Peano and the cat, and the earth

More from the history of cats and physics, as explained in the Skull in the Stars blog: Giuseppe Peano (1858-1932) is not well-known to the general public, but he was a formidable voice and researcher in mathematics, publishing over 200 books and papers during his lifetime…. When Peano encountered the problem of the falling cat in […]

The Allen-Alchian (theorem) Explains Why the Internet Is Made of Cats

Dr. Jason Potts Centre Fellow and Project Leader in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation, Queensland University of Technology, Australia, explains in the special ‘cute’ issue of the M/C Journal, Vol. 17, No. 2 (2014) why the internet is made of cats (with reference to the Alchian-Allen Theorem). Supporting material here […]

Fictophones – a curiously unstable class of musical instruments?

    Does this video, showing sound sculptor Henry Dagg performing ‘Somewhere over the Rainbow’ on a Faux-Katzenklavier of his own construction, qualify as a fictophonic collapse scenario? First, some background. Musicologists often like to categorise instruments into classes or groups. For example – idiophones (vibrating bodies), membranophones (vibrating membranes), chordophones (vibrating strings), aerophones (vibrating […]

Podcast 29: Eat a shrew, and an epidemic of penile amputations

The secret of why onions make people cry; the scientist who ate and excreted a shrew; the one-armed man who was arrested for applauding; the question of when cows lie down and stand up; and surgical management of an epidemic of penile amputations in Siam; and a cat unexpectedly taking over the podcast — all these all […]

Prize-winning cat-on-your-keyboard detector

Here’s an appreciative look at the Ig Nobel Prize-winning cat-on-your-keyboard detector. Zachary Crockett writes, on the Priceonomics blog: The Software That Detects When a Cat Is Messing with Your Keyboard … While 140 Ig Nobel prizes have been doled out in history, only one has been awarded in the category of “computer science.” This distinct honor goes […]

Do cats see these optical illusions? Study and video say yes.

Further insight, in this study, on what cats have in sight: “Cats and Illusory Motion,” Rasmus Bååth [pictured here], Takeharu Seno, Akiyoshi Kitaoka, Psychology, vol. 5, 2014, pp. 1131-1134. The authors, at Lund University, Sweden, Kyushu University, Japan, and Ritsumeikan University, Japan, report: “Many cat owners have probably looked into their cat’s eyes and wondered how the […]