Author Archive

Pandemic Portraits and Transplantation

Event poster - 17th December. Pandemic Portraits, Transplants. Nerd Nite Brighton Online.

We are back, bringing more evidence-based entertainment to you in the comfort of your own living room. We have two more nerdishly passionate speakers, the usual nerdy news and quiz, and some festive surprises.

BYOMPABW (bring your own mince pies and mulled wine). Be there and be square!

Our speakers this month are:

Dr. Hannah Maple – “But my mum says I’m cool” – Why being a transplant surgeon is the best job in the world

Nick Sayers – #NickDrawsNationals: Drawing portraits of life during a global pandemic

£4 Regular nerds

£3 Unemployed/furloughed/skint/students

Tickets from Eventbrite

All proceeds will go to a different local charity each month. This month we are supporting Clock Tower Sanctury. The Clock Tower Sanctuary was founded in 1998 by a group of concerned people who wanted to do something about the rising homelessness in the city. Ever since then, it’s been their mission to work with young homeless people to help them to move from crisis to stability.

Our speakers this month:

Hannah Maple

Hannah Maple somehow managed to become a transplant surgeon, despite being a) from Crawley and b) a woman. She graduated from Guy’s, King’s and St Thomas’ medical school in 2007 and currently works as a transplant registrar at Guy’s Hospital, London. She is known as the ‘pink and fluffy one’ due to her interest in health psychology and love of cats and penguins. She was awarded a PhD in 2015 for her thesis which attempted to measure how living kidney donors benefit psychologically from their donation. Hannah is also a Lecturer in Transplant & General Surgery and Vice-Chair of ELPAT (Ethical Legal and Psychosocial Aspects of organ Transplantation arm of ESOT. She is a world expert in the practice of altruistic kidney donation (where someone donates a kidney to someone they do not know) and is branching out into the complex mystical world of medication non-adherence. In her spare time she likes to think about what she would do in her spare time, if she had any. Twitter: @TransplantMaple

Nick Sayers

Nick Sayers is a science-inspired artist based in Brighton. In 2020 he embarked on two Covid-19 art projects: first drawing portraits of neighbours on his street while talking about life during the pandemic, and then doing the same by Zoom video chat, with people in countries around the world. In pre-pandemic life, he has made drawing machines from bicycles, six-month-exposure pinhole cameras from beer cans, geodesic shelter domes from estate agent signs, and has Cycled The Solar System in Goa. He has shown his work internationally at art and science events in countries including Azerbaijan, Canada, Greece, Egypt, India, South Korea, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan and USA. Twitter: @NickSayers

Crashing galaxies and conspiracy theories

Event poster. Reads Thursday 19th November 2020. Crashing galaxies - Conspiracies. Nerd Nite Brighton Online. Image includes our glasses logo with galaxies in the lenses.
NNB67: Crashing galaxies and conspiracy theories, 19th November 2020

Facebook event

Tickets from Eventbrite (£4 Regular nerds / £3 Concessions)

Nerd Nite Brighton is back! Evidence-based entertainment in the comfort of your own living room. We have two nerdishly passionate speakers, nerdy news and our fabulous quiz. It’s BYOCAB (bring your own cake and beer). Be there and be square!

Hosted by Dr Mick Taylor, our speakers this month are:

Dr Jillian Scudder: The Galaxy is crashing. (Don’t worry.)

Ben Bailey: We Are All Conspiracy Theorists Now

All proceeds from our online events will go to a different local charity each month. This month we are supporting Impact InitiativesEstablished 40 years ago, Impact Initiatives aims to give individuals and communities the support they need to improve their quality of life and feel a part of a wider community. From social activities or after school care to advocacy or counselling, employment support or housing they support people of all ages.

Our speakers this month:

Jillian Scudder

Jillian is an assistant professor of physics and astronomy at Oberlin College, in Oberlin, Ohio. Her research focuses on how and why galaxies form stars, and the physics of how galaxies collide. She has a popular astronomy book in paperback: Astroquizzical: a beginner’s guide to the cosmos. Twitter @Jillian_Scudder.

Ben Bailey

It’s been a great year for conspiracy theories. What used to be a fringe hobby for eccentrics and an amusing sideshow for sceptics is now a driver of world events. Join Ben as he surfaces for air after spending months lost in an ever-expanding warren of insane rabbit holes. What happened? And who can he really trust? Naturally, he’s had no choice but to deliver his findings in the form of a PowerPoint presentation.

Ben is a journalist and musician who sometimes gives talks on nerdy topics. He is probably on several blacklists and is almost certainly considered a threat to national security, but he could also just be a government shill. No one really knows, not even him.

A joke image - a mocked up Zoom window showing various famous nerds joining the meeting, including Albert Einstein and Ada Lovelace.
Nerds on Zoom, Nerds on Zoom

*POSTPONED* Nerd Nite 67: Sci-Fi, Winemaking, Decarbonising

19th March 2020 poster

Venue: Rialto Theatre

Facebook event

It’s our last NNB for a little while so join us for three more fascinating talks:

Ben Bailey: Science Fiction and the End of the World

Apocalyptic narratives are nothing new, but these days it feels like sci-fi is on a constant downer. Join journalist Ben Bailey for a time-bending tour of the future, visiting every lawless wasteland, corporate dystopia and futuristic fascist state that has ever been conjured up in the name of entertainment. This talk attempts a scientific experiment on science fiction itself, using a succession of dubious calculations to pinpoint the exact moment the world will end. There will also be graphs.

Richard Warren: Decarbonising Industry

The UK has set itself the legally binding target of achieving net zero CO2 emissions by 2050. Too slow for some, wildly ambitious and eye wateringly expensive for others, perhaps the one thing most people can agree on, is we still have very little idea of how we’re going to get there. The good news, is that many of the technological answers to these problems are already with us or are in rapid development. The bad news is that there are also significant economic and political challenges, and these are far more tricky nuts to crack.

Industrial emissions, those emitted in the process of manufacturing all the goods we require for everyday living, are a case in point. Many of the low-carbon options available to industry add huge costs to production processes, but companies must still compete in a global market place where production costs are the number one decider of competitiveness and success. Squaring this circle, reducing industrial emissions whilst maintaining an industrial base, is one of the foremost challenges Government must get to grips with in the next decade.

Richard Warren is Head of Policy & External Affairs at UK Steel, the representative body for the UK’s steel industry. In this talk he will discuss the challenges the steel industry faces in decarbonising over the next 30 years, what Government needs to do, and perhaps most importantly, why you should care.

Collette O’Leary: Winemaking

Collette O’Leary is estate manager and winemaker at Henners, a 7 acre vineyard in Herstmonceux, East Sussex. Collette graduated from Plumpton College in 2014, and was previously assistant winemaker at Bluebell Vineyard Estate.

Hosted by Partha Das

Nerd Nite Brighton 37: Arsehole Scientists, Digital Leaders, RPS

Join us in the North Laine for the first Nerd Nite Brighton of 2017. As always we have three fun-yet-informative talks for you, and the usual cakes and quiz.

1. Ben Dyson – The Science of Rock, Paper, Scissors
Ben Dyson is a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Sussex. He graduated from York University, UK, in 2002 after completing his thesis on auditory cognition and went on to a postdoctoral fellowship position at the Rotman Research Institute, Canada (2002-2004) to learn about event-related potentials. His first academic position was at the (then) Department of Psychology at the University of Sussex, UK (2005-2008). He returned to Canada to work at Ryerson University, Toronto for six and a half years where he remains an Adjunct Professor. Ben returned to Brighton in January 2015. Find out more about his research at:

2. Steve Cross – Your Favourite Dead Scientist was an Arsehole
Steve is a comedian and nerd celebrity who specialises in turning science upside-down and shaking it till its lunch money falls out. He’s the founder of Bright Club, an international network of academic comedy nights, and the force behind the chaotic cabarets Science Showoff and Books Showoff. His dream in life is to make every nerd funny, and his website is

3. Pollie Barden – Older People & Technology: Digital Learners to Digital Leaders
Pollie is a Lecturer in Product Design at the University of Sussex. Her research focuses on creating delightful user experiences with technology. She has over ten years of experience in designing, developing and project managing digital experiences that range from web/mobile platforms, physical computing to pervasive games. She has presented her work at conferences and exhibitions across the globe. As an educator, Pollie has taught physical computing, coding, game and graphic design in workshops and at universities in both the U.S. and U.K. Her varied experience informs her success at managing and mediating professional relationships and fostering team building. Find out more and see her work at

Tickets £4 (£3 Student/65+ nerds)

Nerd Nite Brighton #7: 7/11/13

 NNB7 resized

Did someone say something about a storm? Hopefully your hats haven’t been blown away and you’re going to come and join us in the cosy warmth of the Caroline of Brunswick once again for some evidence-based entertainment. Bring your non-blown away hats too.

A very very very important message for y’all: this will be a post-Halloween Nerd Nite and in celebration we’d like you to bring a pumpkin carved with a nerdy icon. Perhaps you’d like to chisel out Albert Einstein’s face? For inspiration have a look here.


Our talks this month:

1. Water poverty: A consideration of the global and the local – Ian Hextall from WaterAid

As long as Ian can remember he has been obsessed by rivers, irrigation, floods, valleys, canals, dams and all things watery. Where WaterAid came into his view he can’t exactly recall but it must have been over 20 years ago. After retiring as an academic he became a volunteer for the organisation and was so impressed by its clear direction and mode of working that when he moved to  Brighton he helped establish the Brighton and Hove WaterAid Campaign Group which has now been in operation for some 6 years.

WaterAid is one of the key institutions currently engaged in the redefinition of the UN Millenium Development Goals for 2030 under the campaign heading EveryoneEverywhere: a vision for water, sanitation and hygiene post-2015. At the level of the UK there is a growing awareness of the incidence of water poverty amongst vulnerable groups. At its simplest this is generated by the interaction of: low levels of economic activity; the impact of welfare/benefit erosion; new charging models for water provision; specific ‘hazards’ eg., ill health, family size and disability; and secular dynamics such as climate change.

These ‘local’ factors are most likely to impact negatively upon low income families, hence the local articulation with ‘water poverty’. Ian’s talk will briefly focus on these “glocal” features in greater detail and he shall comment on WaterAid’s awareness and campaigning role with specific reference to their work on a local level.

2. Leading social innovation – Toby Moore

Toby has many walks of life, from revolutionising IT leadership to writing recipe books and developing local currencies. Toby is always looking to create things that boast collaboration, fairness and change.

A lot of his work is within the IT Services industry trying to help technologists and their managers better understanding the emerging social values of business and workplace culture. Toby also plays a big part in the local social innovation networks, working with organisations and events such as CityCamp, TEDx Brighton and The Brightoneers to build exciting projects that have meaningful outcomes for Brighton and its people.

In this talk Toby will share his experiences in building up businesses that put people and happiness above profit and what it takes to motivate people to do great things beyond just getting paid.

3. An introduction to hackspaces – Mike Pountney

Mike is a professional nerd and has been for many years so will be well at home at Nerd Nite. He loves learning pretty much anything, especially when it comes to how to do things. For ages he wondered what it would be like if you got enough people together that liked just doing stuff for the pure joy of doing it, and built a clubhouse for them. It turns out lots of other people around the world had the same thought. They are called Hackspaces here in the UK, and they are just wonderful. We’re a lucky bunch because he’s going to tell us a bit about them.


As always there will be drinks, quizzes, music and of course free cake which we’re informed this month are GBBO Mary Berry’s spice orange cake and the crazy chocolate and beetroot cake.

Upstairs at the Caroline of Brunswick

£4 regular nerds and £3 student nerds
Doors 7.30pm for an 8pm start

Tickets from HERE

And if you’ve been a naughty nerd and haven’t been already, please pop by the facebook page and follow us on twitter.

Nerd Nite Brighton #5: 12/9/13

NNB5It’s that time again! Come and join us for lots more nerdiness in beautiful sunny Brighton.

Like an excited vegan in Infinity Foods (other health food shops are available), we’ve been sourcing the best speakers to keep you enthralled and entertained.

This month:

1. The embodiment of engagement – Dr Harry Witchel

Dr. Harry Witchel is Discipline Leader in Physiology at the Brighton and Sussex Medical School. In 2004 he received the national honour of being awarded The Charles Darwin Award Lecture by the British Science Association. His interdisciplinary research uses motion capture and time series video analysis to quantify nonverbal behaviour as a measure of human-computer interaction and interpersonal engagement. He regularly appears all over the world as a commentator on radio and television, and in 2012 he appeared on BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours and Word of Mouth, talking about an experiment he ran on thousands of people on the busiest clubbing night in Brighton — which demonstrated that music can change people’s body language to be less territorial. His latest work is on how we comprehend the body language of engagement and this will form his the subject of his talk tonight.

2. How do animals get from A to B? – Dr Paul Graham

Ever seen a trail of ants marching along with apparent design and purpose? As a Psychology student, Paul was interested in Artificial Intelligence and the prospect of building brains. Unfortunately this turns out to be a hard problem, even for supposedly simple brains like those of insects. The brain-building plans are still on hold and Paul has spent the last 15 years at Sussex University studying how insects produce sophisticated behaviour, even with their ‘simple’ brains.

3. Run for your life: the psychobiology of marathons – Dr Iain Moore

Flying in from Belfast via Newcastle for NNB this evening is Consultant Nephrologist Iain Moore. When not saving lives, listening to Kurt Vile, or critiquing the latest Van Sant film, he can be found running marathons at various exotic destinations across the globe. In fact he’s just back from running 1250km from Brussels to Bratislava… Why does he do it? How does he do it? So put down that pizza slice – combining his nerdish love of physiology, psychology and running, Iain will be telling us what drives endurance athletes at both a cellular and a cognitive level.

There’ll be the usual drinks, japes, quizzes, music and of course free cake. So do swing by! We’ll be upstairs at the Caroline of Brunswick and looking forward to seeing you.

£4 regular nerds and £3 student nerds
Doors 7.30pm for an 8pm start

tickets from here

pop by the facebook page and follow us on twitter


Dear all

There’s been a little bit of stopping, starting and then stopping again with the first Brighton, no first UK, Nerd Nite.

It has been a long time coming. Having said that I can’t give you an exact date right now. HOWEVER, watch this space in the next few weeks for details of the first one. There are some great speakers lined up and poised to get going.

In the meantime, relax your eyes with this beautiful visualisation of wind patterns across the US.

Cheers a million

Partha Das

Brighton Nerd Nite Curator

PS. Do let us know if you have something suitably nerdish you’d like to present – form on the right!