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Recognising Scientific Madness

Every year, at the start of October, a parody of the Nobel Prizes is carried out in America through giving out Ig-Nobel Prizes to scientists for researches that "first make people laugh, and then make them think". Presented by genuine Noble Prize winners, the initiative aims to celebrate the unusual, honour the imaginative - and spur people's interest in science, medicine, and technology.

In the gala ceremony that sees spectators of thousands even after live streaming of the programme, bemused noble prize-winners hand out mock prizes for achievements that must be duly recognised for their sheer awesomeness. Listed below are some of the humorous researches that received the honour in the past years.

2010 Prizes
Medicine: for discovering that symptoms of asthma can be treated with a roller-coaster ride. But yes, they also did mention that rides on broken roller coasters do not work.

Physics: for demonstrating that, on icy footpaths in wintertime, people slip and fall less often if they wear socks on the outside of their shoes.

Peace: for confirming the widely held belief that swearing relieves pain.

Public Health: for determining by experiment that microbes cling to bearded scientists, and in cases, terrorists in exile.

Chemistry: for disproving the old belief that oil and water don't mix.

Management: for demonstrating mathematically that organisations would become more efficient if they promoted people at random (I so love this one, promotion boss!).

2009 Prizes
Veterinary Medicine: for showing that cows that have names give more milk than cows that are nameless. But yes, that does not necessarily imply that the cow named "milky" will produce more milk or that the cow named "dry" will be milked less.

Peace: for determining by experiment whether it is better to be smashed over the head with a full bottle of beer or with an empty bottle (we pray for the soul of the subject of the experiment).

Chemistry: for creating diamonds from liquid - specifically from tequila (now that is one sparkling drink).

2008 Prizes
Physics: for proving mathematically that heaps of string or hair or almost anything else will inevitably tangle themselves up in knots (now that is truth, any earphone will testify!).

Biology: for discovering that the fleas that live on a dog can jump higher than the fleas that live on a cat.

Medicine: for demonstrating that high-priced fake medicine is more effective than low-priced fake medicine (speak about telakuchi leaf draught).

By Eshpelin Mishtak

All typed up

So, you've just been given an article or a story or an essay to read, possibly to even proof read. Provided that the writer of said article or story or essay isn't much of a typesy person, it will be riddled with typos and mistakes.

To go about finding these typos and errors can be an art. There are subtle hints to a typo and a deliberate stab at the networld in general. So, how do you go about picking out the obvious from the not so? Perhaps, this little utterly pointless but vastly educational guide will help.

Some really common typos and mistakes: teh, pwned, form/from, adn, their/they're/there, its/it's.

Firstly, how do these typos occur? Surely, people don't do it on purpose. (Unfortunately, a fair few do exactly that. Think it's pretty rad.) Teh most commonly occurs due to hastiness. And some words like 'okay' becomes 'play', which occurs because 'o' and 'k' are relative to 'p' and 'l', one key to the right.

However, it's not really all that simple. For example, there is a difference between the typo teh and its/it's. The first usually arises due to a misjudgement in hand-coordination - pressing one key before another. The second? Ignorance. While the first is excusable, the second can be considered deplorable. It screams out ignorance and carelessness as far as the English language is concerned. The same with 'their', 'they're' and 'there' - mistakes with these are usually not typos, just ignorance. Likewise, punctuations are mistakes, too, all too often from ignorance sadly. The misuse of punctuation has caused misery the world over. Learn and use.

Going even deeper, it's still not simple. For someone who has an absolute mastery over typing and the English language, the ignorance rule does not apply. What does apply is a slip in concentration, or momentary lapse in proper thought-processing. You just simply forget. Once again, excusable for said person.

Knowing the rules is an integral part in our daily lives. We must take pains to make sure that we know these rules to the letter. Etiquettes and niceties that must be extended, and received in turn.

So, who do these typos and mistakes mostly allude to? Who are the ones that are held contemptible and who are the ones taken with a good sense of sarcastic humour? Not to mean it as a derogatory term, n00bs, of course. These are the people, enthusiastic as they are, who make the most number of mistakes and typos, usually accidentally and in some ways find them to be cool and leave them as they are. LOL, eh?

Geeks, on the other hand, are excused. Why? Because they know the rules, the etiquettes. When used by these knowledgeable group, it has meaning. Otherwise, it's just mistakes.

How's that fair? Because eventually rules are meant to be broken. Sort of. When you know the rules so well that it's ingrained into you, you acquire a certain right to deviate. If not you, who knows all, then who? Sure, I completely veered off from my initial topic, but now you know what's what. Break the rules only when you know them. Laws, on the other hand, should not be broken, by the way.

By SS Emil

Eat. Pray. Lovelove.

Where has the Doctor been for three weeks, you ask? And the audacity to come back with such a small piece? I would apologise if I were not at risk of bludgeoning my reputation to pieces. What is this, you ask. A modest Lovelove? I assure you, that is not the case. My grandeur lives on, my minions, stronger than ever. But worry not, I shall return next week with the bang that is worthy of my presence, of my existence, solving the problems that not even Mita can solve. This week, I'm here more to inform, rather than to solve, or entertain.

Lovelove, lovelove, where have you been?
I've been to London, to see the Queen;
Lovelove, lovelove, what did you there?
Replaced her as King, of course, 'twas only fair.

Why was I in London, you ask? Women, of course. Only a woman could drive a man to flee to another country. Don't get me wrong, I believe the opposite to be true as well: only a woman could drive a man to go to her in another country. First rule of travel: In a foreign country, unless it's your honeymoon, you're always single. So, there I was, in a country of expectedly SDC hot babes and MLTBS technology, and I was ready to mingle. I have plans to go to Portugal later this year; I realise now, in hindsight, that Larissa Riquelme, despite our lack of contact, is my OTL. The last time I had been to London, it was '89, when I was taken there by the British government to perform psychoanalyses on Salman Rushdie (he was having trouble dealing with the massive publicity and also some 'private' problems with his wife.) Then, London had truly enthralled me; for its time, it was SMYCKTGIJ. But alas, I was disappointed this time around: the girls weren't that much better than the Lady and the technology was minimal, hardly BS; I had imagined for myself a futuristic city with tall buildings and night-lights. London had an 8 PM bedtime and it was annoying.

Of course, I managed to bag a few chicas, but compared to the usual that you'd expect from the great West, I was left wanting more. I have even a more profound need for Larissa now. I will livelive and lovelove forever, so I have time.

P.S.: Do NOT watch Eat Pray Love starring Julia Roberts. The only thing good about it is the…right, nothing.

Lovelove terminology:
SDC: Super Dooper Cooper
MLTBS: More Legendary Than Barney Stinson
OTL: One True Love
SMYCKTGIJ: So Marvellous You Can Kiss The Ground In Joy
BS: Barney Stinson
GWB: Guess Who's Back?

Problems, inquiries, endorsements and KMAs: dr.lovelove@live.com

By Dr. Lovelove








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