Archive for 'Boys Will Be Boys'

A most emotionally colorful study (plus eye blinks & nude bodies)

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

This study appears to combine the brightest aspects of phrenology, Jungian psychology,  painting-by-numbers, and numerous other disciplines:

Bodily maps of emotions,” Lauri Nummenmaa [pictured here], Enrico Glerean, Riitta Hari and Jari K. Hietanen, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol. 111 no. 2, January 14, 2014, pp. 646–651. The authors, at Aalto University, the University of Turku, and the University of Tampere, Finland, write:

lauri“Here we used a topographical self-report tool to reveal that different emotional states are associated with topographically distinct and culturally universal bodily sensations; these sensations could underlie our conscious emotional experiences. Monitoring the topography of emotion-triggered bodily sensations brings forth a unique tool for emotion research.”

Here are details from the study:



BONUS (by one of the co-authors): Mandel A, Helokunnas S, Pihko E and Hari R: “Neuromagnetic brain responses to other person’s eye blinks seen on video,” European Journal of Neuroscience, in press.

BONUS (by two of the other co-authors):  “The Naked Truth: The Face and Body Sensitive N170 Response Is Enhanced for Nude Bodies,” Jari K. Hietanen and Lauri Nummenmaa, PLoS One, November 16, 2011. The authors explain:

“We conclude that… the visual processing of other people’s nude bodies is enhanced in the brain. This enhancement is likely to reflect affective arousal elicited by nude bodies. Such facilitated visual processing of other people’s nude bodies is possibly beneficial in identifying potential mating partners and competitors, and for triggering sexual behavior.”


New recommendation for distributing fresh vs. aged poultry litter

Monday, April 14th, 2014

One should not necessarily be blithe about distributing fresh vs. aged poultry litter, if one takes to heart the findings of this study:

Centrifugal spreader mass and nutrients distribution patterns for application of fresh and aged poultry litter,” W. D. Temple, M. Skowrońska, and A. A. Bomke [pictured here], Journal of Environmental Management, vol. 139, 2014, pp. 200-207. (Thanks to investigator Marcin Klejman for bringing this to our attention.) The authors, at the University of British Columbia, Canada and the University of Life Sciences in Lublin, Poland, report:

artBomke“Poultry litter (PL) consists of chicken or turkey manure, feathers and bedding material which is typically wood shavings, sawdust, wheat straw, peanut hulls or rice hulls…. A spin-type centrifugal spreader was evaluated using fresh and aged poultry litter… Relative to the aged litter, the broadcast fresh litter resulted in higher coefficients of variation (CV) over its transverse distance, a narrower calculated space distance between passes for uniform spread and lower soil available N [notrigen] concentrations…. [Our] results suggest that poultry litter should be allowed to age before broadcast application is attempted.”

Here’s detail from the study:


Alexander Semenov and Alexander Semenov, and their works

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

One Alexander Semenov makes beautiful photographs of worms deep in the ocean. The other Alexander Senenov invents spectacular devices, one of which is a method to use the waste products produced by the crew of a battle tank, stuffing those waste products into explosive shells that the tank fires at an enemy. See if you can guess which one appears in this photo taken from an interview by Russia’s TOPSTV:


Marcus Byrne explains how dung beetles use the Milky Way

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Ig Nobel Prize winner Marcus Byrne explains how dung beetles use the Milky Way, navigationally, to find its way home:

(Thanks to Steve Ting for bringing this to our attention.)

Imperial salute to Dr. Fesmire’s digital hiccup cure

Friday, March 14th, 2014

At the Imperial College show, launching the 2014 Ig Nobel Tour of the UK, the 800 audience members each raised a finger in salute to Ig Nobel Medicine Prize winner Dr. Francis Fesmire, who died recently. Dr. Fesmire was awarded that Ig Nobel Prize in 2006, for his medical report ““Termination of Intractable Hiccups with Digital Rectal Massage” [Annals of Emergency Medicine, vol. 17, no. 8, August 1988 p. 872]. This photo was taken by audience member Babs Guthrie, who posted it to Twitter: