You never know what kinds of cool research projects are going on just rooms away from you in your own campus. Even after years (we will refrain from saying how many years) here, I'm still surprised at some of the stuff that goes on here that I had no idea even existed. For example, did you know that there is a giant, 3D body scanner only a few buildings over from mine? I didn't know this until today, but man, it's pretty cool.
My SO was thoughtful enough to grab a poster for me from the gym a week or two ago that was advertising a research study on custom fitted pants. The researcher was looking for people with "curvy butts" to get a 3D body scan, followed by a pants fitting. Not only does this pay money, but if you make it through to the end of the study you can request a copy of the pattern that was used to make the custom fitted pants for you. Score! So, I got up relatively early this morning (for me at least), and went off in search of the scanner in MVR Hall.
I wasn't entirely sure what this thing was going to look like, but it actually looks *exactly* like being inside of a giant photocopier with four scanners in each corner of the scanning box instead of one. You strip down to your undies and the thing runs a beam over you from head to toe, and you end up with a remarkably accurate computerized image of your body (maybe a little too accurate even -- I could totally see that one side of my bra fits better than the other, and I had to stop myself from going on about bra fit problems, despite the fact that her research is on butts).
Now I have to wait a week or two to see if I've been selected for the next stage of research were I get to try on the custom patterns. I told her if she ran out of money she could contact me for free, as long as I got the pattern in the end. Yes, dear reader, I know this is a pretty sure way to guarantee that she won't pay me any more, but getting a pattern made especially for me is worth more than ten bucks!