Thursday, January 1, 2009

We may need as many laughs as we can get during 2009 so here's a start:
The people at the Improbable Research website define improbable research as research that makes people laugh and then think. They collect improbable research, publish a magazine called the Annals of Improbable Research, and administer the Ig Nobel Prizes.

My favourite of the 2008 winners is this one:

MEDICINE PRIZE. Dan Ariely of Duke University (USA), Rebecca L. Waber of MIT (USA), Baba Shiv of Stanford University (USA), and Ziv Carmon of INSEAD (Singapore) for demonstrating that high-priced fake medicine is more effective than low-priced fake medicine..

REFERENCE: "Commercial Features of Placebo and Therapeutic Efficacy," Rebecca L. Waber; Baba Shiv; Ziv Carmon; Dan Ariely, Journal of the American Medical Association, March 5, 2008; 299: 1016-1017.

You can read the article here.

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