flickr / Becky

Not all dad jokes are puns, but most groan-worthy wordplay qualifies as a bad dad joke. And while punny dad humor may seem like low-hanging fruit, the a rich science behind how they work should not be punderestimated (ugh, sorry). So the next time your family tries to tell you that dad jokes are dumb—first of all, agree. But then drop the following fun facts on them. Because the only thing more obnoxious than wordplay at the dinner table is a bonafide lecture on the science of puns:

human brain illustration
Puns Require The Use Of Both Sides Of Your Brain

While it may seem like punny people aren’t using their brains at all, it actually takes both right and left hemispheres of the brain to tell a joke, research suggests. The left side, or the linguistic hemisphere, processes the basic language of the pun, and then the right side kicks in right after to reveal the surprise double meaning—the punchline.

Computers Can Pun With The Best

Machine learning technology has enabled computers to join the pun game for some time now. In 2011, scientists from the University of Washington wrote a program that could add “that’s what she said” to appropriate sentences with 72 percent accuracy. One winning example: “Don’t you think these buns are a little too big for this meat?”… “That’s what she said.”

Another comparably crass study from the University of Edinburgh showed that a computer can be programmed to riff off the basic model of “I like my women (or men) like I like my coffee.” Some results were more problematic than others, such as “I like my men like…

Mayra Rodriguez
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Mayra Rodriguez

Content Editor at oneQube
Work from home mom dedicated to my family. Total foodie trying new recipes.Love hunting for the best deals online. Wannabe style fashionista. As content editor, I get to do what I love everyday. Tweet, share and promote the best content our tools find on a daily basis.
Mayra Rodriguez
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