Week In Geek: 18-24 February 2013

Large Hadron Coxlider. Brian Cox gives a free talk at the Royal Society on Tuesday.

London events for people with curious minds.

Monday 18 February

FOSSILS: The Grant Museum at UCL has a special week-long look at fossils, geared up to a half-term family crowd. Fondle the bones of an iguanodon or stroke the teeth of a giant shark, until 23 February. Check out the new Micrarium while you’re there. Free, just turn up, 1-5pm

Tuesday 19 February

MATHS: Did you know that the average person has fewer than two legs? Find out more screwy stats as Raymond Flood considers the misleading world of means, medians and modes in a Gresham lecture at the Museum of London. Free, just turn up, 1pm

BIG COX: The ever-popular Brian Cox gives this year’s Michael Faraday Prize Lecture at the Royal Society, discussing how we can make Britain the best place in the world to do science. As usual, the RS operates its ticketless first-come, first-served policy, which is smashing for lesser speakers, but a real pain in the hadrons for big occasions. Be sure to arrive early, and be prepared to queue if you want to get in. Free, just turn up, 5.30pm

DECEPTION: The second Museum of London Gresham lecture of the day explores ways — mechanical and through body language — to detect when someone’s lying. Free, just turn up, 6pm

Wednesday 20 February

PHYSICS: Gavin Davies explains the Standard Model of how the Universe is built, but also ponders what might be missing, given that we still haven’t sussed out the nature of dark matter and dark energy. He’s speaking at Imperial College and all are welcome. Free, prebook, 5.30pm

SURGERY: Training up a new surgeon isn’t like training up a new hairdresser. One slip of the scissors and you’ve killed someone. So how’s it done safely? An event at the Dana Centre in South Kensington takes the audience through a trainee colon operation, with real footage from the theatre. Free, prebook, 7pm

EVOLUTION: Esteemed palaeoanthropologist Chris Stringer discusses recent discoveries about the origins of the human species in an open-to-all Imperial lecture. £10, prebook, 7pm

Thursday 21 February

GENIUS: David Rooney, curator at the Science Museum, talks about Alan Turing’s life and legacy at the National Portrait Gallery. Free, just turn up, 1.15pm

MEDICINE: An afternoon talk in the Wellcome Library revisits the thalidomide tragedy of 1958-1962, as Ruth Blue discusses how those afflicted learnt to adapt their bodies to the world around them. Free, just turn up, 3pm

SCIENCE-ART: The latest Imperial Fringe event at Imperial College dabbles in the oft-prodded interface between science and art. Highlights include a dancing robot (who’s going to get some spray-on clothes), the neuroscience of a juggler, and the physics behind stringed instruments. Free, just turn up, 5-8pm

BODY MATTERS: Hugh Aldersey-Williams gives a talk at the Royal Institution concerning the art, science, literature and history of the human body…somehow, all within an hour and a half. £10, prebook, 7pm

TRANSPORT: Andrew Martin, author of Underground Overground, discusses the social history of the Tube at the Bishopsgate Institute. £8, prebook, 7.30pm

Friday 22 February

HISTORY OF SCIENCE: Find out more about the ‘Rothschild Controversy‘ of 1971, a battle over whether politicians or scientists themselves should control the research budget, in a talk at the Royal Society. Free, just turn up, 1pm

Booking Ahead

LONDON BRIDGE: The next City of Westminster Arts Library Salon on 28 February features two pontificators of London’s bridges: Travis Elborough, author of the recent London Bridge in America; and Chris Roberts, tour guide and author of Cross River Traffic. The first event in this series sold out quickstuff, so book early. £6, prebook, 6.30pm

Did we miss anything? Leave a comment below, or tip us off about future events by mailing matt@londonist.com.

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