Week In Geek: 5-11 December 2011

By M@ Last edited 109 months ago
Week In Geek: 5-11 December 2011

London events for people with curious minds.

Monday 5 December

BOOKS: Fiction Lab returns to the Royal Institution. It's a book club for people who like science depicted in fiction, but not necessarily science fiction. This month's novel is Cannery Row by John Steinbeck, which features a marine biologist as a central character. FREE, 7pm

Tuesday 6 December

CLEVER MACHINES: Can a computer be programmed to win at a TV quiz show? The guys behind IBM's Watson computer system talk about machine learning at Imperial College. FREE, 6.10pm

OPEN DATA: Also at Imperial tonight, a debate about openness in science. Should all data be made freely available to anyone who wants it, or are their potential dangers? FREE, 6.30pm

SCI-FI: The ever-lovable Grant Museum screens 1958 B-movie The Blob, followed by a wine-assisted tour of the museum. FREE, 6.30pm

CHEMISTRY: The Royal Society of Chemistry (you'll find them next to the Royal Academy in Burlington House) are chuffed to reveal their new interactive periodic table. They've even found a Dmitri Mendeleev impersonator, who will give some background to the famous schema. FREE, 6.30pm (see also our Periodic Table of London)

BETTER LONDON: This month's Street Talk event takes place at cycle-centric cafe Look Mum No Hands, and concerns itself with ways to make London life more liveable. 11 speakers, including Londonist's James Upsher, each have seven and a half minutes to convince the crowds of their own private utopias. FREE (but donation encouraged), 7pm

QUIZ: This month's Science In The Pub (actually upstairs at the Brixton Ritzy) takes the form of a scientific quiz. Prizes come courtesy of the British Science Association. FREE, 7.30pm

FILM: The Good/Bad Movie Club at the Prince Charles Cinema turns its attentions to camp sci-fi flick Flash Gordon, with a special screening, Q&A and prize giveaways. £10/£6, 9pm

Wednesday 7 December

XMAS SCIENCE: Every year, you'll find a stocking's-worth of events purporting to reveal the science of Christmas, whatever that means. This year is no exception, and the Society of Chemical Industry offer the science behind your Christmas dinner at their UCL HQ. FREE, 6pm

GENETICS: The Royal Society's Francis Crick Lecture is this year delivered by Simon Boulton from CRUK. His theme: how damaged DNA is repaired by the cell, and the connections between these mechanisms and cancer and ageing. FREE, 6.30pm

Thursday 8 December

SPACE: Is the Earth rare? That is, are there many other worlds out there with conditions suitable for complex life, or is our own set of circumstances so unlikely that we might be alone in the whole cosmos? Prof James Kasting, over from Penn State University, discusses the known unknowns about planetary habitability at UCL's Chemistry Department. FREE, 5.30pm

LOST RIVERS: Londonist contributor and all-round good egg Tom Bolton is tonight's speaker at the South East London Folklore Society (Old King's Head, London Bridge). He'll reveal highlights from his recent book on London's lost rivers. £2.50/£1.50, 8pm

Saturday 10 December

ANATOMY: Ever wanted to wiggle your finger round in someone's chest cavity? You depraved bastard. Well, you can fulfil your dreams at a 'pop-up anatomy' class at Wellcome Collection today. FREE, sessions from 10.30am

SCI-FI: Another beery meetup for the London Science Fiction and Fantasy group, who'll be at the Mad Hatter, Southwark. FREE, 5pm

Sunday 11 December

MEET COX! Rock-star-turned-physicist-turned-TV-presenter-turned-shiny-cheeked-posterboy-of-British-science Brian Cox is at Waterstone's Piccadilly to sign his book The Quantum Universe with co-author Jeff Forshaw. FREE, 1pm

SCI-FI: Clapham Picturehouse's season of sci-fi screenings and talks continues with 80's classic (of sorts) Weird Science. The film is followed by a panel discussion about advances in synthetic biology. £11.60, 2.30pm

Last Updated 05 December 2011