Friday, October 07, 2005

Maybe I could win an Ig Nobel Prize?

On the subject of the Nobel Prize, last night they also gave out the annual "Ig Nobel" Prizes for research that is unusual/humorous. As they say, research that "cannot or should not be reproduced."

The award this year in Economics was awarded to Gauri Nanda (a master's student at MIT) who:

"invented Clocky, an alarm clock that scurries around the room as it rings, forcing the person it awakens to get out of bed and chase it."
Click here to see the rest of the awards for this year and past years. My personal favorite is an actual published paper entitled: "Pressures Produced When Penguins Pooh -- Calculations on Avian Defaecation." Talk about a bad laboratory job for some grad student...

Addendum: Here is the website for "Clocky." You can even buy a boring t-shirt.

(Source: Division of Labour)


Gregory Bylos said...

My favorite is definetly "The Effect of Country Music on Suicide", pretty much only because they came to the conclusion that Country Music does seem to be a factor in suicide rates. Who knew? (besides anyone whose ever heard country music)

Anonymous said...

Thats crazy to have photographed and analyed EVERY meal for 34 years!! i cannot even imagine doing that... and what is the point at all... that just seems incredibly dull. Also, you would think the same meals would appear over and over again, or at least mine do

However, the alarm clock idea sounds really fun, and I bet it would work. I hide my alarm clock far away and it makes me get out of bed to turn it off. It works well so i bet running around and chasing it would really help people get up!!
-kelly gaetano

Anonymous said...

A terrible lab job would be the experiment that lasted from 1927 to 2005. The lab test drops of tar, but one drop only fell about every nine years. So, throughout the whole experiment the observers only saw eight drops fall! I would call that boring.

On another note, something that is amazing is the nation of Liechtenstein renting out the entire country for parties! How crazy would a party like that be? Talk about something that needs to be on My Super Sweet Sixteen.

Brian Berkowitz

Anonymous said...

Looking at the various awards, shouldn't scientists be discovering, o i dont know...helpul things? For example, in Nutrition, some men receieved the award for calculating the pressure that builds up inside a penguin, thus causing them to poop. Also, for Biology, the award went to the scientists who smelled and cataloged the various smells of frogs. Maybe its just me...but I don't see how i need to know the smell of a frog or how far penguin poop can fly.

On the other hand, the traveling alarm clock seems useful. Like Kelly, I also place one alarm clock far away from me so that "snoozing" isn't an option.

So i've decided I think I should win a nobel prize next year for anything from studying how long it takes for paint to dry to why I like mexican food. They'd love it.

-Elisabeth Bentley

Anonymous said...

wow... that tar drop thing is insane. That would have to be the most boring thing ever. Plus, the guy who has photographed every meal for the past 34 years also has some issues. I think that alarm clock is a great idea, wish i had one. garrison