Most us who've had school lockers or rental storage units know that lots of people trust inexpensive padlocks to secure their belongings. Tactical studies weblog ITS Tactical proves that this trust is a false sense of security by opening the two most popular type of padlocks with shims cut from an aluminum soda can. Combination padlocks tend to only lock on side while keyed locks usually have a double-lock shackle. To open a single shackle lock, you create a shim by cutting out a piece of aluminum shaped like the letter M. The middle indentation of the shim is inserted in the space between the lock body and shackle and then the shim is turned while working the shackle up and down until the shim has moved around to the other side of the lock into the locking mechanism. Once the shim is there, use it to push the locking mechanism out of the way and open the lock.
Science comes up with a lot of awesome stuff, and you don’t need a Ph.D, a secret lab, or government funding to get your hands on some of the coolest discoveries. We’ve got a list of 11 mostly affordable gifts that are guaranteed to blow your mind, whether or not you’re a science geek. Also known as frozen smoke, Aerogel is the world’s lowest density solid, clocking in at 96% air. It’s basically just a gel made from silicon, except all the liquid has been taken out and replaced with gas instead. If you hold a small piece in your hand, it’s practically impossible to either see or feel, but if you poke it, it’s like styrofoam. Aerogel isn’t just neat, it’s useful.