Tom and Joan Steitz, and a clarinet player

Tom Steitz has died; his obituary is in New York Times. He was half of a marriage of two great and celebrated chemists, who met while they were grad students of the great and celebrated Professor Lipscomb, whom many of you saw and met at two decades of Ig Nobel Prize ceremonies.  (We met at a memorial […]

How Professor Lipscomb inspired Peaco

Peaco Todd’s special duty at recent Ig Nobel Prize ceremonies was to accompany Nobel laureate William Lipscomb. Peaco has written some thoughts triggered by Bill’s recent death at the age of 91.  (She and Professor Lipscomb are pictured here on the cover of the special Professor Lipscomb issue of the Annals of Improbable Research.) Her essay, which appears on […]

Lipscomb, Heisenberg, and momentum

Another Bill Lipscomb moment, from the 1996 Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, as reported by the Harvard Gazette: Ig Nobel festivities traditionally include the Heisenberg Certainty Lectures. These 30-second lectures are named in honor of physicist Werner Heisenberg’s infamous “uncertainty principle,” which states that it is impossible to accurately measure both the position and momentum of […]