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Attracting birds with a ‘Songbird Magnet‘

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‘What Colour is Penguin Guano?‘ [research study]

A new study reports progress on an old chestnut of a question: What Colour is Penguin Guano? W.G. Rees, J.A. Brown, P.T. Fretwell, and P.N. Trathan, Antarctic Science, vol. 29, no. 5, October 2017 , pp. 417-425. (Thanks to Tom Gill for bringing this to our attention.) The authors, at the University of Cambridge and []

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Head-Shaking Research - Ejecting Water From the Ear Canals

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Analysis of the Forces Required to Drag Sheep Over Various Surfaces

An Analysis of the Forces Required to Drag Sheep over Various Surfaces is a research study that won the 2003Ig Nobel Prize in physics for its co-authors -Jack Harvey,John Culvenor,Warren Payne, Steve Cowley, Michael Lawrance,David Stuart, and Robyn Williams, of Australia. John Culvenor, one of the authors, has just boarded an airplane (that‘s him, there, []

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Watch the 27th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony live!

UPDATE: Ten new Ig Nobel Prize winners were introduced at the 27th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, at Sanders Theater, Harvard University. This year‘s theme was UNCERTAINTY. You can read some of the early press accounts. The ceremony was webcast. Here‘s recorded video:

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Exploring the Confusion Matrix for Auto Bidet Seat Icons (study)

When it comes to designing icons for the operation of household equipment, care must be taken to avoid misunderstandings. ‘If the right button is pushed, the desired function will be performed. If the wrong button is pushed, an unexpected function will be performed. It might cause the user‘s body or mental state of unwell even []

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The aerodynamics of cheetahs‘ tails (recent study)

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Psycho-emotional status regulation of minigolf players (study)

When it comes to sporting activities, the psycho-emotional state of the players can have a profound effect on their performance. What positive steps can be taken to enhance it? A number of strategies are currently available : ‘[] various ways and their combinations based on physiological reflexes are applied: breath holdings, relaxation of facial muscles, []

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Effect of Explosion-Puffed Coffee on Fruit Flies [research study]

Fruit flies can be measurably affected by explosion-puffed coffee, suggests this new study: Effect of Explosion-Puffed Coffee on Locomotor Activity and Behavioral Patterns in Drosophila melanogaster, Bong Soo Ko, So Hyun Ahn, Dong Ouk Noh, Ki-Bae Hong, Sung Hee Han, and Hyung Joo Suh, Food Research International, epub 2017. The authors, at several institutions in []

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Vegemite and Marmite (and cigarette butts): research studies

A collection of research studies about Marmite and Vegemite enlivens and en-goos the (digital) pages of the specialCigarette Butts, Vegemite, and Marmite issue (vol. 23, no. 4) of the Annals of Improbable Research. The issue‘s table of contents is online. And you can obtain, for a pittance, the full issue, in PDF form.

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Saturday - The Ig Informal Lectures, at MIT

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Is cheese rational?

The Chetham Library blog reveals a bit of cheese-centric history, with the headline Is cheese rational?: John Byrom, who owned this little manuscript before it came to the Library, was an enthusiast of all things mystical. An earlier reader seems less than convinced by the arguments our scribe expresses. As the argument builds to the []

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