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May 19, 2013
The Electric Universe - a Lecture on Electricity in Living Phenomena

A 4-hour lecture and visual slideshow on how electricity shapes and powers the physical universe.

Lecturer James Sorensen is an engineer and science buff with a lifelong interest in myths & legends, religions, and scientific theories. James believes all these knowledge systems must be integrated to gain a deeper understanding of living phenomena, and this is the inspiration for his lectures.

While working in the semiconductor industry, James noticed curious similarities between his observations of plasma etching (micro) and the forms of planetary nebulae and cosmic plasma phenomena (macro). This inspired five years of intensive study into Electric Universe theory.

Join us for an overview of how recent discoveries in electricity, when linked to historical events, challenge conventional wisdom across the sciences -- from astronomy, biology, geology, and archaeology, to health sciences, mythology, meteorology, and beyond.

Price: $30 Adults / $10 Young Adult / Children free, and should be able to sit quietly for 3-4 hours. Limit of 25 guests, reserve your space now.

To register, contact Cherie Mensching 206-459-6626.

Nov 9, 2016
Mistakes Were Made: Learning From Failure - Portland Street Epistemology
Collective Agency Downtown

Let's get together and discuss anything related to Street Epistemology (SE). The topic for November will be "Mistakes Were Made - Learning From Failure". As Dr. Peter Boghossian said, failure is an expected part of the process of learning to use Street Epistemology effectively.

We'll be looking at our mistakes in a positive light, as a beneficial tool for optimizing our technique and improving in the future. Bring your stories (or audio/video) of errors both big and small and share what you think you might have done better so we can all learn from each other. Afterwords we'll head to Deschutes Brewery.

This is a fun and casual social get-together for people who are interested in Street Epistemology. Why SE? Because beliefs that are not based on sound reasoning and evidence, including those in religion, pseudoscience, politics, and more, can occur at an alarming rate in our friends, family, community, and ourselves. While debate and presenting evidence can be effective when one is open to it, in other cases it can backfire, strengthening the belief even more (Nyhan & Reifler, Political Behavior, 2010: 32,[masked]).

Street Epistemology is an approach for having meaningful, respectful, and productive conversations that help people re-examine the processes they use to come to knowledge, become more reflective about their beliefs, and break through dogmatism.


We're mostly skeptics and atheists, but all are welcome and encouraged to join us.

Mar 16, 2017
Neurogeeks: How to be smarter: looking at "brain enhancing techniques"

Neurogeeks is a (now monthly!) meetup for people interested in neuroscience, cognitive psychology, technology and the mind. Our meetups address a range of related topics at a "TEDTalk" or Nova level of complexity. Our goal is to build a community of people interested in the brain in Portland.

This month, we'll be discussing various ways scientists and "life-hackers" are trying to enhance brain function and essentially make people "smarter." Lots of interesting avenues of discussion!

For more information, join the meetup and RSVP.

Apr 20, 2017
Neurogeeks: Inside the Autistic Mind

For our April meetup, speaker Lily Pacheko, the coordinator of SPARK at OHSU, a landmark autism research project across 21 clinical sites, will present a brief history of autism, autism research, and talk about the SPARK study.

SPARK stands for 'Simons Foundation Powering Autism Research for Knowledge,' and the mission is simple: to speed up research and advance our understanding of autism to help improve lives.

Autism, or autism spectrum disorder, refers to a range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication, as well as by unique strengths and differences. (read more).

Understanding autism gives us a greater understanding of the brain and how epigenetic factors like hormones in the womb affect our brains' development.

Lily Pacheco, MA. is the SPARK study coordinator at OHSU. For the past few years Lily has worked in diverse communities to recruit and collect data for numerous research studies. If you are interested in volunteering with SPARK through OHSU, contact Lily at (503) 949-6478 or email her at [email protected] to ask about volunteer opportunities.

Join and RSVP here:

Mar 15, 2018
The Neuroscience of Consciousness

Historically, the study of human consciousness was often considered to be outside the scope of scientific inquiry. Thanks to recent advances in brain imaging techniques and the development of various methods for manipulating consciousness in the lab, the scientific study of consciousness is now recognized as a mainstream topic of research within the cognitive neurosciences. In this talk Dr. Pitts will outline some of the recent progress in the field... Please RSVP at

Nov 2, 2018
CyborgCamp 2018 at PNCA
through Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA)

CyborgCamps are small, in-depth unconferences about the future of the relationship between humans and technology. Attendees discuss a variety of topics such as the futures of identity, privacy, surveillance, hardware to wetware, drones, 3D printing, cyberpunk, human augmentation, constructed reality, the second self, ethics, robot rights, sexuality, urban design, and anthropology. Topics are discussed the morning of the conference and scheduled into the conference grid by attendees themselves, making it a DIY conference experience.

In addition to the above topics, the following has been discussed at CyborgCamps around the world: cyborgs, wearables, prosthetics, sensors, control systems, assistive tech, transcendence, transhumanism, technological singularity, artificial intelligence, intelligence amplification, utopia / distopia / weird topia, identity, quantified self, exocortex, ubicomp, robots, sensory augmentation, steam punk, philosophy, ethics, intelligence, the borg, hackerspaces, telepresence, science fiction, DIY, cryonics, cybernetics, open source, nanotech, augmented reality, brain-computer interface, artificial life, functional electrical stimulation, and neural science. Each CyborgCamp has its own mix of topics created by what the attendees want to discuss. All CyborgCamps follow a Code of Conduct.