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Posts Tagged "April Fools’ Day"

Anthropology in Practice

Then and Now: April Fools’ Day—How did we get here?

Photo by Will Montague. CC, click on image for license and information.

Where is here exactly? Here is a tired, eye-roll inducing pseudo-holiday that we endure with a grimace every year. Hopefully you have room for one more article about April Fools’ Day. Maybe you spent the day avoiding the Internet as much as possible—clicking around as carefully as you could and refraining from commenting where possible [...]

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Anthropology in Practice

The Missing Link that Wasn’t

Reconstruction of the Piltdown Skull. Credit: Wikimedia Commons

April Fools’ Day is not unique to Western cultures. People all over the world and all throughout history have celebrated the coming of Spring with festivals of deception and lightheartedness. In this spirit, all this week, we’ll explore themes of magic, fraud, and trickery. Today’s post is not quite so lighthearted, however, and looks at [...]

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Anthropology in Practice

Fooling Ourselves: The Everyday Role of Ritual

kdcosta_baseball_2013

April Fools’ Day is not unique to Western cultures. People all over the world and all throughout history have celebrated the coming of Spring with festivals of deception and lightheartedness. In this spirit, all this week, we’ll explore themes of magic, fraud, and trickery. Today is Opening Day for the New York Mets. Like other [...]

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Guest Blog

John Conway Reminiscences about Dr. Matrix and Bourbaki

John H. Conway holds an advance copy of a forthcoming biography. (Photo: Colm Mulcahy)

Last week, life took me through Princeton, and I seized the opportunity to drop in to see resident English mathematician John Horton Conway. He was in particularly good form despite health issues that come with aging, and proudly showed me an advance copy of a forthcoming biography of his life by Siobhan Roberts. “Being the [...]

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Observations

When Your Co-Author Is a Monstrous Ass

journal article title page with authors stronzo bestiale, william hoover

Who hasn’t worked with a disagreeable person—and in the world of science publishing, authored a paper with one?  That wasn’t exactly what went through the mind of William Hoover, a physicist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, when he included an Italian co-author to his 1987 paper. But certainly, frustration and a little juvenilia can [...]

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Observations

Unscientific Unamerican, and Other April Fools’ Jokes in SA History

The more complex the mind, the greater the need for play. Okay, I ripped that off from Star Trek, episode 15, but I like to think the conceit applies to the Scientific American community of readers, writers, editors and authors. Any fan of science and technology must have a curious mind. Of course, you probably [...]

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Observations

Neuroscientists: We Don’t Really Know What We Are Talking about, Either

brain-dunce-cap

NEW YORK—At a surprise April 1 press conference, a panel of neuroscientists confessed that they and most of their colleagues make up half of what they write in research journals and tell reporters. “We’re always qualifying our conclusions by reminding people that the brain is extremely complex and difficult to understand—and it is,” says Philip [...]

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