Welcome to the Skeptics in the Pub, Nottingham

For the promotion of science, reason and critical thinking

We get together on a monthly basis to have a relaxed, enjoyable and social evening while listening to talks given on a wide range of topics. 

The events are free, though we do ask for a £3 donation to cover the speakers expenses and other costs.

All upcoming events are listed below and on the right of this page.

Our venue is the first floor function room of the Canalhouse pub.

Who can attend? 

The meetings are open to all, whatever your beliefs and views, so please come along. We are a friendly bunch and everyone is welcome.

As the Canalhouse room is a private function room, under 18s are allowed to attend our events. However, under 18s must be accompanied by an adult when in the public downstairs bar.

Disabled access

The Canalhouse has a service lift which we can used to provide disabled access to the first floor function room. There is also a disabled toilet on the same floor.

Please let us know if you're coming to an event and require disabled access. We will make arrangements with the bar staff to bring you to the function room.

Keep in touch

To hear about upcoming events, subscribe to the mailing list here: http://eepurl.com/dvKljT (Ignore the form on the right of this page)

You can like the Nottingham Skeptics Facebook page here.

We are also on Google+.

Follow @Notts_Skeptics to keep up to date on up coming meetings and other information.

 

Michael Brooks

When?
Tuesday, July 3 2018 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Michael Brooks

What's the talk about?

Humans have been trying to make sense of the universe since they first looked up at the stars. Most of us have now shaken off the idea that the heavens display patterns that foretell significant events, and we certainly know more about the universe than any generation in history. But how much do we understand about what we have discovered?

In this talk, Michael Brooks looks at modern cosmology through the eyes of the 16th century astrologer, mathematician, inventor and physician Jerome Cardano. Cardano laid the mathematical foundations for quantum theory, and his unusual perspective suggests that science might not have made as much progress as you think.
 

Amazon link to the book

 

When?
Tuesday, August 7 2018 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Yves van Gennip

What's the talk about?

Say the word "maths" to a random person on the street and they will probably want to know why you are talking to them. Or so they'll claim, but any mention of probability distributions and random sampling will likely only elicit blank stares* and perhaps a proud admission of doing badly in maths in school. But did they? Maths, I mean. Did they do maths in school? The best case scenario is that they did do some of the basics (and yet, I suspect, very few of the fundamentals), but even that will have offered just a narrow view of the topic.

The general perception of what mathematics is or isn't, can and cannot do, and who can do it at all to begin with, tends to be quite different from a (this) mathematician's view, as is quite obvious in places such as, for example, everywhere.

Misconceptions galore (no, that's not a little known 007 sidekick; there, I said "maths", you expected numbers, I provided), yet so little time to have a wildly entertaining stab of dubious efficacy at correcting them. Yet that is exactly what I'll try to do in this talk.

Luckily we are not flying blind here. History provides us with plenty of demi-gods of deduction, titans of theorems, a whole pantheon of provers. Or, coated in fewer Asgardian assumptions and Olympian ordinals, people with good ideas who worked their denominators off to make sure their musings would measure up against mathematical scrutiny.

Join us for a look at some myths of and misconceptions about maths. No test at the end. And there'll be a cat picture too!


The speaker this evening will be a person, probably even a mathematician. The audience will be skeptics (people too), who are known for judging a talk on its own merits and don't need any silly bios of the speaker to decide whether or not to attend a talk. And they definitely are not so shallow that they need a picture. What, is "mathematician" not hot enough for you?


*Not based on empirical observations. Any physicist or other empiricist is welcome to have a crack at it. Ask your local ethics comittee first.

The Science of Where Happiness Comes From, and Why

Dean Burnett

When?
Tuesday, September 11 2018 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Dean Burnett

What's the talk about?

You barely go a week without some puff piece article offering the 'secret' of happiness, or 5 easy steps to make yourself happy. They usually mention dopamine or oxytocin, in vague, context-free ways. But how valid are these claims? Not very, if you ask neuroscientist Dean Burnett, who looked into all this for his book The Happy Brain. In it, Dean delves deep into the inner workings of our minds to explore some fundamental questions about happiness. For starters: what does it actually mean to be happy? Where does it come from? Is lasting happiness possible? Should it be?

In his research into these questions – and many more besides – Burnett unravels our complex internal lives to reveal the often surprising truth behind what makes us tick. From whether happiness really begins at home to what love, sex, friendship, wealth, laughter and success actually do to our brains.

Matthew Clemence

When?
Tuesday, October 2 2018 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Matthew Clemence

What's the talk about?

We are constantly bombarded by opinions backed up be so called scientific evidence.

We have moved from adverts promising “here comes the science bit”, through evidence based policy, to a world where any fact is considered true if you say it often enough.

This “strong and stable” talk will look at how statistics are used and misused to shape public opinion and give you a spotters guide to when you are being bamboozled! – with a few jokes.

Matthew Clemence is a senior scientist at Philips Healthcare. His work involves developing the hardware and software needed to adapt clinical machines to allow the study of lung disease with MRI

Jon Kaneko-James

When?
Tuesday, October 30 2018 at 7:30PM

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(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Jon Kaneko-James

What's the talk about?

long with Johannes Nider's Formicarius, Heinrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger's 15th century book, Malleus Maleficarum, became the manual for a vigorous campaign of European Witch Hunting.

Protestant London saw 67 witch trials in the decade of 1600-1610: both before and after the accession of the witch hunting King James.

In the world of publishing, 1598 to 1610 saw a huge growth in fairy-themed literature, with both the rural and urban sick seeking the help of 'fairy' empowered Cunning Folk in the absence of trained medics.

But did everyone actually believe in it?

Author and researcher Jon Kaneko-James will examine the hidden language of equivocation found in medieval chronicles, the differing nature of experience, and the existence of skeptical narratives in pre-industrial Europe.

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