Orlando Sentinel Reports on Nerd Nite Orlando’s 2-Years

Tod Caviness, of the Orlando Sentinel, hangs out with Ricardo Williams and talks about the 2-year anniversary Pi Day Celebration.

Watch the interview here: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/entertainment/bars-and-clubs/os-wingman-nerd-nites-2-year-anniversary-pi-celebration-20150312-premiumvideo.html


Watch on Hulu here: http://www.hulu.com/watch/766210

Orlando Water Hole Podcast about Nerd Nite

Orlando Water Hole is an internet talk show recognizing the people in Central Florida who make Orlando a vibrant place to live, work and play. We share the stories of small business owners, artists, independent media creators, volunteers, non-profit leaders and community activists – among others.

On episode 51, Ben Reed speaks with Nerd Nite Orlando Host Ricardo Williams about how Nerd Nite got started, what vexiphilia means, how Nerd Nite can help you on a date, tips for giving a great Nerd Nite Presentation, and more.

Listen to the podcast here: http://orlandowaterhole.com/ep-51-ricardo-williams-host-nerd-nite-orlando/


Radio Interview on 91.5 FM WPRK with Orlando Nerd Bosses (11-10-14)

Josh Manning and Ricardo Williams stopped by the WPRK station to talk about the space-themed Nerd Nite event happening on Thursday, November 13, 2014.

Airing on 91.5 FM WPRK Winter Park, Florida(www.wprk.org/)

Hosted by Sarah Peerani and Sarah Elbadri for “ReThinking the City”

Listen here: https://soundcloud.com/nerd-nite-orlando/interview-on-wprk-11-10-14


Ricardo Williams discusses Nerd Nite Orlando [VIDEO]

In this short clip, Orlando Nerd Boss Ricardo Williams talks about what Nerd Nite means to him.



Beth Phillips to Represent Nerd Nite Orlando at Future is Here Festival


We would like to officially announce that Beth Phillips will be traveling to Washington DC in May to represent Orlando at the Nerd Nite Global Fest in the third annual Future is Here Festival, presented by Smithsonian Magazine.

Her talk, “Robot Intimacy: The Inevitable Leap to Love and Sex with Robots” will be presented during a weekend of exploration into science, technology, culture and the arts, all gathered around the exciting and elastic theme of “the future.” Congratulations to Beth

Click here to get a complete list of the speaker schedule for the event: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/future-here-2015-180954528/


Nerd Nite Celebrated 2 Years in Orlando on 3.14.15

On the 2-year anniversary of the first Nerd Nite in Orlando, I hosted a special event at the Church Street Exchange building to celebrate this momentous occasion.

The day featured 6 presentations, Pi Day trivia, a dry t-shirt contest, interactive game setups by IndieNomicon and Cherry Pie Games, a Pie Baking Contest judged by Bungalower, and prizes by our sponsor, the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.

Thank you to the speakers (Chris Castro, Amy & Nathan Selikoff, Bobby Wesley, Max Jackson, Beth Phillips, and Nick Paul) who delivered incredibly nerdy talks; and congratulations to Barbara Madvin, Lisa Melegari, and Kristine Thomas for winning our Pie Contest.

I’d also like to thank representatives from IDEAS For Us, Fleet Farming, and The Hive for joining us to share how they are helping to advance Orlando; and Thomas “Thor” Thorspecken and Amanda Wegmann who donated original art as items for the silent auction.

Lastly, a special thank you to the Church Street District for giving us a warm welcome to the ‪#‎DTO‬ neighborhood and offering all the ‪#‎PiDay‬ attendees $10 off the door entry for the Downtown Brew.

Join us on April 9th as we return to the second Thursday of every month at a new location… The Geek Easy!

RSVP to the April Nerd Nite here: https://www.facebook.com/events/352683394918428/

-Ricardo Williams
Nerd Nite Orlando







Click here to view more photos from the event: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.641148725990549.1073741850.350851321686959&type=1

Nerd Nite Orlando XXVI (at the Geek Easy!)


Join us for our 26th consecutive Nerd Nite in Orlando at the Geek Easy!

Nerd Nite Orlando is an evening of entertaining yet thought-provoking talks across many disciplines – all while the audience drinks along in a casual bar atmosphere. Speakers present for 15-20 minutes each on a fascinating subject of their choice, often in an uncanny and unconventional way. Following each presentation is a brief Q&A with the audience.

Come meet up, drink, and learn something new!


Thursday, April 9th
Talks: 7:00 – 9:00pm
Location: The Geek Easy (behind A Comic Shop)
114 S Semoran Blvd Suite 6, Winter Park, Florida 32792


FIRST TALK: “Who Are We Anyway?: Using MMORPG’s As A Lens for Understanding Our Reality.” by Daniel Kaufmann

Talk Description:
Massively multiplayer online role-playing games are one of the quickest growing forms of entertainment since the turn-of-the-century. Much of the media and countless healthcare professionals have spent years trying to understand the exact way in which a player becomes immersed in these interactive virtual worlds which range from Azeroth, Middle Earth, a galaxy far far away, and many, many more. Certain concepts in the field of psychology have been used to reach a better understanding of the person, all the way from understanding the nuance of in game roles, virtual communities, and even ways we project ourselves into the game when we create avatars. This talk will provide the audience with insight into how the positive experience of the game can result in greater understanding of concepts such as personality theory, motivation to play, and the context of what happens when we play games in an online capacity.

Speaker Bio: Daniel Kaufmann is a licensed mental health counselor in the state of Florida, and is pursuing his PhD at Barry University. He is currently preparing to conduct his dissertation research on the topic of personality theory and motivational connections involved in the play of MMO games, and really hopes to finish before Episode VII comes out.

SECOND TALK: “Next Gen Interactive Theater: Merging Video Games, Architecture, and Theater” by Sarah Elger

Talk Description: What’s next in interactive theater and video games? Why is interactive theater important? What would happen if we took the idea of gaming into reality and challenged the players in a more real world situation? Sarah is creating an experience which will take interactive theater to the next level that will Beta test with Orlando Fringe in May. She’s created this type of experience by studying architecture, especially the works of Archigram, video games, namely the game play of World of Warcraft, and endless theatrical elements. How do you design a real world experience that empowers players to push themselves and engage in the designed world around them?

Speaker Bio: Sarah is an Associate Attraction Designer with Universal Creative with a Master of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania and BA in Sculpture from Bard College. She has always been interested in pushing the arts into a new realm, into something innovative and inspiring. After working on numerous plays, seeing how architecture can influence a user, and playing endless World of Warcraft, Sarah wanted to create an experience that pushed people to think and take the audience out of their seats and into the action of a production. She wants the audience to feel like they are the stars of their own play and get to make decisions that affect their play.

THIRD TALK: “How Not To Die On This Fucking Rock: Using Ecologically Inspired Sustainable Systems To Allow Extraterrestrial Human Habitation.” by Griffin Lunn

Talk Description: Being a single planet species is for chumps. However, Space is a cruel bitch and Mars WILL CUT YOU. Our local regenerable life support systems expert Griffin Lunn will break down the strategies on how to live outside our comfy little biosphere and in HOSTILE TERRITORY. With biomimicry hybrid physical/chemical life support systems and In-Situ Reutilization techniques we should be able to tame these inhospitable shitholes. And once we do hopefully we won’t trash it like we did with our last place (the Earth and/or your first apartment; pick whatever one makes the most sense).

Speaker Bio: Griffin is a Sustainable Systems Engineer at Kennedy Space Center, working on the Engineering Services Contract. He currently works on thermofluid analysis for ground support systems on the Space Launch System, but also maintains a sustainable systems lab that works primarily on bioreactor design/operation and nutrient recovery for closed-loop Environmental Control and Life Support Systems (ECLSS). Somehow Florida Tech awarded him a couple degrees in chemical engineering and Biotechnology. Griffin enjoys (when outside government property when they somehow let him leave/escape) beverage formulation and waking up in strange new places, and usually in that order.


RSVP on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/events/352683394918428/

RSVP on Meetup here: http://www.meetup.com/Orlando-Nerds-and-Geeks/events/221575621/

If you have any questions about Nerd Nite Orlando or are interested in being a future presenter, email Ricardo [at]

Nerd Nite Orlando XXV: Pi Day Celebration


Nerd Nite Orlando’s 2-Year Anniversary Pi Day Celebration
Presented by Canvs & Nerd Nite Orlando

Nerd Nite Orlando is an evening of entertaining yet thought-provoking talks across many disciplines – all while the audience drinks along in a casual bar atmosphere. Speakers present for up to 20 minutes, each on a fascinating subject of their choice, often in an uncanny and unconventional way. Following each presentation is a 5-10 minute Q&A with the audience.

To coincide with Pi Day and the 2-year anniversary of the very first Nerd Nite in Orlando, we will be co-hosting a special event with Canvs on Saturday, March 14th at the Church Street Exchange. The afternoon/evening will compile a diverse group of classic nerd nite talks along with new presentations and additional programming that includes trivia, a drunk science nerd-off, and a dry t-shirt contest; along with music, games, pies, a magic show and of course drinks!

Date: Saturday, March 14, 2015
Time: 3pm – 9pm
Location: Church Street Exchange, 101 South Garland Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801
Tickets: $10 (Presale) $15 (Door)

Purchase your tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/nerd-nite-orlandos-2-year-anniversary-pi-day-celebration-tickets-15696069366

If you would like to participate in the Pie Baking Contest, bring in your homemade pies to the event, we’ll collect them and at the end of the night, we will have our judges pick the best and the winner will be given a prize.

All those interested in participating in the Pie Contest, should fill out this short questionnaire: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/8VRH9RC

All Pi Day attendees get $10 off the door entry for the Downtown Brewfest, hosted by the Church Street District and Real Radio 104.1 (Brewfest is a craft beer sampling event that will be happening next door on Church Street from 4-8pm.)

Chris Castro 3:15-3:45
Amy & Nathan Selikoff 3:55-4:25
Bobby Wesley 4:35-5:05
Max Jackson 5:45-6:15
Beth Philips 6:25-6:55
Nick Paul 7:05-7:35

● Nerd Nite talks
● Trivia
● Console games
● Dry T-Shirt Contest
● Drunk Science/Nerd Off
● Nerdcore Music
● Pie Baking Contest (sponsored by Bungalower)

Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts

“The Clean Energy Revolution: How Citizens are Re-energizing our Future” by Chris Castro

Talk Description: The clean energy economy is one of the most exciting industries for new economic development and job creation opportunities, not to mention its potential to help save the planet from the greatest challenge facing humanity. Leaders in Central Florida are working on ways to drive efficiency, and re-energize our future by working on ways to unlock the clean energy economy through community engagement and creative new policies that could change the game for energy in the Sunshine State and beyond.

Bio: Chris is an emerging social eco-preneur, community organizer, public speaker, Global Shaper, and practitioner in the sustainability movement with a passion for accelerating the transition to a clean energy economy. Chris currently is the Sustainability Program Manager and Senior Energy Adviser for the City of Orlando. He holds a B.S. degree in ‘Environmental Studies’ and ‘Energy & Sustainability’ from the University of Central Florida (UCF). Through his years as an undergrad, he co-founded IDEAS For Us, an international 501c3 nonprofit and UN-accredited NGO, building a movement of people around the World working to advance environmental solutions and sustainability. In 2012, Chris also partnered with professionals to create a clean energy consulting firm – Citizen Energy – that is implementing energy efficiency + renewable energy solutions in commercial buildings in Washington DC.


“Digital Mapmaking: You Are Here” by Nathan & Amy Selikoff

Talk Description: Why does Google Maps use the Mercator projection? Does it matter? Maps have power, and are a fascinating intersection of data visualization, mathematics, design, geopolitics, and history. The data and tools we now have at our fingertips (for free!) allow us all to get our feet wet in cartography. We can create maps that tell stories, explore our place in the world, or help us see our city differently. Join Nathan and Amy as they explore digital mapmaking in the 21st century.

Bio: Nathan Selikoff is an artist and programmer inspired by systems, science, nature and music. Selikoff fuses these interests into interactive artistic installations and unique objects that provoke community engagement and inspire new ways of thinking about the world we live in.

Amy Selikoff has taught 7th grade social studies for the past 10 years in Orange County. She loves her job. A lifelong geography nerd, Amy majored in history and journalism at the University of Florida. Amy has been married to her wonderful husband Nathan for 8 years. They love traveling the world, playing music, and pursuing justice together.


“Bowties are cool: Geek Chic, Identity and a Thin Strip of Cloth” by Bobby Wesley

Talk Description: Bowties are popular. Well, kinda. And right now so are “geek chic” and nerd culture. But what we wear has a history; it says something about who we are or want to be. Through the knot of bow ties, we’ll tie together the history and roles of fashion, identity formation, popular culture, hipsters, nerds and Dr. Who. Also puns and jokes. Can you tie a bow tie? Are clip-ons ever acceptable? Will the Eleventh Doctor be in attendance?! All this will be answered and more!

Bio: Bobby Wesley is a marketing guy, writer, recovering politico and often tells jokes at bars. He’s also pretty dapper. He has taught every one of his adult male friends (and quite a few ladies) how to tie bow ties. He likes nice suits and hipster shit. Despite his best efforts, you may know him as “the bow tie guy.” Which is fine.


“Programming on the Mind” by Max Jackson

Talk Description: For those of us in the West, digital technology has become an effortless part of our day-to-day existence. Actions such as sending an email or watching Netflix occur to us naturally, without challenge and without really catching our attention (unless something goes wrong). In addition to being effortless, digital technology is also uniquely and excitingly *rewarding* of our efforts – putting attention and time into learning how it works produces extraordinary benefits for the individual who does so. This talk will explore the ways in which programming makes a difference in the lives of everyday people and the ways it will continue to do so in the future, and in doing so will show that the brain-machine interfacing revolution is already well underway.

Bio: Max Jackson is a graduate student in Bioinformatics at the University of Central Florida. He helps to develop ‘Brains-on-a-chip’, focusing on analyzing their neurotransmission on both the network and the nano level. Through the Orlando Hackerspace FamiLAB he works with OpenBCI, an open-source Brain-Computer Interface group out of New York City.


“A Professional Liar: Fake Magic is Real Art” by Nick Paul

Talk Description: Magician Nick Paul has been lying to people for over 13 years. He has a fascination with honest deception and why magic works. His brand of “fake magic” is intended to entertain and confuse. Nick will explain why magicians who claim to have magical powers are creepy, and why magic is an art form no different from stand up comedy or music.

Bio: Nick Paul has been performing professionally for over a decade. He has been seen internationally and performs for colleges, theaters and fortune 500 companies all over the US. He is a graduate of the theater department at Columbia College Chicago, as well as the Second City Conservatory. In 2006 he was given the award for “Best Magician….in His Family”.


“Robot Intimacy: The Inevitable Leap to Love and Sex with Robots” by Beth Phillips

Talk Description: Robots are undergoing a transformation in society, from fulfilling roles as dissociative tools to roles as our partners and collaborators. Drawing on what we know about the current direction of robotic design as well as human attachment, it’s easy to predict that one day we will have loving, intimate relationships with our mechanical friends. Join us for a discussion on the future of human-robot relations and why envisioning a world in which people fall in love with artificial beings is not as far-fetched as it may seem.

Bio: Beth Phillips is a doctoral candidate in Applied Experimental & Human Factors Psychology at UCF. She studies human interaction with robots to better understand how to foster teamwork between humans and robots of the future. She’s also passionate about saxophone, space, sustainability, people and creating. Check out “about.me/elizabeth.phillips” for more information about Beth and her work.


For questions or more information, contact Ricardo Williams [at]

Nerd Nite Orlando XXIV (featuring Nerdy Speed Dating)


Nerd Nite Orlando XXIV

Join us for our 24th consecutive Nerd Nite in Orlando with a special Valentine’s Day theme featuring NERDY SPEED DATING!

Nerd Nite Orlando is an evening of entertaining yet thought-provoking talks across many disciplines – all while the audience drinks along in a casual bar atmosphere. Speakers present for 15-20 minutes each on a fascinating subject of their choice, often in an uncanny and unconventional way. Following each presentation is a brief Q&A with the audience.

Quench your curiosity! Come meet up, drink, and learn something new!


Thursday, February 12th
Talks 7:00 – 9:00pm
Stardust Video and Coffee, 1842 E. Winter Park Rd. Winter Park, FL 32803.

NERDY SPEED DATING (Hosted by Ricardo Williams)

Reserve a spot for speed dating here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/nerdy-speed-dating-at-nerd-nite-orlando-xxiv-tickets-15398143261


“They Might Be Giants: Brooklyn’s Ambassadors of Love” by Ed Petersen

If you’ve enjoyed the alternative rock musicians of the past thirty years, there’s a good chance you know about the unique worldview of Brooklyn’s TMBG. Their pop music is injected with a heavy dose of absurdism, nerdy references, and off-beat musicianship. They’ve written music for kids, provided soundtracks to TV shows, movies & commercials, and played well over 1,000 shows to promote their one-of-a-kind vision. They’ve even won two Grammys for their efforts. Join us as Ed takes on a magical, musical ride through their discography!

Ed Petersen holds B.A. in Economics from U.C.F. and currently works for the City of Orlando’s Planning Division. Perhaps unexpectedly, Ed is a “giant” alternative music nerd, having attended shows by R.E.M., They Might Be Giants, Weird Al Yankovic, Indigo Girls, Interpol, Paula Cole, and many others. He can even list the entire TMBG discography in exact order!


“Roses are Red, Orange Lilies Mean I Hate You: Exploring the Symbology of Flowers” by Emily Dovydaitis

Although most flowers lack tu-lips, they often “say” more than most people realize. During the Victorian era, the clandestine language of flowers provided a way for society to communicate emotions in a more respectable manner. Lovers, charmers and boothangs alike should ask themselves one simple question before this Valentine’s Day: what sort of message are you actually sending with that bouquet?

Emily Dovydaitis is a tree-hugging enthusiast, as well as an undergraduate in Biology and Cultural Anthropology at UCF. She fancies ethnobotany. Her dream is to one day travel to the Amazon to study native, plant-derived medicines. When she’s not drowning in organic chemistry, Emily enjoys rattling off plant binomials and drinking tea. She also secretly envies the fact that plants make their own food, which means they don’t need to clean dishes.

Click here to RSVP on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/1051326214893020/

If you have any questions about Nerd Nite Orlando or are interested in being a future presenter, email us at

Nerd Nite Orlando XXIII


Nerd Nite Orlando XXIII

Join us for our 23nd consecutive Nerd Nite in Orlando and the first of 2015.

Nerd Nite Orlando is an evening of entertaining yet thought-provoking talks across many disciplines – all while the audience drinks along in a casual bar atmosphere. Speakers present for 15-20 minutes each on a fascinating subject of their choice, often in an uncanny and unconventional way. Following each presentation is a brief Q&A with the audience.

Quench your curiosity! Come meet up, drink, and learn something new!



Thursday, January 8th

Talks 7:00 – 9:00pm

Stardust Video and Coffee, 1842 E. Winter Park Rd. Winter Park, FL 32803.

“DNA Nanotechnology: A Breakthrough For Us All” by Felix Sosa

Description: The talk is about the history, development, and possible future of the great breakthrough known as DNA nanotechnology. We’ll briefly go over the history and development, the exciting research being conducted here in Orlando, as well as by all others around the world. Then finish by discussing the astounding effects this new technology may have on our lives. Witness a revolution in medicine, computing, and more in our lifetime with this advent!

Biography: Felix is an undergraduate researcher at UCF working towards a Bachelor’s degree in both chemistry and computer science. He currently is a part of a large-scale research effort between the Chemistry Department, NanoScience Technology Center and Physics Department at UCF designing, simulating and synthesizing DNA architectures that have vast applications from medicines to computational machines. To be more straight-forward: he is a goof, a serious nerd and sometimes thinks he can sing. Felix loves the idea of making something that benefits us all and is a member of the maker community in Orlando helping others and myself accomplish just that.


“Trash to Treasure: Hoarding Demystified” by Heather Grove

Description: If you are a hoarder, have friends or family who hoard, or just know about it from the Discovery channel, you know it is a serious, life-threatening disease. With 1 in 30 Americans afflicted by the not so uncommon disorder, Heather hopes to shed some light on the science behind collecting shit.

Biography: Since a wee one, Heather has found value in what most might consider valueless. From rocks to wine cork collections, Heather has been an avid acquirer of things, but with an extreme hoarder in the family, she has fought the genetic proclivity to collect stuff by understanding the science and specifics of the disease…she hopes to help others transform their habits from hoarding to helping repurpose waste and keep it from landfills. By day, Heather turns wasteful lawns into food-growing gardens and she is co-creator of East End Market (where she helped incorporate reclaimed materials and salvaged doors from Henry Flagler’s historic railroad station).


“The Cosmetology Cosmologist” by Derek Demeter

Description: Join the cosmological hairstylist Kelvin Boson as he cuts the fabric of space time on a journey through the history of our universe, all while cutting some hair too.

Biography: Derek has been Planetarium Director at Seminole State College of Florida since 2007. He writes and produces new shows that explore the astronomy and history of numerous cultures from around the world. He serves as Vice President of the Central Florida Astronomical Society and sets up telescopes at local shopping centers to give the public a truly “out-of-this world” experience.


RSVP on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/406275459522491/

If you have any questions about Nerd Nite Orlando or are interested in being a future presenter, email us at