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Speaking Of Things Scatological

CNN reports – Wombat poop: Scientists have finally discovered why it’s cubed. The Register adds their slant to the reporting: Wombats literally sh!t bricks – and now boffins reckon they know how.

Reading that I was struck by the probability that this research would rate the notice of the Ig Nobel Prize committee, and it did.

Lead author, Patricia Yang, a postdoctoral fellow in mechanical engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, won the Ig Nobel Prize for Physics in 2015 for her study showing that in mammals “Duration of Urination Does Not Change With Body Size.” The study of wombat scat was right down in her sewer 😈

UPDATE: The perfect XMas gift for people who think they have everything.


1 Kryten42 { 11.20.18 at 11:03 pm }

Thanks for that! I read about that in the Guardian. I wonder what Patricia will do for her third Ig Nobal to complete the Trifecta?

PS: She is my kind of Engineer! NO fear of “going where no person has gone before!” I would have hired her for my award winning R&D team back in the day! One of my interview questions was “Do you believe or think that any Engineering problem is impossible to solve?” Many either said something similar to “of course.” They didn’t get the job. We won many awards doing what had been considered “Impossible” I’m still very proud of them. I hope they are all doing well, wherever they are.😊🤗

Of course, there is a difference between “impossible” and “technically unfeasible currently”. We had a couple of idea’s shelved because the current level of technology (30 years ago) simply wasn’t up to the task. But we know that one day, it would be. They wern’t impossible, just untimely. 😉 😀

2 Bryan { 11.21.18 at 12:41 pm }

It was 100 years before we had the precision machining necessary to build Babbage’s Analytical Engine, but there was nothing wrong with the design. There are a lot things taken for granted today that just couldn’t be built when I started programming.

Both of her major projects deal with fluid dynamics and the processes involved in mammal energy production and regulation – dealing with a body like it was a power station.