Nerd Nite 32

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DETAILS:

Friday 9 June
Doors open at 20:00
First talk at 20:30

at CREA Muziekzaal
Nieuwe Achtergracht 170
1018 WV Amsterdam

Facebook event page

Fasten your seatbelt and hop on a journey through time at Nerd Nite 32! Our first speaker Arthur Neeteson will take us back to the ancient days when Indo-European still hadn’t evolved into half of humanity’s languages and he will explain how seemingly completely different words are actually related. Don’t like living in the past? Then keep on travelling to the future of encryption with our second speaker Jaya Baloo, Chief Information Security Officer at KPN. Jaya will discuss current developments of cryptography in the light of new quantum computing systems and persistent government surveillance. Looking forward to it? Join us on 9 June, be there and be square!

Indo-European – the evolution of half of humanity‘s native tongues
By Arthur Neeteson

How many languages do you speak? Did you know that it is highly likely that those languages once came from the same origin? About half of all the people alive, grew up speaking a language originated from the “InPasfoto Arthur Neetesondo-European” origin, after India and Europe, where most of these languages originated from. In his talk, Arthur Neeteson will take you back in time to show the ancient connection between words like ‘father’ in English and ‘pater’ in Latin. With him, you’ll reconstruct what your linguistic forefathers called their mothers, teeth and feet. You may even be able to count to ten like your linguistic ancestors 200-odd generations back. Come and listen to his talk to be amazed by this origin of languages. Especially if you belong to the 46% of the world with Indo-European roots.

Bio: Arthur Neeteson made his first alphabet when he was five and he has never lost his love for languages. He studied Comparative Indo-European Linguistics in Leiden, while completing another full time study in Groningen at the same time (long live the ov-jaarkaart). Arthur has since left the path of linguistics, and is now developing a seaport in Indonesia.

 

 

 


Everything is quantum! The future of cryptography & quantum technologies
by Jaya Baloo

You finally got used to the extraordinary powers of computers? Get ready for the new kid on the block: quantum computers! A new technology that holds big promises for the future, as can be seen by huge investments made by Microsoft, Google and the NSA. But as the race for quantum computing systems rapidly evolves, the threat to modern cryptography becomes more pressing. Will this lovechild of physics, mathematics and computer science be a blessing or a curse? There must be new strategies and clear options to ensure data protection for the near and long term. Jaya Baloo will discuss current developments and projects in this area, which is set against the background of ever more persistent government surveillance.

 jaya_v67Bio: Security girlboss Jaya Baloo has probably the most busy schedule you could imagine. From dusk till dawn she leads the Chief Information Security Office of KPN. She is a quantum crypto expert and a frequent speaker to share knowledge and raise awareness. In her spare time Jaya has a passion for reading, she is a real content junky. And by the way, she is also learning to be a pilot.

 

 

Nerd Nite 31

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Get ready for some serious science Nerd Niters, and save the date for an evening all about neurology and linguistics! Will there ever be a world without Alzheimer’s? Is it possible to early diagnose this terrible disease? Our first speaker TedX Amsterdam Award winner Jurre den Haan will talk about his research on early diagnostics of Alzheimer’s through the eye and try to find an answer to these questions. And after all, what would science be without the right questions? Our second speaker IgNobel winner Mark Dingemanse will tell us all about their power and share how studying misunderstandings can teach us deep lessons about language itself and human nature. Join us at Nerd Nite XXXI on 31 March, be there and be square!

DETAILS:

Friday 31 March
Doors open at 20:00
First talk at 20:30

at CREA Muziekzaal
Nieuwe Achtergracht 170
1018 WV Amsterdam

Facebook event page

 

Alzheimer diagnosis: the eye as a window to the brain?

by TEDx Amsterdam Award 2015 winner Jurre den Haan

1The brain is the most intriguing organ we possess. It makes us think, communicate, feel and love. Always wondered what goes wrong in the brain during Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) when you lose all these abilities step by step? How can we end the series of failed trials so far? It turns out the eyes are the window to the… brain! The eye might be the source of early and patient friendly diagnosis. This could mean a first step towards a world without AD. Jurre de Haan will take a bird’s eye view on the advances of 15 years of AD-research and the importance of awareness that AD is a public rather than a medical cause.

Bio: Jurre den Haan is intrigued by the brain and its function ever since he studied medicine at the VU University. In his PhD in neurology he aims to visualize Alzheimer’s disease(AD) in the eye; the retina in specific. He also combines running and charity for AD-research in two editions of ‘de Damloop voor Alzheimer’.

 
 

The Power of Questions

by IgNobel Prize winner Mark Dingemanse

What is the goal of science? Finding answers, you may say — but that means we had better be asking the right questions. What better place to start than “Huh?”, the simplest question known to humans. In everyday life, we use expressions like this all the time to briefly halt the conversation to fix some trouble, then seamlessly pick up where we left off. Amazingly, this practice seems to be uniquely human: no other animals seem to be able to fix communicative trouble ibb_1609_2015_06_square twn this way. Ig Nobel prize winner Mark Dingemanse provides a guide to asking the right questions by taking us into the world of linguistics, the science of language. From “Huh?” he leads us to more complex questions, and shows us that some of the deepest lessons about language and human nature lie in what we do when things go wrong.

Bio: Mark Dingemanse is a language scientist who studies people in the wild and in the lab to understand why languages are the way they are. He and his team discovered that rarest of things, a word shared by languages across the globe — a serendipitous finding weird enough to be awarded with an Ig Nobel prize in 2015. He works at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics.

 

Nerd Nite 30

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The new year has just begun and what better way to start than sprinkling it with a bit of nerdiness? Join us on 3rd February for an inspiring evening on maths, language and love at Nerd Nite 30! Want to find out if you and your significant other have the right numbers? Our first speaker Tim Bush will reveal how he can predict divorces by simply using the most universal language of all: mathematics! More interested in syntax than algebra? Fear not! Our second speaker Melanie Mueller will talk about Dothraki, Loglan and Esperanto, discuss why people construct artificial languages and delight us with an Esperanto crash course. Finally, if you’re still looking for your soul mate you can sign up for our pre Nerd Nite speed-dating here https://goo.gl/forms/jP8GmftdOcFEEXhk2! Be there and be kvadrato!

 

DETAILS:

Friday 3 February
Doors open at 20:00
First talk at 20:30

at CREA Muziekzaal
Nieuwe Achtergracht 170
1018 WV Amsterdam

Facebook event page

 

The mathematics of love: a combination of the sensual and the statistical

By Tim Bush


TimBushPictureWant to save yourself from the pain of one-sided love? Tim Bush will save your love life using maths! Unrequited love is not something you wish for your worst enemy, even more so when your loved one is leading you on. He’ll discuss a mathematical model describing a famous instance of unrequited love using data that goes back to 14th century love poems. Afterwards the evening will be brought to a climax by discussing another mathematical model with a shockingly high success rate of 90% at predicting divorces, based simply on a 15 minute video of the couple.  Are you ready for a combination of the sensual and the statistical, the arousing and the analytical, the titillating and the trigonometric, the X-rated and the exact? Learn to look at love from a mathematician’s point of view!

Bio:

Tim Bush became interested in the mathematical modelling of romantic love while studying for his PhD in Physics at the University of Edinburgh. He has also worked on mathematical models of bacteria, honeybees, geology and astrobiology, and now works as a Data Scientist in London. Previously, he worked on mathematical models of lakes at the University of Amsterdam. In his free time he enjoys board games, video games and boxing.

Esperanto, Loglan and Dothraki: Why do people construct new languages?

by Melanie Mueller

MelanieDid you know that there’s a language that can be played on musical instruments? That there are native speakers of Esperanto? That there’s a language with only 120 root-words? That languages were designed to test a scientific hypothesis? In this talk, I’ll give a short tour through the colorful and eccentric world of constructed languages, and the reasons behind them. I’ll end with a mini crash course in Esperanto. Estu tien aŭ kvadrata!

Bio:

Melanie likes to find patterns, and play around with them. This led her to play with Lego, get a PhD in Theoretical Physics, speak Esperanto, and do biology research at Harvard. Currently, she works as a data scientist at Booking.com, where she helps to transform patterns in customer data into fun holidays.

Nerd Nite Speed Dating

Sign up here for Nerd Nite Speed Dating #5

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Nerd Nite #29: Nerdxplorers

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Brace yourselves Nerd Niters, and prepare to get adventurous! At Nerd Nite 29 you will discover how to go from couch potato to ultramarathon runner with our first speaker Duco van Lanschot. Duco will share the five lessons he learnt from extreme sports and take us far away to Sahara Desert and Mont Blanc. Not far enough? The journey continues with our second speaker Natasja van Knippenberg who will take us to the the land of the morning calm, South Korea! Join us to explore korean culture, food, fashion and manners. Finally, it’s your time to shine during our annual Dry T-shirt Contest: wear your favourite nerdy T and admission will be free. Be there and be square!

 

DETAILS:

Friday 25 November
Doors open at 20:00
First talk at 20:30

at CREA Muziekzaal
Nieuwe Achtergracht 170
1018 WV Amsterdam

Facebook event page

 

5 lessons from Extreme Sports
by Duco van Lanschot

Most of us think about running like this: 10 K will Zoom in - Photo Duco van Lanschot - Blendle (HD)be okay, 10 Miles will take a while and a Marathon will be a bit too long. What if you have to run a marathon 5 times within 5 days? Are you already exhausted thinking about it? In 2015, Duco van Lanschot finished the Marathon des Sables, a 248km self-sufficient race through the Moroccan Sahara Desert. This race is ranked by Discovery Channel as The Toughest Foot Race on Earth. Last summer, he finished the TDS, a 119km nonstop race with +7250m elevation. He will tell us all about the lessons he learned from these challenging races. Curious to find out how he did it and why you can do it too? See you at Nerd Nite!

Bio: Duco van Lanschot (1988) ranked 45th in the Marathon des Sables 2015, a 248km self-sufficient race through the Moroccan Sahara Desert. Duco is currently Head of Benelux of Stripe, the “easiest way of accepting payments online”. Stripe, founded in 2010, handles billions of dollars every year for forward-thinking business around the world. Prior to working at Stripe, Duco worked as a comedian, consultant at McKinsey & Company and Head of International at Blendle, an iTunes-like system for journalism.

 

 

The Story of Kim & Kim: Quirks of modern-day South Korea
by Natasja van Knippenberg

What do you know about the land of the morning calm? The country with the fastest internet and the most dangerous border on earth has many secrets. Our speaker Natasja van Knippenberg will take us on a journey to South Korea where we will learn about this dynamic country through funny, shocking, and eyebrow-raising facts. Kimchi, Kpop, plastic surgery; all will be addressed in this short trip to the other side of the globe to a country where the fast first world lifestyle meets deeply rooted traditions. The country that went from a third world country to one of the most developed societies in 50 years’ time has many stories left to tell!

Bio: As a proper Korea-obsessed person, Natasja van Knippenberg works for the Korean company LG Electronics as a marketing coordinator. When she isn’t trying to coax people into buying Korean products, she is trying to get them to join her in celebrating the Korean culture through her foundation “Stichting Promotie Koreaanse Cultuur”. During the free time she has left, she enjoys a good game of Dungeons and Dragons, cosplay, and video games.

 

Nerd Nite 28: Aquanerdics!

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Summer might be at an end, but season 6 of Nerd Nite Amsterdam is just getting started! Join us on September 23rd for a night all about H2O aka water! Are you ready to (non-literally) dive into it? Our first speaker David Zetland will show how water policies affect billions of people in a world of climate change and political unrest. Thirsty for more? Our second speaker  PhD researcher Jink Gude will share with us the secrets of water treatment and arsenic removal in the Netherlands. Be there and be square!

DETAILS:

Friday 23 September
Doors open at 20:00
First talk at 20:30

at CREA Muziekzaal
Nieuwe Achtergracht 170
1018 WV Amsterdam

Facebook event page

 

Waterfails: Why are we so bad at managing water when we need it to live?
by David Zetland

 

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We depend on water for food and drink (beer!), but if you think this vital liquid gets the attention it deserves, then think again. All too often, we hear about smart management but see stupid results. How is it possible that 3 billion people cannot drink their water? Why are ecosystems destroyed for almond butter? Can the Dutch keep their feet dry with rising seas? With over 10 years of experience in this field, David Zetland will introduce us to his quest for understanding water policy, explain failures to implement “obvious” solutions, identify who benefits when your community loses, and introduce his most recent attempt to help us help ourselves. Grab a beer, lend an ear, and question without fear!

Bio: David Zetland is an assistant professor at Leiden University College, where he teaches various classes on economics. After earning his PhD at the University of California, Davis in 2008, he held positions at UC Berkeley (US),Wageningen University (NL), Simon Fraser University (CA) and KAPSARC (SA). He blogs on water, economics and politics at aguanomics.com, has two books (The End of Abundance: economic solutions to water scarcity and Living with Water Scarcity), gives many talks to public, professional and academic audiences, and writes for popular and academic outlets. David lives in Amsterdam.

 

Drinking water: Insight in the production of the most valuable resource for life
by Jink Gude

Jink Gude
Have you ever wondered if you could get sick, or even die, when running the tap at home? Despite drinking water quality disasters hitting the news in the USA and in New Zealand, safe drinking water is something we often take for granted. Tonight you will find out why. Our speaker Jink Gude will unravel the Dutch approach to producing the best drinking water in the world and he’ll tell us more about his research on removing arsenic from drinking water. Truly life-saving and refreshing research!

Bio: Jink Gude is a PhD student at Delft technical university and has worked over a decade on improving drinking water all over the Netherlands. Structuring large data files, making complex water quality models and stirring in jars for 14 months makes him feel like a fish in water.

 

New bosses wanted!

NN Amsterdam bosses wanted

We’re on the hunt for 2-3 people to become Nerd Nite Amsterdam bosses for the next season! You must be organized and good at working both independently and in a small team. This is a volunteer gig — we do it for the nerdy love of it. Send us an email if you’re interested!

Nerd Nite XXVII: Nerdiness for Social Good!

Nerd Nite Amsterdam poster Melanie Rieback Daniel Wigboldus security hacking face perception

Delve deeper into the everyday at Nerd Nite on Friday May 13th! We’ll examine technological practices and scientific thought about two things ubiquitous in this modern world: computer security and human faces. First, speaker Melanie Rieback introduces us to the realm of non-profit, open-source computer security consultancy. She’ll go into both the technological side of hacking-for-good and their radical business model that makes security knowledge accessible. Following that, Daniel Wigboldus shows us his social science research into the perception of human faces and why we shouldn’t judge others at face value. We’ll learn a thing or two about how and why we unconsciously perceive faces, and a data-driven approach to quantify the perceived qualities of a face. Be there and be square!

DETAILS:

Friday 13 May
Doors at 20:00
First talk at 20:30

at CREA Muziekzaal
Nieuwe Achtergracht 170
1018 WV Amsterdam

Facebook event page

Smashing the stack for fun and non-profit
by Melanie Rieback

Melanie Rieback Nerd Nite Amsterdam
Radically Open Security is the world’s first non-profit computer security consultancy company. It’s a collective of hackers who aim to disrupt the computer security market with their ideals — give 90% of profits to charity (the NLnet Foundation), release all their tools into the open-source, invite customers to actively participate, and generally optimize for openness, transparency, and community service. In this talk, Melanie will share with us some anecdotes from her career development as both a computer hacker and an idealist, and also raise thought-provoking questions about how we each can more effectively use our finely-cultivated nerdly skills for the public good.

Bio: Dr. Melanie Rieback is the CEO/Co-founder of Radically Open Security. Her impressive academic career has led her to appear in lists such as “400 most successful women in the Netherlands” (2010) and “50 most inspiring women in tech” in the Netherlands (2016). For an extra dose of nerdiness, she founded Girl Geek Dinner NL.

What’s in a face?
by Daniel Wigboldus

Daniel Wigboldus Nerd Nite Amsterdam
We all are surrounded by the faces of others. But what do we really see when we look another person in the face? What does this tell us about the other person, and about ourselves? In this talk, we’ll hear from person-perception specialist Daniel Wigboldus on a brief history of research into face perception and how it relates to unconscious bias and prejudice. Moreover, he’ll explain a data-driven approach to face perception that makes use of reverse correlation methods. After this talk, hopefully we’ll think twice before judging others at face value.

Bio: By day, Daniel is the dean of the faculty of social sciences at Radboud University in Nijmegen. Alongside his administrative duties, he investigates how we perceive others and lectures on (social) psychological topics within and outside of university. By night, Daniel unwinds by making music using synthesizers, samplers and computers.

Nerd Nite Greatest Hits – Five years of Talks and Beers

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Behold it’s Nerd Nite Amsterdam’s birthday! We’ve been nerding it up in Amsterdam for five years now so we decided to celebrate big! How? By doing what we do best: an entire evening filled with nerds taking the stage. Over the years we’ve had more than 50 nerds to impress, inspire and surprise us; so we thought we’d bring back six of our all-time favourites for a blast-from-the-past greatest-hits edition of Nerd Nite.

There will be parallel sessions, quizzes, drinks, surprise elements, groovy tunes and, well, more fellow nerds than you can shake a stick at. Be there and be square!

Writing history in stone on an Arctic volcanic island by Erik Verheul

Erik Verheul
The enigmatic island of Jan Mayen, a volcanic island in the Arctic Ocean, has a rich but nearly forgotten history. On the island, an old and heavily eroded memorial stone tells the story of 7 Dutchmen who died there in an attempt to winter over. In 2014 the Navy ship RNLN Zeeland set out for an expedition to Jan Mayen island, one of their goals being to preserve the cultural heritage there. On board were a large team of scientists, a small team of mountaineers, and a single stone carver. Erik Verheul, the man behind the mission and our fearless leader for this Nerd Nite talk, will take us through remarkable story of the history behind and renovation of the memorial stone: old granite, modern ceramic materials, and granular structures.


Bio: Erik works from 9 to 5 as a civil servant for the government (something with telecommunications). He lives in an average house, has a wife and 2 kids, and drives a Volvo. He dreamed of crossing the Sahara desert, parachute jumping, climbing snow-capped volcanoes, scuba diving, and watching starry nights from a beach in Madagascar. And he did all that, but actually thinks his current job is more fun.

Mathematics of musical harmony. Why does a piano have twelve keys? by Tom Hijmans

Tom Hijmans
On pianos the octave is divided into twelve equal tone steps. Why twelve? Is this just convention, led by our cultural penchant towards dividing things into twelve parts? Think of the dozen, the number inches in a foot, the number of pence in a shilling in old English money, and, of course, the number of hours in a half day. In the case of the piano the twelve key octave is there because of mathematical necessity. That is, if we want to be able to play harmonic music on our instrument. No prior math knowledge required, just a good set of ears!




Bio: Tom Hijmans is an experimental physicist of the UvA. He is also a piano tuner and runs a piano repair workshop from his home, races laser sailing boats and climbs rocks. His favorite animals are the moth and the peregrine falcon. Do ask him why!


It is rocket science, from Scud to Unha-3 by Ralph Savelsberg

Ralph Savelsberg
Developed in Nazi Germany, the V2 was the world’s first ballistic missile. It spawned a Cold War arms race between the world’s superpowers, but also lead to the Scud missile, which gained notoriety in the 1991 Gulf War. Under the leadership of its Bond-villain dictator, Kim Jong-un, North Korea is building ever larger missiles by cleverly applying technology little different from that used by the V2 and Scud. It may be less than a decade away from developing an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of reaching the United States.


Bio: Ralph Savelsberg is a physicist who, after obtaining a PhD and performing wind tunnel experiments in the UK for several years, joined the Netherlands Defence Academy in 2010. There, he teaches officers of the Dutch military about weapons systems and writes computer simulations of ballistic missiles. In his spare time he builds scale models using LEGO.

Please don’t touch? A history of controversial monuments by Eveline van Rijswijk

Eveline van Rijswijk
While biking through the city, do you ever pay attention to the countless statues and monuments around you? Probably not — many of them are just being peed on by dogs. But then there is a small category of statues that trigger huge debates and are even vandalized. As a historian, Eveline van Rijswijk is fascinated by what happens when history makes up its mind and a statue becomes a “monumental mistake”. Come and listen to the story of what happened to Stalin’s boots after a revolutionary crowd sawed his 8-meter-tall bronze statue at its knees and get to know where you can still take a selfie with a statue of Lenin.


Bio: Walk down a street with Eveline, and you’ll soon find out she is a historian. When she’s not telling you everything about an obscure monument or old building you just encountered, she’s probably already looking for the next one. During daytime she trains professors to give cool lectures about science. Now it’s her turn!

The truth is out there… it’s called math! by Michiel Renger

Michiel Renger
Think the Matrix is just a movie? Think again! Reality is a fraud and Plato was right all along… Science, in a way, attempts to reveal the truth behind reality. But what do we even mean by ‘reality’; and is there even such a thing as the truth? …and if it exists, how do we find it? These philosophical questions take us all the way back to Plato, the man that started it all – Mathematics plays an important role in his philosophy. So what is truth in the mathematical world, and how does it relate to reality?


Bio: Michiel Renger studied mathematics in Delft, and after some years of non-math-related jobs, he realised that he really should be doing math. Currently he works as a researcher at the Weierstraß Institute in Berlin, studying limits of an infinite number of particles. If he doesn’t do math, he likes to play dance music on his saxophone and didgeridoo.

The amazing and crazy inventions of Nikola Tesla. Including a demo of artificial lightning by Kjeld Eikema

Kjeld Eikema
Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) was a true genius and one of the most brilliant inventors of all time. Everyone is using his inventions often without knowing it! He invented things like AC electric power, (high-voltage) transformers, radio, power generators, fluorescent lamps, and much more. Some of his ideas where really ahead of his time, inspiring other people to come up with conspiracy theories and bizarre ideas about UFO’s and energy out of nothing. In the talk I will give you an idea about his amazing and crazy inventions, and what Tesla was like as a person (quite weird!). Of course, we will finish with a live demonstration of his most famous invention, the “Tesla coil”, producing sparks with insanely high voltage.


Bio: Kjeld is a professor of experimental physics at the VU University, with a particular liking for things and devices that tend to be dangerous. After his first experiments at age 6, connecting a 1.5V light bulb to the mains, many other experiments followed at home with high voltage, lasers, robots, rockets, and explosives. That was still possible back then, and great fun. Besides hobbies like playing the piano (sort of) he currently likes to test fundamental physics theories using precise (and of course dangerous!) lasers.

Details:

Friday April 15th
Doors open: 20:00
First talks: 20:30
Felix Meritis Zuilenzaal & Shaffyzaal
Tickets: €15,- (includes 1 drink)
Tickets can be found here
Facebook event page (don’t forget to click ‘Going’ and invite your friends, yeah yeah this is what our society has become)

Nerd Nite Greatest Hits: Five Years of Talks and Beers!

12764607_1085158561548485_25654307406622041_o

Behold it’s Nerd Nite Amsterdam’s birthday! We’ve been nerding it up in Amsterdam for five years now so we decided to celebrate big! How? By doing what we do best: an entire evening filled with nerds taking the stage. Over the years we’ve had more than 50 nerds to impress, inspire and surprise us; so we thought we’d bring back six of our all-time favourites for a blast-from-the-past greatest-hits edition of Nerd Nite.

There will be parallel sessions, quizzes, drinks, surprise elements, groovy tunes and, well, more fellow nerds than you can shake a stick at. Please pledge your support and buy a ticket now! Be there and be square!

Details:
Friday April 15th
Doors open: 20:00
First talks: 20:30
Felix Meritis Zuilenzaal & Shaffyzaal
Tickets: €15,- (includes 1 drink)

Featuring:
It is rocket science, from Scud to Unha-3 by Ralph Savelsberg
Mathematics of musical harmony – Why does a piano have twelve keys? by Tom Hijmans
Writing history in stone on an Arctic volcanic island by Erik Verheul
Please don’t touch? A history of controversial monuments by Eveline van Rijswijk
The truth is out there… It’s called math by Michiel Renger
The amazing and crazy inventions of Nikola Tesla – Including a demo of artificial lightning by Kjeld Eikema

Check out the talk descriptions and buy tickets on the Felix Meritis website!

And don’t forget to click ‘Going’ and invite your friends on the Facebook event page!

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Upcoming Nerd Nites

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