Monday, October 04, 2010

Ig Nobel Awards for 2010

Boing Boing informs us that the 2010 Ig Nobel Awards are out for 2010! According to Wikipedia for those not in the know -
  • The Ig Nobel Prizes are an American parody of the Nobel Prizes and are given each year in early October for ten achievements that "first make people laugh, and then make them think." Organized by the scientific humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research....
So, what are some of the awards?

The medicine prize goes to psychologists Simon Rietveld and Ilja van Beest at the University of Amsterdam for discovering that breathing difficulties brought on by asthma can be alleviated by repeated roller coaster rides.

Engineering prize goes to Karina Acevedo-Whitehouse and others at the Institute of Zoology in London developed a way to collect fluids ejected from whales' blowholes by attaching petri dishes to the underside of small, remote-controlled helicopters and hovering them overhead.

Transportation prize to Mark Fricker and Dan Bebber at Oxford University, used slime mold to model an effective railway network. In the experiment, cities were represented by oat-meal that were linked to one another as the slime mold grew.

Biology prize goes to Gareth Jones who's description of the sexual antics of the short-nosed fruit bat. The research showed that females who performed oral sex on their mates copulated for longer.

Peace prize was awarded to psychologist Richard Stephens for confirming that swearing relieves pain

Public health prize awarded to Manuel Barbeito at the Industrial Health and Safety Office in Maryland for scientific studies that found microbes cling to beards, making more hirsute men a potential laboratory hazard.

More on these and other awards can be found at the Guardian website here

No comments: