In a piece headlined "Rube Goldberg meets Aquaman" a few weeks ago, we wrote of something called PowerSwim--a contraption developed by DARPA that would allow Navy SEALs and others to swim 150 percent faster and with less effort than they would with regular fins. In describing it, we had to rely on an illustration done by Popular Mechanics. Apparently PM never saw the thing either, because it looks nothing like that picture. Here, thanks to the understanding and generous folks at DARPA, is the real deal: The photo's a little muddy but, after all, it's under … Read more
"What the #*%^?" is a common question heard every year from hundreds of bobbing heads attempting the famous Alcatraz swim across San Francisco Bay; arms and legs flail furiously, but it seems they're no closer to the beach.
The government has an explanation for this swimming phenomenon: You suck!
It's spelled out in this month's Popular Mechanics. "Humans are terrible swimmers, converting roughly 3 percent of their kicks, strokes and general underwater exertions into forward motion. We can boost our efficiency to 10 percent by adding fins, but dolphins, by comparison, can turn 80 percent … Read more