July 11th Nerd Nite: Zombies on the Oregon Trail!

Apologies to our guests for the most recent hiatus! You’ll be happy to hear we are back in full force on July 11th at the Deuce. Here are the details:

Where: The WWII Club aka “The Deuce / 50 Conz / Northampton, MA

When: July 11th at 7:00 PM

Who: Julie Rose on “Attack of the Zombies!: A Brief Introduction to the Problem of Consciousness” and John Vilk on “Digital Preservation: Bringing Oregon Trail to your Web Browser”

There is a $5 admission fee (cash, please), which goes towards our speakers, our audio equipment rental and sound tech, the person helping out at the door, and general overhead expenses. It’s greatly appreciated!

RSVP not required, but getting a headcount is super helpful for us. You can RSVP on Facebook or Meetup.

NOTE: The World War II Club is still recovering from some burst sprinkler system pipes, which has left the kitchen temporarily out of commission. What does this mean? Unfortunately, we can’t offer food. You are welcome to bring something to eat or order takeout while at the deuce. Bring some pizzas and have a pizza party!


“Attack of the Zombies!: A Brief Introduction to the Problem of Consciousness”

Why are we conscious, and where does it come from? In this talk, we’ll explore the Zombie Argument, a compelling contemporary philosophical argument for the claim that consciousness is not a physical phenomenon.

Julie Rose has a master’s in philosophy from UMass Amherst, where her research focused on the problem of consciousness. She has also farmed lettuce in Hawaii, made wine in France, and worked at a plastic bag factory.


“Digital Preservation: Bringing Oregon Trail to your Web Browser”

Thanks to rogue archivists who chose to “Copy That Floppy”, the Internet contains large collections of old software and video games that are of historical interest. Unfortunately, experiencing these digital artifacts firsthand requires complicated setup procedures and antiquated technical expertise. In this talk, I will describe how I collaborated with a loose collective of amateur archivists to bring these items to life in a single click on the Internet Archive, along with the importance of digital preservation.

John Vilk is a PhD student and a Facebook Fellow at the University of Massachusetts Amherst whose research focuses on improving the web browser for developers. His nerd credentials include owning every issue of Nintendo Power, having a fairly decent collection of video game systems, working with the Internet Archive and other volunteers to bring old computer software and video games to millions of people, writing a complete Java Virtual Machine in JavaScript called Doppio, and working with Microsoft to bring time-travel and privacy-preserving augmented reality to Internet Explorer.

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