Nerd Nite XIX 5.12.16
The Science of Friendship by Annik Babinski
We all know how great it is to have friends, but there are documented biological and psychological benefits to surrounding yourself with people who have your back. Learn about the effects of friendship and loneliness on people, and how science suggests you get out of your shell and meet new people!
Annik Adey-Babinski moved to Miami in 2012 to pursue a Masters of Creative Writing in Poetry at FIU. She graduated in 2015 and works as an assistant editor at a magazine about welding. In her spare time, Annik runs Lady Crush, a friend-making service for women in South Florida.
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TB Or Not TB - Arose By Many Other Names by Shaka Brown
A breathtaking history of tuberculosis 5000 BC to present.
World traveler, writer and teacher, Shaka Brown has rubbed elbows with the finest people that money can’t buy. He’s quite tickled to be alive in an era of antibiotics, electricity, and the Internet. He’s currently either packing, or on his way to the airport.
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Snake Oil: The $27 Billion Bullshit Industry by George Tucker
Starting with the first patent medicine created in 1712, we briefly survey the history of questionable medicine. Then we'll explore the state of the modern snake oil industry: how products are created, who sells them, who buys them, and why is this allowed? What role does the FDA play? How can we protect ourselves from the hype hurricane that surrounds Oprah, Dr. Oz, and the ocean of affiliate marketers online?
George Tucker grew up in the Arkansas Ozarks where he learned how to dowse for water and hide from ghosts. After earning his Master's of Fine Arts in fiction writing from Florida International University, he used his master's level bullshitting skills to pilfer over $50 million from the naive by magically promising to make their dicks bigger.
April 14, 2016
Nerd Nite Miami XVIII
1) “Boogie Nights: How to Dance Your A** Off and Your Brain On” by Carolyn Margolin
Dancing has been called “a vertical expression of a horizontal desire,” but it can be much, much more. Come hear a dancing fool talk about how a cha cha or waltz can benefit you- body, mind, and spirit.
Originally from New York, Dr. Carolyn Margolin began her long-term love affair with ballroom dance while she earned her Ph.D. in Marine Biology and Fisheries at the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. Before that, it had just been flings with swing dance and ballet. She now works as a grant coordinator at Miami Dade College and credits her time on the dance floor with preserving at least a portion of the sanity that was threatened on a regular basis during her graduate studies.
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2) “Talk Nauti To Me” by Joshua L. Marano M.A., RPA
A humorous discussion of the history of many of the nautical terms and phrases commonly in use today, including many insights into the stereotypical drunken, swearing swashbucklers throughout history.
Marano is a professional maritime (underwater) archaeologist working at Biscayne National Park where he specializes in shipwrecks and all things nautical.
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3) “The Art of Revealing Art” by Silvia Manrique
Are there real secrets hiding beneath a painting’s surface? Is it possible to discover repaints, forgeries, damages, or images that are invisible to the naked eye? Can we extract an amulet from an Egyptian mummy without ever touching it? New advances in digital imaging make it possible for scientists and art conservators to reveal the secrets that lie just beneath an artwork’s surface. Come to see how these technologies can provide new and fascinating details about artist’s techniques, the long and sometimes tortuous history of artworks, their internal structures, or hidden damages.
Art conservator Silvia Manrique Tamayo is the Project Conservation Advisor for The Wolfsonian-FIU Museum.
Nerd Nite XVII 3.10.16
1) The Impacts of Climate Change You May Not Know About
by Ta-Shana Taylor
The conversation around climate change has been dominated by melting ice caps, bleaching coral, and reducing carbon. But what about the everyday impacts of climate change? How will people’s lives change? How have people’s lives already changed? We’ll be discussing this and more.
Ta-Shana Taylor is a lecturer at University of Miami’s Department of Geological Sciences.
2) Why You Suck At Learning Languages
by Jeff Peterson
“I’m not good with languages. It’s too late for me, children learn languages better. Maybe if I had time to live in another country I could learn…” If you’ve thought any of these things then this talk is for you. Jeff Peterson will dispell all of these language learning myths and show you research on what linguists say are the ways we REALLY acquire those 2nd and 3rd languages. And of course, he’ll give you some proven methods that you can use the jump start this language learning process yourself. ¡Hasta pronto! Até logo! Bis bald! Na wé pita!
Jeff Peterson is an engineer turned traveling vagabond turned MD/PhD student at University of Miami who is addicted to learning languages to distract him from learning about diseases. He is obsessed with meta-learning and making “mastery” an inevitability. He learned to speak Spanish and Portuguese in 2.5 years and is now working on his Haitian Creole and German.
3) Natural History of the Asshole
by Steven Whitfield
Butts are great, right? But where do butts come from, and how did they evolve? Do all animals have butts, and can butts be used for more than pooping? In this lecture, biologist Dr. Steven Whitfield will provide a detailed account of the evolution, anatomy, and biodiversity of assholes.
Dr. Steven Whitfield is a conservation biologist at Zoo Miami, where he conducts field research with endangered species (figuratively, saving their butts).
For those of you who were not present, here is an update on the bosses. Boss Laura is back from having a baby (YAY!) but Boss Nathan has stepped down (BOO!).
Nerd Nite XIV 12.10.15
Nerd Nite Miami – Year in Review
Happy Hour & Holiday Bingo 6-7pm
Presentations begin 7:30pm sharp
- Bringing back your favorite speakers to share more of their nerdiness:
- Gary Bremen (ocean animal sex guy) -“Why National Parks?”
- Yellowstone, Grand Canyon and the Statue of Liberty are national parks most folks have heard about, but national parks are much, much more than spectacular scenery. Gary has been to nearly half of America’s 409 national parks, and he shared some of his reasons…funny, touching and insightful…for why national parks matter.
- Alan Goldman (password guy) -“Is It Ok to Use Public WiFi – Encryption Demystified”
- You’ve always heard the old saying, don’t access your bank account over public WiFi. But why is this the case, and is there any truth to it? The short answer is yes. Alan shared lots of tips and info on how to protect yourself.
- John Gulla (board game guy) -“The Narrative Revolution WILL Be Televised: How video games are changing the way we tell stories”
- Human Beings have been telling stories since the dawn of history. Just a handful of years ago, however, something interesting and unique in the history of storytelling began to take shape: video games became a viable medium for storytelling and, perhaps even more remarkably, people began using them as a platform to tell stories differently than we have ever been able to tell them before. John shared the various ways that video games have developed over time to tell us stories, how they have explored their medium to produce fascinating and distinctive results exclusive to their platform, how we as the audience have been affected as a result, and why it all matters to both gamers and non-gamers alike.