Archive for 'Arts and Science'

Just Says In Mice [a studied approach to certain studies]

Saturday, April 13th, 2019

“This twitter account calls out press releases of studies on mice that discuss the studies as if they were performed on humans,” says Samantha Joel.

The twitter feed is @justsaysinmice. The feed itself is the work of James Heathers.



WEDNESDAY Ig Nobel at Stockholm University, livestreamed

Tuesday, April 9th, 2019

Wednesday afternoon, the Ig Nobel EuroTour arrives at Stockholm University—featuring cookies, cannibalism, a-fly-in-wine, all sorts of other prize-winning things that make people LAUGH, then THINK. Also: 24/7 Lectures. Also: paper airplanes.

April 10, Wednesday, 3:00 pm—University of Stockholm, Sweden, in the Alba Nova—FREE ADMISSION, OPEN TO THE PUBLIC—[PREVIEWPREVIEW]Marc Abrahams and

  • Ig Nobel Prize winner Len Fisher (the optimal way to dunk a biscuit)
  • Ig Nobel Prize winner James Cole (Nutritional value of human cannibalism)
  • Ig Nobel Prize winners Paul BecherErika WallinErik Hedenström, (detecting, by smell, the presence of a single fly in a glass of wine)
  • The 24/7 Lectures by: Ragnhild LunnanJonas SellbergRezan GülerSara Strandberg
  • A human-endurance demonstration by Max Kesselberg

This event will be livestreamed on Stockholm University’s Facebook page.

Tour Subsequent Events

After that, the Ig Nobel EuroTour will move on to Norway, Germany, and Italy (again).

Economic Consequences of Restrictions on the Usage of Cookies

Sunday, April 7th, 2019

The research project “Economic Consequences of Restrictions on the Usage of Cookies” has received funding to proceed.

The work is being done at Johann Wolfgang Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, under the direction of Prof. Dr. Berndt Skiera [pictured here]. The university explains:

So far, there exists very little empirical knowledge on the trade-off between user privacy and the economic value that website publishers, advertisers, and even users derive from cookies. As a result, policy makers have no way of telling whether their restrictions on cookies have the intended positive consequences for user privacy, or whether any benefits are outweighed by negative effects on the profits of companies—which policy makers also seek to nurture. The research project COOKIES (Economic Consequences of Restrictions on the Usage of Cookies) by Professor Bernd Skiera aims to close this gap. In the project, several data sets will be analysed, including a cookie dataset

(Thanks to Bob O’Hara for bringing this to our attention.)

Brief versus Thong Hygiene in Obstetrics and Gynecology

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2019

Does thong underwear present heal hazards?  A new study addresses certain aspects of that general question. 

The study is “Brief versus Thong Hygiene in Obstetrics and Gynecology (B-THONG): A survey study,” Alyssa A. Hamlin, Jeanelle Sheeder, and Tyler M. Muffly, Obstestrics and Gynecology Research, vol., 131, May 2018, 108S ff. (Thanks to Gwinyai Masukume for bringing this to our attention.)

The authors, at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora and Denver Health and Hospital Authority, Denver, include data on:

Cleaning practices—

Wipe front to back

Wipe back to fr

They state this conclusion:

In this large cross-sectional study we found that oral sex was the only independent predictor of urinary tract infection and bacterial vaginosis, and that wearing noncotton crotch underwear was associated with yeast vaginitis. Wearing thong underwear was not associated with any urogenital infections. Medical providers should discuss sexual practices and underwear fabric, rather than style, with their patients when there is concern for urogenital infection.

The day Ig Nobel people came together at Hokkaido University

Friday, March 29th, 2019

This film documents what happened when I (founder of the Ig Nobel Prize ceremony) visited two Ig Nobel Prize winners at Hokkaido University.

Toshiyuki Nakagaki, winner (with his team) of two Ig Nobel Prizes (in 2008 for discovering that slime molds can solve puzzles, and in 2010 for using slime mold to determine the optimal routes for railroad tracks) and Kazunori Yoshizawa, winner in 2017 for the discovery of a female penis, and a male vagina, in a cave insect, were gracious hosts. Many of their colleagues and students joined in the mutual amusement.

Kiyoshi Furusawa and his colleagues tell the video story of my visit to the campus and especially to the two labs:

A second video shows what happened during the public event we held later that day with a group of happily rambunctious students:

This all happened in late September of 2018.

I was in Japan for the opening of the Ig Nobel Prizes exhibition at the Tokyo Dome complex. Professors Nakagaki and Yoshizawa—together with eight other Japanese Ig Nobel Prize winners—took part in the press opening of that event in (of course) Tokyo, as did some fifty-odd journalists. (Quick snippets of that day appear near the start of this video.)

The arrival of these Hokkaido videos comes at a happy time—in the middle of the 2019 Ig Nobel EuroTour, when scenes a little like these are happening in many of the ten European countries I’m visiting.



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