A Northwestern University professor is under fire from critics for having accepted a $700,000 "research grant" awarded by the federal government to create joke-telling computer software.
According to Chicago's WLS-TV, Professor Kristian Hammond received the funds from the federal stimulus package, funds meant to create jobs and help shore up the faltering economy. But Hammond insists the "humor grant" is about serious work:
"Understanding what makes humor, what makes irony, what makes interesting juxtapositions, to understand what that means we can actually create it. We can create new material," said Hammond.