Homemade Zygotes — Just Like Mom’s!

"’Homemade Zygotes — Just Like Mom’s!’"  You may not be that far off!" So writes investigator Ron Josephson. The phrase is familiar to regular readers of AIR’s Unclassified Ads section, in which an ad saying exactly that has been appearing relentlessly for years now. See for example, the Unclassified Ads section in the magazine’s Jan//Feb […]

Pek’s Pictures

Scientific reports don’t have to be dull or overly complex. Consider this passage: “OBJECTIVE: To find out whether taking images of the male and female genitals during coitus is feasible and… So begins this week’s Improbable Research column in The Guardian. Read it here.

Another Look at “Trinkaus: Another Look”

If you you can’t get enough Trinkaus — and be aware that that makes you part of a growing horde — a rich analytical look is now available. Investigator Don Danila has written “Trinkaus: Another Informal Look.” It was published in the Nov/Dec 2003 issue of the Annals of Improbable Research. Partly because of the […]

Five Pages on Cake

If you read our recent column “The Mystery of the Yellow Cake” (in The Guardian) about a mathematics paper called “The Yellow Cake,” and were bemused or confused, here’s a remedy. The phrase “yellow cake” is not explained or even mentioned anywhere in “The Yellow Cake.” That is the mystery. We have just received a […]

March mini-AIR

The March issue of mini-AIR just went out. Read it here. Contents include, among other things: / Teaching: A New Spin / Hotheads, Buckets, and a Book / Non-Cosy Sticky Poet / Beauty and Truth: The Correction / Zweibeck’s Death Challenge / Survey Results: Astronomers vs. Moons / Watch What You Eat Limerick Contest / […]

Finger tips

Many people, especially academics and taxi drivers, take pride in having arcane knowledge at their fingertips. Dr William B Bean bested them all. Dr Bean’s arcane knowledge was not only at his fingertips; it was about them. Dr Bean spent much of his adult life monitoring the growth of his fingernails…. So begins this week’s […]

Chocolate Bunny Protection Complaint

Long-suffering investigator Jon Cramer is, on balance, not pleased with our coverage of chocolate bunny protective packaging research. He writes: While studying for the Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (at the University of Washington-Seattle, WA) I was forced to endure “Dynamic Systems” (2nd quarter) where we studied the nearly identical problem-How much packing material […]

Shake or Bow?

For the public health, is bowing a better practice than shaking hands? Investigator Theda Turnbull, who lives in the United States, thinks maybe that is the case. Inspired by the recent suggestion by investigator Sakae Inouye (see that here), she writes: I’ve been thinking for a while that the Japanese habit of bowing has it […]

Repeat Read Repeat

A typical adult knows almost nothing about the psychology of repetitive reading. That is not surprising. Research psychologists, as a group, know little about the subject. Human beings can be induced to read repetitively. In one experiment, a scientist named Borgovsky… So begins this week’s Improbable Research column in The Guardian. Read it here.