Asses and beans

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  • Published: Aug 13, 2014
  • Author: Steve Down
  • Channels: Chemometrics & Informatics / MRI Spectroscopy / Base Peak / UV/Vis Spectroscopy / Proteomics / NMR Knowledge Base / Raman / Atomic / Infrared Spectroscopy / X-ray Spectrometry

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I came across a common typo recently, steriods, and was reminded of some of the typing errors I had seen in papers over the years. These aren’t the ones which the youth of today seem to have adopted - confusing its and it’s, your and you’re, who’s and whose, and so on. (Here speaks someone for whom much text speak is a hanging offence).

No, I mean scientific typos which I have met and noted down. Yes, I have a list !

Terms like that cereal-based chemical called flouride, or studies that refer to alkali metal dusters, rather than clusters.

I have also come across that emerging technique referred to as electron spray ionisation which periodically attempts to surpass electrospray.

I have seen electrospray mass spectra that were used to identify amino acid substations, which I presume should have read substitutions.

And do you remember that older ionisation technique used in mass spec which one research group referred to as the particle bean?

Some mass spectra have been illustrated as tables of ass-to-charge ratios, which reminded me of ASMS 2005 in San Antonio. As I reported at the time, we were entertained by country star Suzy Bogguss at the conference finale. She contrived to pronounce the society acronym as AssMass, by accident or design, perhaps hinting that we were a collection of asses. I’m sure we could all nominate a few….

Can you recall any humorous typos? If you have a moment, perhaps you could add them in a comment here so that we can all enjoy them.


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