Tuesday, November 14, 2006

A Mashing Attachment to Mixer Grinder

In cooking one often finds the need for garlic-ginger paste. Garlic and ginger have high medicinal value and the importance of garlic-ginger paste in cooking cannot be over emphasized. How do you prepare garlic-ginger paste? You cannot use a table top wet grinder since the quantity of the garlic-ginger paste required is usually small, except when you require it for a big feast for hundreds of guests. Usually the paste is prepared using a small ‘chutney’ attachment available with the mixer grinder. But you cannot get the thing mashed to the consistency you would like it to have. The good old grinding stone might have been in use right from the stone age, but it is used even today in many Kerala homes to prepare garlic-ginger paste and the like. Modern house wives will not touch the hand operated grinding stone and will prefer the chutney attachment with the mixer grinder, sacrificing the consistency of the paste to some extent.
An idea that came to my mind some time back on improving the mashing capability of the chutney attachment is here: Instead of using the stainless steel blade, why not use an eccentrically rotating sphere as the rotor? The stainless steel jar inside which the rotor rotates (and which holds the things to be mashed) should be corrugated inside (or made rough) so that when the sphere rotates eccentrically within the jar, the contents get mashed to your heart’s contentment! (The rotor also can be made with a rough surface if you want). Certain high vacuum pumps have eccentrically rotating rotors. Mixer grinder manufacturers may think of cheaper alternatives to be used in their new chutney attachment. So,
Attention Mixer Grinder Manufacturers!

Monday, October 30, 2006

When the Mind is Clean

The concept of mind has been a subject of a lot of debate. Feelings of love, hatred, anger, sympathy and so on come from the heart, we usually say. We don’t mean the physical heart (which is just a very efficient machine for pumping blood) but a different entity called the mind. Well, where is the mind? Scientists will point to the brain, which is equipped with the operating system and many complicated software along with the marvelous hardware elements that perform unimaginably sophisticated functions.
Memory locations are extremely vital in the operation of the brain, as in the case of a computer and it is here that we humans store data which we interpret as of probably three types: desirable, harmful and good for nothing. There may be difference of opinion about the third type. I am leaving it to your own interpretation!
I have heard that when one is in the death bed, the mind becomes clean. I think the random access memory (RAM) in the brain becomes devoid of the harmful software and data and the read only memory (ROM) continues its function to the extent possible. The man in the death bed therefore behaves like a child or, may be, like the foetus in the mother’s womb. The feeling of love and concern for others is a lasting trait and nature probably is very reluctant to obliterate it from the memory locations of the brain. Probably these are part of the ‘operating system’ itself.
If you compare your life span with the cosmic standard, you will realize where you stand. If you compare your size with the cosmic standard you will realize how insignificant you are. Such thoughts will help in deleting undesirable software and data from the memory locations in your brain. You will then love o
thers and will be loved by others.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Zeeman Effect and Metallic reflection

This post is aimed at Physicists interested in fundamental research.
Zeeman effect is the splitting of spectral lines when the source of spectrum (usually a discharge tube) is placed in a magnetic field. An idea that has been in my mind for some time is to check whether you can observe Zeeman effect if you place a mirror strip (instead of the light source) in a magnetic field and direct a beam of monochromatic light towards the mirror strip.
As usual, you will require the entire set up for Zeeman effect (electromagnet, high resolution instrument such as Fabri-Perot interferometer or Lummer-Gehrcke plate, Spectrometer etc.) but instead of the spectral source you will use a mirror strip or any polished metal surface and you will observe the light reflected from it. I have certain ideas about the experiment and its consequences, but I don’t want to distract you at the moment. I don’t know whether somebody has done this type of an experiment before. I think the result of this experiment, whether positive or negative, will have an influence on our explanation of metallic reflection. I thought of mercury green line for this experiment, but a suitable laser also can be considered. So,
Attention Physicists!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Why not a Floor Paint?

About two decades back, ‘loose marble chips’ (mosaic) floor was very popular in Kerala. Marble slabs and ceramic tiles were also used, but they were not very popular. Marble slabs were very costly then. The cost of marble slab has come down but people prefer tiles, especially vitrified tiles, because of the convenience and the saving in time. Loose marble chips floors are being dug out and tiles of choice are being laid by most house owners who can afford the cost. I too have an inclination towards the modern tiles and it is now only a question of time for effecting the change.
Meanwhile, I have been thinking of the feasibility of a suitable floor paint. Why should one waste so much time and money in replacing the loose marble chips floor with one of vitrified tiles? If you have a durable coating (on the existing floor) that will give the look and neatness of floor tiles, you can save quite a lot of labour and cost. A matty finish will be practicable and sufficient. Even if the coating can last for five years, the method will definitely prove convenient. Paints similar to those used in glass painting (with suitable modifications) can be considered I think. With modern manufacturing techniques, it will not be a big problem to make this idea practicable. So, attention paint manufacturers!

Monday, September 18, 2006

Vitamin C

Ever since I came to know about the beneficial effects of vitamin C as advocated by Linus Pauling, I have tried to include this vitamin in my diet. Linus Pauling was a very rare scientist who won the prestigious Nobel Prize twice, the first one (in Chemistry in 1954) for his work on the nature of chemical bonds and the second one (for peace in 1962) for his efforts to stem nuclear weapons proliferation.
I believe that a scientist of his caliber should be correct. My trust in his findings had the additional support from ayurveda, the ancient system of medicine that has been popular in India from time immemorial. In ashtangahridaya, one of the authoritative books on ayurveda, there is a chapter on rasayanas (tonics) which discusses the preparation of chyavanaprasha (chyavanprash), the famous tonic that restored the health of Chyavana Maharshi. (This preparation is very popular in India even today. In fact, its popularity is so great that you can find many companies in India manufacturing and marketing this tonic on gigantic scale). A very significant ingredient in chyavanaprasha is gooseberry which is rich in vitamin C.
Ayurveda requires that one should consume a suitable rasayana for physical and mental health. Interestingly, the converse also is true according to ayurveda: A person who has good physical and mental health might be taking some suitable rasayana!
My personal experience is that a 500mg vitamin C tablet per day in the chewable form is good for preventing the common cold and such viral diseases when the likelihood of catching such diseases is suspected. When you consume such a tablet, you will be getting a total quantity of more than 500mg since your food items will contain additional quantity of vitamin C. Since vitamin C is ascorbic acid, I never take the tablet in an empty stomach and I consume a lot of water. You can get more interesting information on vitamin C here.

Monday, September 11, 2006

A Bed with Adjustable Width

An idea which came to my mind long time back was about a bed of adjustable width. Perhaps many of you might have longed for such a bed at some point of time. To be frank, I thought of it when my first baby was born.
In Kerala couples usually allow their babies to sleep with them in the same bed up to the age of one year. There might be variations, but all couples here surely might have slept in the same bed with their baby in between them. The necessity of a broader bed then is relevant, especially on account of the tropical summer coupled with the frequent electric power failure in those days. (Occasional power failure is not uncommon in Kerala even today. I thought of uploading this post some three hours back, but there was no power supply then!).
When you want to adjust the width of a bed, the main problem is the adjustment of the width of the cot (the piece of wooden furniture used for arranging the bed on it). Double cots with width 4 feet and 5 feet are common here. Whatever the width, how to make the width of the cot adjustable? You can have a wooden (or plastic) plank hinged at the side of the cot. The plank could be fitted with legs of adjustable height. These legs should be easily removable and re-attachable so that the plank can be conveniently folded down whenever required, to restore the original width of the cot. You can make it foldable upwards also so that the plank will serve as a barrier for the safety of your baby. These things are quite simple to design, once you are up to make such an adjustable cot.
Once you make such a multipurpose cot of adjustable width, you can arrange your bed on it in accordance with your requirement.
I am just giving you the idea of the bed of adjustable width. You can make your own original design and market the product. If you want any more suggestions in this regard, please let me know through your comments.
One final point at the moment: You can think of a universal attachment that can be fixed to any cot.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Introductory Remarks

This blog is meant for giving useful ideas to you . You may be a scientist, a teacher, a student, an administrator, a politician, an industrialist or an ordinary citizen. But all of you will definitely like to have useful ideas. As far as possible, new ideas will be posted here. Let me have your comments on them. And don’t hesitate to make critical comments.
Attention Toilet Soap Manufacturers!
The following idea has been in my mind for quite a long time. Manufacturers of toilet soaps may see whether this idea is of use to them.
One problem with the current method of packing toilet soaps is that by the time you use half of the soap, it loses a good share of its perfume and sometimes even its shape. Why not pack it as a two-in one soap? What I mean is this:
Instead of packing the soap as a single continuous homogeneous block, you make an inner block, cover it with thin polythene and then make an outer block, covering the inner one with the outer block. Finally the outer block carrying the polythene covered block of soap inside it, is to be packed as usual. This two-in-one soap can be made with the same perfume or, you may use two different perfumes for the inner and outer blocks.
The benefit of this type of packing is that once you finish off the outer soap block within a few days, you arrive at the inner block (inside polythene cover). On tearing off the polythene cover, you have a fresh piece at your disposal (with the same perfume or a different perfume if you want).
The soap will last longer, since the waste may be reduced. I don’t know whether this last point is agreeable from a business point of view!