The influence of the Ig Nobel Prize slowly seeps into academia — especially in techniques for piquing people’s curiosity and attention. Here’s a new, 2023 example. The Harvard Gazette, in a report headlined “The snappy book talk: ‘When does that happen in academia?’ ” tells of an innovative event: “Scholars had seven minutes to explain […]
Curiosity: “ZERO margin of error”?
The NASA Jet Propulsion Lab produced this music-thumping action video to explain the wondrously complicated plan for the new machine (which is called “Curiosity”) to enter the Martian atmosphere and make it safely to the planet’s surface. There is one teensy line of text, near the start, that is fun for starting arguments with any […]
A curious book review
I sent New Scientist magazine this letter, which they published in their June 6, 2012 issue. Curiously (and probably rushing stupidly when I typed the letter), I managed to confound Herr Schrodinger of cat fame with Herr Heisenberg, he of the uncertainty: Your review of Philip Ball’s book Curiosity (19 May, p 50) ends: “Yet for all its […]