The Ig Nobel Awards for 2018

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by Ike, Sep 17, 2018.

  1. Ike
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    Ike Senior Member

    They have been just released and for those who want to see them the link to the ABC news article is
    Improbable Research https://www.improbable.com/ig/winners/#ig2018

    But the one most relevant to us, the boat building world is something we already know. No One Reads The Manuals. LITERATURE PRIZE [AUSTRALIA, EL SALVADOR, UK] — Thea Blackler, Rafael Gomez, Vesna Popovic and M. Helen Thompson, for documenting that most people who use complicated products do not read the instruction manual. REFERENCE: "Life Is Too Short to RTFM: How Users Relate to Documentation and Excess Features in Consumer Products," Alethea L. Blackler, Rafael Gomez, Vesna Popovic and M. Helen Thompson, Interacting With Computers, vol. 28, no. 1, 2014, pp. 27-46.

    from Popular Science:

    Literature: Nobody reads the manual
    The winners: Thea Blackler, Rafael Gomez, Vesna Popovic, and M. Helen Thompson

    The research: It may seem obvious to you, but apparently the people who write manuals weren’t sure—no one had ever bothered to study it. These researchers not only confirmed that no one really reads manuals for new products, they did an in-depth investigation as to the various reasons why. You should read the (very long) study if you’re curious, but one of the more interesting highlights is that not only do people find manuals overwhelming and confusing, they think that they shouldn’t need to read the manual. A product should be well-designed enough that the owner doesn’t require written instructions on how to use it.

    The why: Silly as it may seem to you, those responsible for designing manuals should be informed as to the potential challenges associated with them. If all these people are just writing manuals for no one, we should maybe rethink how to best inform consumers of various risks and instructions.
    Human spit is actually a great cleaning solution (and other award-winning scientific finds) https://www.popsci.com/ig-nobel-winners-2018
     
  2. JamesG123
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    JamesG123 Senior Member

    Why do you think most mfg. now include (often only) a "quick start guide" with just the basic information on how to get going and not immediately return it to the store as "defective" and hopefully get it past the warranty period?

    Manuals are also written on the 5th grade (American, which isn't saying much) level. Its more likely that the users are just functionally illiterate ****** with short attention spans.
     
  3. Ike
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    Ike Senior Member

    Manuals are also written to protect the manufacturer from liability. The "you didn't warn me" syndrome.
     
  4. JamesG123
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    JamesG123 Senior Member

    Yes that too.
     

  5. Ike
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    Ike Senior Member

    And I might add that this was one of those studys that simply proves what we already know. Like the one on using saliva to clean things. That got the award for chemistry. Hopefully very little money was spent on these research projects.

    But they are always good for a chuckle. Kinda like the Darwin awards.
     
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