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"Spot The Professor" 2017 Results Announced

The Expert Panel of the Threadbone Corporation-funded Professor Thrupiece Image Inventory Enhancement Programme (known colloquially as the "Spot the Professor Competition") has announced its results for 2017.

Launched in 2006, the programme seeks to assemble a comprehensive library of images of Professor Thrupiece with a view to ensuring their digital preservation, photographic enhancement, educational promotion and commercial distribution. According to Jury Chair Mrs Amanda J Threadboen (unavoidably absent this year) the competition element is an incentive to the indigent to "get their axxxs in gear". The growing collection is housed in the high security wing of the Threadbone Corporation's Great Heaving Complex as part of the National Foundation for Culinary Bio-ethical Prosopography's Three Pillars of Science Initiative .

Library curator Melvyn Darke-Roome explains: "It is hard to believe given the now almost universal recognition of the Professor that photographs of him were once rare and his very appearance disputed. We now know that his visage changed significantly over the years (the Professor was in representational terms "highly unstable") so we aim to document these changes as scientifically as we can. Whilst some images will remain iconic and some will always be considered of doubtful provenance, we believe we now have the techniques and skills to establish definitively which are of authentic images of him and which are of other people. We can already exclude most those images which are in all probability female and we are refining our algorithms all the time to allow the exclusion of some male representations though false positives are not uncommon at this stage. Some years ago we appealed to the public worldwide to submit any images of the Professor which they might have in their possession or discover on their travels and it is this which has led to the Professor Thrupiece Image Inventory Enhancement Programme."

This year's panel agreed on a short-list of four "best new submissions" [see below] and awarded first place to the Billboard in Des Moines, citing in its appreciation "the unexpected location, ephemeral nature and inexplicable presence".

The shortlisted images: [CLOCKWISE from TOP LEFT] Thrupiece in Development Threadbone Laboratories, Great Heaving [submitted by Agfa Gaevert]; Thrupiece in Des Moines Iowa [submitted by Walt D Isney] Thrupiece in the Metropolitan Museum Caracas [submitted by Concita Paraventura-Bottone-Negredo-da Silva-Palmieras] and Thrupiece in the Swedish National Portrait Gallery Stockholm [submitted by Greta Scracchi]. None of the images was known to exist prior to 2017 - a strict stipulation of the Competition Rules. BELOW an excluded* image - typical of many submitted by opportunistic enthusiasts keen to add to the collection but pitifully unaware of the Professor's actual appearance. [*excluded on a 95% probability by the patent Threadbone Laboratories Advanced Thrupiece Matching Algorithm High Capacity Optical Digi Scanner [TLATMAHCODS].

An excluded image - typical of many submitted by opportunistic enthusiasts keen to add to the collection but completely unaware of the Professor's actual appearance

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