# Scientists joke

Have you ever heard of a spherical cow in a vacuum? And about the dangers of cucumbers or how not to listen to the speaker? All this is scientific humor.

How else? With such a hostile attitude of most people to science.

In the articles "The Oil Cat Paradox, the Fuhrer's Algorithm and All-All-All" and "Parody Religions" we have already mentioned some famous jokes from scientists. Today we will continue to laugh with them.

## Spherical cow in vacuum

This is the name of an expression that denotes a certain ideal concept, divorced from real life. The term comes from an anecdote:

They invited a veterinarian, statistician and physicist, so that each for 100 thousand dollars within a week came up with a way to guess the horse that will win the races.

All three come in a week.

Veterinarian:

- I have developed a table according to which, knowing the physical data of the horses, it will be possible to predict the winner.

Commission:

- Very useful information …

Statistician:

- I built a regression, according to which, knowing the previous races, you can predict the winning horse.

Commission:

- Very useful information!

Physicist:

- I need another two years and \$ 1 million to work, but by now I have built a model for victory - a spherical horse in a vacuum.

As you might guess, the idiom about a horse in a vacuum parodies all sorts of physical calculations (surely everyone who was interested in science has come across them), in which, for simplicity, such assumptions are made that the situation is approaching ideal, and therefore non-existent. A spherical horse in a vacuum is a metaphor for an overly abstract and simplified model.

Instead of a horse, there can be any other object suitable for a particular case. So, in the European tradition, the horse is replaced by a spherical cow.

## About the dangers of cucumbers

“Cucumbers will ruin you! Every cucumber you eat brings you closer to death, "- with these words began an article in The Journal of Irreproducible Results. The article is a humorous exercise in comparative logic and mathematical statistics. Judge for yourself - it's hard to disagree with the author's arguments:

1. Almost all people suffering from chronic diseases ate cucumbers. The effect is clearly cumulative.

2. 99.9% of all people who died of cancer ate cucumbers during their lifetime.

3.100% of all soldiers ate cucumbers.

4. 99.7% of all car and plane crash victims ate cucumbers in the two weeks leading up to the fatal accident.

5. 93, 1% of all juvenile delinquents come from families where cucumbers were consumed constantly.

And what do you say to that? But there is still evidence that among people born in 1839, the mortality rate is 100%. And they all ate cucumbers at least once in their lives!

What about guinea pigs? They are also victims of the "cucumber" death. As evidenced by the result obtained during the experiment, when the unfortunate animals were forcibly fed 20 pounds of cucumbers for a month. As a result, all the pigs completely lost all appetite.

“The only way to avoid the harmful effects of cucumbers is to change your diet. Eat swamp orchid soup, for example. As far as we know, no one has died from him yet,”the author concludes.

## How not to listen to the speaker

The same journal published an article by A.B. Binah entitled "How not to listen to the speaker."

“Sit down in a chair as deep as possible, tilt your head slightly forward (this frees the tongue, it hangs freely, without difficulty breathing), - the author writes. "Loud snoring irritates even the most humble speaker, so the main thing is to avoid snoring, all airways must be free."

To maintain balance during sleep, the professor proposes to arrange a solid support "in the form of a tripod" from the arms and torso. “Even Archimedes knew that this is a very stable device,” he writes. "So your head won't fall on your chest, and your jaw won't fall off." The full text of the instructions can be read here.

## Scandal with the "Rooter"

Jokes are jokes, but sometimes they allow you to reveal the dishonest work of "individual elements" of the scientific community. For example, the work of reviewers of scientific journals.

Sclgen is the name of a computer program that generates random text in such a way that it looks like a scientific article, containing graphs, pictures, notes and other serious things that we are used to seeing in scientific journals. The goal of the program is "to automatically generate abstracts for conferences suspected of low admission requirements."

With the help of this program, in 2005, a famous article in the scientific world was created called 'Rooter: A Methodology for the Typical Unification of Access Points and Redundancy', which was accepted without peer review. for consideration by one of the scientific communities, after which the latter was deprived of funding from the IEEE (International Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, the world leader in the development of standards for radio electronics and electrical engineering).

And in September 2008, the then still quite respected Russian "Journal of scientific publications of graduate students and doctoral students", which published "The Root" on its pages, sat in a puddle. Before that, however, the text was reviewed by the staff of the famous newspaper "Troitsky Variant". Deciding to demonstrate the low quality of the system of scientific publications and peer review, they wrote: “The relevance of the work: high. The choice of the object of research: correct. Definition of tasks and goals of work: logical. Scientific novelty: excellent. The degree of elaboration of the topic: sufficient. Work structured: good. Methodological value: excellent. Presentation style: unsatisfactory. Practical effectiveness: excellent. " The reviewer's claims boiled down to the unscientific, in his opinion, the style of individual expressions ("The style of presentation may be good for a newspaper article, not for a scientific one!"). These comments have been corrected and the article has been published. It is not surprising that in the same year the Journal of Scientific Publications of Postgraduate and Doctoral Students was excluded from the list of the Higher Attestation Commission - the list of leading peer-reviewed scientific journals and publications in which the results of their dissertations are published by candidates for the degree of Doctor or Candidate of Science.

## The Atom That Bohr Built

And finally, a little poetry. From the collection "Physicists are joking" (1966, free translation by V. Turchin):

Here is the atom that Bohr built.

This is the proton, which is placed in the center

The atom that Bohr built.

And here is the electron

Which headlong flies around the proton, Which is placed in the center

The atom that Bohr built.

Here is mu meson

Which disintegrated into an electron

Which headlong flies around the proton, Which is placed in the center

The atom that Bohr built.

And here is the pi-meson, Which, having disintegrated, gave mu-meson, Which disintegrated into an electron

Which headlong flies around the proton, Which is placed in the center

The atom that Bohr built.

Here's a fast proton

Who gave birth to the pi-meson in shock, Which, having disintegrated, gave mu-meson, Which disintegrated into an electron

Which headlong flies around the proton, Which is placed in the center

The atom that Bohr built.

And here is the betatron, In which that proton accelerated, Who gave birth to the pi-meson in shock, Which, having disintegrated, gave mu-meson, Which disintegrated into an electron

Which headlong flies around the proton, Which is placed in the center

The atom that Bohr built.

And here is complementarity.

This is the law that Bohr proclaimed.

The law of all nations, the law of all times, Describing successfully from both sides

Not only proton and electron, But also a neutron, Photon, Positron, Phonon, Magnon, Exciton, Polaron, Betatron, Synchrotron, Phazotron, Cyclotron, Cyclone, Ceylon, Nylon, Perlon, Cologne, Decameron.

And undoubtedly every neuron

The brain that was invented

That wonderful betatron

In which that proton accelerated, Who gave birth to the pi-meson in shock, Which, having disintegrated, gave mu-meson, Which disintegrated into an electron

Which headlong flies around the proton, Which is placed in the center of the Atom, Which was also built by Niels Bohr!