CLOSE
Original image
Karthik Janakiraman, youtube

India Has Human-Powered Ferris Wheels

Original image
Karthik Janakiraman, youtube

The ferris wheels most westerners know and love are motor-powered contraptions. But some of their Indian counterparts utilize a slightly different source of momentum, as this eye-popping video reveals:

Reliable electricity is almost impossible to come by throughout much of India. And just two years ago, a mammoth blackout devastated the subcontinent, leaving more than 700 million people in darkness. So when an amusement park ride can claim to rely on nothing but physics and good, old fashioned elbow grease, it’s an attractive selling point.

Squads of acrobatic daredevils are hired to get these things moving. How, you ask? Their routine generally goes something like this: Individual cars are loaded with passengers as some ground-level employees rotate the wheel by pushing it forward. Then, a few team members begin scaling the rafters and using their body weight to accelerate it. Some of the luckier individuals remain below, shoving cars and maintaining momentum.

These human-powered ferris wheels are popular attractions in many Asian countries. They also come in a variety of sizes, including a few models that are several stories high.

Original image
iStock
arrow
Live Smarter
Getting Calls From Your Own Phone Number? Don't Answer!
Original image
iStock

There’s a new phone scam that could affect you, according to Washington’s KIRO 7 News. In addition to keeping your eyes open for calls that come from area codes like 473 or involve people claiming to be Equifax representatives, you now have to watch out for your own phone number.

Scammers are manipulating your phone’s caller ID to make it look like you’re getting a call from your own phone number, then posing as someone from a wireless carrier like AT&T or Verizon. They tell whoever answers the phone that their account has been flagged for security reasons, then ask for the last four digits of that person’s Social Security number. The FCC has been aware of these scams for at least two years, but they seem to be ramping up once again.

In general, you shouldn’t give out any part of your Social Security number over the phone on an incoming call. If you’re suspicious, you can always call your carrier back using the official customer service phone number on their website or on your bill. But it’s best not to pick up at all. If you receive a call from your own number, don’t answer or press any buttons. Instead, file a complaint with the FCC.

[h/t KIRO 7 News]

Original image
Samsung
arrow
fun
Samsung’s Star Wars Vacuums Offer Everything You Want in a Droid
Original image
Samsung

Hate housecleaning but love Star Wars? Samsung’s got the solution. In anticipation of December’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the newest film in the Star Wars saga, Samsung has transformed a limited number of its VR7000 POWERbot robot vacuum cleaners into two familiar faces from George Lucas’s legendary space opera: a Stormtrooper and Darth Vader (which comes with Wi-Fi connectivity and a remote control).

In order to create a unique device that would truly thrill Star Wars aficionados, Samsung consulted with fans of the film throughout each stage of the process. The result is a pair of custom-crafted robo-vacuums that fill your home with the sounds of a galaxy far, far away as they clean (when you turn Darth Vader on, for example, you'll hear his iconic breathing).

“We are very pleased to be part of the excitement leading up to the release of The Last Jedi and to be launching our limited edition POWERbot in partnership with Star Wars fans,” B.S. Suh, Samsung’s executive vice president, said in a press statement. “From its industry-leading suction power, slim design, and smart features, to the wonderful character-themed voice feedback and sound effects, we are confident the Star Wars limited edition of the VR7000 will be a big hit.”

Be warned that this kind of power suction doesn’t come cheap: while the Stormtrooper POWERbot will set you back $696, the Darth Vader vacuum retails for $798. Who knew the Dark Side was so sparkling clean?


Samsung

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios