Thursday, May 23: Nerd Nite Season Finale! 7 pm, $10. 

The 2018-19 Nerd Nite Toronto season is coming to an end! Join us for the season finale on May 23rd at the Tranzac.

Talk # 1: Here Today, Gone Tomorrow: Reversing Our Throw Away Culture

By Michele Mastroeni

Science Fiction is a great tool for helping us think about the future, and it gives us licence to think of possibilities without voices automatically saying “no” or “that won’t work.” Sci Fi, along with pockets of activity in our current society, can show us what the future may look like or what we can achieve in embracing sustainability.

I will explore our attitudes towards technology and the products we consume, their longevity and disposability, and whether we can imagine different attitudes and possibilities. In current Western society, a large amount of consumer goods is disposable or readily displaced by the next version of the same product – many times without any notable user-benefit besides the cachet of having “the next new thing.” In science fiction, there are many examples of technology that has value despite its being old and long-lasting. In the Star Wars universe, for example, droids can be centuries old and starships can be decades old. We see the development of real sub-cultures in our society looking to re-embrace long-lasting goods, or heading to Repair Cafés to keep their waste to a minimum. What can we learn from these examples, and how can we shift our current consumer culture of disposability to a more sustainable one?

About Michele: As Assistant Professor and Graduate Program Director at OCAD University in Strategic Foresight and Innovation, Michele conducts research in the areas of innovation systems and innovation policy. His work has included topics such as the regulation of agricultural biotechnology, new biomedical business models, policy toolkits for regional development, and innovation in the armed forces. Before moving to OCAD, Michele worked as senior policy advisor for the Ontario provincial government, senior research associate for two think-tanks, and research fellow at the University of Edinburgh Innogen Institute, in the area of innovation and research policy.

Talk # 2: The NEW Music of the Spheres

By Matt Russo

While pursuing degrees in jazz guitar and astrophysics I had the silly idea that music and astronomy had very little in common. Then in 2017, the discovery of an exquisitely musical planetary system showed me just how wrong I was and I’ve since become a sonic explorer of the cosmos. I’ll share some of the universe’s greatest hits (and misses) and show you how listening to astronomy can give us a new perspective on our role in the celestial symphony.

About Matt: Matt Russo is a lecturer in the Department of Physics at the University of Toronto and a professor of astronomy and music at Seneca College. He is a co-founder of SYSTEM Sounds, a science-art outreach project that converts the rhythms and harmonies of the cosmos into music and sound. His TED Talk “What does the universe sound like? A Musical Tour” has been viewed over 1 million times.

We'll have two amazing talks, trivia, nerdy raffle, and more! Only $10 at the door.

Stay tuned for details of the Nite's talks!

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