Nerd Nite Hong Kong

Hong Kong

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #13

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #13
Date: 28th May 2018
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Dr. Jiandong Huang
Topic: What does synthetic biology have to do with us?
Quick Nerdisms: What is synthetic biology? What does synthetic biology have to do with us? I will use some examples to describe this frontier science.
Nerd Cred: Prof. Huang earned his BS degree from Fudan University, Shanghai and went to the US through the CUSBEA program to pursue his PhD study in transcriptional regulation during fruit fly embryonic pattern formation. He earned his PhD degree from the University of California, Los Angeles. Thereafter, Prof. Huang received his postdoctoral training in mouse genetics at National Cancer Institute, NIH in the USA. During this period, Prof. Huang was the first to report that the two major intracellular transportation systems of mammalian cells, the microtubule- and actin-filament-based system directly interact with each other through their motor proteins, kinesin and myosin. After returning to China, he established his own laboratory at the University of Hong Kong. Prof. Huang is now the L & T Charitable Foundation Professor in Biomedical Sciences in the School of Biomedical Sciences, the University of Hong Kong.
Prof. Huang focused his research work on synthetic biology. He has provided experimental evidence revealing the mechanism of a powerful DNA engineering technology, recombineering and improved its efficiency in both E. coli and mammalian cells. He has applied this technique to genomic studies and developed more efficient methods in DNA and chromosome engineering. Since 2008, he began to pursue synthetic biology studies focus on vaccine development and cancer therapy. Prof. Huang has published over 130 peer-reviewed papers in Science, Nature, Nature Medicine, Nature Biotech., PNSA, PRL, Journal of Controlled Release, Diabetes, Nucleic Acids Research, Genes & Development, and other prestigious journals.
Speaker 2: Mr. Rocky Cheung
Topic: The modernisation of anatomy
Quick Nerdisms: Dark history of anatomy? Confucianism? Cadaveric dissection? You may be wondering how I am going to link all these in a 15minute presentation. What you do not know is that as a story-teller, I am going to “dissect” the rich history of anatomy layer by layer deep into its bare bone. Join me on this voyage to the heart of it all.
Nerd Cred: Rocky Cheung is a first year PhD student at the University of Hong Kong. He received a bachelor’s degree in Anatomy and Human Biology at the University of Liverpool and a master’s degree in Human Anatomy at the University of Edinburgh. His research interest is in innovative pedagogies in human anatomy education, particularly with 3D printing. He also helps out with gross anatomy teaching at the University of Hong Kong as a teaching assistant.
Speaker 3: Dr. Tjonnie Li
Topic: Gravitational Waves: A New Window on the Universe
Quick Nerdisms: Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity, published in 1916, gave us a radically new way of understanding how space, time and gravity are related. His theory quickly became science’s best tool for understanding elusive phenomena such as black holes, the expansion of the Universe and the Big Bang.
The last prediction stemming from general relativity, the existence of ripples in the fabric of spacetime better known as gravitational waves, was finally confirmed in 2015. We will explore what gravitational waves are, and why they promise to revolutionise our understanding of the Universe.
Nerd Cred: Professor Tjonnie Li studied Natural Sciences at the University of Cambridge and received his PhD from the Dutch National Institute for Subatomic Physics. He then spent two years conducting research at the California Institute of Technology before joining the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2015. He was involved in the first detection of gravitational waves by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) and his awards include the 2016 Gruber Prize in Cosmology; the 2016 Special Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics; and the 2013 Stefano Braccini Thesis Prize.

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Anniversary Edition

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Anniversary Edition
Date: 23rd April 2018
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Dr. Timothy Bonebrake
Topic: A multi-scale tale of scaly tails
Quick Nerdisms: Pangolins are scaly mammals distributed across Asia and Africa. All eight pangolin species are now vulnerable to extinction however due in large part to recent increases in the demand of pangolin scales for use in traditional Chinese medicine. We’ll explore this complex issue from conservation, ecology and social perspectives and multiple spatial scales (from the local to the global) with stories from Cameroon, Hong Kong and China.
Nerd Cred: Dr. Timothy C. Bonebrake is an Assistant Professor in the School of Biological Sciences at The University of Hong Kong. He received his BS at the University of California, Berkeley andPhD from Stanford University. He has broad research interests in global change ecology and tropical conservation with work conducted all over the world including Central Africa, Southeast Asia and North America.
Speaker 2: Dr. Danny Chan
Topic: Stress, are you? Cells do, what do they do?
Quick Nerdisms: We all experience stress in our daily lives. Some deal with it better than others. Some absolutely need it to function while others will collapse. Chances are you know and have work with such people, and they could be your friends, family members or yourself. Cells are no different, and there are all sorts of cells. Some are hard workers and others wait for something to do. Some gives orders and other received. Sound familiar? Welcome to the world of cellular stress. The kaleidoscope of cells in our body has to deal with one and other and the changing environment in order to survive. Otherwise, there will be a problem we call disease. Want to know more about how cells deal with stress in their world?
Nerd Cred: Danny Chan is a professor at the School of Biomedical Science in the University of Hong Kong, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine. He graduated from the University of Melbourne, with a Bachelor of Science (Hons), Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy.
His research interest is in skeletal biology, focusing on development, growth and degenerative processes of the skeleton in health and disease. He has a particular interest in rare diseases of the skeleton. He has received more than 25M HKD of research funding as principal investigator and 200M HKD as Co-investigator, and with more than 150 publications in high impact journals such as Nature, JCI, AMHG, PNAS, PLOS Biol, EMBO and JCB.
In recognition of his achievements, he received an award for excellence in medical research from the Premier of Victoria in Australia, and recently, the Croucher Senior Research Fellow Award in Hong Kong, and the SY and HY Cheng Endowed Professor in Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine. In knowledge exchange, he and his research team helped to initiate “The Little People of Hong Kong” Foundation in Hong Kong, an NGO for the patient groups, and to increase the community’s awareness of the needs of patients with rare skeletal disorders in Hong Kong. He is also a council member of Hong Kong Alliance for Rare Diseases, advocating for the needs of rare disease people in our society.
Professor Chan is the Assistant Dean for Research and Research Postgraduate studies, as well as the Deputy Director for Development and Education for Research Integrity at the University of Hong Kong. He is involved in the education of responsible conduct of research to students and academic staff, and has a strong interest in promoting an environment for high quality research at the university, and sharing experience through networking with regional and international institutions to foster responsible conduct of research.
Speaker 3: Ms. Li Meng De Bakker
Topic: The Language of Film Music
Quick Nerdisms: When a new film hits the theatres, we often ask friends, “Have you seen it?” But films are often as much about sound, as they are about image. Why does film music sound the way it does? How can composers and directors work together to play with our expectations and emotions? Learn more with me about the language of film music through an analysis of techniques and trends drawn from the classics.
Nerd Cred: Li Meng de Bakker is a budding radio host and DJ, with a monthly music education show streaming on Hong Kong Community Radio. She holds an MA in Music from The Chinese University of Hong Kong, and will begin a 4 year PhD at the University of Hong Kong in September, studying Hip-Hop culture in Asia. She also uploads pop culture music analysis videos to YouTube, as ‘Musicoology’.

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #11

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #11
Date: 26th March 2018
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Mr. Ralf Mayet
Topic: AI 2018: Memes for convolutional teens, or the end of humanity?
Quick Nerdisms: With the most recent breakthroughs in statistical machine learning, Artificial Intelligence has moved out of it’s winter sleep back into the mainstream, this time with massive industry backing. This talk explores the significance and limitations of recent advances, sheds light on what it means to be a machine learning researcher today, and talk about the hard problems we haven’t yet solved.
Nerd Cred: Ralf Mayet is a nerd, researcher and engineer. He has a degree in Computer Science from University of Technology in Graz, studied at Istanbul Teknik and currently lives in Hong Kong. With a research background in swarm robotics, self-regulating systems and emergent intelligence, his current focus is exploring human cognition and language through interaction and play. At the OpenCog foundation he is researching the synergy of learned statistical representations and symbolic reasoning. At Hanson Robotics he is working on social robotics, and the integration of perception and action into dialogue systems.
Speaker 2: Mr. John Scott Daly
Topic: Below the line: ‘othering’ the poor in Benefits Street and YouTube comments
Quick Nerdisms: ‘The Big Short’ is a film about the 2007/8 financial crisis. At the end, one of the characters suspects that, although it seemed like an opportunity for real change, soon we would do “what we always do when the economy tanks: blame immigrants and poor people”. My PhD investigates this; specifically how people receiving government welfare are blamed for society’s problems and ‘othered’ in a British documentary and the YouTube comments attached. For Nerd Nite, I have removed all the boring stuff and, surprisingly, there is still some stuff left, so I’ll show you that.
Nerd Cred: John Scott Daly prefers to be called Scott. He left the UK in 2003 and, before coming to Hong Kong, worked in South Korea, New Zealand and Qatar. He is currently experiencing a permanent sense of anxiety about his PhD at HKU.
Speaker 3: Mr. Bryan Ervin Bentley
Topic: A Study in Stereoscopic Imaging
Quick Nerdisms: Have you ever wondered why putting on those wacky glasses to watch “3D” movies makes you see “into” the screen? This talk will walk you through the history, biology, and psychology of stereoscopic imaging as well as examine the tools and techniques that professionals and hobbyists use to produce these images.
Nerd Cred: Bryan Ervin Bentley is currently the Professor of Visual Effects at Savannah College of Art and Design’s Hong Kong Campus.
Previous to this role, Bryan served as a creature technical director for Industrial Light and Magic, a division of Lucasfilm Entertainment, in Singapore. There he had the opportunity to work on such films as Transformers 4, Pacific Rim, and Warcraft. Before moving to ILM Singapore he worked at Industrial Light and Magic’s main branch in San Francisco on Rango, which went on to win the Oscar for Best Animated Film.
Previous to working at Industrial Light and Magic Brayn worked at Rhythm & Hues studios, in Los Angeles, on The Golden Compass, which won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects, Alvin and the Chipmunks which has the 5th highest Christmas opening in cinema history, and HULK a revision of one of Marvel comics most popular franchises.
Bryan has a Bachelors of Science in Computer Graphics Technology from Purdue University and a Masters of Fine Arts in Animation from Savannah College of Art and Design.
At Purdue University he was awarded the black caucus and faculty award twice and made the dean’s list. Also while attending Purdue Bryan was granted to opportunity to instruct at the collegiate level at the University of Technology in Rezerwowe Poland. He also served as a Part-Time Professor at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.
Bryan’s areas of specialty include; Character Rigging, Cloth and Softbody Simulation, Python Programming, Rigid Simulation and geometry fracturing for Destruction.

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #10

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #10
Date: 26th February 2018
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Dr. Tami Zhang Jingshu
Topic: The Social Network of Microorganisms
Quick Nerdisms: TBA
Nerd Cred: Dr Zhang joined HKU-Pasteur Research Pole, School of Public Health of HKU in 2015. She obtained a Bachelor of Bioengineering in 2007 at the China Pharmaceutical University and a PhD degree in 2013 at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
Dr Zhang is a trained cell biologist/virologist to work on various aspects of virus-host interactions in the context of dengue infection and influenza. Her current research interests are the roles of ubiquitin and ubiquitin-like modifiers in viral protein trafficking and in cellular signaling pathways during viral infections.
Speaker 2: Dr. Scott Edmunds
Topic: Building genetic literacy through decoding the Hong Kong Bauhinia
Quick Nerdisms: Far outpacing Moore’s law, the growth of genomics, sequencing the genetic code of all living organisms, is predicted to overtake the data volumes produced by astronomy, streaming video, and social media. The effects of the genomics revolution are already touching all our lives, and our health and wellbeing in the 21st century. To better equip the people of Hong Kong with the literacy and training to make informed decisions and work in this new genomic era a group of us launched Bauhinia Genome, a grassroots, citizen science project using the crowdfunded sequencing of the genome of the Hong Kong emblem to better understand where our mysterious emblem came from, and train local students to assemble and analyse the data. Crucial skills needed for this field to advance, as well as engage the public through local pride.
Nerd Cred: Scott Edmunds is executive editor of the open science journal and repository Gigascience, working out of the Tai Po offices of BGI, the world’s largest genomics organisation. With a background in cancer genetics, his PhD at the Royal London Hospital was on the molecular pathology of a nasty and rare form of eye cancer. After postdocts at the WHO International Agency for Research in Cancer in Lyon and at Queen Mary, University of London he then moved into open access publishing where he ran journals genomics research. He is passionate about open data, teaching data management at HKU and working as an executive committee member of Open Data Hong Kong to promote the fight for open knowledge. From getting involved in crowdsourcing disease outbreak data, Scott has worked on a number of other citizen science and education projects in Hong Kong, including BauhiniaGenome and CitizenScience.Asia.

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #9

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #9
Date: 29th January 2017
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Dr. Julian Tanner
Topic: DNA Nanotech Will Change Your Life
Quick Nerdisms: As well as being life’s genetic material, DNA is an incredible lego for building at the nanoscale. DNA nanotechnology will transform medicine, electronics, computing and might even create a new biology in our lifetimes. This revolution is just emerging and we’ll look at where it might go.
Nerd Cred: Julian is an Associate Professor in the School of Biomedical Sciences at HKU who researches DNA nanotechnology and chemical biology. His team has developed new technologies for malaria diagnosis and is building devices out of nucleic acids at the nanoscale.
Speaker 2: Mr. Sébastien Bourdeauducq
Topic: A Talk About Nothing
Quick Nerdisms: Vacuum is a required ingredient for many interesting projects, such as making great 3D printers with electron beam melting, analyzing unknown chemicals with mass spectrometry, and building your own early-20th-century vacuum tubes for radios. But when considering the creation of a vacuum, many people are taken aback and deterred by the cost and complexity. This presentation will tell our stories of building low-cost vacuum systems in Hong Kong, and demystify their construction. While
vacuum technology is certainly not trivial, it is perfectly accessible to someone with a bit of dedication, the right information, and less money than what the Hong Kong real estate system milks from you over a few months.
Nerd Cred: Sébastien is the founder of M-Labs, a company in Hong Kong that designs electronics and software tools for research in quantum physics. In its office, he hosts a semi-weekly “Experimental Physics for Morons” workshop, where people hack around with vacuum systems, electronics, lasers, and other devices. It is open to everyone with the right mindset.
Speaker 3: Dr. John Stonham
Topic: Artificial Intelligence! You must be Joking!
Quick Nerdisms: The history of AI is as long as that of computing with many significant developments having taken place as long ago as the 1950’s.
Whilst conventional computing has enjoyed continuously successful exponential development over the past 70 years, AI has encountered many major setbacks over the same period but it is currently enjoying a resurgence of interest world-wide.
The challenges however remain immense but I believe it is achievable. Natural Intelligence, based on biology, is essentially the processing of electrical signals mainly, but not exclusively in the brain. Natural Intelligence clearly exists, but some would argue that its system complexity compares with that of the Universe. How do we replicate this intelligence in artificial systems and why should we want to do so?
Nerd Cred: Dr. John Stonham is a Professor of Neural Systems Engineering at Brunel University London and has been working on Neural Networks and Artificial Intelligence all his academic life, which is now a very long time. He has supervised more than 100 PhD projects and notably some of the pioneering neural network hardware developed at Brunel University in the 1980s which is currently on exhibition in the London Science Museum.

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #8

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #8
Date: 27th November 2017
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Dr. Monica Borschel
Topic: What’s love got to do with it
Quick Nerdisms: Our attachment styles develop over time and through different relationships. Our experiences, our personality and thoughts dictate our love styles. During this presentation we will explore attachment styles and how our attachment styles make or break our relationships.
Nerd Cred: Dr. Monica Borschel is a clinical psychologist specializing in attachment and loss at the Mindnlife clinic in Central. She is a graduate of HKU, her thesis was on attachment styles and how this effects grief outcomes. For more information visit www.doctormonicaborschel.com
Speaker 2: Ms. Sophia Nazer
Topic: The Google Games: Catching Data Analytics
Quick Nerdisms: Understanding what your website needs and what information is relevant to you! SEO basics – it’s not all about keywords! And useful tools to make the most of your website with a few cheeky UX tips.
Nerd Cred: Out of the papers and into the code! Shifting her career from administration to coding and digital marketing instructor, Sophia found her passion for communication and engagement. She is now focused on how to best utilise coding and digital marketing to improve businesses and expand opportunities for other people. Sophia began teaching herself how to code by building a website based on her beloved pugs and then learned how to use digital marketing to improve traffic to her site and expand onto e-commerce.
Speaker 3: Ms. Lin Kiu
Topic: The Imitation Game: Intercepting and decoding complex messages sent by cells
Quick Nerdisms: From the sneaky cancer that seems so hard to kill, your acne outbreak, the pain you suffer because of your OTT (Over the top) freakish immune cells, to the taste of your beer. These are results of cellular communication. I will tell you how, by intercepting and decoding the messages from these cells, would allow us to manipulate the cellular environment and perhaps change the outcome of a disease, or the taste of beer.
Nerd Cred: KUI Lin is a final year permanent head damage (PhD) sufferer from the Department of Paediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, focusing on stem cells and immunology. Recently, she has published a research article, describing a protein named “TSG-6” and its anti-inflammatory action in immune cells. With this as a basis, she used “TSG-6” as a marker to select for stem cell with anti-inflammation potential. She is trying to investigate what these stem cells are telling its surrounding cell to STFU stop being a nuisance and go away.
Lin’s research interest lies in finding alternative strategies to treat autoimmune diseases such as lupus. She previously worked on signalling transduction in macrophages and dendritic cells (mechanistic working of a certain immune cells participating as the first line of defence) at the Department of Immunology, Bioprocessing Technology Institute, A*STAR Singapore before joining HKU for her PhD.

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Halloween Edition

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Halloween Edition – Come dressed up!
Date: 30th October 2017
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Dr. Michael Pittman
Topic: Freaky Dinosaurs!
Quick Nerdisms: Dinosaurs were amazingly strange, but T. rex, Stegosaurus and Triceratops were just the tip of the iceberg! In ‘Freaky Dinosaurs!’ we’ll explore the weirder sides of the world of dinosaurs. I might even throw in some blood and guts for extra effect, we’ll see.
Nerd Cred: Michael Pittman is a dinosaur palaeontologist at the University of Hong Kong. He is particularly interested in carnivorous dinosaurs and the origin of birds. He expects lots of chocolate and candy in his trick-or-treat bag.
Speaker 2: Mr. Jasper van Holsteijn
Topic: Sexy Ghosts and Cute Demons
Quick Nerdisms: What do a 17th century Chinese horror story writer, a Taoist sex manual, and a Hong Kong porn parody have in common? Find out in this talk about the femme fatales of Chinese horror, and learn how to protect yourself from sexy ghosts on Halloween night.
Nerd Cred: Jasper van Holsteijn is a PhD-candidate in Comparative Literature at HKU, whose thesis is on Hong Kong and Taiwanese gangster films. Originally from The Netherlands, he is a big fan of horror films and stories, Chinese or otherwise.
Speaker 3: Mr. Shawn Tan Zheng Kai
Topic: Developing the Neuralyzer from Men in Black
Quick Nerdisms: A flash of light, and bam! Memories of witnessing an alien is all gone. That’s the work of the neuralyzer, the iconic memory erasing device from Men in Black. This idea might seem far-fetched, but yet with a greater understanding of memory, neuroscientists are getting ever closer to achieving this. What do we already know about memory? What can we do with memories? Is the concept of a neuralyzer even actually possible? We’ll explore these questions and more in this talk!
Nerd Cred: Shawn Tan Zheng Kai is a PhD candidate at HKU studying neuroscience, in particular, studying the possibility of erasing memories, speaking of which, I should mention that Shawn Tan Zheng Kai is a PhD candidate at HKU studying neuroscience, in particular, studying the possibility of erasing memories…

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #6

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #6
Date: 25th September 2017
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Dr. Daniel-Joseph MacArthur-Seal
Topic: How Turkish opium put the Brits out of business in China.
Quick Nerdisms: When public pressure forced Britain to quit the opium trade, Chinese addicts and their suppliers turned to “Turkish delight”. The talk will give insights into the little known trade in Turkish opium and the complex pathways and motley smugglers that brought it from the Mediterranean coast to the China Seas.
Nerd Cred: Daniel-Joseph MacArthur-Seal is a newly arrived Research Assistant Professor at the history department at Baptist University, fresh off the boat from Turkey where he carried out a three year post-doc project at the British Institute At Ankara on smuggling in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Speaker 2: Ms. Sharne McMillan
Topic: Otter! The “water ghost” of Hong Kong
Quick Nerdisms: There are native otters in Hong Kong! They’re rare, nocturnal and very shy of humans, so most Hong Konger’s aren’t aware of their presence. I will talk about the research that is currently being undertaken to learn more about these amazing animals.
Nerd Cred: Sharne McMillan has more than 15 years working experience in the ecological field including consultancy and research. This has involved survey and assessment of a range of flora and fauna species in Australia, the UK and Hong Kong. She is currently undertaking a PhD at the University of Hong Kong studying the ecology and conservation of Eurasian Otter (Lutra lutra) in Hong Kong. Sharne is also a member of the IUCN Otter Specialist Group.
Speaker 3: Mr. Jose Perucho
Topic: The role of imaging in personalized cancer medicine
Quick Nerdisms: Even after decades of cancer research and the development of more effective therapies that do less collateral damage, cancer is the second leading cause of death globally. This talk will explore the emerging field of personalized medicine: how therapy should be tailor made for each patient, and the role diagnostic imaging plays in managing cancer patients.
Nerd Cred: Jose Perucho is a doctoral candidate studying Medical Diagnostic Imaging at the University of Hong Kong.  His research interest is in the use of Magnetic Resonance Imaging in gynaecological oncology (cancers of the female reproductive system). His published research makes use of image post-processing algorithms and machine learning to improving diagnosis and developing biomarkers to predict patients’ response to treatment.
Jose has a background in Biomedical Engineering with a special interest in medical instrumentation, devices, and signal processing. He previously worked on brain-computer interface and sports wearable devices before moving to diagnostic imaging.

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #5

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #5
Date: 28th August 2017
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Ms. Keisha Siriboe
Topic: Combining Social Good and Enterprise to improve Early Literacy Practices in Hong Kong
Quick Nerdisms: A supportive learning environment and an early start are crucial in shaping children’s literacy skills during early childhood (ages 0-5 years), however, for parents who do not speak English and/or cannot afford private tutoring, there are few mechanisms in place to help them provide an English language learning environment for their children. Stories of Us is a social enterprise that empowers parents to engage confidently in enjoyable early literacy activities. Keisha will share her experiences and the lessons she has learned as the Founder of Stories of Us, winner of the 2017 University of Hong Kong Dreamcatcher competition for entrepreneurship. This talk will honestly explore the highs and lows of being a social entrepreneur in Hong Kong.
Nerd Cred: Keisha Siriboe is a doctoral candidate studying English Language Education at the University of Hong Kong. Her published research focuses on early childhood literacy, parent education, access, and equity. For her dissertation, she is studying how parents in Hong Kong establish English language literacy skills with their children during early childhood. Before beginning her Ph.D. program, Keisha was the first African-American to graduate from Beijing Normal University with a Masters degree in Comparative Education in 2014.
Globally minded and service oriented, Keisha founded Stories of Us, a Hong Kong based social enterprise promoting enjoyable parent-child early literacy activities for 21st-century skills development. Stories of Us received the 2017 Dreamcatcher Award for Entrepreneurship from the University of Hong Kong. Keisha believes firmly in servant leadership and applies that model to her current positions as Chair of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Graduate Student Council and representative for early career and doctoral students within the World Education Research Association (WERA)
Speaker 2: Mr. Vince Siu
Topic: Inspiring and Educating through Games
Quick Nerdisms: Learning through play, game-based education, experiential learning – all buzzwords that often surface in discussions about the future of education. “Gamification” solutions are popping up on the market, proclaiming to incentivize learning by creating “levels” for students to progress through and rewarding the completion of assignments. But do these solutions actually make learning fun? How do you design a memorable experience that puts fun first – and thus attract students to actually want to learn by themselves?
Press Start Hong Kong, a game design and education consultancy, is bringing a new interpretation of both topical knowledge and soft skills development – through analog games and immersive programs. Vince will share Press Start’s player-centric, fun-first game design approach to create experiences that inspire learners to self-driven exploration.
Nerd Cred: As Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Press Start Hong Kong, Vince is primarily responsible for business strategy, partnership development, PR and marketing. He works with partners and clients to create and run games-centric programs and new game experiences, and thrives on finding unique intersections between games and education to unlock the true potential of play.
Vince has a professional background in consulting and financial services, as well as years of experience in curriculum development and teaching across different age groups. He is also on the executive committee of TEDxWanChai, one of Asia’s most established TEDx chapters, and enjoys performing with his band around Hong Kong.
Speaker 3: Mr. David Nazer
Topic: An Insider’s Guide to Diamonds
Quick Nerdisms: An informal presentation on the world of diamonds; where they are from, how they are cut and why they are so rare and expensive
Nerd Cred: David Nazer is the co-founder and managing director of Haywards, one of Asia’s leading bespoke jewellers. Originally from London, David has spent most of his adult life in Asia, with just over 13 years in Hong Kong

Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #4

Event: Nerd Nite Hong Kong: Edition #4
Date: 31st July 2017
Time: 8:00 p.m.
Location: Mezcalito; 27/F, 18 On Lan St, Central.
Entry Fee: Free! Thanks to the support provided by the venue! You just got to buy your own drinks!

Speaker 1: Prof. Cameron Campbell
Topic: Big Data for Chinese History
Quick Nerdisms: Just as big data is transforming our understanding of the contemporary world, it is also leading to a new understanding of the past. For China, results from analysis of novel big historical data both confirm and contradict longstanding assumptions about society and the economy. I will show how big data is transforming the study of Chinese history, with examples from an ongoing project to study the Qing civil service in its entirety, using a massive database of surviving personnel records
Nerd Cred: Cameron Campbell is Associate Dean for Research and Postgraduate Studies in the School of Humanities and Social Science at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. His research focuses on kinship, inequality, and demographic behaviour in China and in comparative perspective. With James Lee and other collaborators in the Lee-Campbell group, He has published on a wide variety of topics, including economic, family and social influences on demographic outcomes such as birth, marriage, migration, and death, fertility limitation in historical China, and the role of kin networks in shaping social mobility. With other members of the Lee-Campbell group, he is now conducting a study of the careers of government employees during the Qing by construction and analysis of a database of personnel and examination records. Before moving to HKUST in 2013, he was in the Department of Sociology at UCLA for 17 years. He originally earned his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania, and his Bachelor’s degree at the California Institute of Technology in 1989. He was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2004 and was named a Changjiang Scholar by the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China in 2016, nominated by Central China Normal University. To learn more about his research, please see the website of the Lee-Campbell Research Group: http://www.shss.ust.hk/lee-campbell-group/
Speaker 2: Mr. Eric Byron
Topic: Juggling Tech Stacks – How to Keep Up With Technology Changes
Quick Nerdisms: Surviving in a tech career means constantly learning new skills and technology. Eric will share lessons learned in his 25+ years as a technologist, life-long learner, and fun seeker.
Nerd Cred: Eric has 25+ years of business and leadership experience in Information Systems and Technology. Eric has ~10 years of experience working in the video game industry. He has been living and working in Asia for 5 years and has extensive experience working for and with large multinational companies like Disney and Electronic Arts.
Speaker 3: Dr. Stuart Taylor
Topic: The Universe’s Missing Planets
Quick Nerdisms: Planets don’t form anywhere at random, but somehow pileup around favored periods (the time it takes the planet to go around the star). That was expected, but I have found a mysterious region right in the middle of the pileup where if the star has more planet-making material than the sun, there are no planets. This is really strange because it is where there should be the most planets, but there are none! There are planets in this period range for stars with less planet-making material, so does this mean that planet formation dislikes having too much material?
This case of the missing planets must be solved in order to understand how planets are formed. If we want to find life on other worlds, it is important to know where planets and their moons are — and where they are not.
Nerd Cred: Stuart Taylor has been studying exoplanet-related subjects since 1992, before the exoplanets that started the explosion of exoplanet research were found in 1995. This has led him to his most recent research, studying the distribution of planets by their periods, masses, and other parameters.
After obtaining his Ph.D. from BYU, he has studied the changing brightness of the sun at Caltech, and then measured features of the star Regulus with an array of telescopes called CHARA that can see features on the surfaces of stars with the highest resolution of any optical telescope in the world. Dr. Taylor set up the exoplanet observation program at a new worldwide observatory of globally linked telescopes.
Stuart “hot balls of gas” Taylor has lived in HK for five years where he often performs comedy and storytelling, where his funniest stories often come from saying the wrong words in Cantonese.