Festival of Bad Ad Hoc Hypotheses, bolstered with math and graphs
September 15, 2014 8:27 PM   Subscribe

The 2014 Festival of Bad Ad Hoc Hypotheses, or BAHFest, is a month away. If you're not sure what is in store, you can watch the entire festival (1 hr 32 min), or jump to the winning presentation: Tomer Ullman: The Crying Game (Q&A), or why babies are so annoying and the competitive advantage crying babies likely gave to warriors from times past. "I don't want to get too much into the technical details, so let's not."

The other presentations from 2013: If you're up on webcomics, you might already know that Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal inspired this event.
posted by filthy light thief (12 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
Great post. Ullman achieves a level of impenetrable deadpan I could only dream of pulling off.

I'd even go so far as to call it a competitive advantage.
posted by churl at 9:03 PM on September 15, 2014 [4 favorites]

I first heard about BAHFest on this episode of Inquiring Minds, which also discussed the completely separate baby catapulting hypothesis.
posted by maudlin at 9:04 PM on September 15, 2014 [1 favorite]

I pretty much spend my every walking moment constructing theories like this to explain people's pedestrian behavior.
posted by srboisvert at 9:08 PM on September 15, 2014

Stacy Farina is just so wrong. Geez.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:17 PM on September 15, 2014 [2 favorites]

I enjoy black humour as much... no, more than the next man... but the massive response to the initial "annoying, isn't it" momentarily gave me the creeps. I wonder how it would go with adult sounds of extreme distress.
posted by holist at 10:46 PM on September 15, 2014

Needs more paleo food and PUA theorizing.
posted by benzenedream at 11:42 PM on September 15, 2014 [1 favorite]

These are great.
posted by homunculus at 12:28 AM on September 16, 2014

I really, really want versions of these without the laughing, produced a bit closer to TED Talks, and I want to post them without context in places with a high percentage of evopsych wackjobs and the kind of douchebags who think that "black people are less smart because biology" and "women like pink because they evolved to pick berries" and places like LessWrong where a lot of people who think they know what they're talking about bloviate about rationality, and then I want some popcorn.
posted by NoraReed at 12:56 AM on September 16, 2014 [4 favorites]

What's with all this crying about babies and chickens? I thought was supposed to be a comedy piece.
posted by mcrandello at 1:37 AM on September 16, 2014

Thanks for this. I haven't laughed so much since the last Lewis Black routine. Tastes like hilarious.
posted by key_of_z at 1:49 AM on September 16, 2014

woo! I love the BAHfest! I know what I'm doing over lunch :)
posted by rebent at 6:39 AM on September 16, 2014

holist: "I wonder how it would go with adult sounds of extreme distress."

Kinda comparing apples to oranges there. That wasn't a baby sound "of extreme distress", that was a baby sound of mild to moderate distress. It was the equivalent of an adult shouting about someone taking their parking space, or their favorite TV show being rescheduled. Baby cries of extreme distress sound very different, and people wouldn't be laughing after one.
posted by Bugbread at 8:03 PM on September 16, 2014

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