A knighthood for Geim—he of frogs, magnets & pencils

The man [pictured here] who was awarded an Ig Nobel Prize for using magnets to levitate a frog (a feat he accomplished together with a man who already had a knighthood) and then ten years later was awarded a Nobel Prize for having used scotch tape to tease graphene layers from a pencil, has now been […]

Oddies in air & sea: Hitchcock, pelicans, & flying rays

Some oddities from the air and the sea: A new study about what got Into Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” birds: “Mystery behind Hitchcock’s birds,” Sibel Bargu [pictured here], Mary W. Silver, Mark D. Ohman, Claudia R. Benitez-Nelson and David L. Garrison, Nature Geoscience, vol. 5, nos. 2–3, 2012. Published online 22 December 2011. “On 18 […]

Scrutinising the FACS: Cheek Raiser & Lid Compressor

The Facial Action Coding System (FACS) was first described by Paul Ekman and colleague Wallace V. Friesen in their article entitled Measuring Facial Movement for Environmental Psychology and Nonverbal Behavior1(1) fall 1976. The authors’ goal “… was to develop a comprehensive system which could distinguish all possible visually distinguishable facial movements.” The system presents a […]

Ten Tops List [videos of spinning tops] — 2011

There are lots of top ten lists, but this is the first Ten Tops List. Here are ten videos of spinning tops that scientists find interesting and or amusing. [Want to take a whirl at learning the science of spinning tops? Download (free) Professor John Perry’s 1890 book Spinning Tops— The “Operatives’ lecture” of the British […]

Innovation Time Machine’s 6-minute joy ride

A hiply (and expensively_ dressed bearded man, not one—but two!—lava lamps, lots of quick video clips backed by catchy, cheesy music, in Italy. It’s a six-minute journey through time and space, sort of, looking at Ig Nobel Prize winners. It’s… Innovation Timemachine IGNOBEL di Ivo Mej: BONUS: Innovation Timemachine Techno Sex di Ivo Mej BONUS: A […]

Medical Mistakes in Medical-Themed Romance Novels

How realistic are the medical practices in medical-themed romance novels? Dr. Cornelis H. (Kees) Langeveld investigated. Dr. Langeveld chose to publish his results in a medical journal, rather than in a romance novel. His study is: “Medical Mistakes in Doctors Novels,” Cornelis H. (Kees) Langeveld, Nederlands Tijdschrift Geneeskunde, 2011;155:A4372. OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether doctors novels give […]