The Apostrophe’s Greatest Champion Has Died

Sad news from Boston, England: John Richards, Ig Nobel Prize-winning founder of the Apostrophe Protection Society, has died. He taught the world that proofreading is a form of moral philosophy. David Seymour reports, in the Boston Standard: Tribute paid to Boston man and founder of internationally famous Apostrophe Protection Society following his death, aged 97 […]

Building protective high, high walls along Tornado Alley

A bold physicist is about to present his plan — a bold plan — to build gigantic walls to protect people and property against tornadoes. The physicist is none other than Rongjia Tao, chair of the physics department at Temple University. Here’s notice about his planned announcement: Session Q30: The Physics of Climate 2:30 PM–5:06 PM, Wednesday, March 5, […]

A Swiss sock boosted (and over-booted?) by Kiwi research

A product called The Swiss Protection Sock appears to extend the principle that was honored by the 2010 Ig Nobel Prize in public health. That prize was awarded to Lianne Parkin, Sheila Williams, and Patricia Priest of the University of Otago, New Zealand, for demonstrating that, on icy footpaths in wintertime, people slip and fall less often if […]

Earthquake-activated house-levitating pneumatic system

The  Air Danshin Systems company of Japan says it offers pneumatic technology to protect buildings in the event of an earthquake. The shaking triggers a stream of air that levitates the house. The diagram below, from the company, shows to some extent how the system works, with blue representing the stream of air. (The Spoon & Tamago blog […]

Apostrophe Protection Ig Nobellian Admonishes Bookseller

Ig Nobel Prize winner John Richards swung into action against a bookstore chain this week. (Mr. Richards, founder of The Apostrophe Protection Society, was awarded the 2001 Ig Nobel Prize in literature  for his efforts to protect, promote, and defend the differences between plural and possessive.) Harry Wallop reports in The Daily Telegraph: Waterstones drops its apostrophe Waterstones, the […]