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

August 2015, issue number 2015-08. ISSN 1076-500X.

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The monthly wee little tiny mini update/alert from Improbable Research

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

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2015-08-01 TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

2015-08-02 Imminent Events

2015-08-03 In the Magazine: Dogs (and Cats) on the Loose

2015-08-04 RESEARCH SPOTLIGHT: Small and the Giant Strawberry Plant

2015-08-05 The Ig Nobel Ceremony & Webcast, and Lectures

2015-08-06 Small / Giant Component Limerick Contest

2015-08-07 Scientific Bipolar Anthropology Poet

2015-08-08 Sooooooon: The Improbable PDF Subscriptions

2015-08-09 MORE IMPROBABLE: Hey Dude, Shoe-Throwing at Weddings, Bumps

2015-08-10 MAY WE RECOMMEND: Small and the Giant Garter Snake

2015-08-11 — Improbable Research Events

2015-08-12 — How to Get the Magazine (*)

2015-08-13 — Our Address (*)

2015-08-14 — Please Forward/Post This Issue! (*)

2015-08-15 — How to start or stop receiving this newsletter (*)

 

      Items marked (*) are reprinted in every issue.

 

 

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2015-08-02 Imminent Events

 

      25th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony     — Sep 17, 2015

      Ig Informal Lectures, MIT                     — Sep 19, 2015

      European Ig Nobel Show, Amsterdam             — Oct 3, 2015

      Vienna, Austria                               — Oct 8, 2015

 

For details and additional events, see

<http://goo.gl/QJTBnO>

 

 

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2015-08-03 In the Magazine: Dogs (and Cats) on the Loose

 

The special DOGS (AND CATS) issue of the magazine is out and about <http://goo.gl/fXejuU>. Three of its articles are online:

 

      "Cats and Dogs Research Review"

      "Ig and Beyond: Dogs on Faces, Mice on Art"

      "AIR Vents (letters from our readers) "

 

Links to every issue: <http://www.improbable.com/magazine>

 

 

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2015-08-04 RESEARCH SPOTLIGHT: Small and the Giant Strawberry Plant

 

This month's spotlight shines, as do so many things these days, on Small, and on a giant strawberry plant:

 

"Strawberry Plant Named 'Cal Giant 4' ", U.S. plant patent PP12423 P2, granted February 26, 2002 to David W. Small. <http://goo.gl/LKsfcP>

 

 

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2015-08-05 The Ig Nobel Ceremony & Webcast, and Lectures

 

Tickets for the Twenty-Fifth 1st Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony are sold out. If you didn't get one, despair not. Watch the live webcast!

 

The new Ig Nobel Prize winners are traveling from many continents.

The prizes will be physically handed to them by Nobel laureates.

This theme of this year's ceremony is LIFE.

The ceremony includes the premiere of a new mini-opera "The Best Life".

The 24/7 Lecturers will cogno-dazzle in 24 seconds, then seven words.

Several returning Ig Nobel winners will bow and gleam.

Dr. Nakamats (posibly the greatest person on earth) will sing his Swan Song.

Eight-year-old Miss Sweetie Poo will keep everyone's speeches short.

Lots more will happen, too. Lots, lots, lots.

Having been some months in preparation,

A splendid time is guaranteed for all.

 

THE CEREMONY & WEBCAST

  WHERE: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University

  WHEN: THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 2015, 6:00 pm. (Boston time)

  DETAILS: <http://www.improbable.com/ig/2015>

  Tickets are sold out.

The webcast begins at 5:40 pm., with a Dryfoosian pre-ceremony concert.

 

THE LECTURES

  WHERE: MIT, Building 10, Room 250

  WHEN: SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19, 2015, 1:00 pm.

  DETAILS: <http://www.improbable.com/ig/2015/#informallectures>

  Free, but seating is limited. First come, first seated.

 

 

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2015-08-06 Small / Giant Component Limerick Contest

 

Small, and the Giant Component, are the inspiration for this month's limerick competition. To enter, compose an original limerick that clarifies the nature of this study:

 

"Critical thresholds for co-citation clusters and emergence of the giant component," Henry Small, Journal of Informetrics, vol. 3, no. 4, 2009, pp.  332-340. <http://goo.gl/qEGe2J>

 

Submit your perfectly formed limerick to:

 

      SMALL / GIANT COMPONENT LIMERICK COMPETITION

      c/o <MARC aaattt IMPROBABLE dddooottt COM>

 

 

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2015-08-07 Scientific Bipolar Anthropology Poet

 

The judges have chosen co-winners in last month's Bipolar Tripolar Theological Anthropology Limerick Competition, which asked for a limerick to honor this study:

 

"A Scientific Bipolar Anthropology Completed by a Tripolar Theological Anthropology," L. Morren, in the book Origins, Time and Complexity, 1994, pp. 53 ff. <http://goo.gl/24EKvi>

 

The winner is INVESTIGATOR DAVID MARPLES, who wrote:

 

A mind, a body: man complete?

Or do we need the Paraclete?

  A gift of God,

  Plus Edens sod,

Emergent thought: now were elite!

 

Here's the offering from our LIMERICK LAUREATE, MARTIN EIGER:

 

Science has rules that constrain.

There are things that it doesn't explain.

  But once we apply

  Religion, oh my!

We find that no questions remain.

 

 

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2015-08-08 Sooooooon: The Improbable PDF Subscriptions

 

Led by the Improbable bookmeister, Lauren Maurer Trew, we are test, test, testing the machinery to distribute the PDF version of the magazine — the magnificent Annals of Improbable Research.

 

We are still producing the paper version of the magazine, and will phase it out when we are sure that the PDF sales/delivery machinery works well.

 

For current subscribers to the paper edition:

We will present you with some nice options, to convert your subscription, and bring it hopping and cheering into The Glorious Future.

 

We have fairly high hopes that the conversion will happen Pretty Soon!

 

 

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2015-08-09 MORE IMPROBABLE: Hey Dude, Shoe-Throwing at Weddings, Bumps

 

Recent improbable bits you maybe missed.

 

The weekly podcast:

 

      LISTEN / DOWNLOAD: <http://goo.gl/sxh7DX>

            (It's also on Play.it, iTunes, and Spotify)

 

      #19 How to pour the perfect 2nd cup of coffee

      #20 Hey dude

      #21 Objects found in people's rectums

      #22 The gluteal hardness of security guards

      #23 The effect of country music on suicide

      #24 The longest oath

      #25 Fire-eaters and punk rockers

      #26 A look back at the 2014 Ig Nobel Prize winners (PART 1)

 

Newspaper column (in The Guardian): <http://goo.gl/uaZH9Q>

 

  The Tradition of Shoe-Throwing at Weddings

  The Great Attempt to Catalog All Fetishes (w the pacemaker fetish)

 

The blog: <http://www.improbable.com/>

 

      Professor Necker on head-bobbing

      How Do Bumps Form in Carpets?

      Terrestrial shrub rover

      Tyrannosaurus Rx: "The day I removed a toy dinosaur from a woman's vagina

      The Enigma of the Two Phonebooks, pulled apart

      ...and lots, lots more

 

AND LOTS MORE MORE, at

      [blog]      <www.IMPROBABLE.com>

      [twitter]   @ImprobResearch, @MarcAbrahams, #IgNobel

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

      [podcast]   <http://goo.gl/GqUW6i>

 

 

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2015-08-10 MAY WE RECOMMEND: Small and the Giant Garter Snake

 

"Hematology and plasma biochemistry values for the giant garter snake (Thamnophis gigas) and valley garter snake (Thamnophis sirtalis fitchi) in the central valley of California," Raymund F. Wack, Eric Hansen, Marilyn Small, Robert Poppenga, David Bunn, and Christine K. Johnson, Journal of Wildlife Diseases, vol. 48, no. 2, 2012, pp. 307-313. <http://goo.gl/v5nnct>

 

 

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2015-08-11 — Improbable Research Events

 

For details and additional events, see

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

 

25th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony       — Sep 17, 2015

Ig Informal Lectures, MIT                       — Sep 19, 2015

European Ig Nobel Show, Amsterdam               — Oct 3, 2015

Vienna, Austria                                 — Oct 8, 2015

NASW, Cambridge, MA                             — Oct 10, 2015

St. Jude Hosp, Memphis, TN                      — Oct TBA, 2015

U Rhode Island                                  — Dec 8, 2015

SIBC, Portland, OR                              — Jan 5, 2016

AAAS, Washington, DC                            — Feb TBA, 2016

Ig Nobel EuroTour                               — Mar TBA, 2016

 

 

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2015-08-12 — How to Get the Magazine (*)

 

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

 

PAPER EDITION:

      To subscribe, go to <http://improbable.com/subscribe>

 

NOTE: In the near future we will be converting from paper to PDFs.

Details of that will appear on the web site, and here on mini-AIR,

and in issues of the magazine itself.

     

 

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2015-08-13 — Our Address (*)

 

Annals of Improbable Research (AIR)

PO Box 380853, Cambridge, MA 02238 USA

(+1) 617-491-4437

 

EDITORIAL: <MARC aaattt IMPROBABLE dddooottt COM>

PRINT SUBSCRIPTIONS: <subscriptions AT improbable.com>

Web Site and blog: <http://www.improbable.com>

Twitter: @ImprobResearch

 

 

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2015-08-14 — 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 2015, Annals of Improbable Research

 

 

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2015-08-15 — How to start or stop receiving this newsletter (*)

 

Mini-AIR is a (free!) teeny-tiny monthly *supplement*

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