Dirty Books: Quantifying Patterns of Use in Medieval Manuscripts Using a Densitometer

“The dirt ground into the margins of medieval manuscripts is one of their interpretable features, which can help us to understand the desires, fears, and reading habits of the past.” – explains researcher Dr Kathryn M. Rudy who is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Art History, of the University of St Andrews, Scotland. […]

Ig Nobel Prize-winning swearing research wins best science book prize

Black Sheep: The Hidden Benefits of Being Bad, a new book by Richard Stephens, is the British Psychological Society’s Book Award winner — in the category Popular Science. The BPS’s Book Awards have just been announced. In the year 2010, Richard Stephens and two colleagues were awarded the Ig Nobel Peace Prize, for confirming the widely held belief that swearing […]

The further future adventures of Troy Hurtubise and a grizzly bear

Troy Hurtubise, who was awarded an Ig Nobel Prize in 1998 in the field of safety engineering — for developing, and personally testing a suit of armor that is impervious to grizzly bears — is again hard at work pursuing a better way to pursue a better meeting with a grizzly bear. The Hamilton Spectator reports: Troy Hurtubise wants Project […]

Further dramatic readings from bizarre studies, Friday night

We’ll be doing some more Improbable Dramatic Readings — brief public readings from bizarre — yet genuine — scientific studies, this Friday night, September 26, at Porter Square Books, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, starting at 7:00 pm. The studies — which we will treat as if they are dramatic literature written for actors to perform — […]

Librarian-titillation TV

The Harold B. Lee Library, at Brigham Young University, is a premier producer of titillating television programs for librarians. This program, called “The Many Stations of Book Preservation,” is no less than eight minutes, twenty-five seconds of variegated stimulation for persons who find hope or dread in the perils and pitfalls of book decay, destruction, or preservation. […]