NERD NITE MELBOURNE EDITION #31
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We have another excellent 3-speaker lineup for you in June where speakers will be discussing art forgeries, quantum computing and the science of Star Trek. Come and secure your seat when doors open at 7pm and enjoy a $14 burger/pot Howler special whilst we get into the nerdy learning.
Magnifying the Distant Universe
by Dr Rachael Livermore
Using the most advanced telescopes in the world and in space, we can now find galaxies so far away that the light left them when the Universe was only a few hundred million years old. This lets us see the very early stages of the formation of galaxies, but it's incredibly difficult: since they're in the first stages of formation, the galaxies are small and faint, and being so far away makes them even smaller and fainter. To overcome this difficulty, we use an amazing quirk of the theory of General Relativity that causes dark matter to act as a natural telescope in space, magnifying these very distant galaxies to make them bright enough to see. Is this sounds like magic, that's because it is.
Computing with Quantum Physics
by Dr Anna Phan
Because atoms and subatomic particles behave in strange and complex ways, classical physics can not explain their quantum behaviour. However, when that behaviour is harnessed effectively, systems become far more powerful than classical computers... quantum powerful. In this presentation, I'll attempt to explain how quantum computers work, and describe where we are in terms of building them and understanding what types of problems they might be able to solve.
F-ART: Fakes, Forgeries and Fraud in the Art Market, or, what is Art?
by Petrit Abazi
For the last fifteen years, Petrit has handled, valued and authenticated thousands of works of art. In that time, he has detected dozens of paintings and sculptures which were presented to him as 'authentic' or 'original' examples by well-known artists but were probably not 'the real McCoy'. Identifying what is 'real' and what is 'fake' involves a number of tools including good pattern recognition skills, a photographic memory, meticulous research provenance (ownership history), a basic understanding of history and history of materials, a science lab (to check facts) and a little bit of luck (fortune favours the trained eye, to paraphrase Louis Pasteur). As well as discussing specific international and Australian examples of F-art, Petrit will be extending the discussion to broader social and philosophical concepts: what is 'real' and what is 'fake'? Why do we endow so much value to the 'authentic', and finally, that big, seemingly unanswerable question, what is art?