and Science Humor.
latest news: see the mad scientist wiki http://oddwiki.taoriver.net/wiki.pl/MadScientist/HomePage
see also #people_that_scare_me . and high_voltage.html
I've listed stuff that looks like serious science articles that turn out to be tongue-in-cheek humor. See also Pseudo-science, pseudo-advertisement, pseudo-corporate humor eye_candy.html#pseudo for stuff that looks like a very professional advertisement, serious piece of journalism, etc., but turns out to be tongue-in-cheek humor (parody).
Is this the same as
The MAD Scientist Network http://madsci.org/ includes the surprisingly useful "Ask-A-Scientist" Section. with the online archive of questions and answers.
GraffitiWriter is a tele-operated field programable robot which employs a custom built array of spray cans to write linear text messages on the ground at a rate of 15 kilometers per hour. The printing process is similar to that of a dot matrix printer. GraffitiWriter can be deployed in any highly controlled space or public event from a remote location.
"Studies have shown that in nearly 100% of the cases, a given agent of the public will willing participate in high profile acts of vandalism, given the opportunity to do so via mediated tele-robotic technology."
- IAA research division
================================================================ The mini-Annals of Improbable Research ("mini-AIR") Issue Number 1998-04 April, 1998 ISSN 1076-500X ... ----------------------------------------------------------- 1998-04-04 Luggage Vaporization Investigator David Smith writes to notify us of a startlingly powerful new technology: "The March 16th issue of "Aviation Week and Space Technology" (p.13) reports that passengers at San Francisco International Airport will be asked to submit carry-on luggage for examination by a machine called the "Carry-on Luggage Profiler." Av Week reports that this remarkable device makes use of "3- megawatt average power" top- and side-mounted lasers to derives precise bag height and width data. The article goes on to say that initial trials at Des Moines International Airport have 'significantly increased the amount of luggage that was checked.'" If anyone has first-hand knowledge as to what is the minimum power needed to convert luggage from solid to gaseous form, please send it to <firstname.lastname@example.org> ... ================================================================ The mini-Annals of Improbable Research ("mini-AIR") Issue Number 1998-05 May, 1998 ISSN 1076-500X ... ----------------------------------------------------------- 1998-05-05 How to Vaporize a Suitcase Last month we asked if anyone had first-hand knowledge as to what is the minimum power needed to convert luggage from solid to gaseous form (as is reportedly happening with the "Carry-on Luggage Profiler" device at the Des Moines International Airport). Here are some of the responses: Investigator Marti Wolfe: Based on the experience of my family flying into San Diego week before last, all you need to have your luggage vaporized is a ticket on any major airline. Investigator C. D. Tavares: The "Carry-on Luggage Profiler" is clearly designed not to measure the profile of carry-on luggage, but to enforce it. I expect that the manufacturer's next product will be geared toward improving airline seat comfort parameters. Investigator Louis G Lippman: There have been public warnings not to put undeveloped film through carry-on screeners. It would seem that any competent scientist should be able to take this phenomenon and make an estimate, i.e., there should be a known relationship between fogging and vaporization. Investigator Dave Thomson: You may want to check out an article I published in Applied Optics some years ago, Vol 32, No 33, Page 6818, 20 Nov 1993. In any case, I'll attempt a quick first approximation to your question. I'll make the following gross approximations: A typical 10 micron diameter particle may require a fluence of 100 J/cm to completely vaporize. This implies an energy deposition of about 8 x 10^-5 Joules. Assuming a density of 1.7 (which may be low for luggage), the particle would have a mass of about 5 x 10^-10 g. Putting this together shows that one would need about 1.5 x 10^5 J/g, or 150 MJ/Kg to vaporize a macroscopic object. Even with a 3 MW laser (impressive as that is), a small piece of luggage of several Kg would require several minutes to be vaporized. ------------------------------------------------------------- ... 1998-05-20 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. ------------------------------------------------------------ (c) copyright 1998, The Annals of Improbable Research ... http://www.improb.com/ ... ============================================================
I think heavy machinery is pretty cool; [FIXME: shouldn't this be categorized elsewhere ?]
(mad-science-like semi-legal fine print)
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Legal Mumbo-Jumbo. Q: Is legal mumbo-jumbo like the following really necessary ?
Copyright (c) 1995 by David Cary, all rights reserved. This FAQ may be posted to any USENET newsgroup or other on-line service as long as it is posted in its entirety and includes this copyright statement. If you want to sell an archive which includes this message, you agree to send me a free copy of it for examination purposes. Please Note: Some quantum physics theories suggest that when the consumer is not directly observing this product, it may cease to exist or will exist only in a vague and undetermined state. ---- David Cary ------------------------------
[FIXME: should this really go somewhere else ? DAV: I think early dozenal ideas are quite serious -- dozenal may well be better than decimal. On the other hand, some of these articles have some humor, and many have that very dry mathematician humor that leaves me wondering if it's a joke or if it's serious. ... mad-science-like mathematics ... ]
"When all the wall street computers screw up, will a band of twelve fingered mutant marxists sieze power? :-)" -- William T. Lynch
Zirkel, 63, is past president and gray eminence of the Dozenal Society of America, which, as its name implies, is interested in the number 12. In fact, the Dozenal Society is convinced that 12 is a much better way to go than 10.
"There is not one single instance of any country accepting the metric system voluntarily," Zirkel said. Even the French, who invented metrics, had to enforce compliance.
Zirkel is one of the more civil members of the anti-metric crowd, a small but sneering bunch increasingly annoyed with scientists, bureaucrats and other pointy-heads' propensity to bow down to what Dozenal Society founder F. Emerson Andrews described in 1934 as "the number-God 10."
For this reason, a 1994 column detailing the Commerce Department's 20-year effort to convert the republic to the metric system became a cult favorite in the underground.
"It is only in popular documents (such as your article) that decimal metric is sold as `easier,' " said Andrew Denny in a humiliating broadside from the Dozenal Society of Great Britain. "That is the sort of repetition passed along from person to person like the admiration of the emperor's clothes."
Bureaucrats might deal in tens, Denny said, but the metric system "is useless in the real world." According to Zirkel, human beings count by tens only because of the unfortunate biological accident of having 10 fingers. When the species measures things, the inclination is to use 12. And not only 12 inches to a foot, Zirkel notes. There are 12 items per dozen, 12 dozen per gross (the origin of the word "grocer'), 12 hours on the clock, 12 x 2 hours in a day, 12 x 5 seconds in a minute, 12 x 5 minutes in an hour, 12 tones in a musical scale, 12 x 30 degrees in a circle. "In the real world, you work in halves, quarters and thirds," Denny said, and you want things to come out even. With 12, halves, quarters, thirds and sixths are whole numbers. With 10, you get fractions: "Try dividing ten eggs," Denny suggested. -- quoted from http://www.aspenonline.com/clients/aspenonline/directory/times/dir/95/Jul/week1/opinion.html
but in a entertaining way.
I'm not worried about being sucked into things I find gross and disgusting. But these things are cool, nifty, fun, and exciting, albeit often dangerous, toxic, etc.
We need more parents who are willing to let their kids grow up and experience things first hand. I'm not saying that it's a good idea to give a kid a box of matches, a gallon of gas and tell them to have a good time in their bedroom. That sort of thing should done outside after all.-- thynk http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=03/08/24/0151212&mode=thread&tid=133&tid=137&tid=159&tid=186 ... http://thynk.us/ ... http://slashdot.org/~thynk
the Barbie Liberation Organization, ... switch the voiceboxes of three hundred Barbie(TM) and G.I. Joe(TM) dolls.http://rtmark.com/blo.html
A paintball gun firing at the international speed limit of 300 feet per second muzzle velocity has an energy of about 17 joules.
I ... Want to live in an Atlas Missile Silo. Abandoned sites exist. People have advice.-- Mark Shields http://www.markshields.com/archives/2000-09-faketelepathy.shtml DAV: hey, that sounds pretty cool. I remember when my brother and I (perhaps around 10 years old) thought it would be cool to live at an address that looked like just a flat field of grass. Occasionally the garage "door" would lift up out of the ground like in a spy movie and let us into the underground garage and the rest of the house.
Would you survive a nuclear blast? Nuclear Blast Mapper will show you how terribly destructive thermonuclear weapons are.
``Evil Overlord Career Guide'' by Peter Aspach http://www.geocities.com/tlg_00/evillord.html
32. I will not fly into a rage and kill a messenger who brings me bad news just to illustrate how evil I really am. Good messengers are hard to come by. [DAV: Are you saying that accurate messagers are rare, or that messengers that bring news about "good" are rare ?]
"Why I work in AI and Astronomy" article by Chris McKinstry, 07-24 (2002 ?) http://www.mindpixel.com/article.php?sid=104&mode=thread&order=0&thold=0
Backyard Ballistics http://www2.csn.net/~bsimon/backyard.html
What about "Things Man Was Not Meant To Know" ?
You have to believe in God before you can say
there are things that man was not meant to know.
I don't think there's anything man wasn't meant to know.
There are just some stupid things that people shouldn't do.
What do you think of the belief that inventors are usually crazy people who inhabit a twilight zone to which other human beings have no access? The stereotype is that there is a high incidence of insanity among those in the creative professions. My observations is that inventors are normal and everyday people.
... I have been doing this for years (taking things apart that were not supposed to be) and have become very good at it. I don't care what anybody says, there ARE user serviceable parts inside. :)
... I like to SEE how things work and how they are manufactured and EVERYTHING that I own, have owned, and will own, is destined to be opened and looked over. ... -- "Dave", as quoted by Samuel M. Goldwasser http://www.repairfaq.org/sam/laserpic/glpdpics.htm
- "Fellow Hobbyists and Mad Scientists (Primarily Electrical)... And MAD HOBBYIST web resources in general" by Don Klipstein http://members.misty.com/don/madlinks.html
- Doctors and scientists of the future, do not let yourselves be tainted by a barren skepticism nor discouraged by sadness of certain hours that creep over every nation. Do not become angry at your opponents for no scientific theory has ever been accepted without opposition.-- Dr. Louis Pasteur
"Dr. Louis Pasteur: servant of all" article by Reverend Ed Hird http://www3.telus.net/st_simons/cr9712.htm "Pasteur was maligned as a murderer and a menace to science."
- "do you know that numb, stinging sensation that you get in your fingers when you didn’t throw the firecracker away from you fast enough?" -- "Engineer = Pyromaniac" article by Darren Ashby http://www.chipcenter.com/eexpert/dashby/dashby041.html
I say that any device that creates a white hot ball of exploding plasma was designed by someone with the heart of a pyromaniac. To sum it up in the words of Travis who sent me this link, "Nifty-keen!"-- "Engineer = Pyromaniac: Part 2: Backyard Engineering" article by Darren Ashby http://www.chipcenter.com/eexpert/dashby/dashby042.html
"eyelashes would eventually grow back. ... (Are all engineers morbid as well as being pyros?) ..." -- "Engineer = Pyromaniacs, The Third Iteration" article by Darren Ashby http://www.chipcenter.com/eexpert/dashby/dashby047.html
"I have had quite a bit of fun making interesting knick-knacks that happen to shock you when you pick them up." -- "Where does all this power come from?" article by Darren Ashby http://www.chipcenter.com/eexpert/dashby/dashby048.html
- Eric Conspiracy Secret Labs http://ericconspiracy.org/
- CheggWar http://www.chegg.com/cheggwar/ large furniture in flames.
- "Zombie Infection Simulation v2" by Kevan Davis, 2003-08 http://kevan.org/proce55ing/zombies/ (open source)
- solar-powered pacemaker http://www.ibiblio.org/Dave/Dr-Fun/collections/1987/images/df1987-006.gif
- MAD-ENGINEER BBS http://www.abc-cgi.com/bbs/bbs.cgi?room=taku0825 ??? ... http://taku0825.hp.infoseek.co.jp/ ???
- "Let the World Know Who You Are" article by Travis Rood http://cem.colorado.edu/archives/su1998/travis.html "engineers ... society that may never understand us."
- "Colin Hildinger is an Aerospace Engineering senior at Oklahoma State University" http://www.os2ezine.com/v2n8/widget.htm 1997 ? ???
- The International Society of Mad Scientists http://www.mad-scientists.org/ has a membership directory http://www.mad-scientists.org/members.html [FIXME: why is DAV not on this list ?]
- Work Well With Others http://www.mit.edu:8001/people/dinoriki/phliez/work-well-together.html explains how to build a multiple-fly-powered airplane. [FIXME: don't I have more information on fly-powered airplanes elsewhere ?]
- some of the people http://atomicloveboogie.com/main/bio-icon.htm at http://atomicloveboogie.com/ may be mad scientists.
- Have you ever seen a graduate engineer solve a simple everyday problem with a simple tool, such as a tin-opener or a carburettor?!-- Vincenzo Minissi http://www.oikos.org/psydre.htm
- -- Richard http://www1.alphasmart.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=22;t=000167 (... also links to a story about killing a rattlesnake with a portable keyboard ...)
It was Joe Barrus, co-founder of AlphaSmart, Inc. and co-inventor of Dana who pounded a nail with Dana. There is a quicktime video of this event floating around and if we can find it we can link to it. I also saw him do it again, live, at an Advisory Board meeting. If you think I'm insane, wait until you meet Joe. ... Ketan Kothari, the other co-founder of AlphaSmart, Inc. and now its CEO.
- Evil Genius Test http://www.fuali.com/default.aspx?id=111
- "it is difficult and in most cases ethically impossible to conduct evolutionary experiments on humans." http://www.madsci.org/posts/archives/1073514032.Gb.r.html
- The Mysterious Venus' Flytrap http://botany.org/bsa/misc/carn.html "insectivorous (carnivorous) plants" [FIXME: unknowns] "People still do not understand fully how the trap closes. The Venus' Flytrap does not have a nervous system or any muscles or tendons. Scientists theorize that it moves from some type of fluid pressure activated by an actual electrical current that runs through each lobe."
- "There are people who are experts in their various fields -- engine design, scrap booking, fusion reactors, needlepoint -- and they would love to pass their knowledge on to other people." _Manna_ book by Marshall Brain http://marshallbrain.com/manna6.htm (OK, so I'm taking this a little out of context)
- "Biological computer born" article by BBC, June 2, 1999 http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/358822.stm>
A computer made of neurons taken from leeches has been created by US scientists.
Professor Bill Ditto, at the Georgia Institute of Technology, is leading the project and says he is amazed that today's computers are still so dumb.
Professor Ditto says a robot brain is his long-term aim ...
"We want to be able to integrate robotics, electronics and these type of computers so that we can create more sentient robots," he says.
- "Science reverts to Mad Science" by Matthew http://www.slashnot.com/article.php3?story_id=276
- "Extreme makover", "extreme body modification" (antlers !) http://dilbert.com/comics/dilbert/archive/dilbert-20040418.html
- "Hi guys ! What are you doing ?" "Research. Get down." http://www.nukees.com/d/19970408.html
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