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8 Bunk Beds That Are (Almost) Too Cool to Sleep In

If you’re sharing a bedroom with someone, it's either going to be super fun or a super drag and either way, an awesome bunk bed is the perfect thing to add some practical whimsy. Ditch generic twofer beds most commonly seen in college dorms and hostels around the world and consider a few of the options below. They're sure to turn sleepy time into an event—every single night.

1. STAR WARS IMPERIAL WALKER

Jonathan Wentworth // Screenshot via YouTube

Did you hear that? It’s the sound of millions of Star Wars fans crying out in envy. The owners of this themed bunk bed are maybe the luckiest kids in the galaxy, and they probably weren't even alive when the prequels hit theaters.

2. ECTO-1 CAR

Image via Dave Delisle

This ghost-busting design is sadly only a concept, but all great ideas have to start somewhere! Designer Dave Delisle used the iconic Ecto-1 1959 Cadillac Professional for inspiration for this cool creation, with the roof rack serving as a barrier for the top bunk, and the hood of the car providing additional bedroom storage.

3. JURASSIC PARK RAPTOR CAGE

Dave Delisle also designed this Jurassic Park-themed Velociraptor cage concept bed. The door slides closed to keep the wild animal (read: kid) inside, and the exterior has the industrial feel of a high-tech containment system from the film. Delisle writes on his website: “My only qualm with this design is having to punch out a hole in the bed frame at the top of the ladder, which prevents this from looking exactly like the raptor cage; however that’s in keeping with all bunk bed designs, so safety and accessibility should be considered for a real-life bed.”

4. SOFA BUNK BED

Couches that transform into beds are nothing new, but designing a couch with a hidden bunk bed inside is something special. The full conversion only takes about 20 seconds, so the transition from watching a movie to meeting the sandman is always a quick one. Now all we need is a name for this extra-special futon. 

5. SURF SHACK

Image via YouTube

Kids can enjoy the beach year-round with this indoor surf shack. Using leftover and recycled materials and real water reeds, a handy dad spent two months building the structure for his sons. There's even a working doorbell and a coconut telephone so the kids can talk to each other from bed. We might make a motion for a sand-covered floor for authenticity, but mom and dad would likely have a problem with that. 

6. SUPER MARIO CASTLE

Image via Imgur 

Bring virtual reality into the real world with this kid-sized homage to retro gaming. The stairs to the top bunk are hidden behind 8-bit bricks, and the rest of the castle matches the style and color of the Super Mario landmark perfectly, with the archways serving as windows for the bottom bunk.

7. TOWERING PINK CASTLE

Image via Imgur

If Super Mario isn't the king of the castle in your home, fear not: There's a bunk bed castle for all tastes. Kids can rule their own kingdom from this big pink castle, with stairs on one side and a slide on the other, which the builder/mastermind admits is a little too steep: “My girls flew down it and right into the wall, but of course they laughed and said again,” user G00D_GUY wrote on Imgur. “After a few times they got the speed down.”

8. ROOM FOR THREE

Image via Imgur

Three is a crowd that doesn't feel too crowded in this deluxe custom build. This design has two beds on top and one on the bottom left, with extra space on the right that's perfect for a play area or a pet’s bed. While a feat of spatial efficiency, this design does come with a conundrum: Which sibling has to take the bottom while the other two get to party it up together in the penthouse?

Original image
iStock // Ekaterina Minaeva
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Man Buys Two Metric Tons of LEGO Bricks; Sorts Them Via Machine Learning
Original image
iStock // Ekaterina Minaeva

Jacques Mattheij made a small, but awesome, mistake. He went on eBay one evening and bid on a bunch of bulk LEGO brick auctions, then went to sleep. Upon waking, he discovered that he was the high bidder on many, and was now the proud owner of two tons of LEGO bricks. (This is about 4400 pounds.) He wrote, "[L]esson 1: if you win almost all bids you are bidding too high."

Mattheij had noticed that bulk, unsorted bricks sell for something like €10/kilogram, whereas sets are roughly €40/kg and rare parts go for up to €100/kg. Much of the value of the bricks is in their sorting. If he could reduce the entropy of these bins of unsorted bricks, he could make a tidy profit. While many people do this work by hand, the problem is enormous—just the kind of challenge for a computer. Mattheij writes:

There are 38000+ shapes and there are 100+ possible shades of color (you can roughly tell how old someone is by asking them what lego colors they remember from their youth).

In the following months, Mattheij built a proof-of-concept sorting system using, of course, LEGO. He broke the problem down into a series of sub-problems (including "feeding LEGO reliably from a hopper is surprisingly hard," one of those facts of nature that will stymie even the best system design). After tinkering with the prototype at length, he expanded the system to a surprisingly complex system of conveyer belts (powered by a home treadmill), various pieces of cabinetry, and "copious quantities of crazy glue."

Here's a video showing the current system running at low speed:

The key part of the system was running the bricks past a camera paired with a computer running a neural net-based image classifier. That allows the computer (when sufficiently trained on brick images) to recognize bricks and thus categorize them by color, shape, or other parameters. Remember that as bricks pass by, they can be in any orientation, can be dirty, can even be stuck to other pieces. So having a flexible software system is key to recognizing—in a fraction of a second—what a given brick is, in order to sort it out. When a match is found, a jet of compressed air pops the piece off the conveyer belt and into a waiting bin.

After much experimentation, Mattheij rewrote the software (several times in fact) to accomplish a variety of basic tasks. At its core, the system takes images from a webcam and feeds them to a neural network to do the classification. Of course, the neural net needs to be "trained" by showing it lots of images, and telling it what those images represent. Mattheij's breakthrough was allowing the machine to effectively train itself, with guidance: Running pieces through allows the system to take its own photos, make a guess, and build on that guess. As long as Mattheij corrects the incorrect guesses, he ends up with a decent (and self-reinforcing) corpus of training data. As the machine continues running, it can rack up more training, allowing it to recognize a broad variety of pieces on the fly.

Here's another video, focusing on how the pieces move on conveyer belts (running at slow speed so puny humans can follow). You can also see the air jets in action:

In an email interview, Mattheij told Mental Floss that the system currently sorts LEGO bricks into more than 50 categories. It can also be run in a color-sorting mode to bin the parts across 12 color groups. (Thus at present you'd likely do a two-pass sort on the bricks: once for shape, then a separate pass for color.) He continues to refine the system, with a focus on making its recognition abilities faster. At some point down the line, he plans to make the software portion open source. You're on your own as far as building conveyer belts, bins, and so forth.

Check out Mattheij's writeup in two parts for more information. It starts with an overview of the story, followed up with a deep dive on the software. He's also tweeting about the project (among other things). And if you look around a bit, you'll find bulk LEGO brick auctions online—it's definitely a thing!

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iStock
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Here's How to Change Your Name on Facebook
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iStock

Whether you want to change your legal name, adopt a new nickname, or simply reinvent your online persona, it's helpful to know the process of resetting your name on Facebook. The social media site isn't a fan of fake accounts, and as a result changing your name is a little more complicated than updating your profile picture or relationship status. Luckily, Daily Dot laid out the steps.

Start by going to the blue bar at the top of the page in desktop view and clicking the down arrow to the far right. From here, go to Settings. This should take you to the General Account Settings page. Find your name as it appears on your profile and click the Edit link to the right of it. Now, you can input your preferred first and last name, and if you’d like, your middle name.

The steps are similar in Facebook mobile. To find Settings, tap the More option in the bottom right corner. Go to Account Settings, then General, then hit your name to change it.

Whatever you type should adhere to Facebook's guidelines, which prohibit symbols, numbers, unusual capitalization, and honorifics like Mr., Ms., and Dr. Before landing on a name, make sure you’re ready to commit to it: Facebook won’t let you update it again for 60 days. If you aren’t happy with these restrictions, adding a secondary name or a name pronunciation might better suit your needs. You can do this by going to the Details About You heading under the About page of your profile.

[h/t Daily Dot]

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