Your Beverage Ice Is Dirtier Than Toilet Water

You may want to consider ordering your drink without ice next time you’re at a fast food restaurant (or any place):

“I found that 70-percent of the time, the ice from the fast food restaurant’s contain more bacteria than the fast food restaurant’s toilet water,” Roberts told local station 10 News in Tampa.

How did that happen?

The reason that the bacteria was more prevalent in the ice could be that while toilets are cleaned regularly, ice machines are not.

This really isn’t terribly surprising. In addition to regular cleaning, toilets are intentionally made of glazed porcelain because bacteria has trouble latching onto it. It’s worth noting bacteria is all around you and almost unquestionably that bacteria in question, while plentiful is not likely to cause any health issues.

It’s still an interesting observation.

Getting Heart Rate From Video

From the creatives folks at Fitbit:

The basic idea is that the color of your face fluctuates slightly as blood perfusion under the skin changes from your heart’s pumping. If you measure the color change, you can measure heart rate. It sounds simple, but it’s not. One thing that makes this difficult is user motion: if the person being measured moves, it becomes difficult to disentangle cardiac-induced color changes from changes in lighting conditions on the face, rotations of the face, etc. But in some cases, we’re actually able to filter out some of this motion. Pretty cool, right?

This is hardly polished technology, but the idea is that you can get heart rate by looking at skin color changes. This is really pretty impressive. It’s a pretty clever approach. I’d be curious how well it transfers from using older film to using some modern 1080p broadcast quality video. Does the accuracy improve?