starts face up. You’ll be going for a specific number of flips. This is why referees and umpires do the tossing in most sports, while team captains make the call.
Practice. The trick is to flip the coin the same way every time, with the same force behind your thumb. Too many spins and it’s too difficult to repeat; too few and it doesn’t look fair. Three or four flips are ideal.
As part of their “Evil Week” series of posts, Lifehacker shares this surprisingly simple trick to unlocking one type of airplane lavatory door. Simply lift the little “Lavatory” sign above the lock, then slide the now exposed lock open. Hit the links for pictures.
- Step 1: Approach locked lavatory
- Step 2: Lift “LAVATORY” sign
- Step 3: Slide the knob into the unlocked position
- Step 4: Cackle because you’ve just unlocked the bathroom from the outside
Many more tricks are being featured on Lifehacker. Here are just a few a bunch more:
- How to Beat a Polygraph Test
- How to Set Up Free Facetime Home Surveillance
- How to Lie Effectively
- How to ”Find” a Good Victim
- How to Create Fake Numbers
- How to Build a Cheap Bug
- How to Defeat Big Brother
- How to Pick Locks
- How to Manipulate People
This video shows a couple of thieves installing a card-skimmer and a pinhole camera in an ATM. It also illustrates just how effective shielding the keypad can be in defending yourself against scammers. It is a simple trick, but it still provides little protection from more sophisticated techniques, such as keyboard overlays that are capable of logging your keystrokes.
According to Wired, the video was seized by police in the UK. But card skimmingoperations are becoming increasingly common in the US, too. Last year, a group of four Romanians stole $1.8 million from New York ATM customers in a skimming operation.
We always thought people who covered the keypad when typing in their PIN and gave the ATM a once-over before using it were paranoid freaks. Guess they’ll have the last laugh when we find our account’s been emptied by a Central European crime syndicate.
Safety is the number one priority when dealing with any kind of firearm, as just one mistake or lapse in attention can be devastating. The Art of Manliness blog has put together a nice tutorial that covers the basics of handgun safety and tips on how to actually hit your target.
To get the lowdown on how to shoot a handgun safely and correctly, I headed over to theUnited States Shooting Academy in Tulsa, OK and talked to Mike Seeklander, the Direct of Training at the Academy. He explained the basics of firing a handgun so a first-time shooter could do so safely and semi-accurately (the accuracy part will take some practice!).