Out of the Pages: Looking at Literature Beyond Books


     This month we’re partnering with Lit in the Mitt to bring you a great night of literature beyond books. We’ll have details soon, but there will be talks covering film and video games along with other topics and great activity.

Alibi Crew will be on hand with tunes & Sidecar with food. See you then!




Click the image to view the full Lit in the Mitt Schedule



Beer, Textiles, and Wood: When Passion Meets Industry


     We’re back for April with a great line-up of talented craftspeople. Rescheduled from our January event, we’ll have Isaac Gilman presenting “Miracle of Detroit: Turning Water Into Beer” along with Karen Buscemi and Mark D’Andreta giving their presentation “Industrial Sewing: Bringing a Lost Trade Back to Life.” We’re also excited to welcome James Willer from Workshop – presentation name TBA.

As usual, Alibi Crew will have music and Sidecar Detroit some fabulous food. See you there!

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Nerd Nite’s Birthday!

Birthday Banner

     Hey, we’re turning one! It’s a big birthday for us and we want to celebrate with you. This very special Nerd Nite will follow a different format: in lieu of speakers, we’ll have all sorts of nerdy carnival attractions for you. From demonstrations to performances and food, Tangent will be jam packed with fun!

Bring your friends, bring your families, and come out for a great time, oh, and cake!

Politics, Policy, and Polyamory

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Doors at 6:30PM Event from 7:30 to 10:30
@ The Tangent Gallery 

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Presidential Campaign Songs

Liza Roe and Doug Brooks     
P1020960     Every election season, presidential candidates select songs they hope will inspire, motivate, and energize voters. Some candidates use songs that are already popular, whereas others have musicians craft songs exalting the candidate’s positive qualities while vilifying their opponent. Over time, the art of the campaign song has evolved in response to changes in technology, the expansion of voting rights, and the entrenchment of the two-party political system. From the ludicrous lyrics of “Get on a Raft with Taft,” to the vitriolic verses of “Rockabye Baby, Daddy’s a Whig,” the history of presidential campaign songs is rife with political intrigue, legal landmines, and mudslinging merriment!      Liza Roe received her history degree from the University of Michigan where she studied Presidential Campaign Songs as part of her senior research thesis.  A lifetime political wonk, she also enjoys collecting presidential campaign buttons and other memorabilia.

     Doug Brooks is a local musician and performs around the Detroit area as a part of buzzbangpow and The Bardsong Renaissance Band

Facebook – Buzzbangpow
Soundcloud – Bardsongband


Detroit – Challenging the Narrative

Mary E. Byrnes, Ph.D., MUP     
Detroit     The focus will be on these three myths1.  Detroit was doing fine until one day in 1967.  There was a big riot and everything fell apart. 2.  Through actions, words, and policies, Detroit’s first African American mayor, Coleman Alexander Young, who took office in 1974,  created  the racial divisions in this region.

3.  Unemployment, poverty, crime, and vacant buildings all stem from character flaws in people, and, obviously, from the residents of Detroit.  This presentation not only interrogates and “busts” these three myths but also examines the implications to policy making.


Facebook – Institute for Detroit Studies
Marygrove College – Detroit Studies


I Love You, and You, and You and You! – Demystifying Polyamory

Amy Leikert and Chris Tom     
Detroit     Amy and Chris are involved in a polyamorous relationship. Chris is a graduate student at the University of Michigan and advocates for sexual equality and expression with the Rackham Student Government.  They are involved in the Bureau of Erotic Discourse (Michigan Chapter), which promotes safer sex practices and consent in a sex-positive atmosphere. 

Nerd Years Resolutions

Join Nerd Nite as we celebrate the new year!
Thursday, January 16, 2014 from 7:30 PM to 10:30PM (EST)


Detroit – Challenging the Narrative

Mary E. Byrnes, Ph.D., MUP     
Detroit     The focus will be on these three myths

1.  Detroit was doing fine until one day in 1967.  There was a big riot and everything fell apart. 

2.  Through actions, words, and policies, Detroit’s first African American mayor, Coleman Alexander Young, who took office in 1974,  created  the racial divisions in this region.

3.  Unemployment, poverty, crime, and vacant buildings all stem from character flaws in people, and, obviously, from the residents of Detroit.  This presentation not only interrogates and “busts” these three myths but also examines the implications to policy making.


Facebook – Institute for Detroit Studies
Marygrove College – Detroit Studies


Adam, Eve, Noah and Able
A Unified Musical Composition and Performance Device With Lots of Blinking Lights

Bubba Ayoub / Juggable Offense     
P1020960     A brief history and explanation of modular synthesizers, followed by a demonstration of Adam, Eve, Noah and Able, which are 4 of the major pieces of an analog and digital modular synthesizer used to make/destroy sounds that sometimes come out as the music heard here: www.soundcloud.com/juggableoffense
Facebook – JuggableOffense
Soundcloud – JuggableOffense

Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey Nerds


     Join Nerd Nite Detroit for an evening of space, time, and a bit of Dr. Who! We encourage our Whovian nerds to dress their Dr. Who best and we’ll have a portable planetarium on site courtesy of the Michigan Science Center.

Here’s a sneak peek:

Charles Gibson and the Michigan Science Center’s Portable Star Lab


     What could be more interesting than looking at the majesty of the cosmos?  Looking at it within a miniature planetarium set up especially for Nerd Nite, courtesy of the Michigan Science Center.  10-15 minute presentation will be going throughout the night.   


Mysteries of the Cosmos


Cosmology is the study of the origin and fate of the universe.  I will describe our current understanding about our universe and uncover one of science’s biggest mysteries.  All this is simply illustrated on a table top.

David Cinabro is a Professor in Physics and Astronomy at Wayne State University.  He studies cosmology with exploding stars and the rare behavior of sub-atomic particles.



Time Travel on the Silver Screen

SCC_101_time_machine_bubble.jpg (1280×720)Presentation by Nathan Hughes (@ndh313).


His Name is NOT Doctor Who, Damnit!

1462965_10201386701246378_88329013_nJourney through time (and space) as we look at the phenomenon that is Doctor Who- his 12…er…13…er…13 and a half? incarnations, his enemies, his companions, and why you should love this show. 

Twitter: @malusman
Bio: Chris’ favorite type of travel is through time.

Spooks and Kooks!


The nerds are alive and are gathering for 2013’s smartest Halloween after party! Don your costumes one more time on Wednesday, November 6 at Tangent Gallery. Tickets are available in advance and at the door. Eat, drink, and be scary.

Special guest emcee:

SRImageScott “Spook” Drebus

Scott is a professional speaker and performer specializing in delivering educational business keynotes as well as entertaining presentations. He also happens to be an expert on ghosts, metaphysics, and the paranormal. As our special spectral guest emcee, not only will he be our ghost host for the evening, he promises to entertain and mystify with unique spooky magic and haunted illusions.




Here’s a sneak peek of our spooks and kooks (and just you wait, there’s more magic to come):

Maggie McGuire, Decoding the Dead: A Zombie’s Guide to Postmodern Analysis



What connects flesh-eating zombies, academic theory and those creepy drawings your little brother drew when you were young? Postmodernism! In this talk, we’ll talk about the evolving meaning of zombies on film and, on the way, clarify just what postmodernism is and how it can help you can justify watching trashy horror films for the rest of your life.





Stage Frights: Blood-Soaked Special Effects for the StageNotLD

Ever wondered how your favorite gruesome stage shows get their gore? Join Jen and Ted Hansen as they discuss and demonstrate some of their favorite techniques for gunshots, zombie bites, chainsaw hits, fake guts and more.


Tyrell J. Simkins, The Neuroscience of Fear: Where, Why, and Why Do We Love It?Scared Homer Brain

Where does fear come from?  Why are we programmed to fear certain things?  Why do most of us crave a good scare once in a while? These topics will be explored through the lens of modern neuroscience to try and understand not only where we are, but where we have been.


Detroit Fire collective


Jadey bug is a local fire dancer. Her passion for the art of fire has lead her down an exciting road filled with community and rich with experience.  In this discussion Jadey will introduce you to the unique world of fire dancing! During our talk she will get into how props are made and used, the community, live fire demonstrations, and fire safety! At the end she will finish with a beautiful performance capturing the art in fire dancing!

Get Booked!


At long last, Nerd Nite Detroit returns! Fall’s here, and that means it’s time to go back to school! Or better yet, it’s time to get booked with Nerd Nite Detroit. This month, we’re celebrating book culture. We’ll have talks on banned books, the role of books in the digital age, and more! Also, we’re having a book exchange where you can give books and take books..come join the adventure! This month we’re changing it up a bit by hosting our festivities on a Wednesday – Wednesday, September 25th to be exact. But we’ll be back at Tangent Gallery with awesome food and drinks, and cover will be $5.

Date: Wednesday, September 25

Time: Doors at 6 Event at 7

Location: Tangent Gallery

Tickets: $5 in advance or at the door


Josh Diskin: Banned Books


Sara Hanlon, John King Books: A Day in the Life of a Rare Book Buyer


Bonnie Russell, Wayne State Press: Attack of the E-Book – The Rise of the Geeks 


An overview of the ways in which digital publishing and the rise of e-books has impacted the publishing industry. E-books have affected more than just publishers’ product lines – they have brought with them a vast array of programs, technology, and marketing. Technology is transforming the way we look at publishing and the very definition of “a book.”




Nerd it. Build it. Make it. Wire it. Smash it. Glue it. Hacknologic.

nn313-july-shareableMaker Faire is coming to The Henry Ford, but the Nerds at Nerd Nite have a chance to start the Making early. Join us July 25th for a special Nerd Nite 313 + Maker Faire mashup. See world famous death defying makers Ted Hansen, John Ackley, and Will Brick tinker/hack/invent/make/talk on the Nerd Nite stage, with special Maker Faire fun going down in the mezzanine. Avoid certain doom while thrilling to the spectacle of the knife fighting robot automatons! Enjoy tasty dinner and treats from our friends at Sidecar! Find us at the Tangent Gallery for a hacktackular Nerd Nite 313 in July.

When: July 25th, 2013, doors at 6pm, talks at 7pm!
Where: Tangent Gallery, 715 E Milwaukee St, Detroit
Moola: $5
Tickets: At the door or
Eventbrite - Nerd it. Build it. Make it. Wire it. Smash it. Glue it. Hacknologic.



Here are this month’s presentation topics! Speak it. Preach it. 



Image Source

John Ackley: Bicycles, the Great Mobilizer – Simple, but not easy, Machines 

John will focus on design, fabrication and production of bicycle frames in various materials as well as structure, design and building of traditional spoked bicycle wheels. John is currently the Production Manager for Bicycles at Shinola Detroit.

IMG_20120329_222648-300x225Image Source 

Ted Hansen & Matt Switlik: Robot Knife Fight 


20  GOTO 10
Matt is a web application developer, a founding member of i3 Detroit, and a perennial Maker Faire Detroit exhibitor. Ted Hansen is another founding member of i3 Detroit and its current CEO, and he makes robots both big and small.
Will Brick: The Flying Aces
Old model airplane guys of a very arcane and eccentric order; The Flying Aces.  The are some of the most inventive, creative, excited, whimsical and silly people I have ever met.  Their hobby blurs engineering, art, story telling, screwed up aesthetics and a healthy dose of self inflicted hardship and punishment!  They build intricately detailed models of antique aircraft in miniature using traditional methods and wacky invention.  The discipline is known as “free flight” after the fact that once completed, these model are trimmed to fly free (without remote control).  Imagine tossing hundreds of hours worth of work into the air often to never be seen again! Will is the manager of TechShop Detroit.



Motor City Super Nerds!


Nerds Assemble!

Come join us for some superhero shenanigans as we’ve got Scott vertical Superman, David Moan talking Batman, and Ben Criger talking Robocop. The Michigan Science Center will be bringing some super toys for you to harness your powers with, too. And there may also be paint. Also, we’re having our first ever costume contest! Dress up as your favorite superbeing (or create your own!) and there will be prizes.


When: Thursday, June 27. Doors at 6. Event at 7.

Where: The Old Miami, 3930 Cass Ave. Detroit

Tickets: $5 either in advance or at the door.

Scott Vertical – Krypton: Superman’s Forgotten Past


Prior to 1986, DC Comics told many stories about Superman’s home planet, Krypton. Those stories have since been abandoned, replaced by a more “realistic” version of an alien planet. Krypton used to be a fun place to live. Find out why.

Scott Vertical is a former Detroit radio DJ (WDVD, 89X). He owns every Superman comic book published from 1984-2012, including such titles as Action, Supergirl, Superboy and The Legion of Superheroes. Scott also owns many reprints and collections from Superman’s past, having read a couple of thousand stories starring the Man of Steel and his friends. He was a nerd way before being a nerd was cool. He is also an avid movie buff and lapsed Star Wars aficionado (thanks for nothing, prequels). Mr. Vertical currently runs a website which has won multiple awards for “Least Frequently Updated” and “Most Unfinished Ideas”. He lives in Royal Oak with his daughter, who is a Doctor Who fan and future nerd.

David Moan, Not the Hero We Need: Chronology of the Caped Crusader and Philosophical Musings on a Masked Vigilante


Would our real world problems be solved by a Dark Knight or should Bruce leave his cape and cowl in the Batcave? This talk begins with a survey of the evolution of Batman mythology as a reflection of an ever-changing American culture throughout the 20th and 21st century. It then moves to examine the repercussions of recent adaptations of the World’s Greatest Detective that attempt to reconcile The Batman and our modern society.

David Moan has been obsessed with Batman since he was a child.  Having accepted the fact that he cannot actually become Batman, Moan instead devotes himself to studying the evolving Batman mythology with the goal of developing a college-level lecture series.  (It also serves as justification for purchasing so many comics, movies, and video games.) Originally from Pittsburgh, Moan earned a BA in Music: Vocal Performance with studies in history and theatre from Manchester University in Indiana. He sings for the Michigan Opera Theatre, teaches diction courses for his alma mater, and works as a lead presenter at the Michigan Science Center. He currently lives with his wife and two bats cats in Detroit.

Ben Criger, RoboCop: Why You Should Like It, and Why You Don’t


In this talk, Ben will address the subtle genius behind the 80s schlock film RoboCop. The talk begins with a brief summary of the main plot of RoboCop, for those that don’t know, and continues with an analysis of RoboCop’s influences, and why RoboCop is a hero for our era.

Ben is from Canada, and has talked about RoboCop several times at Nerd Nite Kitchener Waterloo. He wouldn’t say that he’s an expert on RoboCop, he’s more of an enthusiast. The word ‘expert’ would imply that he has some useful knowledge, but really, he just likes RoboCop a lot. He has has probably seen RoboCop over 100 times, though. You can go down a bit of a rabbit hole when it comes to RoboCop, too, since there have been so many sequels and spin-offs. Some of it’s pretty good (Frank Miller’s RoboCop, based on the original script for RoboCop 2), but it can get really bad.