Date: Sat, 23 Nov 2002 12:09:41 +0100
From: Jacques Benveniste <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: Requset for the IgNobel Prize winner
At 15:04 23/11/02 +0900, you wrote:
Shinya Masahiro 19/m/kyoto
University of Kyoto, faculty of integrated human studies, sophomore
Dear Dr. Benveniste
This is Shinya Masahiro, undergraduate student at Kyoto University
in Japan. I am very interested in how sciences entertain people
and are studying it in class called Searching for the
Integrated Human Studies (prof:Oda Shingo). On our project
for this class, my group focused on the Ig Nobel Prize because
we think it makes sciences closer to us. Therefore it would
be extremely helpful if you could take some time to answer our
Science has been or is an ivory tower that has no contact with
the world, and the scientists in the tower are haughty and satisfy
with themselves. On the other hand, people tend to regard science
as something difficult and therefore they are not interested.
I think this is quite an undesirable situation. As you know,
we have made progress with science, and I think we will in the
future, so its very important that people and science
are close to each other.
I have heared that you have won the Ig Nobel Prize as chemistry
We would like to ask you to answer our questions. We are currently
interested in to what purpose men are doing their studies. In
order to enrich our ideas we would like to ask you these questions
listed below, and I appreciate if you can answer in this month.
- Why did you work hard on things that seemed useless to most
Because this is exactly the definition of scientific research.
(Why did you work hard for such an intersting and seemingly
I don't understand the question. This work is utterly interesting
and very demandful given the absolute standstill of science
Have you ever felt empty without getting
any praise from the general society?
The only days I felt empty is when the results were not
showing. A rare event.
If you have, how did you overcome the emptiness?
When results kept next morning. This is the definition of
scientific research. If we knew what it was we were doing,
it would not be called research, would it?
~ Albert Einstein ~
- How did you get your money to continue your study?
Private companies, business angels, love money.
And what kind of persons helped your study?
Scientists, entrepreneurs with open minded spirit, a very
- W hat do you think about how studies should be?
You mean scientific research? Certainly not the way the
so called ig(ignorant)-nobel jury, a bunch of scientific vigilantes,
self-appointed talibans of science, obscurantists whose mottos
is understand I do not, therefore it is not, are
operating. These people, that have been present all along
the history of mankind to fight progress are the modern counterpart
of the Great Inquisition. They are not at all willing to bring
science closer to the people, but the exact contrary. They
say we, and only we, know where science should go. Al
others shut up, otherwise they will be put at the pillory.
Do you think your study should contribute to the society?
We would like to thank you in advance for your help.
You are welcome. Check your typos ;-).
Sincerely yours, Shinya Masahiro
Dr. Jacques Benveniste, AIHP, ACCP, Dir. de recherche Inserm.
Laboratoire de Biologie Numérique
Jacques Benveniste MD, Head, Digital Biology Laboratory
32, rue des Carnets, F-92140 Clamart
Tel : +33 (0)1 46 01 58 40
Fax : +33 (0)1 46 31 02 77
Mobile : +33(0)6 09 68 25 01
Quand le fait qu'on rencontre ne s'accorde
pas avec une théorie régnante il faut accepter
le fait et abandonner la théorie.
When a new fact does not fit with the reigning theory,
one must accept the fact and drop the theory".
~ Claude Bernard ~