mini-Annals of Improbable Research ("mini-AIR")

March 2014, issue number 2014-03. ISSN 1076-500X.

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The monthly mini update/alert from Improbable Research

      Archive at <http://improbable.com/airchives/miniair/>

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2014-03-01 TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

2014-03-02 Imminent Events

2014-03-03 In the Magazine: Miscreant Trapping

2014-03-04 Ig Nobel Shows in UK, Denmark, Sweden

2014-03-05 RESEARCH SPOTLIGHT: Human Epididymis's Pitted Pattern

2014-03-06 The New Book! This Is Improbable Too

2014-03-07 Cannock Chase Pitted Pebbles Limerick Competition

2014-03-08 Interest of Ruin Probabilities Poet

2014-03-09 MORE IMPROBABLE: Lively dead gathering; Wallaby tendon usage

2014-03-10 MAY WE RECOMMEND: Nuts, Cracking, and Pitted Stones

2014-03-11 Improbable Research Events

2014-03-12 — How to Get the Magazine (*)

2014-03-13 — Our Address (*)

2014-03-14 — Please Forward/Post This Issue! (*)

2014-03-15 — How to start or stop receiving this newsletter (*)

 

      Items marked (*) are reprinted in every issue.

 

 

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2014-03-02 Imminent Events

 

      NEW BOOK — Publication day UK                 — Mar 6

      Ig Nobel Tour of the UK                       — Mar 14-Apr 2

      Ig Nobel Tour of Denmark                     — Mar 24-26

      Stockholm, Sweden                            — Mar 27

      Washington, NIST, and New York City           — Apr 24 & 25

 

      Full events schedule at <http://goo.gl/tzwJt>

 

 

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2014-03-03 In the Magazine: Miscreant Trapping

 

The special Miscreant Trapping issue (vol. 20, no. 1) of the Annals of Improbable Research is out. The e-book version will be available very soon on the major e-bookstore sites. The table of contents, etc., is online at <http://goo.gl/OhkpS3>, along with these articles from the issue:

 

"Do the Origins of Surgeons' Aggressive Behaviour Lie in Tadpole Cannibalism?" by Bethany Morgan, Josie Morgan, Helena Morgan and Richard Morgan <http://goo.gl/R9swm5>

 

"Entropy in the List of Authors of Scientific Papers,"by  Arne Lundberg, et al. <http://goo.gl/3FbO3h>

 

"Icky Cutesy Research Review," compiled by Alice Shirrell Kaswell <http://goo.gl/5CRP3F>

 

      Download a FREE E-BOOK ISSUE <http://goo.gl/BMzMw>

      Links to all issues: <http://www.improbable.com/magazine>

 

 

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2014-03-04 Ig Nobel Shows in UK, Denmark, Sweden

 

Friday, March 14: LONDON: Imperial College

Monday, March 17, COVENTRY: University of Warwick

Tuesday, March 18, LONDON: Conway Hall [book launch]

Thursday, March 20, LEEDS: University of Leeds

Monday, March 24: AARHUS: University of Aarhus

Tuesday, March 25: AARHUS: : University of Aarhus

Wednesday, March 26: COPENHAGEN, Copenhagen University

Thursday, March 27: STOCKHOLM (afternoon): Karolinska Institute

Thursday, March 27: STOCKHOLM (evening): ABF House

Wednesday, April 2, PORTSMOUTH, University of Portsmouth

 

Expect oh so many highlights. Here are some of them:

 

World premiere of the opera "The Homosexual Necrophiliac Duck"

Parboiled shrew eating

QI elves dramatically reciting research

Opera-listening heart transplant patients who are mice

Swearing as a response to pain

Using Roller coasters to treat asthma

 

Details at <http://goo.gl/tzwJt> and <http://goo.gl/oKA1Km>

 

 

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2014-03-05 RESEARCH SPOTLIGHT: Human Epididymis's Pitted Pattern

 

This month's research spotlights a pitted pattern in a particular place:

 

"Pitted Pattern in the Human Epididymis," M. Nistal, L. Iniguez, and R. Paniagua, Journal of Reproduction and Fertility, vol.  89, no. 2, 1990, pp. 655-661. <http://goo.gl/C4Py48> The authors, at Autonomous University of Madrid and the University of Alcal de Henares, report:

 

"This histological study of the human ductus epididymidis in autopsy or surgical specimens revealed the presence of multiple intra-epithelial cavities or pits."

 

 

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2014-03-06 The New Book! This Is Improbable Too

 

The new book is here!

This Is Improbable Too, by Marc Abrahams (Oneworld Publications, ISBN 9781780743615). Official publication day is March 6 in the UK, August 12 in the US.

 

The Daily Mail newspaper has already reviewed the book <http://goo.gl/vSIytn>, saying:

 

      "It's almost dementedly inconsequential"

 

The Guardian says <http://goo.gl/ABKntW>, of the predecessor book (This Is Improbable) <http://goo.gl/uBCig0>:

 

      "Rationalism taken to intoxicating extremes"

 

Come to our show at Conway Hall, London on Tuesday, March 18, for the official celebration of the book. Magnificent persons will each perform dramatic, brief readings from published scientific studies.

<http://goo.gl/XFO8MG>

 

 

 

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2014-03-07 Cannock Chase Pitted Pebbles Limerick Competition

 

Pitted pebbles inspire this month's limerick competition. To enter, compose an original limerick that illuminates the nature of this ancient study:

 

"Pitted Pebbles in the Bunter Conglomerate of Cannock Chase." T. Mellard Reade, Geological Magazine, vol. 2, no. 8, August 1895, pp. 341-5. LINK: <http://goo.gl/5wtdgi> The author instructs:

 

"Mr. W. S. Gresley criticizes the summing-up of my views... It would have been more satisfactory if Mr. Gresley could have read my original paper before penning his letter."

 

Submit your perfectly formed limerick to:

 

      PITTED PEBBLES LIMERICK COMPETITION

      c/o <marca@improbable.com>

 

 

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2014-03-08 Interest of Ruin Probabilities Poet

 

The judges have chosen a winner for last month's Interest of Ruin Probabilities Limerick Competition, which asked for a limerick to honor this study:

 

"Ruin Probabilities with Random Rates of Interest," Wang Han-xing and Wan Ai-hua, Journal of Shanghai University, vol. 10, no. 3, June,  2006, pp. 211-4. <http://goo.gl/j3ioGR>

 

The winner is INVESTIGATOR ALICE SHIRRELL KASWELL, who writes:

 

There seems to be so little new in —

Yet so many things that I rue in —

   (things that make the rate

   Of boredom so great!)

This unlikely paper on ruin.

 

And here is the offering from LIMERICK LAUREATE MARTIN EIGER:

 

Where should I choose to invest?

Which investment will turn out the best?

   In such matters fiscal

   To work out the risk'll

Most likely just make me depressed.

 

 

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2014-03-09 MORE IMPROBABLE: Lively dead gathering; Wallaby tendon usage

 

Recent improbable bits you maybe missed:

 

IMPROBABLE BLOG:

 

Founder of Assn of Dead People meets fellow Ig Nobel Prize winners <http://goo.gl/r1rp2S>

 

Nurse, please pass the 27-gauge wallaby tendon <http://goo.gl/zlHzzl>

 

Macroscopic inspection of ape feces <http://goo.gl/XPe9mP>

 

...and MORE, MORe, MOre, More, more at <http://improbable.com>

 

LFHCfS (Luxuriant Flowing Hair Club for Scientists. Admire them at <http://goo.gl/8AZawf>

 

Newspaper column: "The scariness of spiders to people who are scaref of spiders" <http://goo.gl/cfAzt3>

 

twitter:    @ImprobResearch, @MarcAbrahams, #IgNobel

facebook:   <http://www.facebook.com/improbableresearch>

book:       <http://goo.gl/rHMb3t>

 

 

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2014-03-10 MAY WE RECOMMEND: Nuts, Cracking, and Pitted Stones

 

"Nuts, Nut Cracking, and Pitted Stones at Gesher Benot Ya aqov, Israel," Naama Goren-Inbar, Gonen Sharon, Yoel Melamed, and Mordechai Kislev, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol. 99, no. 4. 2002, pp. 2455-2460. <http://goo.gl/rtzPXh>

 

 

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2014-03-11 Improbable Research Events

 

For details and additional events, see

<http://improbable.com/improbable-research-shows/complete-schedule>

 

NEW BOOK — Publication day UK             — Mar 6, 2014

Ig Nobel Tour of the UK                   — Mar 14-Apr 2, 2014

Ig Nobel Tour of Denmark                 — Mar 24-26, 2014

Stockholm, Sweden                        — Mar 27, 2014

USA Sci & Eng Fest, Washington, DC        — Apr 24, 2014

NIST, Gaithersburg, MD, USA               — Apr 25, 2014 [AM]

New York, NY                              — Apr 25, 2014 [PM]

ESOF, Copenhagen, Denmark                 — Jun, 2014

Ig Nobel TICKETS go on sale         — midsummer, 2014

NEW BOOK — Publication day USA            — Aug 12, 2014

Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony                   — Sep 18, 2014

Ig Informal Lectures                      — Sep 20, 2014

 

 

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2014-03-12 — How to Get the Magazine (*)

 

The Annals of Improbable Research is a 6-issues-per-year magazine. (It's much bigger and better than the little bits in this newsletter.)

We produce each issue as an e-book, as well as on traditional paper.

 

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      DOWNLOAD A FREE E-BOOK ISSUE: <http://goo.gl/BMzMw>

 

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2014-03-13 — Our Address (*)

 

Annals of Improbable Research (AIR)

PO Box 380853, Cambridge, MA 02238 USA

(+1) 617-491-4437, FAX: (+1) 617-661-0927

 

EDITORIAL: <marca@improbable.com>

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2014-03-14 — Please Forward/Post This Issue! (*)

 

Please distribute copies of mini-AIR (or excerpts!) wherever appropriate. The only limitations are: A) Please indicate that the material comes from mini-AIR. B) You may NOT distribute mini-AIR for commercial purposes.

 

      ------------- mini-AIRheads -------------

EDITOR: Marc Abrahams

CO-CONSPIRATORS: Kees Moeliker, Alice Shirrell Kaswell, Gary Dryfoos, Ernest Ersatz, Stephen Drew

PROOFREADER: Ambient Happenstance

AUTHORITY FIGURES: Nobel Laureates Dudley Herschbach, Sheldon Glashow, Richard Roberts

 

Key words: improbable research, science humor, Ig Nobel, AIR, the

(c) copyright 2014, Annals of Improbable Research

 

 

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2014-03-15 — How to start or stop receiving this newsletter (*)

 

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