Nerd Nite London- September 21st

…with guest host James Ward

Nerd Nite London is a monthly event where three speakers give 18-21 minute fun-yet-informative talks across all disciplines, while the audience drinks along.

Address: Nerd Nite, Museum of Childhood, Cambridge Heath Road, London E2 9PA

Date: Wednesday September 21st.

Time: Doors open 6.30pm, event starts 7.30pm

Tickets: Early nerd tickets £6, general admission £7.50.

Tickets available here

This month’s Nerd Nite’s speakers will show you what fictional realities can teach us about war and linguistics, and we ask what makes us man not monkey. This month’s learning and drinking will be hosted by James Ward, one of Nerd Nite London’s favourite speakers and the founder of the Boring Conference.

From Kesh to Klingon: How languages are created for books and films

Aliens always used to speak English, which made understanding them very easy. Some writers, however, thought that this was a decidedly unlikely state of affairs and made up new languages for them to speak. We’ll look at how some of these conlangs were based on believable rules of evolutionary linguistics while others were, frankly, utter gibberish.

Matt has an unhealthy obsession with languages, the more useless the better. He’s currently working on the machine translation of Egyptian Hieroglyphs. He’s also rather fond of incredibly strong cheese.

Monkeys to Man – How Human is Human?

Whilst the classic line up of chimp to man is widely used to illustrate evolutionary theory, at what point along that queue of primates did we become people? How are we really any different to other large primates in our family tree? What is it exactly that makes us human, and is it necessarily something we should be happy about?

Els has degrees in archaeology, anthropology & human evolution and behaviour. Having spent almost a decade in education she’s slightly concerned that she now finds people more bewildering than ever, and can only hope that people remain distracted enough by her hair and tattoos to not realise this.

What can science fiction teach us about the realities of global politics?

If you’ve watched Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, and Game of Thrones, you are already a scholar of global politics and international relations. Did you know that Cersei from GoT is essentially theories of Realism wrapped into one character? Or that Adama from BsG systematically exercises Constructivist ideals when interacting with the Cylons? This talk will highlight how the expertise you’ve gained from binging on boxsets translate to theories that can be used to analyse wars and foreign policy… and that you are maybe more qualified for office than most current politicians.

Tracy is a fellow in health economics at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She studies the politics and economics of global health and focuses on ameliorating problems in health systems. After years of schooling and teaching she realized that sometimes it is more effective to learn from sci-fi than your traditional books and articles.

This month’s host, James Ward is the author of Adventures In Stationery: A Journey Through Your Pencil Case and the founder of the Boring Conference, a one-day celebration of the mundane, the ordinary, the obvious and the overlooked. He previously spoke at Nerd Nite on our favourite traffic icon, Ampfelman.

All proceeds from Nerd Nite London go to charity. This year we are partnering with the Shine Trust to help foster a new generation of nerds. More information about Nerd Nite London can be found by following us on Twitter @nerdnitelondon, or liking us on Facebook For more information about the Shine Trust visit

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