Feeds

Spammers target hamsters after Ig Nobel winning research

Gay bombs, viagra, and indexing 'the'

Bridging the IT gap between rising business demands and ageing tools

Today is surely the biggest day of the year for boffins and those involved in the pursuit of boffinry. Because today, the Ig Nobel awards are handed out. Well, they were handed out last night, but the boffins will be having their hangovers today, and that is even more important.

As regular readers will know, the Ig Nobel Awards are given to scientists who have contributed a certain something to the overall store of human knowledge, and have simultaneously made us all wonder, "what were they thinking?" The tagline of the awards is "research that makes people laugh, then think".

This year's illustrious winners include the team of geniuses who came up with the idea of a "gay bomb". Although it was not ever constructed, the idea behind this was that when unleashed behind enemy lines, the chemical bomb would render enemy soldiers more interested in pursuing one another, than in fighting an actual war.

The prize for physics went to a team who tackled the tricky and vexing question of just how it is that sheets become wrinkled. A team that demonstrated that ducks can't tell the difference between the Japanese and German languages, if they are played backwards, won the prize for linguistics.

Glenda Brown of Australia took home a trophy for her unstinting search for the best way to index titles that start with "The". She said the band "The The" cause particular difficulties. Thankless work, we are sure, so good to see it being recognised.

Medical work is recognised, too. So let's hear it for the researcher who discovered that the injury most often sustained by professional sword swallowers is a sore throat.

But our favourite has to be the work done in Argentina, which determined that viagra can help hamsters recover from jetlag. Splendid news indeed, since hamsters are known for their globe trotting.

We are a little confused tough, as to how you would spot a jetlagged hamster. From our own childhoods we seem to remember the damn things spent virtually 24 hours a day sleeping, or hiding in a plastic boot. ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 claimed lives of HIV/AIDS cure scientists
Researchers, advocates, health workers among those on shot-down plane
Mwa-ha-ha-ha! Eccentric billionaire Musk gets his PRIVATE SPACEPORT
In the Lone Star State, perhaps appropriately enough
SMELL YOU LATER, LOSERS – Dumbo tells rats, dogs... humans
Junk in the trunk? That's what people have
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.