Most folks' shoelace training begins and ends in kindergarten. You remember taking the bunny ears over, around and through, right? Ian Fieggen, a computer programmer and graphic designer from Melbourne, Australia, wants to change that: enter www.fieggen.com/shoelace, his Web site devoted to untangling the singular subject of shoelaces. And how: The site serves up 25 lacing styles and 15 different knots, complete with illustrated instructions and a list of pros and cons for each method. Looking for something fast? Try Double Helix Lacing (con: "asymmetrical"). More interested in a decorative lace? Opt for the Checkerboard, above (con: "loose fit").
As for Fieggen's own preferences: "I always go for simplicity, functionality and efficiency," he says, naming the Criss Cross and Over Under as favorites. Fieggen claims that he's "really not a knotting nut" -- rather, he attributes the site's existence to his passion for efficiency and desire to contribute something he considers worthwhile to the digital realm.
By and large, the site's "knot testimonials" have been appreciative. "I've mastered Ian's Knot, and even Ian's Secured Knot and now walk about in utter confidence," writes "Doug M." But there have been a couple of exceptions. "What really annoys me is when people comment that 'This guy has way too much time on his hands,'" Fieggen says. "This obviously comes from people that have never done a good deed for anyone else."