Tag Archives: cafe scientifique

November PubSci: Museums and Science

Why museum collections are vital to life on Earth

On Tuesday 20th November we will have museum curator and regular PubSci host Paolo Viscardi talking about museum collections and their value to science, society and species survival.

Continue reading

July PubSci: Terrible Table Manners

The Feeding Habits of Carnivorous Dinosaurs

On Tuesday 17th July Tuesday 24th July we will be finding out more about dinosaur behaviour with Dr. David Hone.

Understanding the diet and feeding habits of long extinct species is a challenge, but it can provide an insight into predator-prey relationships, ecosystem structure and animal behaviour in past environments.

Majungatholus atopus feeding. Artwork by Demetrios M. Vital

Majungatholus atopus feeding. Artwork by Demetrios M. Vital

Dave  is the founder of Ask A Biologist, he runs an excellent blog and he is one of the latest additions to the Guardian’s science blogging stable. He is also an active vertebrate palaeontologist involved in some really interesting research on dinosaurs, pterosaurs and birds. That means he isn’t just reporting on this topic – you’ll be hearing about the research, results and the fossils from the source.

Why not join him for an insight into the science used to explore the feeding habits of the mighty meat-eating dinosaurs – you may never see T. rex and Velociraptor in quite the same way again!

The talk will start around 7:45pm, but the venue (Upstairs at the Ritzy) will be open from 6pm for those who want food, a drink and a bit of geeky chat. Hope to see you there!

Oh yes, and it’s FREE!

March PubSci: 1000 Years of Cultural Amnesia

On Tuesday 6th March at 7:30pm Upstairs at the Brixton Ritzy we will be exploring science in the context of Arabic with Dr Anne-Maria Brennan.

Anne-Maria is a Principal Lecturer in Bioscience and Forensic Biology at London South Bank University. One of her many activities (besides music and co-writing the definitive entry textbook on Ecology) has been to organise, chair and present at conferences for the British Science Association on the Muslim contribution to science.

Islamic heritage in the sciences is a fascinating area that has sometimes been the subject of a form of cultural amnesia – why not join us to find out more about the causes, consequences and cures?

February PubSci: Darwin Day

On Tuesday 7th February we will be celebrating Darwin Day Upstairs at the Brixton Ritzy.

Paolo Viscardi will lead the celebrations with a talk on Darwin’s life, his evolutionary ideas and their lasting legacy. Then we can get down to the serious business of discussion about some of the issues raised over a beer.

Join us from 6pm if you want to get food, drink and conversation. The more formal bit won’t start until 7:30pm and the talk will probably kick off at 8pm. Oh, and as always, PubSci is free!

We hope you can make it!

November PubSci – FIRE!

Fire Science

At 7:30pm on Tuesday 1st November 2011 (just a few days before Bonfire Night), we will be exploring the science of FIRE with Fire & Explosion scientist Claire Benson ‘Burner’.

FIRE

This is your chance to find out about how and why forensic scientists undertake fire investigation, with details about everything from charring to explosive combustion.

Here’s a taster:

All of this excitement is free and can be had over a pint of beer, or perhaps some flaming sambucas if you really want to get into the mood.

Usual venue upstairs at the Brixton Rizty – hope to see you there!

(N.B. This video contains some of the greatest dance moves ever seen)

October PubSci: Ig Nobel Prizes

Ig Nobel Prizes

On 29th September 2011 a very exciting event will be taking place – the 21st Ig Nobel Prize ceremony.

For those who aren’t aware of the Ig Nobel Prizes, they celebrate the best of research that makes people LAUGH and then THINK.

Past winners have carried out research on swearing as a response to pain, the microbiological laboratory hazard of bearded men and fellatio in fruitbats.

We don’t know who the winners for this year will be yet, but at 7:30pm Tuesday 4th October, Upstairs at the Ritzy in Brixton, be prepared to discuss and debate the finer points of the kind of science that brought us levitating frogs and homosexual necrophiliac mallards (which we have discussed before).

And of course, we will be running another live experiment. Hope to see you there!

To Boldly Go… to the Pub

September’s PubSci – Beer and Galaxies

On Tuesday 6th September Upstairs at the Brixton Ritzy starting at 7:30pm (although you can come earlier if you like) our Designated Scientist Alice Sheppard of Galaxy Zoo will give you a glimpse into the world of Astronomy and Citizen Science over a pint of something nice.

This will be followed by a live experiment and probably a debate (if previous months are anything to go by)!

Galaxy Zoo

Astronomy has been the subject of wonder and speculation for as long as historical records exist (and probably for longer than that). As with all science, people got some things right and – even with the best methods available – some things wrong.

Since 2007 Alice Sheppard has run the Galaxy Zoo Forum, the discussion area for an online astronomy project with 300,000 members worldwide. Galaxy Zoo has so far produced 21 papers, whose authors and acknowledged contributors include several ‘ordinary’ citizens. Some of the findings were a direct result of questions or collections of objects created by users, who became “Citizen Scientists”.

Alice takes us through some of the best and worst of astronomical history and what ancient and modern mistakes have been made. We will hear about the questions people have brought to Galaxy Zoo, the ways in which biases have been found and dealt with by the scientists and participants, the beautiful and inspiring projects created by untrained people and the scientific thinking they have learned to apply for themselves.

We also take a look at citizen science in general, how Galaxy Zoo has taught large numbers of people to understand and use science and we will explore what this might mean for engaging the wider public.

By day Alice is an office superviser at a charity for disabled people; by night she writes about science and astronomy

The Experiment

After the talk you will get the chance (or be forcibly coerced) to be involved in a live experiment.

The Debate

A chance to discuss the most recent issues in science, if you have something to get off your chest about science, now is the time to do it.

See you on Tuesday!