We all take plants for granted, and why not since it is all around us…the flowers that bloom in the neighbor’s garden, to the weeds that jets out of the concrete pavement, and the avid vegetarian gardener plucking the string beans from the foray of green leaves.
Have we stopped to think how this beautiful marvel of nature comes about and continues to coexist with mankind without once complaining? Naturally, there have been much science and research done regarding plants, how they germinate, pollinate and provide the nutrients for mankind to survive but we are likely have some hazy memories of this that we studied at school.
Sunflowers – a miracle of nature
I recently became more intrigued on this subject when I stumbled upon a news breaking story on how scientists have cracked the process of why sunflowers follow the sun. The mere idea of a flower following the sun is simply awe-inspiring and to understand the whole process is even more captivating. What the scientists have essentially found out from tracking thousands of sunflowers from their research are the following:
- Young sunflowers follow the trajectory of the sun by following the sun’s motion ie. rising in the east and setting on the west. Naturally, this is to ensure that they maximize the sun’s energy in the process in order to grow fast.
- Now you may ask, how does it keep following east to west, it must surely settle back to where it started. Of course you are right, and there is an explanation for this. What happens is that during the night, the stem of the flowers grow more at night only on the west side and as a result it moves the flower back to it’s starting point to resume another day of tracking the sun.
- The scientists have also discovered that older sunflowers do not track the sun at all and end up just facing east so as to be warm in the morning to attract pollinators.
So there you have it, the magic of the sunflowers and how nature has produced an amazing miracle that has been confirmed by science.
For more information, please follow the link below..
Okay, I am a big fan of Michaels, Dollar Tree and other shops where I can buy the necessary items for my creative projects. The other day while I was shopping in Dollar Tree I came across these organizers (Fig. 1) which are cardboard type trays to organize your papers. It was the perfect thing I was looking for and they came in packs of 2 for only $1.
Paper cardboard holder from dollar tree
I decided that I was going to get a bunch to organize my papers, mail, receipts and alike to keep myself efficient in the mini-office that I made for myself. When I got home, I had more ideas on how to bind these organizers together to make a stackable tray (shown in the pics). I was quite impressed myself to have come up with this idea since the trolley shelf was sitting pretty doing nothing and suddenly it became more valuable.
Paper organizers stuck together
How to put them together:
Assembling the organizer was a breeze… you actually have to bend one of the flaps to close the base and the unit looked as though it could hold up to some light use. I then made 6 of these units and then stuck them with Elmers glue. I wasn’t sure how strong this bond would be but I thought I would give it a try anyways. I have used Elmers wood glue and that was a fantastic product and produced a really strong bond for all my wood projects. In fact the joints were so strong that the force would literally tear away the wood around the joint rather than the glue joint itself!
As usual, one has to let the glue dry which did not take too long, the curing time for this glue seemed to be a few hours. For some of the joints I put glue in between and stuck them together with clear sticky tape. The finished product is shown in the pics.
The whole ‘stackable tray’ unit fits snug in the trolley shelf and I couldn’t be happier. Now, I need to wade through all the papers, open my mail, pay the bills and all the un-fun stuff….sigh.
Paper cardboard holder in office environment
Hope you like this post.
Stay tuned for more creative ideas and projects brought to you by ferdouse.com
I am not sure if I speak for many of the readers when I say that I have had hit or misses when it comes to pairing bluetooth devices.
Bluetooth devices can be a bugger to get working
Bluetooth has been around for a fairly long time and it was back in 2004 that I actually purchased one of the miniature headset that are in large supply today. So the other day, I decided to purchase one of these cheap headsets for literally under $5 from ebay. The first one I ordered was a tiny unit that simply sits inside your ear and of course it has a tendency to fall off.
I was able to pair this device to my Samsung Galaxy Note 4 fairly easily and it wasn’t too long I was listening to some youtube channels through the headset. However, the sound from the thing was very faint so I thought it would be a useful device that I can keep in my ear and listen in the background whilst I do work. However, since the device had a tendency to fall out of my ear, I thought I would check another one out that could stay in my ear. I forked out another one for just a shade under $5 and this one had a hook that wraps around the earlobe and stop it from falling.
I was very surprised that the second unit that had supposedly come all the way from China took just 7 days to arrive. I was creating all kinds of scenarios in my head as to how they did that ie. passenger planes – throw it in with the other bags, freight planes etc. Still I was dumbfounded as to how they can possibly offer free shipping with the unit priced under $5. This would be almost unheard of if you go back 20 years and probably told never in a million years.
I still have to figure out how you can ship one item with next to nothing all the way from China. However, I do have a hunch that there is one operator who takes shipments from all the distributors and puts them into a larger shipment and is able to offer the cost savings to the distributors. Anyways, I am sold in buying from China and I already have a few more items coming from there. After all, Apple has its stuff made in China and so far I have been happy with the smaller items from China and ready to order some higher purchase items. Call me a traitor but it beats the prices you get here in the US.
So going back to the subject of bluetooth devices, I found that keyboards are even more difficult to pair. Apple surprisingly does makes very easy task of this affair with couplings of the mouse and keyboard, but maybe it doesn’t use bluetooth, I would need to check. As I am exploring the bluetooth devices ie. configuring, uninstalling, reinstalling, pairing and unpairing, I expect to have useful information for my readers on upcoming posts.
Stay tuned for more!
The other day, I found myself in an empty basement of my Uncle and Aunt’s house in NY (don’t ask me how I got here, it’s a long story). Bless my Uncle and Aunt for helping and supporting me go through some difficult times in the last year or so.
Plastic folding doors
Anyways, onto the topic of my post which I thought fellow readers might very useful ie. how to put up a cheap and cheerful folding door. The plastic door I picked up is from Lowes for under $30 to insulate my room from the excessive heat wave that was happening around the NY area. I had brought the portable AC unit down from the attic and positioned it in the window and then I was left with all manner of tasks on how to insulate the room and keep the room cool as well as reducing the electric bills. Naturally the wide open door was my first area of concern and I had temporarily hung a bed sheet with two push pins which you can imagine was a sorry tale for a door. I came up with the idea of a folding, sliding door that would do the job of putting a barrier from the cool air escaping as well as being functional. Normally I often research the heckl out of anything I want to buy by going to reviews, youtube etc. until I build up enough knowledge and confidence that I have made the right decision and can do the job with eyes closed (ok not quite). Of course you don’t have to follow my lead, you can just simply buy the product and follow my simple instructions.
Surprisingly, once I got around to installing it, it was a breeze and pretty much anyone could do it.
Here are the steps to putting it up:
- Measure the opening of the doorway that you are installing the folding door and make sure you purchase the folding door that is bigger than this opening.
- My opening was 76” x 29” and the item I purchased covered openings of 88×32
- I cut the length of the item to fit the drop length of the opening. This is where you need to make sure you cut it to the right size. Too short and you could leave a large gap at the bottom and too big means it won’t close as it will drag on the floor. I actually put the top rail on the doors and measured it before I cut the excess off the bottom. In this way you have ensured that the cut will be exact to size. I used my humble electric cut-off saw which did the job nicely.
- Make sure that you know which is the top and bottom before you do the cut. One can easily make a mistake and cut the excess from the top. The way you can tell is that there are a number of holes that hold the guide plastics that feed through the top rail.
- Drilling or screwing to walls – I was not sure whether I needed anchor plugs but once I screwed my first screw of the top rail, I realized it had some tension to hold up the rail even though the screw went in easily. You need to decide whether to use anchor screws or not on your project and how rigid you want the thing to be. I thought this would work for me and if I needed to reinforce the thing later, I could screw fatter screws through the thin plastic railing.
- Once you put everything up, you realize the mechanics of the whole thing. Some additional screws (supplied) were required to fasten the loose flap that will be bound to the wall on the opposite side of the door opening. The handles with magnetic catch are used to snap the door in place when closing.
I installed the whole thing in just under an hour but it can be even quicker for some folks since I took extra time in measuring and reading so as not to make a mistake. You realize immediately what the differences are between say a proper robust folding door to a diy cheap and cheerful one that I have. First the folding door will bend once you open it since there are no rails at the bottom to keep it straight. However, since the whole thing is very light, I wasn’t too worried about that, I just moved it slowly using the handles and using my arm to keep the whole thing straight. If I got too lazy, I would open it slightly and then slide the rest of the door from the top.
As usual, I can see all kinds of bells and whistles going off in my head as to how the whole thing could be improved. After all, I am an engineer For those readers who are interested, please read on..
folding door magnetic door hing
Mechanics of the sliding and folding door..
As explained previously, the door relies only on the top rail to move it back and forth and this causes the door to bend when you slide the whole door where the handle is. The cure for this is to have either bottom rail guides to put this in place just like sliding insect screens you see on external windows and doors.. Alternatively, you can make the whole thing heavy enough that the weight would simply prevent the unit from twisting when you slide from the middle. This would require strong top rail mountings and most definitely anchor joints.
On this cheap and cheerful folding door there are gaps that come from the bottom and the side of the door where the magnetic catch is. Naturally, this would not be the best choice for an effective insulation of the room. You could put a strip of plastic of the same thickness as the magnetic strip to cover the gap and you could put some cloth or ribbon at the bottom to cover the gap in the bottom. Guide rails at the top, side and bottom could cure this problem however expect to pay upwards of hundreds of dollars for that luxury.
However, for now I am very happy! Now to find the other holes to stop the cool air from escaping.