An analysis of journal articles winning Ig Nobel prizes during 2011–2020

Dr. Andy Wai Kan Yeung (pictured here, below) of the University of Hong Kong analyzed several years’ worth of Ig Nobel Prize-winning studies. He published a paper telling how he did it, and what he found. You can download the paper. Here’s the citation: “Not just nickel-and-dime: An analysis of journal articles winning Ig Nobel […]

Unwordy Analysis: Can You Identify Authors by Their Punctuation?

Can you identify who wrote a big chunk of text, if you remove all the words and examine only the punctuation. This new study says that in many cases yes, you can: “Pull Out All the Stops: Textual Analysis Via Punctuation Sequences,” Alexandra N.M. Darmon, Marya Bazzi, Sam D. Howison, and Mason Porter, SocArXiv. January […]

A Somewhat Scientific Risk Analysis of Risk Analysis’s Scientificness

Journalist Dan Vergano points out the disciplined approach, in this study, of using using risk analysis to analyze whether risk analysis is scientific: “Is Risk Analysis Scientific?” Sven Ove Hansson [pictured here] and Terje Aven, Risk Analysis, epub June 11, 2014. The authors, at Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden and the University of Stavanger, Norway, explain: […]

Comparative study of the minds of gods (Purzycki / Gaiman)

Comes further progress in understanding the minds of gods. A newly published study: “The minds of gods: A comparative study of supernatural agency,” Benjamin Grant Purzycki [pictured here], Cognition, vol. 129, 2013, pp. 163–179. The author, at the University of British Columbia, Canada, explains: “The present work is the first study to systematically compare the minds […]

“Topical Trends in a Corpus of Persuasive Writing”

If you list everything that’s topical, trendy and persuasive, your list might include things you’d prefer it not to include, suggests this study: “Topical Trends in a Corpus of Persuasive Writing,” Michael Heilman and Nitin Madnani [pictured here], Research Report ETS RR-12-19, October 2012. The authors write, topically and perhaps persuasively: “Many writing assessments use generic […]

A subject-specific model of human buttocks

Specific buttocks get a thorough analysis in this study: “A subject-specific model of human buttocks and thighs in a seated posture,” Rami M.A. Al-Dirini, Matthew Reed, Gunther Paul, Gunther and Dominic Thewlis,  in 7th Australasian Congress on Applied Mechanics, ACAM 7, 9-12 December 2012, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA. “MR image processing was conducted to both […]

Engineering analyses of Noah’s ark

Noah’s ark, if it existed, was an impressive piece of engineering. Here’s one detailed analysis of just how impressive: “The Impossible Voyage of Noah’s Ark,” Robert A. Moore, Creation/Evolution Journa , issue 11 (Winter 1983) Moore goes into considerable detail. He also laments the loss to humanity of the engineering expertise that must have gone into […]

Tea that is of, If Not for, Insects — Its Place in Culture

Some tea news, for thee: “Insect tea, a wonderful work in the Chinese tea culture,” Lijia Xu, Huimin Pan, Qifang Lei, Wei Xiao, Yong Peng, Peigen Xiao, Food Research International, epub January 17, 2013. The authors, at the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, and at the Ministry of Education, in Beijing, China, explain: “Insect tea… […]

A ninefold typology of Beatles please-please analysts

The Bibliolore blog reports: In an experiment, three groups of music students transcribed the first 64 seconds of The Beatles’ Please please me. Analysis of these transcriptions yielded a ninefold typology of polylinear listeners: holistic melodists, holistic formalists, impressionists, melodic conventionalists, semiprofessional generalists, nonmelodic semiprofessional generalists, nonprofessional melodic generalists, semiprofessional rhythmicians, and holistic graphicians. This according […]

She ponders on and in a strapless evening gown

SciCurious essays a look—perhaps a deeper and more gleeful look than ever has been looked—at Charles Seim’s classic “Analysis of a Strapless Evening Gown”. Seim [pictured below] is the very same Seim who is a decorated bridge designer. BONUS: The birth of “Stress Analysis of a Strapless Evening Gown” BONUS: Deborah Henson-Conant‘s five-movement orchestral work “Stress […]