Nerd Nite SF #20: Ice Cream, Streetcar Housing, and Antibody Engineering

Wednesday, 1/18
Doors at 7:30, show at 8
Rickshaw Stop, 155 Fell Street @Van Ness
$8
All ages

Mad science turns its attention to ice cream making! A 19th-century suburb of SF made out of streetcars! Artificial development of antibodies – which will maybe help me get over this @*($% cold! But, wait, there’s more! We’re also celebrating the first issue of Nerd Nite: the Magazine! So come on down for some drinks, beats, lectures, and a free copy of our first issue. Be there and be square!

NERD NITE: THE MAGAZINE

Holy heck, we have a magazine, peoples. It features the best of the best from Nerd Nites around the world, coupled with gorgeous photos and infographics. The first issue covers: the history and future of the late Kim Jong-il’s favorite attire, the jumpsuit; an in-depth look at the romance novel industry; a cephalopod sex advice column written by Nerd Nite SF alum, Rich Ross, and more! We’re giving away FREE copies at this month’s Nerd Nite.

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“Closer to the Cow: Robyn’s Adventures in Ice Cream” by Robyn Sue Fisher and Cory Bloom

After graduating from Stanford Business School in 2007, Robyn Sue Fisher attended ice cream school (which is even more fun than it sounds) at Penn State University, where she met cows that told her they were really, really disappointed with how their milk was being churned into icy, way-too-sugary ice cream that was loaded with preservatives. She decided to perfect the ice cream freezing process using liquid nitrogen, so she spent a few years in her super top-secret underground workshop building “Kelvin,” her patented ice cream making machine. In late 2009, she began wheeling Kelvin around the streets of San Francisco atop a Radio Flyer wagon, powered with a homemade battery pack, equipped with off-road wagon wheels, and armed with Twitter and a dewar of LN2. She’s now the proud owner of the first San Francisco made-to-order scoop shop, which is in nearby Hayes Valley.

Robyn will talk about her invention process, entrepreneurial passions, and New Year’s Resolution to make new, old fashioned ice cream for each and every resident of San Francisco. She will be joined by “The Kelvin Doctor,” Cory Bloome, the engineer responsible for bringing the next generation of Kelvins to life.

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“Carville-by-the-Sea: San Francisco’s Streetcar Suburb” by Woody LaBounty and David Gallagher

“Carville-by-the-Sea,” one of the quirkiest and least-remembered communities in San Francisco’s history, flowered as an 1890s beach retreat on the sand dunes south of Golden Gate Park. Prominent bohemians, judges, lady bicyclists, and sand-bath-prescribing physicians transformed old transit cars into cottages and clubhouses, mansions and churches. See what creative carpenters of a century ago could make with obsolete horsecars, cable cars, and trolley cars. Famous capitalists, writers, painters, and journalists visited Carville to work, play, and enjoy what was touted as the “oddest village in the world.”

Woody LaBounty and David Gallagher are the founders of the Western Neighborhoods Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the history of western San Francisco (www.outsidelands.org). Rather than get history degrees, the two have relied on wearing old-timey hats to appear credible.

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“Antibody Engineering (or at least something close)” by Sai Duriseti

Do you get sick? Yes? Well, me, too. Now that we’ve cleared that up, let’s talk about those little guys that help you fight off disease. That’s right, I’m talking about antibodies; they rock. They rock so hard that, in fact, there is a whole scientific field dedicated to the artificial development of antibodies to fight disease. We call this field: antibody engineering. Men have spent fortunes, leveraged their homes, and sold their spouses in order to bankroll efforts to find an antibody-based magic bullet for diseases. As I’ll explain to you, however, this task is much harder than it seems. We ingenious humans, however, have found some PAR codes (shame on you if you know what those are) for this seemingly insurmountable task. We’ll talk about antibodies and the current status of this awesome field.

Sai is a PhD student at UCSF. He is a gentleman, a scholar, and a troublemaker.

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Plus: DJ Alpha Bravo selects vinyl cuts to illuminate our presenters’ themes. Alpha Bravo is VP of left-field pop label, Radio Khartoum, and was one of the forces behind legendary SF pop-club nights, Anisette and Schokolade.

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