Nerd Nite SF #43: Accounting, Meyer Lemons, and Libraries and Librarians!From the sweetest of lemons to the sweetest of information scientists and the sweetest of… accounting?, we have a delightful cocktail of non-holiday-related talks that will make you glad you skipped that one Christmas party. So head over to the Rickshaw Stop and join us for fruity drinks and fruitful discussions with a plant-loving theorist, the Librarian in Black, and an accountant with a PhD. Be there and be square!

Wednesday, 12/18/2013
Doors at 7 pm, show at 8
Rickshaw Stop, 155 Fell St @Van Ness
$8, all ages

Get tickets here!


“Debits and Credits and Fraud… Oh My!” by Nick Ross

Over the last two decades we’ve seen an explosion of accounting fraud. From WorldCom to Tyco, Enron to Kmart, it sometimes feels like more companies are engaging in fraudulent behavior than being honest. And despite the fact that these are often multi-billion-dollar crimes, involve mysterious suicide (Clifford Baxter at Enron), and help push our economy to collapse (Lehman Brothers), accounting somehow still isn’t sexy and is considered boring. During this talk, we’ll do a bit of demystification, a bit of history, and a bit of forensics to show how we’ve gotten here and why this keeps happening. Hopefully, you won’t fall asleep.

Nick Ross, PhD, actually, no lie, holds a PhD in accounting from UCLA and finds it fascinating. He currently ruins video games at TinyCo and teaches Accounting and Analytics at USF.


“When Life Gives You Lemons: Frank Meyer’s Hunt for Pomological Perfection” by Xan Chacko

In the early 20th century, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) funded agricultural explorations with the aim of retrieving fruit specimens for hybridization projects. One such agricultural explorer, noted for his eponymous lemon, was Frank Nicholas Meyer (1875-1919), an immigrant from the Netherlands whose expeditions in Asia brought us celebrated fruit, toxic weeds, and possibly even Chestnut blight. Writing to his patrons, Meyer is hopeful for a future for his fruit trees, laden with promise and productivity in their projected American environments.

Xan Chacko is a grad student in cultural studies at UC Davis who thinks about the intersection between plants and our ways of knowing them.


“Where’d the Card Catalog Go? Today’s Ass-Kicking Libraries and Librarians” by Sarah Houghton

Contrary to the pundits’ predictions of their demise, libraries are now more vital to the knowledge economy than ever. They have 3D printers, home brewing and butchering classes, battles of the bands, downloadable books and magazines, torrent tutorials, and some of the world’s strongest information privacy systems and policies. And what about the librarians? You’ll find a scary-smart group of tech-nerd radicals dedicated to fighting government surveillance, campaigning against digital rights management, and above all protecting your freedom to access the information you want. As the library of yesteryear fades away, what
is emerging in its place?

Sarah Houghton is the director for the San Rafael Public Library. She’s blogged and consulted about technology and the future of libraries for ten years as the Librarian in Black. You can find out more at


NNSF t-shirts are still here! $20. Designed by our Über-talented DJ, poster artist, and now t-shirt maker, Alpha Bravo. He’ll also be spinning tunes specially selected for the presenters’ themes. Follow the setlist on Twitter @djalphabravo.

And Kevin & Gail’s Chili Palace will be serving delicious hot chili upstairs.