Nerd Nite #27: Another season finale

It’s the last Nerd Nite of the 2015/16 season, and we’re wrapping things up in typical Nerd Nite fashion: with amazing speakers, and fine adult beverages. We have three incredible speakers on topics ranging from opening a crowd-funded restaurant, to urogynecological health, and even building a satellite right here in Edmonton.

So put on your beer goggles and get ready to engage your brain before we take a break for the summer!

Be there AND be square!

When: Wednesday, April 13, 2016 (doors @ 7:30pm, show @ 8pm)
Where: The Club at the Citadel Theatre (9828 101A Avenue)
$20 in advance (includes fees and GST) — on sale Monday, March 28 at 9:30am
$25 at the door (depending on advance sales)
$15 peanut gallery seating (released on Monday, April 11, and only available in person or by phone)
[Children 17 & Under Will Not Be Admitted]

Our line-up of speakers includes:

Thinking outside the box: Advances in developing and measuring strength/relaxation in the levator ani
Julia-lin Ding

This presentation will focus on pelvic anatomy and assessing your pelvic floor health. New data (and opinion!) on emerging pelvic floor strengthening technologies will be discussed with the hope that Nerd Nite participants will be empowered to “squeeze and relax” themselves into better pelvic health. All participants are encouraged to come prepared to get their blood flowing.

Julia-lin Ding is a Nurse Practitioner in women’s health.  She rostered as a Nurse Practitioner in 2009, finished her Master’s in Nursing with a specialization in Aging in 2011, and did the Nurse Continence Advisor certification through McMaster University in 2013. Her four children and husband have repeatedly asked her to refrain from discussing clinic findings around the dinner table, so she is always excited to share what she’s learned with new audiences.

Racing for Space: AlbertaSat, the Ex-Alta 1 Satellite and the Birth of Alberta’s Space Industry
Chris Robson

The space industry affects us daily through satellite services, economic growth or technological/scientific development and yet it’s something we don’t think about often. Why would you? After all, space is far away, it’s the realm of Star Trek, NASA and a handful of billion dollar corporations who can afford to put up satellites. However, the space industry is rapidly growing, changing and expanding to all corners of the world, including the last place you would expect, Alberta. Join me tonight, as I show you the dawn of Alberta’s space industry. During this presentation, I will introduce you to AlbertaSat (a student group at the University of Alberta), we will discuss the need for space in Alberta, I will introduce you to Alberta’s first satellite launching this July, the Experimental Albertan #1 (Ex-Alta 1) Satellite (and it’s juicy, totally nerdy technical details). Finally, I will give you a glimpse of the future of space in Alberta and the world.

Chris Robson is a 5th year Mechanical Engineering Co-Op student at the University of Alberta, was the Project Manager of the Ex-Alta 1 Satellite project (designed and created by the AlbertaSat Student Group) for two years and is currently the Mechanical Lead for the Ex-Alta 1 Satellite. Chris enjoys boating in BC, fishing for salmon, throwing around the word swanky, anything related to space and rum (or cider, or beer, or… etc). Chris’s future plans include Graduate studies in Mechanical Engineering with a focus on spacecraft technology and creating a space industry start-up company for Earth observation from a CubeSat platform.

Your Kickstarter was Funded, Now What? The Chartier Story
Darren Cheverie

A Kickstarter campaign was launched in March 2015 with the goal of raising $95,000 to use as a down payment for Beaumont’s first rustic French-Canadian restaurant in the heart of downtown Beaumont, called Chartier. At the end of the 60 day campaign, just over $107,000 was contributed by 600 community members, friends, and family – the most successful restaurant Kickstarter in Canada and the first in Alberta. But that was just the beginning. A lot has happened in just 1 year to ensure that Chartier’s doors opened in March 2016.

After finding each other, falling madly in love, and supporting each other through the early years of their careers, Darren & Sylvia Cheverie moved back to Beaumont for the birth of their daughter. With a growing family, they began to think about how they could contribute to life in Beaumont. With entrepreneurial passion and experience as both a restaurant manager and marketing consultant, Darren & Sylvia embarked on the crazy adventure of opening a restaurant.

SOLD OUT: Nerd Nite #26: Feast for the senses edition

Taste, sight and sound — those are the senses you’re going to need to use, or at least understand, at Nerd Nite #26. Chocolate, film and vinyl records will be the story of the evening, and it’s not a story you want to miss. From old media, to ancient baking to the era of digital filmmaking, this Nerd Nite will be a feast for the senses.

Be there AND be square!

When: Thursday, March 24, 2016 (doors @ 7:30pm, show @ 8pm)
Where: The Club at the Citadel Theatre (9828 101A Avenue)
$20 in advance (includes fees and GST) — on sale Friday, March 11 at 9:30am! SOLD OUT!
$25 at the door (depending on advance sales)
$15 peanut gallery seating (released on Monday, March 21, and only available in person or by phone)
[Children 17 & Under Will Not Be Admitted]

Here’s our line-up of speakers:

My O.C.D is A.O.K. – vinyl collecting as art form
Yuri Wuensch

Records are dead. Long live records! The unflappable format has experienced a massive resurgence of popularity in recent years. But why? In this presentation, digger Yuri Wuensch will discuss the reasons for vinyl’s comeback, its dominance as *the* music format of the 20th century and how we’ve barely ‘scratched’ the surface of its cultural and historical significance. He’ll also explore the psychology of digging, the various types of collectors, and the fragile balance between collecting, curating and hoarding.

Yuri Wuensch is a communications professional, part-time DJ and graduate of MacEwan University’s Journalism program. When he isn’t working at Alberta Innovates – Technology Futures, where he helps support the province’s tech sector entrepreneurs, movers and shakers, he is usually on the hunt for new (old) records. Yuri is the co-founder Dead Vinyl Society, which celebrates vinyl culture by hosting fun events for collectors, selectors, diggers and deejays. This includes the monthly Bring Out Your Dead swap meets and the annual Super Mega Records Garage Sale. His other undead infatuation is Vote Zombie Wall!, an award-winning public information campaign that ran in conjunction with Edmonton’s 2013 municipal election. The cheeky campaign sought to make building a zombie-proof perimeter wall around the city a ballot issue and succeeded in helping make sustainable urban development, or “smart growth,” part of Edmonton’s election conversation.”

Chocolate: Sweet truths, bitter myths and tantalizing wonders.
Jacqueline Jacek

Chocolate is goodness that is often associated to decadence, love and cravings. However, thought is rarely given to what truths and myths might surround this ‘Food of the Gods.’Have you ever thought about when the best time of the day might be to eat chocolate? Is all dark chocolate bitter? Is chocolate a ‘new food?’ The presentation will be a brief exposition of what chocolate is (and isn’t!) and will hopefully elevate your experience of this fine substance the next time you indulge.

A passion for all that is tasty and beautiful is what drove Jacqueline Jacek to learn the art of becoming an artisan chocolatier. Since 2003, she has been studying the physiology of chocolate, working on new techniques and developing recipes for her edible creations. The fusion of her love for couture and food has resulted in a unique collections that are launched seasonally, emulating the fashion industry. She officially launched the JACEK Chocolate Couture brand on 1 December, 2009 from a home-based chocolate studio in Sherwood Park, and has since been committed to spreading joy through fine chocolate. Since then, she has opened a production studio, two retail boutiques and partnered with like-minded business to help build the best Edmonton possible. Jacqueline has been chosen at one of the Top 10 Chocolatiers in North America by Dessert Professional Magazine in NYC (2011), Don Neil Young Entrepreneur Award (2012), Sherwood Park Business of the Year (2014), Global Woman of Vision (2015), Leaders Award by Business in Edmonton Magazine (2015), and last month JACEK Chocolate was chosen ‘Best Chocolatier’ by Avenue Magazine (2016).”

Losing the Light: The Unintentional Consequences of Digital Film-making
Robin Taylor

Film-making as an art form has existed for over 100 years, and while technology changes, film-making stays the same… or does it? In the past 20 years, tools and techniques of film-making have transitioned to digital (from acting to editing and everything in between). In the face of rapidly advancing technology, are we losing authenticity as scope and scale grow? Join me as I tell kids to get off my lawn while we discuss sets, locations and green screen over a century of epic films.

Robin Taylor is a classically trained animator who spent 10 years working in and around the Canadian Film industry as a storyboard artist, director, producer & editor. He is currently on “hiatus” but spends most of his time thinking and talking about film to anyone, including himself.”

SOLD OUT: Nerd Nite #25: TELUS World of Science Edition

What does speed reading, atmospheric chemistry and organ transplant legal controversies have in common? They’re all topics at Nerd Nite #25! We’re hosting a slightly-larger-than-normal Nerd Nite as our regular space at the Citadel isn’t available. So we’re bringing the Nite to the TELUS World of Science.

Be there AND be square!

When: Monday, February 29, 2016 (doors @ 7:30pm, show @ 8pm)
Where: Kinetic Hall (TELUS World of Science, 11211 142 St NW Edmonton)
$20 in advance (includes fees and GST) — on sale Feb 1 at 9:30am SOLD OUT!
[Children 17 & Under Will Not Be Admitted]

Here’s our line-up of speakers:

Nerdy Superpower: Speedreading
Liz Hay

Have you ever wanted a superpower? Have you wanted to be able to finally finish your TBR (to be read) pile and still talk to your family/ kids/ friends? Do you want to read all the books? If you have ever been curious about speedreading and how it works, now is your chance. Using basic principles of speedreading, you will be guided through the first steps of unlearning your old reading habits and relearning a new approach to reading and comprehension. Bring an open mind and your questions!

Liz Hay has a Bachelor of Arts in Cinema Studies from the University of British Columbia and has always loved writing, reading, travelling and volunteering. She has facilitated classes on academic integrity, non-profit board governance, and is strangely more comfortable in front of a large group of people than she is at a party. Currently, you will find her working to support the Art and Design Department at MacEwan University, volunteering at Metro Cinema and completing her Web Design and Development certificate also from MacEwan University.

Payment for organs? Legal and ethical limits on strategies to increase organ donation
Maeghan Toews

Hundreds of Canadians die each year waiting for lifesaving organs. Although our donation rates have increased in recent years, there are still not enough donated organs to meet this need. Various strategies to increase donation are being discussed in policy and academic circles (e.g., changing our consent framework, or financially incentivizing donation), and this talk will explore some of these strategies and their ethical and legal limits in the context of our current donation system.

Maeghan Toews is a Research Associate at the Health Law Institute in the Faculty of Law at the University of Alberta. Her research interests include examining the legal and ethical issues associated with genetics and genomics, organ donation and transplantation, rare diseases, and biomedical research. Prior to joining the Health Law Institute, Maeghan received her B.A. from the University of Western Ontario, her JD from the University of Toronto and spent several years as a commercial litigator in private practice. She then pursued her graduate work at Leiden University where she graduated cum laude and received her LL.M in public international law. Maeghan currently sits on the University of Alberta’s Biomedical Research Ethics Board, the University of Alberta Hospital’s Clinical Ethics Committee, and is teaching “Law and Medicine” at the Faculty of Law.

Dust: The Little Particle That Could
Sarah Styler

Over a billion tons of dust are emitted into the atmosphere each year from desert regions in Africa and Central Asia. Once emitted, dust particles can be transported around the world. During their travels, they promote cloud formation, fertilize oceanic and terrestrial ecosystems, and influence air quality in cities. I’ll talk about how and why these small particles have an outsize influence on our climate and health, and about how we can make and study dust in the lab.

Sarah’s undergraduate and graduate studies in environmental and atmospheric chemistry at the University of Toronto were punctuated by two somewhat eclectic breaks, in which she worked in community fundraising and investigated the adverse effects of long-term storage on paintings and sculptures. After graduation, Sarah undertook a postdoc in Leipzig, Germany, where she studied the role that urban surfaces play in mediating urban air quality and collected more than an apartment’s worth of East German furniture. She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Alberta, where her group’s research focuses on chemistry and photochemistry in polluted and dust-influenced urban environments.