Ig Nobels honor crazy science with a point


Ignobels_hmed_6p_2 Good news for your Viagra-using hamster: On his next trip to Europe he’ll bounce back from jet lag faster than his unmedicated friends. The researchers who revealed that bizarre fact earned one of 10 Ig Nobel prizes awarded Thursday night for quirky, funny and sometimes legitimate scientific achievements, from the mathematics of wrinkled sheets to U.S. military efforts to make a “gay bomb.” The recipients of the annual awards, handed out by the Annals of Improbable Research, were honored at Harvard University’s Sanders Theater.

Best (and worst) of the rest
Other winners include:

  • A Dutch researcher who conducted a census of all the creepy-crawlies that share our beds.
  • Spanish scientists who found that rats sometimes could not distinguish between Japanese spoken backwards and Dutch spoken backwards.
  • An Australian woman who documented the indexing problems caused by the word “the.”
  • A Japanese researcher who extracted vanilla flavoring from cow dung.
  • A Taiwanese man who patented a Batman-like device that drops a net over bank robbers.

More here.