Options Techtonic with Mark Hurst: Playlist from September 21, 2020 Options

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Conversations with creators and thinkers who are charting the way forward in a tech-saturated society. Tech, community, video games, and whatever else is next.

Mondays 6 - 7pm (EDT) | On WFMU | 91.1, 90.1, 91.9 FM & wfmu.org
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Options September 21, 2020: Marc Abrahams, founder of the Ig Nobel Prizes

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Tonight: Marc Abrahams, founder of the Ig Nobel Prizes

Pointers:

Ig Nobel Prizes, including video of the 30th First Annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony from last Thursday, Sep 17

The Annals of Improbable Research, edited by Marc Abrahams

@MarcAbrahams (Twitter)

Facebook Has Been a Disaster for the World (by Jamelle Bouie, NYT Op-Ed, Sept 18)

The Social Dilemma (Netflix documentary on Big Tech)

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Artist Track Images Approx. start time
  Marc Abrahams talks about the Ig Nobel prizes and "improbable research."
Tomaš Dvořák  Game Boy Tune   Options
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  Mark's intro  
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  Interview with Marc Abrahams  
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0:06:45 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
  Mark's comments  
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0:44:27 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
Pink Tiles  The Internet   Options
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0:58:21 (MP3 | Pop‑up)


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Listener comments!

Avatar Swag For Life Member 5:59pm ultradamno:

Mark! Techtonorees!
  6:01pm Jon:

Greetings, Mark
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:01pm ultradamno:

Another potential downside of smart devices twitter.com...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm Webhamster Henry:

Same Tech Time, Same Tech Station!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm Webhamster Henry:

Or Sports Closet as the case may be.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm Webhamster Henry:

I'm a long time fan of the Ig Nobel prizes.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm Bas NL:

Hi Mark! Techtonignorany!
  6:03pm queems:

greetings from my air b&b in the adirondacks that has a ring camera outside
Avatar 6:03pm Jeff Moore:

Wow! 30 years.
  6:03pm David in London:

Evening Technoids. Hi Mark.
Ultradamno, Webhamster.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:03pm Ken From Hyde Park:

Hi, Mark and noble TikTokTeks!
Avatar 6:04pm Sonderangebot:

Hi Mark & all, from my golden palace.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:04pm ultradamno:

Hiya DiL!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:04pm PaulRobeson1920:

Warm greetings one and all
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:05pm melinda:

The Eyebrow Test
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:06pm ultradamno:

Like if it's just a drawn line?
  6:06pm queems:

the eyebrow test would have helped me out a couple of times in my life
  6:07pm David in London:

My father in law used to cover the Ignobles in his capacity as roving editor at New Scientist magazine. Years of big laughs.
  6:07pm GListener MW:

!! Mark Abrams? Amazing!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:07pm Petricole:

Hi Mark and Techtotalers. Glad to be able to tune in live today! Hope you are all alright.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:08pm ultradamno:

Like crazy eyes or jerknails?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:09pm Mark Hurst:

Hi all, thanks for joining in!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:09pm Mark Hurst:

@queems agreed - I think we should all study the eyebrow test (actually I'm still not quite sure how it works)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:09pm chris:

hi, Mark and folks. looking forward to your review, Mark. i think /the social dilemma should be required viewing. not the final word, but if it is one's first exposure to this stuff, it a great beginning to understanding.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:10pm Mark Hurst:

@David in London that's cool! You must have heard some amazing highlights over the years.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:11pm Mark Hurst:

@chris I pretty much agree with you. I think it was incomplete in a key way that is worth pointing out, BUT it's still well worth watching (and important, as you say, for anyone who isn't familiar with these issues)
  6:13pm GListener MW:

Speaking of scat, I’m now reminded of the past Ig Nobel winners in Archeology who swallowed a boiled shrew to see which bones would digest in a human and which would not
  6:14pm David in London:

I think that was Ernest Rutherford’s maxim about science: if you can’t explain your theory to the bar staff at the local pub in about a minute, then it isn’t worth a damn.
Avatar 6:14pm Jeff Moore:

Now I want to read the paper! How DO they make cubic poo?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:15pm ultradamno:

But the scat people have to know they're favorites to win the whole time.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:15pm Mark Hurst:

@DiL along those lines the Ig Nobels also includes "24/7 Lectures" - scientists describing their work in 24 seconds, and then in 7 words that anyone can understand.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:16pm Mark Hurst:

@Jeff I'm not entirely sure, but one of the researchers (accepting the prize last year) gave one of the best one-liners I've seen at the Ig Nobels. Watch the video...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:16pm Lisboner Pasc:

Greeting Techtonerites! Pleased with the huge variations on Techtonic listeners tonight, hope we're all well :-)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:17pm ultradamno:

It's like he's got librettos coming out his butt, in squares.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:17pm Mark Hurst:

Hi @Pasc!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:18pm Webhamster Henry:

In short , working on the Ig Nobel prizes obeys Newton's First Law of Motion.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:19pm melinda:

@ultradamno haha
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:22pm Webhamster Henry:

My Board meetings need a SweetyPoo.
Avatar 6:24pm Sonderangebot:

Next time I'm on the radio, I'm sticking a pen in my mouth for sure
  6:24pm ?:

Little known fact - Miss SweetiePoo is cube shaped.
  6:25pm Bee:

Pen now in mouth - feeling better!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:26pm ultradamno:

A lot of people think a cat purring indicates contentment, even though cats have been known to purr after being hit by a car.
Avatar 6:27pm JohnEBGood:

I just had a frustrating day with computers and phones. I log onto FMU and here I am! God Bless WFMU! Ready to Rock : )
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:27pm ultradamno:

The Dangers of “Smiling Depression” www.amenclinics.com...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:28pm Mark Hurst:

@JohnEBG welcome! Sorry to hear about the computer frustrations.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:28pm dave miss:

I have a pen behind my ear. What does that do?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:29pm Mark Hurst:

@dave it makes your ear happy
Avatar 6:29pm Fredericks:

My favorite from the Improbable Research was that babies were aerodynamically designed so ancient people could use catapults to toss the babies to other tribes in order to diversify the gene pool.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:30pm dave miss:

Honestly it makes me forget the pen is there. Actually @mark techtonic makes that ear happy
Avatar 6:30pm Fredericks:

Wouldn't you need two pens to make you smile?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:30pm Mark Hurst:

@dave shucks
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:30pm dave miss:

The other ear....very concerned
Avatar 6:31pm Sonderangebot:

Put the pen in one ear, then your mouth, then your other ear, and here you go, you have a smile drawn on your face. :)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:31pm melinda:

@ultradamno I read that cats also purr to soothe and heal themselves. Leonard Cohen revived a sick cat by chanting on it for hours, maybe by using the same mechanism
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:32pm brainiac:

Is that a pen in your ear, or are you happy to see me?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:33pm Webhamster Henry:

The basic scientific narrative matches the humorous one: something here is out of place!
Avatar 6:34pm Jeff Moore:

Our portable "phones" are still terrible as telephones.

They're cool general-purpose pocket computers... but they're terrible to try to talk over.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:34pm ultradamno:

Well...sure...Leonard Cohen is an outlier, of course his voice can heal sickened felines.

My cat thinks she's a cartoon dog. FWIW twitter.com...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:34pm Petricole:

@melinda the image of LC nursing a cat back to health with his own glorious purr is everything I needed. Speaking of, happy birthday Field Commander Cohen.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:35pm melinda:

@Jeff so true.
  6:35pm Kev:

Marc comes across as the type that feels --- no matter what somebody says to him --- they're not **quite** correct.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:37pm Petricole:

@ultradamno Purrfect tabby alert. Who needs limbs, anyway?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:37pm Webhamster Henry:

@Jeff - true, in terms of both physical interface and call quality. OTOH, free three-way calls, voicemail, etc., is better than on older kinds of "phones", unless you are living the "Bells Are Ringing" life.
  6:37pm Listener Robert:

I had an experience like that smile research. At UMDNJ Newark my lab boss put in for me a conference paper based on my preliminary results showing melanin in cells prevented DNA-protein crosslinking from ultraviolet radiation. But before we went to the conference in Scottsdale, I did one more control experiment that showed my result was a mysterious artifact of the assay procedure, which was the fairly uninteresting result I wound up presenting there. And I learned thereby never to trust conference papers.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:37pm PaulRobeson1920:

Telephone replaced the dominance of the Telegraph. The calculator replaced the slide ruler... What will supersede the smart phone?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:39pm brainiac:

stones with little cameras attached
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:39pm Webhamster Henry:

@PaulR1920 - continuous conversational interfaces.
  6:39pm Sam:

Plenty of competent people know they’re competent.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:40pm Ken From Hyde Park:

@PaulRobeson1920 - The Facebook earpiece?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:40pm Carmichael:

@PaulRobeson, the ThinkBand 747 Transmitter.
Avatar 6:40pm Jeff Moore:

@Webhamster: all true.
  6:40pm northguineahills:

I’m the antithesis of the Dunning-Kruger effect, I suck at everything.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:41pm Carmichael:

No, "Transceiver"!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:41pm ultradamno:

Seems like many more people got familiar with the Dunning-Kruger Effect about four years ago than ever before. Can't imagine why.
  6:42pm Sam:

I think the effect is explained more by the fact that competent people tend to be smarter and classier and therefore more modest, because they were brought up privileged and it’s easy to be modest when you’ve been brought up that way. Incompetent people are more likely to be ordinary vain folks.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:43pm Webhamster Henry:

Competent person: "I do not know what I do not know."
Idiot: "I know all about that."
Avatar 6:43pm Jeff Moore:

I enjoyed some of the remote prize-presentation workarounds used during the Emmys last night.
  6:45pm Listener Robert:

Quackel would never have acted like that.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:45pm brainiac:

There are certain phrases even I won't type in a search field.
  6:46pm northguineahills:

I’ve seen a male pigeon attempting to mate w/ a dead female pigeon at the NYC main USPO. All I got.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:46pm ultradamno:

So, science golden raspberry?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:47pm Carmichael:

Sam Kinison did about 10 minutes on that topic.
Avatar 6:47pm Jeff Moore:

For those afraid to do the search:

www.ted.com...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:47pm Carmichael:

Because 140.9% of FMU listeners are cat owners.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:48pm Petricole:

@Jeff Moore, thank you for your courage.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:48pm Carmichael:

I see an Ig Noble prize in my future ...
Avatar 6:49pm Jeff Moore:

I hate devices which try to make you talk at them.

I really hope that madness goes out of style.
  6:50pm David in London:

The surveillance centre cannot hold.
  6:50pm Sam:

Jeff, dignity has to come back into style first.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:51pm Fuzzy:

Critical thinking skills may be in vogue again one day.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:52pm Carmichael:

It's a bad link for me.
  6:53pm David in London:

I’m going to overcome the replication crisis and get an alligator in a helium tank. What could possibly go wrong..?
  6:53pm P-90:

This occasion shouldn’t pass without mention of “The Journal of Irreproducible Results,” for many years THE place where those who publish research, or have been trained to read published research critically, go to publish sometimes sublimely funny satirical papers:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18449.The_Best_of_the_Journal_of_Irreproducible_Results
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:53pm ultradamno:

I might use Alexa if I can make her sound like Regan from The Exorcist, for authenticity's sake.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:54pm Carmichael:

If you're shopping for a new home, make sure upon entry that you yell, "Alexa, order 80 lbs of cottage cheese."
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:54pm PaulRobeson1920:

Gulp... Rumor has it technology will one day be able to access other peoples memories
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm Carmichael:

"Total Recall", PaulR.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm Carmichael:

"Total Recall", PaulR.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm PaulRobeson1920:

I would prefer not to... Ha!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm brainiac:

That dramatic depiction of the family in The Social Dilemma had unusually high production standards.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm Petricole:

Surveillance capitalism is infinitely more horrifying than demon bile.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:57pm ultradamno:

By the way, if it wasn't clear, I brought up cats purring as a comparably insignificant indicator of happiness/contentment to smiling.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm ultradamno:

I think R. Crumb refers to his father's compulsive smiling as an indication of deep depression in Crumb.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm melinda:

It would be good to see anyone who wasn't part of the problem
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm chris:

thanks, Mark. good points. fun show. cheers.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm Bas NL:

Thanks Mark & Marc!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm Fuzzy:

Right on, Mark -- ditto for D.C.
  6:59pm David in London:

Thanks Mark. Till next week Technoids.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm melinda:

Thanks Mark!
  6:59pm P-90:

Thanks, Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:00pm PaulRobeson1920:

Good stuff!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:00pm Fuzzy:

Thanks Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:01pm Petricole:

Thanks Mark/c. Take care kitty cats.
  7:35pm northguineahills:

Finishing work, digging from the car....
  12:03pm Ed:

Watched the Social Dilemma last night. It's definitely worth watching...and then trashing most of your social media accounts!
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