NNEB 2016-02

Poster designed by Cindy Wang.

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A Nerd Nite East Bay on Leap Day! We’re celebrating with three great talks and booze. And you?

Join us to hear from two-time NNSF alumnerd Brian Seitel about the great vowel shift, UC Berkeley’s Lauren Ponisio on habitats for local pollinators, and finally Evan and Valkyrie Savage on Jugger, an unusual and violent sport dreamed up by David Peoples of Blade Runner and Twelve Monkeys fame.

Doors will open promptly at 7. Ann-Marie Benz will run the preshow again. This month will be Speed Friending, a giant icebreaker for everyone that attends. During the event you will quickly talk with multiple people and not stay in a conversation with any one person too long. Nerd Nite has the most interesting people attending it, including you, and this way we can all say hello. Bring business cards, or we’ll have paper for you to get the info of anyone you want to contact. We think this will be great fun for the first couple-of-dozen people. So come early to chat with old friends or to make new ones.

The bar also opens at 7 and Chickpea Chick will sell food.

Rick, Rebecca, DJ Ion the Prize, and the Oakland Public Library will accept all Bachelor’s Day dance requests.

Be there and be square.

This event is 21+.

Monday 2/29/2016
Doors (+food,drink,"Detention" preshow) at 7 pm, talks start at 8 pm and end by 10:30 pm
Club 21, 2111 Franklin St, Oakland
(two blocks from the 19th St BART)

Advance tickets are $8 and are available until 3PM the day of the show or until they sell out.
Your CC statement will denote these come from Drinkified Learning, LLC.
Door tickets are $10 (cash or card).


The Great Vowel Shift by Brian Seitel

Somewhere between Chaucer and Shakespeare, the way the English language was spoken changed almost completely — and no one knows why! This phenomenon is known as The Great Vowel Shift. Over the course of the talk, Brian will answer all of your burning questions about linguistic history, such as: Do vowels really shift? What does that mean? Was Chaucer really a dirty old man? And what is a dipthong, anyway? By the end of the night, you’ll know how to talk like Chaucer while also discovering a new appreciation for another book that is one of the most widely printed books of all time.

A two-time Nerd Nite San Francisco alum, Brian attended Jacksonville State University in Alabama. Armed with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and a Masters in Secondary Education, he crammed knowledge down the throats of high schoolers for two years before relocating to the Bay Area. Oddly, he somehow wound up in the world of startups and software engineering. His ultimate goal is to change the world. Results pending.

On-Farm Habitat Enhancements in Agricultural Landscapes for Pollinators: Bringing Bees Back to Ag by Lauren Ponisio

The unintended consequences of our agricultural food system – polluted air and water, dead zones in coastal seas, soil erosion – have profound impacts on human health and the environment. In particular, agriculture is one of the leading drivers of biodiversity loss. To slow the rate of global species loss, it is imperative to understand how to restore and maintain wildlife in agricultural landscapes. Recently there has been a shift toward promoting wildlife in these landscapes for the “services” they provide to agriculture, like pollination or pest control. The underpinning assumption is that we can have our cake and eat it too – that the same techniques that enhance services are also those that help to restore species of conservation concern. It is unclear, however, whether this is actually possible because the species that provide the services may not be the ones that are most threatened. Using decade long study of on-farm habitat restoration in the form of native plant “hedgerows” in the intensively managed agricultural landscape of the Central Valley of California, we ask whether we can conserve diverse native bee communities while also enhancing pollination services.

Lauren Ponisio’s greatest loves are bees and statistics. In addition, as a native of the Central Valley, Lauren has a personal connection to issues concerning the sustainability of agriculture, and her primary life’s goal is to make agricultural systems better for people and wildlife. As a graduate student at UC Berkeley, Lauren investigates strategies for designing agricultural systems to promote biodiversity conservation, and the links between conservation strategies and improving livelihoods.

Jugger: A Brief History of People Gently Hitting Each Other WithSticks by Evan and Valkyrie Savage

Jugger is a fast-paced team field sport akin to Capture the Flag with big foam swords. The sport comes from a post-apocalyptic film written and directed by Berkeley local Dave Peoples (screenwriter for Blade Runner and 12 Monkeys). Depicted therein as a ruthless bloodsport, it was later adapted for real-world play at two separate times: once in Germany by Berlin’s post-wall punks, once here in the US by existing LARP and boffer sports communities. We’ll explain Jugger through images and live game footage, dive into these parallel evolutions of the sport, and speculate wildly about how it rose to popularity in Germany while languishing in obscurity in America…until now.

Evan and Valkyrie Savage founded Jugger California in 2014 after a serendipitous brush with the sport abroad several years earlier. They have taught hundreds to play Jugger at Bay Area festivals, birthday parties, and club practices; and competed in the first international tournament held on American soil as part of the East Bay’s Berkeley Riot team. By day, Valkyrie is a PhD student at Berkeley working on design tools for 3D printing, and Evan is a consulting developer building personal data visualization tools with Intel.