Tuesday, October 5, 2010


I stand in awe of a scientist who can show versatility like this:
Scientist wins both IgNobel and Nobel prizes

This is pretty awesome. Andre Geim won the Nobel Prize in physics this year, for his work with graphene. Ten years ago, Geim won an IgNobel for using magnets to levitate a frog.

The point: A friendly reminder that the IgNobel awards are not here to point fingers at the useless and foolish in science, but, rather, to draw attention to studies that sound funny, but often have some serious thought going on behind the guffaws. Geim's IgNobel, for instance, was earned in honor of research that involved using a popular magnet toy to make a frog float. But, that research is centered around serious ideas about magnetic levitation, a phenomenon best known for its application in Maglev trains.

One note: Technically, Geim is only the first person to win both awards as an individual.
I also like the statement it makes: This guy didn't care what the "crowd" said. They could "award" him an IgNoble Prize because they thought he was wasting time & money. They could award him a Nobel Prize. It didn't matter to him. He just kept pursuing his interests. That's the real statement and that is his strength.

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