The 2012 Ig Nobel prizes, awarded for silly-sounding research, are out, and there are some doozies on this year's list! For example, if you forget caps for the coffee cups at your break, this one could come in handy:
FLUID DYNAMICS PRIZE: Rouslan Krechetnikov [USA, RUSSIA, CANADA] and Hans Mayer [USA] for studying the dynamics of liquid-sloshing, to learn what happens when a person walks while carrying a cup of coffee.
Or if you want to drive a speaker insane, you may want to check out this one:
ACOUSTICS PRIZE: Kazutaka Kurihara and Koji Tsukada [JAPAN] for creating the SpeechJammer — a machine that disrupts a person's speech, by making them hear their own spoken words at a very slight delay.
And if your attendees seem to be sleeping instead of engaged, you could always call in these guys to check:
NEUROSCIENCE PRIZE: Craig Bennett, Abigail Baird, Michael Miller, and George Wolford [USA], for demonstrating that brain researchers, by using complicated instruments and simple statistics, can see meaningful brain activity anywhere — even in a dead salmon.
And for those who like their redudancy redundant, here's the ultimate:
LITERATURE PRIZE: The US Government General Accountability Office, for issuing a report about reports about reports that recommends the preparation of a report about the report about reports about reports.