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Nerd Nite 96: Communication Breakdown

Wednesday October 11, doors at 7:30pm, talks at 8pm

Ambassador is open for November registration  

Nerd Nite Speed Dating tickets are on sale now!

[ASL interpreters will be present]

This month we’re exploring the different ways that technology helps (or hurts) our quest to share meaningful information with each other. Æá ÆÖóÞ¢ë Òп я╟п╨ ÁËÏÚ? We think so!

The talks:


“Put Down Your Phone, Increase Your Happiness: How to Develop a Healthy Relationship with Your Smartphone,” by Gina Helfrich

Recent research studies show some disturbing results: Smartphones can be as addictive as heroin. Spending time on Facebook makes us sadder, less satisfied, depressed, and jealous. We know our phones are “bad” for us, but how to break the addiction? We’ll explore some tips, tricks, and motivation to fix your relationship with your smartphone.

Gina Helfrich received her Ph.D. in Philosophy from Emory University and has since been irresistibly motivated to wax philosophical in public settings. She’s been struggling against her own smartphone addiction since 2009, when she bought her first iPhone (3GS).


“Giving Voice: History, Science, and Application of Augmentative and Alternative Communication Technology,” by Jenna Haggard, SLP-A

Since ancient times, humans have utilized AAC to facilitate conversation and repair communication breakdowns. In this talk, we’ll explore innovative low- and high-tech devices for non-verbal individuals, expose myths and assumptions about AAC, and learn strategies to effectively engage with people who utilize various forms of augmentative and alternative communication. Because every nerd deserves a voice!

Jenna is a Speech and Language Pathology Assistant specializing in young patients using communication technology. She is in the process of completing her Masters degree in Communication Disorders and her preferred methods of communication are meme and gifs.


“Super computing ‘cool’ applications,” by Alex Bara

NASA, Facebook data centers, the Amazon Cloud and Tesla’s on-board AI supercomputer are just a few examples of how high-performance computing is used. What all these companies have in common, among other things, is their use of really powerful clusters.

Alex is a computer scientist currently employed by Intel to work on high performance clusters. She is also a tennis player, avid traveler and wine aficionado.



Form a covalent bond before the show with nerd speed-dating!


Plus plus!

Why not meet some new friends through the Nerd Nite Ambassador program?



Doors at 7:30, talks start at 8:00. As always, Nerd Nite is free.

Talks may not be given in the order described. Grab a beer and relax!