BABE is an expert system for bridge designers. And to some people, it’s worth singing about. Read about it in the study: “BABE: An Expert System for Structural Design of Bridge Abutments and Piers,” H. Zheng, G. K. Mikroudis, S. Pamukcu, and Z. X. Hu, Computer Utilization in Structural Engineering, 1989, pp. 372-381.
“The song was written by journalist Peppino Turco and was set by Luigi Denza in 1880. They drew the inspiration from the inauguration of the first funicular [railroad] of Mt. Vesuvius,” writes vesuvioinrete.it. Click on the image below to hear and see a modern performance.
Big Banks and the Big Bang theory combine in these two new episodes (#122 and #121) of the Improbable Research TV series. These were filmed at an early rehearsal of “The Big Bank Opera”. The plot: Stylish bankers in a swanky Wall Street bar explain the explosive rise and fall of big banking and big […]
Recently I took a few months of my free time and decided to recreate Arnold Schoenberg’s 1909 op. 11 Drei Klavierstücke (aka Three Piano Pieces) by editing together videos of cats playing pianos downloaded from Youtube. Schoenberg’s Op11 is often considered the first piece of “atonal” music, or music to completely break from traditional western […]
Jason Brown of Dalhousie University published a study called “Mathematics, Physics and A Hard Day’s Night.” The abstract reads, in whole: “In this article we shall use mathematics and the physics of sound to unravel one of the mysteries of rock ’n’ roll – how did the Beatles play the opening chord of A Hard […]
Despite everyone’s carefree joy in singing Happy Birthday to You, this simple song puts you in legal jeopardy every time it exits your mouth. A considerable amount of money flows to the corporation that owns the copyright. But … maybe that company doesn’t own the copyright, and maybe you are in no legal peril. Professor […]
Ig Nobel Prize winner Jim Gundlach, co-author of the study “The Effects of Country Music on Suicide,” in Upper Oddington, England, during the 2008 Ig Nobel Tour of the UK. The tour is part of the UK’s National Science Week. Photo: Carol Gundlach. (That’s an excerpt from AIR 14:4. A glorious large version of the […]
Fish lures often have evocative names. So do rock bands. Can you discern or detect which of the following names belongs to a fish lure and which to a rock band? (You may find hints by consulting the published philosophical literature on the question “What’s in a name?” And you may not.) The answers appear […]