Past Meet-ups


Meet-Up (01/17) - Egyptian Pyramid Builders

* New Location *

Richard ReddingThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, January 17th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Classic Cup Cafe. Our special guest will be Dr. Richard Redding, Associate Research Scientist at the Kelsey Museum.

Dr. Redding will be discussing his past and current research in the fields of archaeology, pastoralism, and archaeozoology.  He has published many articles of which you can find a detailed list on the umich.academia website.  He has been featured in documentaries regarding the Egyptian pyramids, and has been the subject of several stories such as these two in science magazines (How 10,000 Pyramid Builders Got Fed and Meat Production Crucial to Egypt’s Pyramid Builders).

You can find a great resource of archaeology articles written for the lay public at AERA of which Dr. Redding is a contributing member.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the discussion at approximately 4:30pm.

There is no cost to attend but donations to cover the guest speaker’s meal and beverages, as well as general group expenses are appreciated.

This should be a fun conversation, but seating is limited so you must make a reservation to guarantee a spot (including any additional people that come with you).  And please update your RSVP if you can not attend.  Thank you!

If interested in attending, please RSVP here or on our Meet-Up page.

Classic Cup Cafe

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Have some time to kill before the meet-up? Check out the Great Lakes Zoological Society’s “A World of Discovery” located just down the road from our get-together venue.   There is $1 off coupon located on our website.

Great Lakes Zoological Society


Meet-Up (10/25) – The Impact of Information

* New Location *

eytan-adarThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, October 25th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Classic Cup Cafe. Our special guest will be Dr. Eytan Adar, Associate Professor of Information and Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, at the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan.

This will be a little different from past meet-ups, but I think it will be a fun topic to learn more about … especially those of us who use the internet a lot.

Dr. Adar’s research is on temporal-informatics which is the study of the change of information—and our consumption of it—over time.   He has had numerous papers published ranging from a variety of topics such as benevolent deception in human-computer interaction, a better way of organizing your internet feeds, the dynamics of web content, and more.

The conversation for this meetup will likely touch on many different topics, but it will have the common theme of how information on the internet is affecting us all.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the informal Q & A at approximately 4:30pm.

There is no cost to attend but donations to cover the guest speaker’s meal and beverages, as well as general group expenses are appreciated.ClassicCupThumbnail

 

If interested in attending, please RSVP here or on our Meeup page.

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Have some time to kill before the meet-up? Check out the Great Lakes Zoological Society’s “A World of Discovery” located just down the road from our get-together venue.   Admission is just $8 (children 3-11 $5.50).  And there is a $1 off coupon located on our website.

Great Lakes Zoological Society


(04/19) Observing the Universe: Telescopes

Mario-Mateo-HeadshotThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, April 19 from 4:00 to 7:00pm at Cubs AC. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. Mario Matteo, professor of Astronomy at the University of Michigan.  We will be discussing his research into studying the universe through telescopes and other survey instrumentation.  Dr. Matteo is one of the leading developers of some of the most sophisticated instruments of observation in the world.  And very recently, some of his work challenges the current models of dark matter as an explanatory reason of the distribution of mass in nearby galaxies.

This should be an exciting topic of conversation, so I urge you to RSVP early.  And if you do RSVP, and learn that you will be unable to attend, please update your RSVP.  There will be a limit of 35 people.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering of food and beverages. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.

There is no cost to attend but donations to cover the guest speaker’s meal and beverages, as well as general group expenses (including our upcoming Scientists Fair event), are appreciated.

You can RSVP here or on our Meetup page.


Meet-Up (04/05) – Innovation in Manufacturing & Engineering

jay guoThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, April 5th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at Cubs AC. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. L Jay Guo, professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Guo’s area of specialty is Optoelectronics; Biophotonics; Nanotechnology and Nanofabrication.  So we will discuss these topics, as well as understand our current state of utilizing cutting-edge technologies in the manufacturing world.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.

There is no cost to attend but donations to cover the guest speaker’s meal and beverages, as well as general group expenses, are appreciated.

You can RSVP here or on our Meetup Page


Meet-Up (02/15) – Plant Evolution and 'The Tree of Life Project'

Steve SmithThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, February 15th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. Stephen Smith, an evolutionary biologist and Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.  His research focuses on plant evolution, detecting and describing large scale patterns of evolution, examining differences in the rate of molecular evolution, and using new data sources like transcriptomes and genomes to address these questions.

He is also currently working on the Tree of Life project, a collaborative effort by “biologists and nature enthusiasts” to “provide information about biodiversity, the characteristics of different groups of organisms, and their evolutionary history.”  A recent story from the University of Michigan News Service describes this project in relation to determining how plants evolved to survive in cold weather.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.

There is no cost to attend but donations to cover the guest speaker’s meal and beverages, as well as general group expenses, are appreciated.

You can RSVP here.


Meet-Up (01/25) – Origin of Organics in Solar System Formation

RuudVisser6The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, January 25th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Ruud Visser.  His research focuses on the chemical aspects of low-mass star formation. Combining observations and computer simulations, he ultimately wants to understand how the Sun and the Earth were formed and how life emerged.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.

There is no cost to attend but donations to cover the guest speaker’s meal and beverages, as well as general group expenses, are appreciated.

You can RSVP here.


Meet-Up (11/16) – “Science Publishing”

Nick WiggingtonThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, November 16th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Nick Wiggington, associate editor of Science magazine.  Nick will be discussing science publishing.  He can talk about the process in which scientific research is qualified, peer-reviewed, and ultimately published.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.

There is no fee for admission but donations to cover the guest speakers’ meal and beverages, as well as group expenses, are welcome.

You can RSVP here or on our Meetup page.


Meet-Up (10/26) – “Stem Cells and Cancer Research”

Eugene ManleyThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, September 21st from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. Eugene Manley, an engineer and biologist focusing on the intersection of biology and orthopedics. Dr. Manley will talk about his PhD work in which he analyzed cancer stem cells in lung cancer, as well as his current research on locating genes that control bone size as a potential target for preventing fracture risk later in life.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.

Please RSVP here or on our Meetup Page.

There is no fee for admission but donations to cover the guest speakers’ meal and beverages, as well as group expenses are welcome.


Meet-Up (09/21) – "The Dark Energy Survey"

DavidGerdes-150x150The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, September 21st from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. David Gerdes, cosmologist and physics professor at the University of Michigan.  Dr. Gerdes will talk about the Dark Energy Survey, a project that will allow researchers to look into the distant past when the universe was just beginning.  The hope is, in Gerde’s words, “to watch dark energy turn on….”

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.

Please RSVP here or on our Meetup Page.

There is no fee for admission but donations to cover the guest speakers’ meal and beverages, as well as group expenses are welcome.


Meet-Up (06/08) – "Communication Amongst Non-Human Primates"

gustisonThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, June 8th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Morgan Gustison, doctoral graduate student in the Psychology Department at the University of Michigan. She has studied non-human primates since 2007, and her experiences range from the wild to the laboratory. Morgan will provide a presentation about her research regarding lip-smacking by gelada monkeys, and its implication on non-human primate communication.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the presentation at approximately 4:30.

There will be a limit of 30 participants at this meetup.  Please RSVP here.

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Saturday, May 25th “Scientists Fair II”

A2 S&S Logo - for BlogLocated in the Multi-Purpose room (in the lower level of the main branch), there will be several professors and researchers from the University of Michigan and other institutions with expertise in general fields of knowledge, available to answer your questions. Some of the topics will include particle physics, human cloning, climate change, the Big Bang, and more.

You can watch a short video about the Scientists Fair here (video).

The purpose of this event is to not only acquaint people to scientific knowledge, but also to how that knowledge is obtained. We want people to ask these experts how theories are supported with experimentation, what hypotheses were tested and confirmed or falsified, and to what extent is there consensus amongst their colleagues about a given theory.

Pic3 Participants talking with physicists Dr. Sean Tulin and Dr. Brian Nord


Meet-Up (04/20) – “The Science Of Volcanology”

mooreThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics is having a meet-up on Saturday, April 20th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C.restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. Gordon Moore, geologist and assistant research scientist at the University of Michigan.  Dr. Moore will talk about the science of studying volcanoes.  And what’s a discussion about volcanoes without some cool pictures of volcanoes? We’ll have some of those as well.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we will start the conversation at approximately 4:30.


Meet-Up (02/16) – “The Ethics of Animal Testing”

CarlCohenThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, February 16th from 5:00 to 8:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C.restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar. (*) note new time

Our special guest will be Dr. Carl Cohen, professor of philosophy.  Carl is an advocate for animal testing in scientific research and has strong opinions on the issue of animal rights in general.

You can familiarize yourself with some examples of Carl’s writings/lectures here:

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then there we will start the conversation at approximately 5:45.

As a courtesy to the host and restaurant staff, please RSVP for you and other guests that you are bringing, so that I can provide an accurate tally.  Thanks!

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (01/19) – “The Higgs and other particles that Matter”

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, January 19th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C.restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. Sean Tulin, theoretical particle physicist.  Sean was one of our guests at last year’s Scientists Fair.  Sean will help answer our questions and provide explanations for how theoretical particle physics provides insight into the laws of nature.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then there will be an informal conversation about particle physics

As a courtesy to the host and restaurant staff, please RSVP for you and other guests that you are bringing, so that I can provide an accurate tally.  Thanks!

RSVP here.

(picture of Sean Tulin taken from Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics: Scientists Fair)


Meet-Up (10/27) – “Evolution and Human Behavior”

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, October 27th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Choosy Women, Cheating MenOur special guest will be Dr. Tom Shellberg, retired professor of biology at Henry Ford Community College. Tom is the author of Choosy Women and Cheating Men: Evolution and Human Behavior. He has also written a paper for Human Ethology Bulletin (page 9).  He was also featured on an episode of Atheists Speak Up! which is produced by the Michigan Atheists (youtube).

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then there will be an informal conversation about evolution, natural selection, and human behavior.

As a courtesy to the host and restaurant staff, please RSVP for you and other guests that you are bringing, so that I can provide an accurate tally.  Thanks!

*picture of Tom Shellberg taken from Michigan Atheists: Atheists Speak Up

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (10/03) – “The Future of Evolutionary Genomics”

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics will be having our October ‘Skeptics in the Pub’ on Wednesday, October 3, at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant from 6:00 to 8:00pm. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.  We will be having a speaker for this meet-up, Dr. Jeffrey Boone, to discuss the impact of gene sequencing on biological science.

BIO: Jeffrey L. Boore, Ph.D., is CEO of Genome Project Solutions, Inc. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of California Berkeley. He holds a Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Michigan and a B.S. in Biology from Penn State University. He retired at the rank of Lt Colonel after more than 20 years in the US Air Force and Air National Guard. He was previously Head of Evolutionary Genomics (and currently a guest researcher) at the DOE Joint Genome Institute (Berkeley National Laboratory) where he was instrumental in guiding the transition from human genome sequencing to being a comparative genomics facility and in establishing the “Community Sequencing Program“, which allocates $20 million per year to genomics projects. Dr. Boore has led 22 grant-funded projects totaling over $12 million, overseen numerous whole genome sequencing projects, authored over 100 scientific publications, delivered over 230 scientific presentations, and served on numerous advisory boards and panels, including those to the National Science Foundation, US Department of Agriculture, National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, and National Institutes of Health.

Colonial Lanes is located on South Industrial (off of Eisenhower). As you walk up to the building, the entrance to the restaurant part of the establishment is on the left.

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (09/22) – Paranormal Investigations with Grimstone Inc.

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, September 22th from 5:00 to 8:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. As usual, we’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Chris Bailey, of the paranormal investigation group called Grimstone Inc.  Chris was a guest back in August of 2011.  He can appreciate the skepticism that most of us share about the existence of paranormal phenomena and will be ready to hear our reservations.  I urge you to explore the website, especially the Press Release section for information about the group and past investigations.

Chris is a physical scientist by trade, and has been interested in the paranormal ever since he was a child.  You can listen to my interview of him here on Critical Wit podcast.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the informal Q & A at approximately 5:45pm.

 

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (08/18) - Economics & Skepticism: Overview, Misconceptions, & Biases

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, August 18th from 4:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C.restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. Miles Kimball, Professor of Economics and Survey Research at the University of Michigan.  Kimball is the blogger at Confessions of a Supply-Side Liberal.  According to his blog, he “is an independent who grew up in an apolitical family. He holds many strong opinions—open to revision in response to cogent arguments—that do not line up neatly with either the Republican or Democratic Party.”  Kimball will help foster a conversation about how we can be better critical thinkers and skeptics when we encounter economic arguments.  This meet-up will hopefully help us to recognize and better understand where our own ideological biases may be affecting our reasoning.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the informal Q & A at approximately 4:45pm.

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (07/21) – Extraterrestrial Life Detection Research

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, July 21st from 4:00 to 6:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C.restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Shaneen Braswell, astrobiologist from the University of Michigan.  Shaneen Braswell currently is a research assistant in the Planetary Science Laboratory under the direction of Dr. Nilton Renno at the University of Michigan. Her research focuses on characterizing the effects of solutes on the growth and survival of Mars microbial analogs.  Her research interests lie at the intersection of space exploration, engineering and biology.


The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the informal Q & A at approximately 4:30pm.

 

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (06/16) – “Stem Cell Research”

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, June 16th from 5:00 to 7:00pm at the Colonial Lanes/Cubs A.C. restaurant. We’ll be in the back room located down the short hallway past the bar.

Our special guest will be Dr. Simon Lunn, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Lunn’s research interests focus on the mechanisms of neurological disease, such as ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) or “Lou Gehrig’s disease.”  Dr. Lunn is part of the Stem Cell Initiative.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the informal Q & A at approximately 5:30pm.

RSVP here.


The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics: Scientists Fair (05/19)

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics invite you to our first ever Scientists Fair.

Located in the Multi-Purpose room of the AADL downtown library (in the lower level of the main branch), there will be scientists from the University of Michigan with expertise in evolution, climate change, the origin of the universe, particle physics, and space exploration all available to answer any questions you have about these topics.

The purpose of this event is to not only acquaint the public to scientific knowledge, but also to how that knowledge is obtained.  For example, this can be done by asking the researchers some of the following questions:

  1. How are theories about [The Big Bang, Global Warming, Evolution, etc.] supported with experimentation?
  2. What hypotheses were tested and confirmed or falsified?
  3. And to what extent is there consensus amongst their peers?

The event will run from 1:00pm to 3:00pm on Saturday May 19th.

Please share this post with anyone you know who is interested in science!

Links for Reference:

And you can like us on Facebook!

View the flyer for more information.

 


Meet-Up (04/28) – “Q & A with James Randi”

James RandiThe Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, April 28th from 4:00 to 6:00pm at SRT Solutions.  We’ll be located in the conference room. Our special guest will be James Randi!

Via video skype, Randi will be available for about a half hour to talk about skeptical activism and answer your questions.

There will be pizza, soda and water, and a raffle for some James Randi-autographed books.  There will be a $5 suggested donation, which will cover food and beverages as well as help support our Scientists Fair in May.  There will be limited seating of about 40 people, so please RSVP early, and update your RSVP as needed.

SRT SolutionsSRT Solutions is located on the corner of 5th and Washington in downtown Ann Arbor. Entrance is on 5th Avenue, take elevator to the second floor and into the conference room.

 

You can RSVP here.


Meet-Up (03/17) – “Pregnant Primates and the 'Bruce Effect'”

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, March 17th from 1:30 to 3:30pm at the downtown public library.  We’ll be located in the Free Space Room on the third floor (go upstairs, turn right and go down the hallway).  Our special guest will be Eila Roberts, researcher and graduate student at the University of Michigan, where her area of research is biopsychology.

Eila Roberts was one of the researchers that studied primates, and published a paper in Science Express, that stated pregnant primates (geladas) intentionally miscarried when a new dominant male entered the group.  This is called “the Bruce Effect” which had only been observed in mice.  You can find a news report here.

The first part of the event will be announcements.  The announcements will include an update of the Scientists Fair, as well announcing who will be the special guest at our April meet-up.  After the announcements, Eila will give a presentation about her research, followed by a Q & A until 3:30pm.

And afterwards, we’ll beat the St. Patrick’s Day rush, and head out to a nearby pub for refreshments.

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (02/18) – "The Sustainability & Efficacy of Organic Farming"

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, February 18th from 5:00 to 7:00pm at the Classic Cup Cafe. Our special guest will be Dr. Catherine Badgley, assistant professor of Biology at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Badgley is an advocate of organic farming, and believes that it would have many benefits to all societies. She also argues that organic farming itself is sustainable and could feed the entire world.  She is currently teaching a course called ‘Food, Land, and Society,’ which explores global and local food issues.

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the informal Q & A at approximately 5:30pm.

RSVP here.

*picture was used by permission from Mitten Press.


Meet-Up (01/21) – "Dr. David Gorski: Science-Based Medicine"

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, January 21st from 5:00 to 7:00pm (*note the new time!) at the Classic Cup Cafe. Our special guest will be Dr. David Gorski, a surgical oncologist at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, and a managing editor for the blog, Science-Based Medicine (SBM), a blog “dedicated to evaluating medical treatments and products of interest to the public in a scientific light, and promoting the highest standards and traditions of science in health care.” Much of the discussion at this meet-up will focus on CAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine) treatments. Dr. Gorski can also talk about vaccines, and provide an answer to “why there’s still no cure for cancer.”

The first part of the event will be for general socializing and ordering refreshments. After which, there will be some announcements, and then we’ll start the informal Q & A at approximately 5:45pm.

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (12/17) –"Alternative Theory To The World Trade Center's Destruction”

*THIS MEET-UP HAS REACHED FULL CAPACITY, NO SEATS REMAIN*

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having our next meet-up on Saturday, December 17th from 4:00 to 6:00pm at the Classic Cup Cafe. We will be hosting Stanley A. Beattie, a representative of the Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth.  Stanley will be providing his arguments and reasoning as to why the AE911Truth members believe that the World Trade Center was destroyed by explosive demolition.

The first part of the meet-up will be food/snacks/beverages and socializing with others.  We will then have a short presentation, and then we will move onto the main discussion with Mr. Beattie.
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Meet-Up (11/13) – "Tour the 'World of Discovery'"

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Sunday, November 13th from 1:00 to 3:00pm at the The Great Lakes Zoological Society’s Conservation & Rescue Center (A World of Discovery).  It’s located at 6885 Jackson Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48103 (map).

It will feature a a guided tour of the facility, as we see reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates, birds, and other exotic animals.

Not to mention the two 80+ pound tortoises!

There is an admission charge of $7 per person (payable to the Center at the meet-up), discounted admission of $5 for children and seniors.  Feel free to bring family, children, and friends!

RSVP here.


Meet-Up (10/22) – Mathematical Estimation As A Skeptical Tool

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, October 22nd from 3:30 to 6:00pm at the Classic Cup Cafe.  It will feature a presentation by Dr. Aaron Santos, physicist and author of How Many Licks?: Or, How to Estimate Damn Near Anything.  The presentation will be about the value of using mathematical estimation as a skeptical tool.

We will also have a fun activity with prizes.  The first part of the meet-up will be food/snacks/beverages and socializing with others.  The presentation will begin at 4:30.

If there’s anyone who would like to get an estimation of something (anything), then please e-mail me your question, and I will forward it to Aaron for him to incorporate into the presentation.

Some examples of estimations he’s calculated:

How sensitive would a shark’s nose have to be in order to detect a drop of blood from one mile away? (inspired by the Gillette ProGlide / Shark shaving commercial)

How long would it take your body heat to raise the temperature of the room by 1° F? (inspired by the scene in Mission Impossible where Tom Cruise’s character is lowered into a room with temperature-sensitive alarms)

RSVP here!


Meet-Up (10/08) - Panel Discussion On Asian Carp Skepticism

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having our next meet-up on Saturday, October 8th from 3:30 to 6:00pm at the Classic Cup Cafe. We will be hosting a panel discussion with scientists and researchers about the reported Asian Carp issue.  Our panelists will discuss skepticism of the scientific and economical arguments regarding the issue, as well as posit ideas on possible underlying motivations for promoting the Asian Carp as a threat to the Great Lakes ecosystems.  There will be an open Q & A portion in which members can apply their skills of skepticism to the panelists’ skepticism.

Due to constraints of space, we can only have up to 20 guests.  We will be video recording this event, and posting it on our website.  So please RSVP through our website if you plan on attending or not (and adjust it if anything changes).

The first part of the meet-up will be food/snacks/beverages and socializing with others.  The panel discussion will begin  at 4:30.

For a review of the skepticism on Asian Carp, please refer to my August 1 post.

Photo by Kate Gardiner, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial license.


Meet-Up (08/20) – On Empiricism & Skepticism: The Philosophy of David Hume

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Saturday, August 20th from 4:00 to 6:00pm at the Classic Cup Cafe. We will be discussing the Scottish philosopher, David Hume, considered to be one of the greatest philosophers of the English Language. Our guest will be Dr. Louis Loeb.  Much of the discussion will focus on Hume’s approach to empiricism and skepticism. This will be an informal Q & A.

Here are some materials that we will likely discuss at the meet-up, that you may wish to reference prior to the meet-up:

  • *A Treatise of Human Nature*, Book I (“Of the Understanding”), especially Parts I, III, and IV.  Audiobook Version [Note: This is a lot of material and can be a little tough going]
  • *An Enquiry concerning the Human Understanding* (aka “The First Enquiry”). – Audiobook Version
  • *Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion* – Audiobook Version

A podcast of this event can be found on the Downloads page under Resources.


Meet-Up (06/29) - Great Lakes & Ocean Ecosystems

The Ann Arbor Science & Skeptics are having a meet-up on Wednesday, June 29th.  We will be meeting at the Old Town Tavern in downtown Ann Arbor at 6:00.

We will be discussing the issue of water ecosystems, including a discussion on how various things can impact a water ecosystem (such as climate change, agriculture, pollution, and invasive species). Our guest will be Dr. Don Scavia.


Meet Up (06/02) - Nuclear Energy

A gathering of science enthusiasts, critical thinkers, and rational-minded skeptics to enjoy some food and beverages at the Old Town Tavern from 6pm to 8pm AND to discuss the issue of nuclear energy, including a discussion on the Fukushima power plant disaster.  Our guest will be Dr. William Martin.

 


Meet-Up (05/07) – The Large Hadron Collider

A gathering of science enthusiasts, critical thinkers, and rational-minded skeptics to enjoy some food and beverages at the Classic Cup Cafe from 3:30pm to 6pm AND to discuss the Large Hadron Collider, specifically what particle physicists hope to find. Our guest will be Dr. Brian Wecht.  Brian is a postdoctoral researcher in theoretical particle physics and string theory.  He is also the co-host of the Story Collider podcast.

Edit: A podcast version of this event was made into an episode of Critical Wit.  You can download or listen to it here.


Meet-Up (03/15) – The Expansion of the Universe

A gathering of science enthusiasts, critical thinkers, and rational-minded skeptics to enjoy some food and beverages at the Old Town Tavern from 6pm to 8pm AND to discuss the issue of dark energy (and it’s relevance to the expansion of the universe), including a discussion on how the observations and experiments that scientists are doing in measuring this phenomena.  Our guest will be Dr. David Gerdes.


Meet-Up (02/15) – Genetic Technologies

A gathering of science enthusiasts, critical thinkers, and rational-minded skeptics to enjoy some food and beverages at the Old Town Tavern from 6pm to 8pm AND to discuss the issue of genetic technologies, including corporations patenting gene discoveries and home DNA tests (and how it relates to privacy).  Our guest will be Dr. Shobita Parthasarathy.