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Podcast #6: Trinkaus: The man who counts what annoys him

The happily annoyed works of Professor John Trinkaus — who counts things that annoy him — bubble forth in this week’s Improbable Research podcast.

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This week, Marc Abrahams tells about:

brussels sprouts study

  • Some topics that annoyed Trinkaus. (The reading is performed by Ross MacFarlane of the Wellcome Trust Library and James Harkin and Stevyn Colgan of QI, The Museum of Curiosity, and No Such Thing As a Fish)
  • Opening an Attaché Case: An Informal Look. improbableresearch(“Opening an Attaché Case: An Informal Look,” J. Trinkaus, Perceptual and Motor Skills, vol. 69, October 1989, p. 618. / The dramatic reading is by Dany Adams, associate professor of biology at Tufts University)
  • “Taste Preference For Brussels Sprouts: An Informal Look. ( “Taste Preference For Brussels Sprouts: An Informal Look,” J. Trinkaus, K. Dennis, Psychological Reports, vol. 69, no. 3, part 2, special issue, December 1991, pp. 1165-6./ The dramatic reading is by Dany Adams.)
  • The mini-opera “The Blonsky Device”,  act 2. (The opera premiered as part of the 2013 Ig Nobel Prize ceremony. Henry Akona orchestrated and directed. The opera starred Maria Ferrante (as Charlotte Blonsky), Martin Kelly (as George Blonsky), Philip Lima (as the zookeeper), and Miles Rind (as the patent examiner), with an orchestra of biomedical researchers directed by Dr. Thomas Michel. Karen Hopkin narrates. The opera also featured, in non-singing roles: Melissa Franklin, Peaco Todd, Alex Nemiroski, and Nobel laureates Roy Glauber, Dudley Herschbach, Frank Wilczek, and Eric Maskin.)

The mysterious John Schedler did the sound engineering this week.

The podcast is all about research that makes people LAUGH, then THINK — research about anything and everything, from everywhere —research that’s good or bad, important or trivial, valuable or worthless. CBS distributes it, both on the new CBS Play.it web site, and on iTunes.

Improbable Research