For anyone who wants to learn ‘How To Apply Statistics To Life’, the section with that title will get into the mathy details. If you are a parent and just want to know how long to pat your baby on the back, you will benefit from the sections titled Summary and The Data.
The original goal was to figure out how long to pat our baby to ensure we got 95% of burps out. However, this same data can be used to find the laziest/easiest solution to get burps out while minimizing risk of an upset baby.
For parents I have 2 options. You can use the outcome of 5 babies we studied, summarized in the next paragraph and additional details in the section ‘Our Data’. Or you can take 2 or 3 measurements to figure out your own baby burp statistics, as described in section ‘How To Apply to Your Baby’.
For 95% of burps, with 90% confidence you need to burp for 6 minutes. For 85% of burps with 90% confidence you can burp for 2 minutes. For 85% of burps, no confidence you can burp for 2 minutes. And for 73% of burps, no confidence, you can burp for 1 minute. This last one I call ‘2AM burp strategy’.
To begin, we timed 25 samples of our newborn burping. I put this data in Excel, calculated the sample mean and sample standard deviation. These are straightforward formulas and if you are not familiar, google can answer your excel questions in seconds.
With the sample mean and standard deviation I could calculate what a statistical distribution should look like in excel using =EXPON.DIST( or =NORM.DIST( or similar. Quick stats lesson, understand Cumulative Distribution Function and Probability Distribution Function. CDF is the probability of the event from 0 to whatever value, for instance 60 seconds is 76%. PDF is the probability at that exact time, for instance at 60 seconds is 0.3%. These require, mean and standard deviation, and a value to calculate against. For instance, 1 second, 2 seconds, 5 seconds, etc… In graphing I use all integers 0-600 seconds.
Comparing to real world results, our data did not seem to fit popular distributions like Normal, Uniform, or Exponential. Most of the data seemed to appear around 0-30 seconds, but the Probability Distribution Function for normal distribution predicted this to happen around 50 seconds. This made it clear normal distribution did not fit the data.
To narrow down the next potential distributions, I found https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Probability_distribution_fitting which prompted a symmetry test. Upon finding the data was not symmetrical, I began testing the data for distributions that were non-symmetrical.
I repeated the same steps as before with Log Normal using =LOGNORM.DIST( and found this lined up to what I would have expected. For my final check I used excel to calculate the Cumulative Distribution Function of the Log Normal Distribution, and compared that with a sample Cumulative Distribution. As an example, with our sample of 25, we should expect the 90% CDF to be similar in seconds to whatever the 22nd or 23rd longest sample.
This Data can be broken up into individual babies and all 5 sampled baby’s data.
For the individual babies, I have attached the spreadsheet above with all babies. However as I trust my measurement method was consistent, I’ll review Aurelia Kirk’s data and also ‘All Babies’.
Here is Aurelia’s PDF, CDF, and their respective values at 90% CI. The 90% CDF is probably the most useful, find your desired percentage on the left(y-axis), and locate the number of seconds on the bottom(x-axis). Note that the y-axis can be multiplied by 100 for a more familiar percentage(0.8 = 80%)
Focusing on the first few seconds
At 10 minutes
The data for all babies:
First few seconds
Its not exactly scientific, but seeing all of this data, I find myself patting Aurelia somewhere between 60-180s.
If you want to assume our 5 sampled babies and 100 samples is good enough for you, you can use my simple rule of thumb- Middle of the night burp for 1-2 minutes. Mid-day, I burp for 3 minutes. And if I’m sure there is a burp stuck in there due to hearing her suck in air, I’ll burp for 6.5 minutes.
If you want to get baby specific results for your own baby without taking 25 samples, you can continue to assume log normal distribution. You technically can get away with 2 timed samples, but the increase in confidence from 3 samples is tremendously worth it. I will continue this article using 3 samples, but you could use 2 and use that T-Value.
First time a sample and record it. Do this 3 times. Take each time and individually take the log of that value. You should have 3 values that are small, around the values 0-8. Calculate Mean and standard deviation of this newly calculated sample. Look up your desired confidence in a t-table(see above). 90% confidence is popular. In this example using a sample size of 3, Multiply your standard deviation by ~2.
Using this data you are ready to calculate Cumulative Distribution Function. Create numbers 1-600 in a column. Use the same standard deviation and mean for the formula, but calculate for each number from 1-600. =LOGNORM.DIST( works in both excel and google sheets. The parameter x is seconds, mean and standard deviation stays the same for each calculation, excel asks if you want PDF or CDF. If you are confused, google has been fantastic to me.
You are ready to make good decisions! What percentage of burps do you want to get out? Is 70% good enough? Find where the CDF says 0.7 and that is your new target time. Or maybe you want to ensure that burping for 3 minutes gives you a reasonable number of burps out.
Note that with seemingly all statistics you make many ‘assumptions’, including perfect data, perfect fits, etc… This is obviously not the case with things that involve humans, and even with something that fits as nicely as log-normal, the start and end of the log normal curve seems aggressive. To clarify, I don’t think after 11s I have exactly 50% of burps out, and I don’t think after 10 minutes I have 87% of Aurelia’s burps out. That said, the general conclusion of burping for 1-3 minutes seems pretty solid and matches real world conditions.
You think you understand Diminishing Returns, but consider the diminishing returns on this topic. Log Normal distribution starts off at a relatively high probability of the event, and quickly tapers off. In our problem Diminishing Returns occurs after the peak of ~3 seconds. Would you stop patting your baby on the back after 3 seconds with only 10% of burps out? Probably not.
This means the optimal stopping point probably wont be determined by diminishing returns, but rather your desired probability of burps out.
If you have been patting for about 1 or 2 minutes and debating if you should continue for another 10 seconds before giving up, give up. That 10 seconds is trivial compared to the previous time you put in.
I personally apply this study by doing the following. I begin patting our baby on the back, I look at the time and tell myself that when the clock increments 3 minutes, I can stop. This means I’ll always be burping between 2 and 3 minutes. This is somewhat low tech, but you can similarly count numbers for your baby. Consider it educational, and I’ve personally found teaching numbers can be an easy way to entertain our kids when they are melting down.
Wish you the best on preventing tears and saving time.
Lead Engineer, Michael Kirk-
Saving 21+ hours per week is too monumental to hold back because it’s not an engineering study. These are the science backed, mind hacks you can use to break time consuming social media and video games habits. Credit to the book The Power of Habit for providing the ideas that will be found in this article. IMO Power of Habit book is better than Tao Te Ching.
For anyone daunted by the ‘wall of text’ in this article. I recommend reading the sections Brain Fundamentals and Brain Lifehacks. That will change your life.
For the last 4 months I’ve been off Social Media, played zero Video Games, and watched zero fiction TV. These tips also helped me consume Zero drugs, including Caffeine, Alcohol, Weed, Ibuprofen, etc… I also have been doing cardio every day. As a result, I’ve read over 20 nonfiction books in 4 months. This article is how you can apply scientific research to your brain to change your habits.
>That must have been hard
I admit there were approx 3 hard days, and to be specific, those ‘3 hard days’ were more like a difficult, willpower taxing 5-10 minutes each of those 3 days.
>But Video games/TV/movies/Social media are part of my personality
I thought so too. But more likely you simply have formed a habit of using video games or similar for entertainment/stress reduction/boredom killer. (feel free to insert Coffee/any entertainment in place of videogames)
I can’t believe I’m not playing video games or using social media anymore.
It has been found that your thinking part of the brain does not have access to read the mind of the automatic/habit part of the brain. Unfortunately this means 80-90% of your daily decisions happen without you knowing about it.
This automatic/habit part of your brain works in an order. Experience a ‘Cue’, perform a ‘Routine’, receive a ‘Reward’. This can apply to seemingly everything you do. You wake up and automatically turn on the shower and are soon rewarded with warm water and a clean body. However if your kid wakes up crying, your routine has been interrupted and you may feel ‘mopey’.
Imagine a stronger situation, your daily coffee. A typical day, you may do your pre-work routine and crave a coffee. You have been programming your brain that ‘going to work’ is a Cue for the Routine of getting caffeine. If anyone has willingly tried to quit caffeine, you will notice this ‘mopey’ feeling as you reject your automatic brain’s cravings. Caffeine withdrawal won’t occur for a few more hours, that is not what causes the mopey feeling. On a similar note, you may have cravings when you experience cues such as being tired, bored, you want to stretch your legs, you want social interaction, etc… All of these have a routine your habit part of the brain will attempt to satisfy your need.
You may notice that on a vacation you will forget to do a habit. It may be the evening and caffeine withdrawal is setting in, or you realize you didn’t binge eat in the evenings. You never experienced the Cue that caused you to automatically get Coffee or binge eat food.
The easiest way to eliminate a bad habit is to eliminate a Cue. If you drive by a fast food restaurant that you often stop by, you could eliminate the cue by taking a different route. You won’t feel mopey at all, as your habit brain will not have activated for that Cue.
However, if at 5pm you feel the need to call and order pizza, you won’t be able to eliminate the time 5pm. A solution here is to change the routine. The necessity is to have the same reward. In this case any food will prevent you from being mopey. On a similar note, it was found Cigarette smokers could replace a cigarette with a cup of coffee.
It was suggested to write down 3 lines answering the question ‘how do you feel’ every ~15 minutes to pinpoint what reward you are looking for. After a few days, I found I was getting coffee because standing up and walking over to the coffee machine cooled me down. I simply needed to get cool off.
What if you crave the rush of energy caffeine gives you and there is no way to replace the craving. It was found that post-surgery patients who wrote a plan for “how they would walk to end of their driveway” were walking 2x faster than those who didn’t write a plan down. Having a plan for dealing with pain and acknowledging the moments of hardest pain will prepare your thinking-part of the brain to fight the habit part of the brain.
If you were successful and quit a bad habit, but… relapsed. There is good news. Analyze the situation that caused you to relapse. Whatever caused you to cave is your strongest Cue. Being aware of strong cues will prepare you for your next quitting attempt. You can form a plan for dealing with that situation.
Suppose you want to have ‘just 1 cup of coffee’ after quitting. This is dangerous. It was found that mice who received a drug after quitting instantly remembered the routine/reward system and would continue where they left off.
This might seem depressing that you cannot go back to caffeine, but I have some positive news. First, you ‘get over it’, and stop thinking about it. Second, it was found that AA members who believed in God were more likely to stay off Alcohol. It may seem bizarre, but those people believed things could get better. Simply having the belief that in time, things will be better, can keep you off bad habits.
Finally I want to mention Willpower. This is a real thing that can be seen in ‘cookie studies’. A person will be given an absurdly long test, ~600 questions. Those with chocolate chip cookies in the middle of the table that they are not allowed to eat, will answer less questions before giving up(vs no cookies on the table). If you take on a habit, expect to allocate willpower to it. Changing multiple habits at once will likely mean failure, similar to being unable to finish the test with tempting cookies in front of you.
The book noted ‘keystone’ habits, habits that when changed would cause you to spiral into a tremendous positive lifestyle. The example they used was an overweight, low paid person who started exercising, lost weight, and soon quit smoking, restarted college and finished, and became financially successful.
I was a bit skeptical of this as unlike most of the studies involved rats, humans, and corporations, this was a mere anecdote. However I will now share my anecdote of a keystone habit.
Using the lessons, I have replaced evening weed usage with alcohol, then replaced alcohol with caffeine. This weirdly worked extremely well with seemingly 0 cravings. However now I was having 5 cups of coffee per day. This is where I needed to brace for pain. I had attempted to quit before, so I had taken note of my Cues and was prepared for the tough spots.
Going from 5 cups of coffee to 4 cups over a few days was no big deal. 4 to 3 cups over a few days was no big deal. No mopey feelings. 3 cups to 2 was a bit harder, previously I would have a morning cup, an afternoon cup, and an evening cup. I stuck to a morning cup and evening cup. Then 2 cups to 1 cup, leaving that precious evening cup. And from 1 cup to 0.5 cups.
Finally I quit. That quitting day from 0.5 cups to 0 cups was difficult. It was painful, but it was only painful for 1 day. I attempted to drink water as a replacement, and that helped slightly. During this ~2 week quitting period I let myself enjoy video games and anything that would help me take my mind off things.
Next I started to exercise, doing daily cardio. This was difficult to start up, but I made the habit a simple ‘cardio daily’. A mere 5 minutes of biking, no intensity requirement. Just move my legs for 5 minutes all while wasting time on social media. After a few days of this 5 minute cardio, I naturally wanted to keep going beyond 5 minutes and I wanted to go faster. I’d start to get fancy and do HIIT and long distance cardio until I got injured doing a 2 hour session. The habit was so strong I biked for 2 hours. Worried about losing this habit, I did arm cardio for a week until my body got repaired and I started again a mere 5 minute workout. Today I’m still doing daily cardio and I felt a bit guilty when I took a day off when my wife gave birth to our second kid.
After starting cardio, I noticed the toxicity of social media. It was a time-sink with limited benefits. I easily replaced social media with Video games. Upon this change, I realized I was playing too many video games, and it provided no benefits. Quitting video games was difficult, but I had a plan to read enjoyable nonfiction books whenever I felt the craving. Friday night seemed to be a strong urge to play video games, but I spent some willpower to fight through the pain. Its been months and I haven’t played video games or used social media. Instead I’ve spent time on Efficiency Is Everything, read books, bulk cooked and cleaned the house.
Quitting video games and social media used to seem crazy, but now it feels normal.
I feel like I’ve reached a neutral state, with cardio and no caffeine in my life, I don’t feel tired. With books and no empty entertainment, I feel fulfilled. I’m looking at other potential habits to transform, but my list of bad habits is almost gone.
What could you accomplish with the ability to conquer the habit part of your brain?
All credit to Charles Duhigg and his book The Power of Habit for changing my life and saving 21 hours per week.
I expect this article to change your life. Enjoy-
There are two sections, theoretical “By The Book”, where you will hear the most optimal situations you can hope to achieve. These are good to know, so you can think about them when doing laundry. There are lots of good ideas in there.
Finally, we will go into real world tips to get closer to optimal, so you can save time and effort right away.
This study was funded by Elizabeth P. Thank her for donating to study Efficient Laundry!
Ergonomics is a hybrid of human health and engineering. This combines the mathematical and logic rigor of engineering to studies in humans. This data comes out as measurements, estimations, and best practice.
One book suggested human attention is limited to ~30 minutes on a routine job. No reason to feel bad about getting bored of household tasks, you are only human.
Room Temperatures above 79 degrees are bad.
Work quickly, being motivated is proven to make you work quicker. Literally, thinking, can make you more Efficient. Rally! Don’t be weak!
Making a decision is fatiguing. Regardless if its trivial, the mind needs to see, understand, think, and convert into an output. It should be noted that after basic skills are obtained, people get better at speed.
Since these tasks require decisions, both in muscle control and mind, proficiency will happen with time.
A 5th percentile female can reach approx 2 feet, and this can be extended an additional 9 inches when standing.
Bending over is not desired. A rolling cart may help elevate baskets off the floor and ease transportation.
Motion is not desired, if you can grab multiple items per bend, you will save time and effort.
Another reminder, Motion is not desired, items that need to be put far away can be tossed aside. Hang up all necessary items, once.
Pulling motions are best done between 120 and 180 degrees, with best performance at 150 degrees. while pulling >120 degrees. This means its easier to pick items up below you, and put away higher.
However, any sort of grabbing without bending over or reaching is encouraged.
Use a power grip! Instead of using fingers, use your fist to pick up.
Discomfort will cause inefficiency, even a 5cm/2in too high counter can cause shoulder pain.
Static, holding still, restricts blood flow and requires longer rest periods. Dynamic movement allows blood to circulate during relaxation.
To reach further, bend your hip(8.2in/20cm) and rotate(1.8in/4.5cm) and extend shoulder(4in/10cm). Those are your 3 ways to extend.
For long tasks, if you can adjust between sitting and standing, this is preferred. Equipment exists to change the height level.
Sitting is better for blood flow.
Try not to hold the same position for more than 15 seconds, that is when lactic acid begins to build up.
Avoid moving/transportation to put something away.
Stress can be good, according to one book, a 10 is very stressful, a 3-5 stress is beneficial. 1 stress was bad.
The arrangement of your workplace(dimensions, relative locations, etc…), makes a major contribution to how a task is handled.
What are the accuracy requirements? Do things need to be folded/unwrinkeled? Could you change this to be happier doing laundry? Or make more challenging?
Is there flow? Work-rest cycles may be beneficial and for extended tasks, having start-stop times.
Environment- Temperature, family/pets, surroundings.
One book had root causes of boredom, here is a take on how to make tasks less boring.
Short cycle times may be boring. Is there an opportunity for process flow?
A task with few opportunities for body movement gets boring, its okay to stretch/exercise muscles.
Warm temperatures, could cooler temps get you motivated.
No coworkers. Does this mean we should be doing laundry with family?
People with high abilities and eager to excel find boredom, so next time you do laundry, try to be more Efficient. This is your new challenge, let us know if you find any discoveries.
Dim work environment causes boredom. Changing color RGB light strips are a solution to boredom, or maybe the book intended to use brighter white light.
Here are applicable to everyone efficiency tips.
The goal here, limit motion like digging around and extended searching. Like Quicksort, your visible items are your ‘sorting set’, and items you cannot see are not sorted. All while picking up many items reduces the number of times you bend/turn to get clothes.
Hanging up clothes may be better separated into a different task. This is highly dependent on if you are sorting clothes near your closet and are near hangers.
This asks the question, if laundry was done at the individual level rather than family level, would it be quicker due to less sorting?
Limit Transportation. Do your work within range if possible. Consider Swapping the contents of drawers to make sorting possible without taking steps.
According to one book, locations of items should have priority- Most important items in front, then items by sequence(multi step items), then items by similarity, then frequency.
Turn Less, consider that turning your body is motion, if doing laundry on the bed causes you to turn significantly, consider sorting in a different location.
Note: this equipment suggestion is best practice, it serves to give you an idea what an Ergonomic Laundry Basket would be. Elevated, with wheels.
If you are interested, these are called Laundry Carts.
Even better, some laundry carts have false/auto adjusting bottoms to elevate laundry to make it easier to reach. Push laundry carts instead of pulling. Although changing muscle groups has economic advantages as well.
Get excited about doing laundry, like you never have before. I was shocked at how fast Quicksort had me putting away clothes.
With 5 ergonomics books under my belt, I expect more household tasks to get optimized, and laundry to be further studied with MODAPTS, which are used to code task time like reaching and grabbing. They use this in Sweat Shop Sewing.
If we can reach 5,000 dollars, we are currently at 800 dollars, I will match and we can finance 2 interns to work 12 hours a week for 28 weeks completing studies that will help everyone.
The goal is to raise 5000 dollars to create more studies on Industrial Engineering Life.
Saving 9 minutes a day for an entire year will give you an additional 54 hours to enjoy however you’d like.
This is a real world condition that was experienced for 3 years at my last living location. This allowed me to stay up later, enjoy my mornings fuller, and arrive to work earlier.
In short, a Process Flow Charts lists every step to complete a Task, the list is reviewed for non-value added steps, and those steps are eliminated.
A Process Flow Chart is a necessary tool applied in every mass production environment. A Process Flow Diagram is best used anywhere a task is repeated often or consumes significant time.
We apply Industrial Engineering to Life and conduct this real life study. For best results, You should go through your own process as normal, and a partner should either video record you, or write down every step and detail. The more mundane the steps, the more opportunities for optimization.
There will be moments that you aren’t sure what you usually do next. This means your process is ‘Out-Of-Control’. By simply standardizing your process, you will begin saving time and have a benchmark to improve against.
This Process Flow Chart starts in bed. Here is what was written down:
This was typed up in excel and the work began. We began classifying. Classifications to aid you in optimization. Don’t overthink it. Optimize and eliminate All Non-Value Added activities.
Value Added is when you get closer to your goal by doing a step. Non-Value-Added is when you accomplish nothing. Necessary Non-Value-Added is when a step does not create value, but is necessary to give you the ability to create value.
In a factory, Value Added Steps modify a part. In this example, modifying your body to prepare for the world. A Non-Value Added step in a factory would be picking up tools from another department. It doesn’t create value. Obtaining the tool is necessary, but the movement to get the tool may not be necessary. Turning on a shower does not make your body cleaner, but it is required as a step to get cleaner.
It was obvious during the process that time was wasted waiting for the shower to heat up. Anything that could be done before getting wet should be. This means that late night preparation may not be beneficial. Modifying the order, the steps choosing clothes and placing your phone in clothes are started immediately after the shower is started.
This simple re-arrangement eliminates the non-value added step of waiting for the shower and accomplishes tasks during this step.
3 minutes per day was saved in this example. Considering this was the morning routine of an Industrial Engineer, you will likely save even more time.
This is expected to save an additional 900 hours in life.
Running this study in your own life will give you plenty of ‘Ah Ha!’ moments. Time that used to disappear will now appear in-front of your own eyes as non-value-added.
As you go through your own Process live, you will start seeing the waste. When you have completed the process, review, and optimize.
Consider what Life Processes can be optimized. A morning routine, a bed time routine, getting home from work routine, recipes you make often, outdoor tasks, etc…
The detail of your process is up to you. The more Steps recorded, the more opportunities for optimization.
Pick a process and use this Process Flow Chart as a tool to visualize and eliminate waste.
I first started writing this article and completely expected this to be a silly study like Capsaicin Per Dollar. I find it fun to play with math, so why not:
3 Things I didn’t consider before starting:
Note: The time study was a single n=1 study. While exact oz/s will vary from situation to situation, everyone has similar situations. Transportation is often one of the largest hidden sources of waste, and it was found to be true for water.
Water dispenses out at pretty similar rates, with low flow water outlets being slightly slower.
Transportation is your largest waste of time. Having to fill 8 glasses of water a day adds up. Our goal will be to reduce transportation time.
The data is showing the advantages of leaving large cases of disposable water at your final destination. Despite having to walk down the isle at a grocery store, unpack the water from your vehicle, and dispose of water bottles, there are time savings over filling up your own water.
I bought my first case of water to conduct this study and my first thoughts on disposable water bottles as a product-
Consider this could be my bias against environmentally harmful habits, but the time savings over Gallon Water Bottles is minor.
To visualize why Gallon Water Bottles are so effective at getting you water, consider how far away you are from a water source.
Making a round trip 8 times a day adds up to minutes per day, hundreds of hours in your life. Transportation waste is the largest time consumer. Optimize the tool for storing water to get 128 oz of water. Compared to 8oz cups of water, this is 16x less transportation. The largest time sink. Pareto?
We have been running with This water bottle for about 5 years.
Its big. You cannot feed this to a baby. There will be a day you spill this on you. Since water is pretty forgiving, I don’t mind it. Especially at 2am when you wake up needing water, in your mouth, right away. Disclaimer- As long as you arent stupid with it, it wont leak. After 5 years of use… We have… Trunk of Car…
Drink out of gallon milk style containers? Not bad, but we did have one leak after a few months of use.
We are working on adding a hose for the new house. I highly recommend it, but apparently suburban culture isnt a big fan of hoses coming down from living room ceilings.
Will take pictures when its complete and beautified for suburban living rooms.
This has me visualizing a closet sized bathroom next to the couch… Living Room Urinal? The unfortunate part is that Misses Efficiency actually encourages this. I just need to decorate it up for the moms 😛
This article will reduce the cook time of your meals by minutes. Lots of engineering to explain WHY, but I will be sure to bold the tips on how to implement ways to cook food quicker. This uses Chicken for most studies, but this can be replaced with any other meat protein.
This topic is going to have a LOT of tips on saving time cooking. The tips saved so much time, it messed with the data 😛
This data is ‘Out Of Control‘. Which means, the data isn’t significant. The data I post on this site is the highest mathematical quality I can possibly create, and I will not post bad data.
I will include the Protein Per Second, however I won’t post it in an Excel file format like I usually do.
Science would isolate this problem and find that throwing a few thousand pounds of chicken into Lava would be the fastest way. Engineering has to make this problem applicable. Grills, Stove Boiling, Stove Sauteing/Searing, and Slow Cookers are examined.
0.11 g Protein Per Second
Methodology for all of these is common. Prep to Clean. Writing down process is something we do in Industrial Engineering.
This can be done faster or slower depending on how you like your eggs cooked. I did this with 4 eggs with the goal of over medium-hard eggs. 27g protein, 4 minutes.
27g + 21 + 8 g protein in 6 minutes =
0.155g Protein Per Second
Eggs were cooked in a similar way. Warming up sausages and toasting bread to make taste optimal added an extra 2 minutes in prep time. This included taking out 1 extra pan, 1 extra lid, opening and closing the freezer 2 times, and taking out an extra appliance.
The biggest thing to note- Sausages will cook in a similar time regardless if you have 2 or 10.
To understand why, I drew a picture that brought me back to our dreaded ME331 Fluids and Heat Transfer.
The heat from Electric Burner to Pan is a Heat Conduction(Qconduction). Conduction is Contact-To-Contact. Meaning surfaces need to touch completely. The browning of meats require Conduction and absence of water(we will get to that later). Protein touching the surface of the pan is getting more heat than protein that isnt touching the surface.
The air inside the pan is moving heat through Convection(Qconvection). Convection is the air and liquid flowing next to the protein. When you point a fan at you, there is no surface to surface contact, but the air will brush your skin and reduce your temperature.
Convection is especially strong with liquids, which we are going to see further in Boiling.
Keeping the lid on, means water in a pan cannot evaporate into your kitchen, instead water vapor circulates in your pan. If you take the lid off, the hot air and water vapor escapes
781g of chicken, cooked in 8 minutes and 15 seconds. Barely brown. 242g protein makes this 0.49 g Protein Per Second.
Similar mentality as above, adding a lid will speed up the cooking process. Cooked on Medium High heat.
Calling it ugly because there is no browning. The Mailliard Reaction when the lid is on. Any moisture kills the browning that gives chicken flavor.
14 minutes for 1041g chicken. 312g protein and .37g Protein Per Second.
This is some beautiful cooking. Searing both sides of chicken for a near perfect Maillard Reaction. Adding a little vinegar to dissolve the brown Maillard bits stuck to the pan. Adding fajita seasoning and stirring.
Quality comes at a time price.
Despite having massive amounts of convection because boiling water is surrounding chicken, water has a high heat capacity. Instead of cooking the chicken, the heat from the burner is being transferred to the water.
Below is a table for specific heats of materials. Water has a high specific heat, water is more dense than air, and there is significantly more mass to heat up than the same volume of air.
However… once the water is boiling, water is a better conductor of heat.
The most optimal way to boil chicken is to start the water, do something else, come back and drop the chicken in. There will be no mallard reaction, but very quickly chicken will be cooked.
If you are going to use oil for frying chicken, take note that at high temperatures, low smoke point oils will begin to smoke and catch fire.
While this technically takes almost 4 hours, this is a favorite because most of this time is inactive. I am considering how to study this given the amount of meat depends on the slow cooker(and who really wants 5lbs of the same meal?). Here are two recipes that take less than 4 minutes to make.
After 4 hours on high or 6 hours low, the chicken can be shredded and topped with BBQ sauce and placed on a bun or eaten plain.
Here is the recipe, takes a tiny bit longer because there are more ingredients and I suggest cooking rice + veggies. However this is a lazy favorite.
1500g in 9.5 minutes =
.81 g protein per second
Cut the fat off and butterflied 1.5 pallets of chicken. 15 minutes in the oven at 350F.
This is potentially misleading because most people arent eating 1500g of chicken out of the oven. It also negates the time in the oven, similar to slow cooker chicken dishes. This was further packaged for later use.
It should be noted that both Ugly Lid On Chicken and Mass Produced Baked Chicken do not produce the Maillard Reaction.
Homemade protein shake using Myprotin Impact (since it was my highest rated Protein Powder per dollar)
28g protein including milk in 1 minute flat.
.46g protein per second
This actually surprised me, I thought a protein shake would crush all competition. It seems that bulk production of food beats the competition.
Prep and Cleanup is a significant use of time on many proteins and I will continue to look to optimize further.
An ultimate study of Protein Per Second, including fast food, street vendors, store rotisserie chicken and more is in the works. However different methods of home prep are going to be practically useful.
This is a touchy subject with many people. How many times should you eat per day?
Does eating breakfast actually change your metabolism?
Does eating food after 9pm turn it into fat? (No. Excess calories turns into fat)
Should you eat 10 snacks a day? Should you eat once a day?
I’m not the first person to invent this concept, but I might be the first to use it to save time.
Shoutout to Daniel Engerer of Brainchild Engineering for pointing out my eating habits are Efficient.
There are some guidelines for Intermittent Fasting, but I use it loosely.
Don’t treat these as rules, treat these as daily targets during your transition. Once you make the transition, you wont be hungry for breakfast, and you wont be hungry before bed.
Depending on your goals, you might be interested in losing weight. Intermittent Fasting is a popular way to lose weight.
I’m a believer in Calories In = Calories Out.
The Calories you eat daily decides if you gain, maintain, or lose weight. Intermittent Fasting a technique to eat plenty of food ~2 times a day, and still lose weight.
There is no magic here, just structure. I count my calories, but eating 1,000 calories in a single meal psychologically feels good.
I’m going to assume ~10 minutes to consume your breakfast.
My first meal of the day is usually leftovers, and the process looks like this:
Without getting into the details of putting food in a separate piece of Tupperware, putting in the dishwasher, taking out of the dishwasher, putting it away. I’m going to give that a value of 2 minutes. I’ve been told I eat fast, for estimation, I’m going to use 10 minutes.
This is 3,040 hours in your lifetime.
As mentioned before, consistency is key. You can imagine a time in your life that you skipped breakfast enough times that you lost your appetite for breakfast.
If you are using this method to lose weight, I highly recommend a calorie counting app, I still use myfitnesspal, but it seems to be filled with push notifications/social media/ads.
We are huge fans of making enough food for leftovers. We just Just-In-Time for our grocery shopping, and we don’t buy any groceries for Thursday. By Thursday, we usually have enough food in Tupperware that we have a quick dinner that can be microwaved in moments. If we somehow ate everything, we always have eggs in the refrigerator and make ‘Breakfast for dinner’.
If you are open to change your eating habits, I highly recommend this lifestyle. It saves time, it aids in losing weight, and it might save you money if you can skip eating out.
Engineer David Richelson conducted this study on Shoes Per Hour-
David- “There has to be a faster way!”
I spent about 3 months taking my shoes on and off at least twice a day. Every time I’d think to myself, “there has to be a faster way!” Since trying out different shoes and different laces, it turns out there’s not much I can do.
I’ve finished a time study on tying and untying my shoelaces, slip ons, shoe horns, and more. The most Efficient way to put on shoes.
To keep it consistent, I would place my phone on the table in front of me, in timer mode, with my shoes in front of me. Then I would slip each shoe on, and tie them at my regular pace, being careful not to rush. I took four samples for each shoe for 7 different shoes: my personal dress shoes, my personal running shoes with standard laces, my personal running shoes with “Lock Laces”, basketball shoes, work shoes, running shoes with braided laces, and running shoes with standard laces. Ultimately what I want to know is: how much time does it take, on average, “per cycle”. In engineering, a cycle is when a given process is complete. In this case, a the process consists of putting the shoes on and then taking them off.
Before I can discuss the results, I need to mention that my Puma shoes and the Starter shoes came with comically large laces (pictured below). It was unreasonable for me to single knot these shoes. Realistically, I’d double knot them, which is how I timed it. This added significant time to taking them off as well as putting them on.
You can see from the chart below, that most tied shoes require relatively similar times to take on and off.
I suspect that the length of the shoelace has more to do with the time, than the profile. I was surprised to see that the Athletic Works shoes, which had a braided shoe lace, had no noticeable effect on the time.
The most dramatic difference was between my Pumas with the stock laces vs replacing them with “Lock Laces.” I shaved at least 15 seconds off putting them on! That’s the most relevant improvement for me, since I know that my motivation for working out is fleeting, and can easily evaporate in 15 seconds. But once I have my shoes on, I might as well work out.
For better or for worse, I’ve got the need for speed. Can I shave off any more time? I needed to think outside the box. I tried stylish slip on dress shoes for work, and velcro shoes for working out. My most inventive idea was leaving my dress shoes tied, and then pushing my feet into them with a shoehorn to assist me.
Slip-on shoes are the clear champion. It was almost too fast to measure. Since there’s no laces for either the Slip-ons, or my pre-tied dress shoes, timing the cycle consisted of just pushing them on. Here’s a quick video of how I timed it.
Switching to slip-ons would save me about 25 seconds per day. That’s worth 15 days vacation(120 hours) over the course of my life! Pushing my pre-tied shoes on did technically work, but it was destructive to the shoe and slightly painful for my feet.
When it comes to working out, I could commit the fashion faux pax of getting Velcro. But, I’ve gotta look stylish in the gym too.
At the end of the day, 25 seconds doesn’t sound like a lot. But it adds up over time. This was a great exercise and I can’t wait to apply these time study techniques to the next part of my life.
Utilizing David’s data, I just had to… I can’t resist 🙂
I currently use Dress Shoes + Shoe Horn set up, but seeing that slip-ons are 2x faster, I’m going to be on the lookout for nice Slip-ons.
I haven’t tied a pair of shoes in memory and this data shows why. Tying your shoes takes 2x more time than using a shoe horn.
Thanks to David for completing this study to my Engineering Standards.
Edit 4/26/21- user Jay reached out suggesting Olukai shoes as they have a collapsible heel. This makes it close to slip-on shoes per hour. While they still require a hand to convert the heel to upright, this can be done when time is less urgent. Something to consider if you are looking for something more fashionable than slip on shoes.
(Article Note: Much of this focuses on Female Appearance, I suggest all readers understand the methodology because the examples of female appearance will explain the Pareto Principle.)
Mrs. Efficiency can be hostile to change. When I was experimenting and threw in chopped spinach to an Alfredo Sauce, she outright refused until she tasted it.
Last week she was dreading straightening her hair, a 30 minute task for her thick, straight/wavy hair. After some reluctance to a new idea, we found a way to save 23 minutes.
And… Husbands, I’m sure your Wives will love to hear that you have an idea to get them ready more quickly. /s
This is a very serious reminder- Change will require buy-in, its important to understand why.
I’ve begun sewing, tailoring my own clothing, and making stuff. However, I ‘half-ass it’. I rarely use pins, and I draw dots rather than connecting lines.
My first time sewing I couldn’t believe how much time I spent preparing. I wondered if it was even necessary. After a trial run of minimal preparation, my shirt came out looking great. 80% of my shirt being too big had to do with the seam location, not the stretch or straightness of the seam. 20% of what I was actually spending time on was sewing a new seam.
Pareto Principle– 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. As a Process Engineer, we used this in our plant to decide which daily problems we’d focus on.
‘I OneFifth-Ass It’
When I look at Misses Efficiency, I see the outside of her hair, and a little bit on the inside layers. 20% of the sources cause 80% of the problems.
We tested this, only straightening the outside of her hair.
As it finished I wasn’t that impressed, I thought she’d need to straighten more. She put some sort of oily spray in her hair, combed it, and her hair looked like a model’s.
The problem wasn’t that her heir needed to be straightened, the problem was that the outside of her hair needed to be straightened.
Sure, there are probably benefits from doing another 25 minutes of work. But in 7 minutes her hair went from Bed to:
This is a topic worth studying on its own, however I’m 1 degree away away from understanding. I am unable to spend my commute thinking about if blush adds enough color to warrant the time. Or maybe Color is one of the most important things for appearance.
Ideas for variables to change.
Change something every morning, or practice a method when you find something optimal.
As most men dont do anything. 1-2 minutes of work puts you into the top 20%.
If you are bald, shave.
(Optional soapbox, but my shirts look great)
Engineers, I have been playing with a sewing machine and I’m going to put the knowledge of a 19 year old girl, a few Youtube Videos, and Misses Efficiency, in our terms.
If the sewing machine isn’t working, turn it off and turn it back on. Seriously- Reroute the threads completely. An engineer designed this thing and they made it pretty easy too. The manuals are well done and have tons of pictures with great work instructions.
I watched this 4 minute video about 4 times and I learned to tailor my first shirt. The first shirt turned out great and I’ve been tailoring through my wardrobe.
Humans naturally take easy routes and shortcuts. However, consciously finding the 80% that actually matters will save you hours and potentially weeks of your life.
Hey this article broke with an update of the website.
The TL;DR is to download and try Spreed
It presents words so you dont need to move your eyes. This method is quite popular and many other apps exist, I use spreed myself for wikipedia articles.
Until I get around to updating this article with pretty pictures again