The new version of Portfolio of a Genius has just arrived. For the better part of a decade, we have been receiving the laboriously crafted, increasingly thick versions of this wondrous work. They arrive in our mailbox at the post office, always unanticipated, always surprising by their very existence. The author, James E. Shepherd, Jr. […]
About: Marc Abrahams
- Editor, Annals of Improbable Research www.improbablecom.wpcomstaging.com
Posts by Marc Abrahams:
Garlic on the Family
‘This study assessed the effects of the odour and ingestion of garlic bread on family interactions.” With those opening words, Alan R Hirsch of the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation, in Chicago, Illinois, declared the purpose and the breadth of his research. So begins this week’s Improbable Research column in The Guardian. Read […]
Mad Cow / Opera
Is mad cow disease a tragedy of operatic scale? Not yet, but it is of mini-operatic scale. “The Brain Food Opera,”a mini-opera in 3 acts, was performed at the 2000 Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony. The entire libretto is here, and you can hear the perfomance by listening to NPR Science Friday’s broadcast of the ceremony, […]
Woof, Quack (Ig)
Kees Moeliker, who won the 2003 Ig Nobel Biology Prize for documenting the first scientifically recorded case of homosexual necrophilia in the mallard duck, published a photo-rich diary of his Ig experience. See it here. Aline McKenzie of the Dallas Morning News personally tested Bow-Lingual, the automatic dog-to-human-language translation device, the inventors of which received […]
Professor Lipscomb’s Nano-Lecture
At the 2003 Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, Nobel Laureate William Lipscomb delivered an especially animated Nano-Lecture, on the topic CHEMISTRY. See it here. This is the third of the five Nano-Lectures we’ll be posting. The Nano-Lecture recalled Mike Stanfill’s magnificent tribute to Tom Lehrer, which was part of the 2002 Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony.
The January issue of mini-AIR just went out. Read it here. Contents include, among other things: / Survey: Beauty and Truth / Filth-in-Foods Paeans / A Month Without Frogs / Tea Scum Backward Poets / Hladik, Hladik, Hladik, Hladik Hoorah / BOVINE INDECISION LIMERICK CONTEST / RESEARCH SPOTLIGHT: The Danger of Chinese / More Hair […]
The Lugnut Letters
In Re Louis the Lugnut You dastardly FIENDS!!!! How could you kill Louis the Lugnut??????! Bring him back!!!!!!! F. T. Alvis, Ph.D.,University of Cambridge, England That is the first in our voluminous collection of letters regarding the demise of the “Louis the Lugnut” comic strip. The Lugnut Society, the foremost group of admirers and scholars […]
The Man With the Rat?
Some call him “Z.” Who is he,that handsome young man with the intent gaze, and why is he holding a rat, and what fortune became him many years later? The answer is here, the honor is described here.
Emily Yuan’s Nano-Lecture
High school student Emily Yuan delivered her Nano-Lecture on the topic MEMORY. This is the second of the five Nano-Lectures (from the recent Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony) that we’ll be posting. The accompanying photo appears in the special Ig Nobel issue of the magazine.
Skipping & Hopping
When do young adults skip and hop, and why? These are the questions that faced Allen W Burton, Luis Garcia and Clersida Garcia. The answers appear in their published research report “Skipping and Hopping of Undergraduates: Recollections of When and Why”. So begins this week’s Improbable Research newspaper column in the Guardian. Read it here.