The Unbelievable Skepticism of the Amazing Randi Profile of a national treasure. What else is there to say?
The 10:23 challenge is an international protest over the weekend of February 5-6 2011, to make the simple statement: "Homeopathy - There's Nothing In It". Protesters will ingest significantly more than the recommended dosage of homeopathic remedies, to demonstrate the lack of efficacy. Here you can watch legendary sceptic James Randi take a lethal dose of homeopathic sleeping pills. (more at Science-Based Medicine)
In recognition of World Homeopathy Awareness Week I give you "The Science of Homeopathy" Also, from the horse's mouth "homeopathy awareness week 2010". James Randi of course gets his licks in as well. [more inside]
Iraq Swears by Bomb Detector U.S. (Correctly) Sees as Useless. Similar to the now debunked Sniffex (as seen previously on Metafilter), the ADE651 detects explosives, firearms, grenades, narcotics, elephant ivory, bank notes, and according to its manufacturer's website, "human research." [more inside]
On April Fools Day 2009, the James Randi Educational Foundation announced the Pigasus Awards for 2008 for the worst in pseudoscientific irrationality. The Scientist award was given to Dr. Colin A. Ross for his claims that he can shoot electromagnetic energy beams from his eyes. The Funding Organization award went to Walt Ruloff and his co-producers for bankrolling the Intelligent Design documentary, Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. The Media award went to cable channels such as Comedy Central that still run ads for Enzyte even though the company's owner is now serving a 25-year sentence for fraud. The Perfomer award was typically awarded in the past to cheesy psychics such as Uri Geller or Sylvia Browne, but this year the (dis)honor goes to actress/spokesmodel Jenny McCarthy for her antivaccination activism, a stance that inspired the Jenny McCarthy Body Count. Finally, a new award for "most persistent refusal to face reality" was presented to infomercial pitchman Kevin Trudeau, who continues selling his books on "natural cures" despite a judge slapping him with a $37 million fine for false claims.
James Randi to end the Million Dollar Challenge in 2010. Nobody's won it in 10 years, and the money would work better if it wasn't tied up waiting for the impossible. Many have tried, none have succeeded.... and just so this isn't a single link, here's Randi owning Uri Geller, and Randi owning James Hydrick (using only styrofoam!) [YouTube links].
"The watch shown could not exist." Would Neiman Marcus spend $200,000 to advertise an expensive watch that doesn't, and couldnt, exist? Magician James Randi thinks so. I am skeptical.
Randi Rhodes is the MC at the mainstage at 4:20 Seattle Hemp Fest 2006 I knew you were cool Randi! Also, Dr.Bob Melameda explains why humans need marijuana to fuction properly.
I just finished up reading The Turk by Tom Standage (briefly mentioned in passing here) a biography of the chess-playing automaton that toured Europe and later the Americas during the pivotal transition from the 18th to the 19th century. The Automaton was invented as an exercise in national pride by Wolfgang von Kempelen, who considered it a trifle compared to his experiments with mechanical speech synthesis. As a celebrity, the automaton had historic encounters with Benjamin Franklin, Napoleon, Beethoven, Philidor and Charles Babbage, and fictional encounters with the monarchs Catherine the Great, George III and Frederick II. Standage credits it with influencing the development of the Difference Engine, the power loom, Poe's mystery stories, and Barnum's manipulation of the press. The myths surrounding have even caught James Randi, who seems to have been unaware of a colleague's reconstruction based on notes from the last owner.
The man who wrote 10,000 Grooks (grooks, grooks, grooks), Piet Hein, was also the inventor of Hex and the creator of the Soma Cube. In the design world, he is most famous for the SuperEllipse, a figure that rivals Buckminster Fuller's geodesics in ingenuity, an aesthetic balance between a circle and a square, and a mathematical figure which has been used to design a square in Stockholm. From the SuperEllipse, you can get the SuperEgg, a strange solid which will unexpectedly balance on one end and has been mistaken for an alien artifact.