Nerd Nite Orlando: Yuri’s Night 2023

Nerd Nite Orlando returns to the legendary Stardust Video & Coffee on Thursday, April 13th to celebrate Yuri’s Night 2023.

UCF Space Scientists Drs. Josh Colwell, Addie Dove, Jim Cooney, and Audrey Martin (the Astroquarks!) will record and live-stream the fun astronomy podcast “Walkabout the Galaxy” at Nerd Nite. Their main topic will be “Back to the Moon with Robots and More”, taking a look at the set of robotic missions underway and in development to help us solve the Moon’s remaining mysteries and get ready for the return of humans to the lunar surface. The astroquarks will also cover the latest news in space science and exploration and take questions from the audience.

[More details coming soon]

Nerd Nite Day 2023: Nerd Nite Orlando Celebrates 10 Years

Join Nerd Nite Orlando on March 14th, 7pm at Mead Botanical Garden** to celebrate 10 years of “the most fun public speaking event in town” with presentations, trivia, the dry t-shirt contest, and a special recap of the last decade of nerdy fellowship.

Doors at 6:30pm
Event start at 7pm

Event is FREE to attend

Hosted by Ricardo Williams

Guest speakers: Derek Demeter, Max Jackson, & Josh Manning

Food + Beverage:
Romay Ethiopian Kitchen
The Tap Room at Dubsdread

Contributing Sponsors
Sampaguita Ice Cream
Winter Park Pie Company

**The event will take place inside at the Azalea Lodge (formerly known as The Clubhouse)

Sponsorships available, contact

“Finding F*cking Fossils in Florida” by Derek Demeter

Description: While Derek has given many space talks over the years at Nerd Nite, he is also an avid SCUBA diver and enjoys battling alligators and sharks in Florida’s waterways in search for prehistoric fossil remains. Derek will take us on a 45 million year old adventure through time and space, showcasing some of his many fossils finds. After the program, you’ll have a chance to come up and check out the fossils yourself. 

Bio: Derek began working at the Emil Buehler Planetarium at Seminole State College of Florida in 2003. In 2007, Mr. Demeter became the Planetarium Director and immediately began the process of writing and producing shows for the Planetarium. Since then, his passion for teaching people about the wonders of the universe has earned him many accolades and worldwide recognition. Derek recently served as president of the Southeastern Planetarium Association and currently serves as the Executive Secretary of the International Planetarium Society. Outside of his role as planetarium director, Derek loves to share his passion for geology and paleontology. Derek has been featured in the news about several discoveries he and his friends have found in the rivers of Florida. 

“Being a Nerd in the Age of AI” by Max Jackson

Max is a data scientist by day and an actor and improvisor by night – his lifelong passion of making people laugh and clap when he talks has taken him every stage he could stand on, from TED talka to improv comedy shows and from New York to Miami to Seattle and back. He is a proud founding member of two improv troupes, Uncle Richard’s Niblings and Malice Improv.

Nerd Nite Orlando s10e05

Nerd Nite Orlando returns to the legendary Stardust Video & Coffee on Thursday, February 9th

Guest speakers: Ian Cole, Eliza Juliano, & Shaun Marshall

“Making Friends In Orlando” by Ian Cole 

Ian’s nerdy friends make fighting robots, costumes for wheelchairs, giant cosplays, tiny electric race cars, and much more. Hear their stories and learn how you can choose your own adventure to make new friends in Orlando while making the world a little better along the way!

Ian Cole is an avid learner who has spent his career working at the intersection of technology, marketing and leadership in both for-profit and non-profit organizations. In his role as the Chief Innovation Officer for Give Kids The World (GKTW) in Central Florida, Ian is responsible for the creation and execution of initiatives designed to deliver unforgettable experiences for critically-ill children and their families. This includes major capital and construction projects around the 89-acre campus and technology functions including end-user computing, software applications, security, and entertainment / show technology.
As part of his community service, Ian has also founded and led several non-profits related to STEM / STEAM education including The Maker Effect Foundation (Orlando, FL), where he currently serves on the board and as part of the production team for Maker Faire Orlando and the leadership committee of MakerFX Makerspace (Orlando, FL). He was recognized for his role in Maker community leadership by the White House in 2016. Ian received his Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering from Florida State University, and his Master of Business Administration from Crummer School of Business at Rollins College.

“The Secret Lives of Cities: How Theory, Culture, and Accident Shape the Places Where We Live, Work, and Play” by Eliza Harris Juliano

Eliza Harris Juliano is an urban planner and advocate for better cities. She serves on the board of Bike/Walk Central Florida, is a former board member with the Congress for New Urbanism, and provides professional planning services at Kimley-Horn. You can find her on twitter at @myurbangen. 

“Buhurt: Don’t Get Hurt, Medieval Armored Combat as a Sport” by Shaun Marshall

Nerd Nite Orlando s10e04

Nerd Nite returns to the legendary Stardust Video & Coffee on Jan. 12th @ 7pm.

Nerd Nite Orlando returns to the legendary Stardust Video & Coffee on Thursday, Jan 12th

Guest speakers: Waldo Grunenwald, Max Jackson

TALK #1: “What a Shell Dotfile Can Do For You!” by Waldo

In the DevOps world, much is made of automation and reducing friction. Despite this, few engineers take the fullest advantage of the closest point of friction: the humble terminal. For decades, terminals have been among the most powerful tools in most engineers’ arsenals, and are well-automated. It’s certainly not hard to improve your daily life, but few people know about or explore the world of dotfiles.

In this talk, we’ll show some ways that you can improve your daily life by reducing friction, saving time, being lazier, catching mistakes, and amusing yourself.

Waldo is a Tech Evangelist for Datadog, which means that he gets to travel and meet people, and advocate on their behalf. He is a recovering SRE and Operations Engineer, has been active in the DevOps community for quite some time, and is keen on helping organizations stop hurting themselves. Despite being a raging introvert, he enjoys public speaking. In his spare time, he enjoys collecting hobbies that he doesn’t have the time to engage in. He hates writing about himself in the third person, and aspires to one day be a better bio writer.

TALK #2: “On Not Being a Thing: The Existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre” by Max Jackson

Max is a data scientist by day and an actor and improvisor by night – his lifelong passion of making people laugh and clap when he talks has taken him every stage he could stand on, from TED talka to improv comedy shows and from New York to Miami to Seattle and back. He is a proud founding member of two improv troupes, Uncle Richard’s Niblings and Malice Improv.

A Very Nerdy Christmas

It’s been a spectacular year. Nerd Nite returned, Artemis 1 finally launched, and (fingers crossed) we might even get some of our student loans forgiven. There’s a lot to be thankful for so let’s celebrate!

We’ve got drinks, we’ve got food, we’ve got games, and we’ve got music. All we need is to bring together remarkable people like you. 

Join us for A Very Nerdy Christmas party on December 16th.

Click here to RSVP on Facebook.

Email if you have any questions.

Nerd Nite Orlando s10e03

Nerd Nite Orlando returns to the legendary Stardust Video & Coffee on Thursday, Oct 13th. 

Guest speakers:
Anna Eskamani
Marie Mercado

Nerd Nite Orlando s10e02

Nerd Nite will return Sept. 8th at the legendary Stardust Video & Coffee. 

PRESENTATION #1: “How Pokémon Helps Us Learn to Be Our Very Best Selves” by Daniel Kaufmann, Ph.D. (@DrGameology)

DESCRIPTION: Video games provide an amazing opportunity for us to learn about ourselves and what motivates us to pursue various kinds of goals in life. The Pokémon series of games is no exception to this. With each new region, players around the world explore far and wide to assemble a Pokémon party that feels special to them. This talk will review a few basic insights these games offer from a psychological perspective, and will share some models a person can explore to better understand what makes the play of video games become a fulfilling activity for them from a psychological perspective.

BIO: Dr. Kaufmann, PHD is an Assistant Professor, researcher, licensed counselor, Twitch streamer, and podcaster who focuses on using insights from video games and other fandom properties to aid our mental health journey and discover our strengths. His research on the psychology of player types has been presented internationally and continues to evolve with each new world players can inhabit across PC’s and consoles. He also continues to share a never-ending analysis on who we become when we play games at fan conventions, in published books, and through collaborations with other professional who share a passion for video games and the messages they offer each of us who play!

PRESENTATION #2: “A brief taxonomy of ‘Speculative Fiction’ SUBGENRES… major historical variations, evolutions&innovations” by Ben Forbes Griffith

DESCRIPTION: “Science-Fiction”&“Fantasy” are merely the most obvious, oversimplified for “genre” fiction bookstore cataloguing, and recently increasingly mainstream tip of a very deep&broad “iceberg” of imaginative worldbuilding by a plethora of significantly diverse authors!Learn how to tell if your Sci-Fi is 🍆“hard” or 🍌“soft” or if your Fantasy is “high” or “low” or grimdark, and so much more! If your awareness of “punk” style speculative fiction subgenres is limited to Cyberpunk 2020 or some Steampunk cosplay you saw at a festival with some dapper mustaches&top hats, elaborately customized goggles, and elegant Victorian clothes, then this is precisely the talk you need to seriously punk up your fiction intake!

BIO: Ben Forbes Griffith is just another middle-aged nerdy intellectual with too many hobbies and never enough time for them all… His day job paying the bills in recent years is as a web-developer, but he is a former history teacher and lifelong learner who spends much of his free time happily dwelling in the past (or in fantastical worlds of his own imagining); toward that end, he is an insatiably curious bibliophile, experienced tabletop-roleplaying gamer, and aspiring creative writer.
Twitter = @BFGriffith 

Nerd Nite Orlando s10e01

Kick off season 10 of Nerd Nite with us this Thursday, August 11th at the legendary Stardust Video & Coffee.


“The Nuclear Niche: Fungi that Survive and Thrive in the Heart of Chernobyl” by Matt Luby

The resilience of many species of fungi to various adverse conditions has been known to biologists for many years. It is only in the past three decades that we have begun to evaluate the ability of some fungi to not only survive extremely high doses of harmful radiation, but also to tap into it as an energy source. We’ll discuss not only how it happens, but what we might be able to do with our knowledge of this unique adaptation.


“Blood & Treasure: Modern Politics and the Golden Age of Piracy” by J.D. Casto

We tend to think of pirates as bloodthirsty thieves, brutal rapists, and vicious murderers, concerned only with indulging their every whim and amassing as much wealth as possible, forever living at the expense of others. And this is absolutely true. However, in some ways, pirates were strangely ahead of the societal curve. In fact, some of their viewpoints would be heartily endorsed by liberal politicians today – health insurance for all, democratic elections (typically without collusion), and even gay marriage. This presentation will focus on the incredible true stories of pirates and their modern policies.

Nerd Nite Pop-Up Event @ Bynx

Join us tonight for a special pop-up Nerd Nite at Bynx Cafe. Enjoy presentations from some of your favorite Nerd Nite speakers Max Jackson and Jimmy Waldron. 

Nerd Nite Orlando: Ranked Choice Voting, Awesome Dinosaurs, and 5 Years Without Drinking

Speakers include:
Eliza Harris Juliano
Jimmy Waldron
Max Jackson

Hosted by Ricardo Williams

Thursday, August 12, 2021 @ 7pm
Stardust Video & Coffee
1842 Winter Park Rd, Orlando, FL 32803

PRESENTATION #1: “How Would Yoda Vote?” by Eliza Harris Juliano

Eliza is the Director of Urbanism at Canin Associates, where she helps communities and developers build and rebuild neighborhoods where walking or biking to run an errand or go to school is a safe and pleasant experience.

PRESENTATION #2: “The Most Awesome Dinosaurs You’ve Never Heard Of” by Jimmy Waldron

Meet six incredible and bizarre dinosaurs that changed everything for paleontology—and not even your kids know their names! 

Jimmy Waldron is the host and creator of Dinosaurs Will Always Be Awesome, on YouTube and wherever you get your podcasts.  In DWABA, Jimmy and his cohost Kat meet scientists, artists, and researchers around the world to tell the stories behind the bones of your favorite dinosaurs. Soon, you can see Jimmy on Conan O’Brien’s podcast – “Conan Needs a Friend”.  This is Jimmy’s third talk with Nerd Nite Orlando, and it’s going to be awesome! 

PRESENTATION#3: “What I Learned From 5 Years Without Drinking” by Max Jackson

For some people alcohol is a fun vacation from an otherwise-okay baseline state of mind. For others, like me, alcohol can become a coping mechanism or a crutch, or something even worse. It took a lot of trial and error for me to figure that out, until on August 13th 2016 I quit drinking for good. Everything about my life has changed since then as a result, and I’ve learned a lot that I think is really worth talking about. Do I think everyone should quit drinking? (Nope). Do you need to get religion to quit drinking? (It’s fine if you do, but also nope). Have I learned some things that I think can help make anyone more resilient and compassionate in their lives? (Absolutely).