I always look forward to this time of year, even more so sometimes than the actual Nobel Prizes, because I want to see what new insights can be derived from the weird science that, as they say, first makes you laugh, then think. That's right, now we are at the 33rd First Annual Ig Nobel Prizes! Just like last year and the few years before, the Ig Nobel ceremony was conducted virtually while the pandemic is still not quelled to an extent that allowed the organizers (men and women of science, see?) to be comfortable enough to have hundreds of people packed into a raucous arena, so the paper airplane tosses and everything else was pre-taped and released online. This did not take away from the absurdity and the few laugh-out-loud moments that I (and probably hundreds of thousands of science enthusiasts tuning in from around the globe) had during the 90-minute event. I do wonder if some of these might supplant my personal top ten, but maybe not just yet. Now let's see what happened!
That time of year that we've all been anticipating is here! That's right, the 32nd First Annual Ig Nobel Prize ceremony took place on the evening of Thursday, September 15, and the 2022 winners took their bows and hammed it up in one of the most favorite of scientific gatherings. Alas, the ceremony was online-only due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but that did not take away from the fun and love of science that is expected from this festival of glee that features actual Nobel Prize winners! Without further ado, please read on for the many great, uh, achievements by this year's newest additions to the Ig Nobel ranks.
Science is the process that allows humans to identify a problem and devise experiments to examine that problem and provide solutions. Not all scientific problems are created equal, but we can agree that all science, even those super mundane details that barely anyone ever thinks of, can be important to the whole of human knowledge. One of the great draws of science is that it is both rewarding and fun, and if ever there was a repository of high-brow humor, science is it. While we celebrate great discoveries every year with the Nobel Prizes, we also have an uproariously entertaining time with the annual Ig Nobel ceremony, a somewhat obscure but highly-anticipated event for the entire scientific community that shows the fun and human side of the "lauded" researchers. Let’s look at the Ig Nobel Prize, and some of the “greatest” Ig Nobel recognitions since the award’s inception in 1991.