London’s 6th Meet the Scientist

· London

 

The London constituency is extremely pleased to welcome all of you to our first event of the year 2018, a priceless opportunity to meet our scientist, learn about their work and have a relaxing time with a pint! This event will take place in the Hoop & Toy pub, 34 Thurloe Pl, Kensington London, SW7 2HQ, very near the South Kensington tube station, on the 23rd of January at 19.00.

Our amazing speakers on this occasion and a brief summary of their talks are:

 

Fluids in our daily life
by Sergio P. Perez

How do tsunamis, space rockets, traffic jams and bird flocks relate to each other? All these phenomena are based on Fluid Dynamics, a field of Engineering and Mathematics with varied and surprising applications. It relies on such complicated equations that there is currently a prize of one million dollars for the person able to shed light on their solutions.

Given this difficulty, in my research I am supported by supercomputers to simulate diverse applications of Fluid Dynamics. These simulations can however take massive amounts of time and make errors, and as a result the design of efficient and accurate algorithms is a paramount objective.

During this talk I hope to amaze you with the endless times that Fluid Dynamics appears in your life, and illustrate you about the usage of computers to grasp all these phenomena.

 

Dating the species divergence times
by Sandra Álvarez

One of the topics that may easily pique our curiosity is about the species that lived in the Earth years or million years ago and got extinct or evolved into other species because of different circumstances.

Consequently, questions such as when the ancestor of all mammals appeared or when a species evolved into other species encouraged me to focus on this interesting field. Specifically, my research consists of developing and/or using bioinformatics tools that implement Bayesian statistical methods to estimate the divergence times of the species by using the hidden information in both the DNA and the fossils.

During this talk, I hope you enjoy discovering how fields so different from each other such as biology, informatics, paleontology, and Bayesian statistics can be integrated to help us better understand the relationship between different species which, in a near future, can help us to improve our knowledge about the tree of life.

 

Social Pinball: a game against LGBT+ harassment
by Alejandro Cámara

I firmly believe video games are the most powerful medium we have to communicate with society. From the cradle to the grave, we all play games. Tag, hide-and-seek, Carcassonne, chess, bridge. You name it! In addition, players not only receive a message when playing video games, but they “live” an experience they can learn from. As such, game developers have the responsibility to create compelling experiences people can relate to.

In this talk I will present the game Social Pinball, my second attempt at delivering an experience with a message players can learn from. In the game, players get to initially feel the joy of human interaction, followed by the despair of rejection by others. By the contrast between the two situations, players get to live in first person the pain many people suffer when they are bullied due to their sexual orientation or identity. Hopefully players receive the tools to emphatise in real life with people in a similar situation.

Attendees will have the opportunity to play Social Pinball at the end of the talk.