Category: Updates

Nerd Nite Reykjavík #9 (14 July 2022)

Join us on 14th July at Loft Hostel Bar (4th floor)!

Event starts 8:00 PM
Talks begin 8:30 PM


The Speaker Line-Up

 “House Gazing-Holes for Horizontal Rain”
by Sæþór Randalsson

Anyone who’s been to Iceland for more than a week has experienced the radical precipitation of this far north Island nation. Learn how Icelanders created their own unique window system for keeping such aggressive weather outside, with decorative transition trim between corrugated siding for residential houses. This talk will describe the building system that developed between 1900 and 1920 for the first housing boom in the capital. Siding, windows, and what makes it unique to Iceland.

Sæþór is a self taught carpenter who has learned the Icelandic window system to renovate a period-house in Kópavogur.

 “ALGORITHM, Why you never gonna get rich on Bitcoin…”
by Paul Cota

If the DATA is new GOLD, who is the wealthiest? Algorthms are running our world more and more every day, I hope that they are conscious. In the quest for the mighty one, do we need 10 new commandments?

Paul is a thinker, kinesiologist, strenght and condition coach, lifeguard, wine maker, cold water swimmer, survival expert, true Nerd.

 “There is no such thing as waste: a fishy tale”
by Dr. Alexandra Leeper

Alexandra will talk about how we can create new exciting value from fish side streams and at the same time reduce our food waste and how that is currently being done in Iceland.

Alexandra is head of research and innovation at the Iceland Ocean Cluster.

Organizers: Yeonji, Saori & Sölvi

Also please welcome our new MC, Lisa Franco!

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Lisa, a.k.a. the unofficial Mayor of Reykjavík!

Nerd Nite Reykjavík #8 – Chemical Weirdness in Space, Satellite

What is Nerd Nite???
Nerd Nite is an evening of entertaining and educational presentations. Speakers present for 15-20 minutes, followed by a brief Q&A with the audience.

Nerd Nite operates in over a hundred cities!
Join us on Sunday 19 July at Loft Hostel Bar (4F)!
Free entrance.
Talks begin 8:30 PM

<July Speaker Line-Up>

“Chemical weirdness in space: How the Universe breaks all the rules you learned in your chemistry class”
by Helgi Rafn Hróðmarsson

In my twenty minutes I will give an introduction to chemistry in space. When we learn chemistry in school we more or less learn about an idealized chemistry that takes place at ambient temperatures and pressures. In space, however, things are vastly different. Near-zero temperatures, no real pressure, ultraviolet and X-ray radiation fields give rise to some truly strange but incredibly important chemical processes. Whether it is stars, planets or life itself… without this weird chemistry, none of them would exist.

Bio: Helgi Rafn Hróðmarsson is a Marie Curie postdoctoral fellow at the Laboratory for Astrophysics at Leiden Observatory. He has a PhD in chemistry from the University of Iceland and is a laboratory astrochemist. He serves on the editorial board of the AstroPAH newsletter ( and writes about science under the pseudonym The Cosmic Chemist (see & Outside of sciece he plays drums for the Icelandic black metal bands Misþyrming and Carpe Noctem.


“The South Atlantic Anomaly: The Bermuda Triangle of Low Earth Orbit”
By Christopher Busby

Nearly all satellites have to deal with an invisible threat to their own well-being: a patch of space problematic enough that it has earned itself the nickname, “The Bermuda Triangle of Low Earth Orbit”. This talk covers what the area is, how and why it affects our satellites, as well as how we’ve decided to deal with it.

Bio: Chris is an aerospace engineer with years of experience in the design and operation of satellites in low Earth orbit and beyond.

MC: Arna Rún Grönvold
Organizers: Yeonji Ghim / Saori Fukasawa

Nerd Nite Reykjavík #7: Dreams, Flags & Circular Economy for Dummies

We all know that learning is more fun when you’re drinking with friends and colleagues. Thus, Nerd Nite is a monthly event held in more than 100 cities across the globe during which several folks give 20-minute fun-yet-informative presentations across all disciplines – while the audience drinks along. It’s like the Discovery Channel…with beer.

PRESENTATION #1: “Dreams: A Journey Through a Dreaming Brain” 💭
by Gunnar Valur Gunnarsson

Dreams, what are they? Can they predict the future, do they hide our inner most secrets or is our unconsciousness simply screaming for attention? This will be a short journey through our brain while it is dreaming, a journey where we look at the science and the history of science behind dreams and what is currently known about them.

Bio: Gunnar is a computer scientist and almost an electrical engineer, he simply forgot to finish his degree. Gunnar loves to study and in the past years, biology has been high on the list. After helping his daughter, who is studying psychology, researching dreams he couldn‘t stop and is now trying to know everything there is to be known about dreams.

PRESENTATION #2: “Flags, Why You Should Care!” 🏁
by Floris Cooijmans

Flags are everywhere, all the time. They are powerful symbols that can convey ideas and meanings. For centuries, flags have been a way to signal community or otherness, ant they seem to have stood the test of time. In our current society where we are being bombarded by images 24/7, flags are present and even prominent. In my talk I will go over a number of interesting stories and facts about flags, as well as talk about what makes a good flag.

Bio: Floris Cooijmans is an International relations student with a Bachelor´s degree in World Politics. If there are two things he deeply cares about, it´s sustainability and flags. As Floris is from the Netherlands, he loves cycling, and thinks it´s the best mode of transport.

PRESENTATION #3: “Circular Economy: the More We Share the More We Have” ♻️
by Anna Carolina Worthington de Matos (Reykjavik Tool Library)

Anna is a craftsman by trade and trained in conservation and restoration of historical buildings and objects. More speech info & bio TBA!

Join us on Thursday, 5th December at Loft Hostel Bar (Bankastræti 7, 101 Reykjavík on the 4th floor)
Presentations @ 19pm

Be there and be square!

Free entrance!

Event organizers: Yeonji and Saori

NNR #6: Chiptune (Music with Game Boy) & Agriculture in Iceland

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#1) Chiptune: Inspiration Through Limitation – Creating Music ‘Inside The Box’
by Hazal Elif Yalvaç

Chiptune is music created with the sound chips that were part of computers and computer games consoles in the 1980s and 1990s e.g. Commodore 64, Atari ST & Amiga, Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) & Game Boy. Creating music with these chips involves many challenges from what now seem like severe technical limitations. Once, there was no way to avoid these limitations; now, there are so many ways to do so, yet musicians are choosing to create ‘inside the box’ with these restrictions today, and I’ll explore some reasons why. To do this, I’ll talk about the enduring appeal of both the chip sounds themselves and the compositional devices that are such a distinctive feature of the music as it’s evolved to the present day, together with some history and some practical demonstrations. Be there and be square (wave)!

Hazal Elif Yalvaç is a sound designer, composer and performer from Turkey. Fascinated by sound and music from an early age, she studied Sonic Arts (MA) at Istanbul Technical University (MIAM) where she researched Chiptune’s limitations and sonic aesthetics as part of her master’s thesis, with a focus on audio programming and music theory/history, alongside her interests in environmental sound recording and guitar. She released two electronic music albums; namely, CloudScapes in 2016, and L’appel du Vide in 2018, featuring ambient music, noise, Eliane Radigue-inspired drones, and microsound techniques. In addition to her live electronics and fixed media performances, Elif has performed in Turkey, Netherlands and at UK festivals including EppyFest and Secret Garden Party, and most recently in Nordic countries.

#2) “Tomayto, tomahto? What’s in your salad bowl?”
by Azusa Yamada

Iceland produces a variety of vegetables successfully all year round using greenhouse. Despite the accessibility of local produce, the fresh food market in Iceland is filled with vast quantities of imported agricultural products. As if to clear out local food items on the market, products transported from abroad into Iceland offer much lower prices than local products. What is happening in the food production system in Iceland? Need the country increase production volume?

Azusa Yamada is a graduate student majoring in Environment and Natural Resources at HÍ. She grew up in one of the biggest cities in Japan and has lived in Vancouver Island and the Philippines. Experiences living in several island countries made her think how vulnerable the food security for a country can be. Currently, she is dedicated to research for sustainable food production.

When: Thursday 19th Sept, 19pm
Where: Studentakjallarinn (Student´s Cellar), University of Iceland
Free Entrance.

Nerd Nite is a recurring event, Like us on Facebook to stay updated!

Nerd Nite, it’s a social hub for nerds!

Be there and be square!

Nerd Nite Reykjavík


Nerd Nite Reykjavík #5: Deep-Space Photography, Roller Derby

Thursday 2nd May 2019 20:00 @ Studentakjallarinn

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Nerd Nite Reykjavík #4: Exploding Stars, Racoons, BDSM

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Thursday 7th March 2019 20:00 @ Studentakjallarinn

PRESENTATION #1 “Our past as massive exploding stars”
by Kasper Elm Heintz

Get your mind blown by stellar explosions! In this talk we will go on a journey to some of the furthest regions of the Universe, illuminated by the cataclysmic death of massive stars exploding as supernovae. The presentor will describe how astronomers are currently trying to hunt down these stellar explosions and what we can learn from them. Some have been identified even within the first few minutes after exploding (plus the up to 13 billion years it took the light to get here) and some even before they were visible to us on the sky by wiggles in space. While watching stars explode all around us is fun in itself, it turns out that studying their remains can actually tell us where all the heavy elements we know from Earth, such as iron, gold and platinum, originated from.

Bio: Kasper is a PhD student working at the astrophysics department at the University of Iceland. He is from Denmark and did undergraduate studies there. Kasper’s PhD project is about exploding stars (supernova and gamma-ray bursts) and how we can study them to understand the origin of the heaviest elements in the Universe. His hobbies includes cursing at the Sun for outshining the beautiful night sky.

PRESENTATION #2 “Raccoons Lurking in the Night: North America’s Most Notorious Trash Bandit”
by Madison MacKenzie

In North America raccoons are considered large, dirty rodents that eat your garbage. Madison wants to educate people about the true nature of the cutest trash-eating monsters in the world. In this talk she will discuss their natural habitats, natural diet, as well as their significance in other cultures. And by the end of this presentation, you will all agree that the North American raccoon, aka the trash panda, deserves a special place in all of our hearts.

Bio: Madison is a Masters student at Reykjavik University studying geothermal geology. Like many college students her favorite activity is watching true crime documentaries on Netflix and surviving long periods of time eating only instant noodles from Costco. She is brought to you by the United States of America to educate the Icelandic public about the wonderful lives of the cutest animal in North America; raccoons.

PRESENTATION #3 “BDSM in current Icelandic pop-culture: A look at Hatari’s Spillingardans and other kinky things”
by Brynjar and Jess

Hatari is Iceland’s Eurovision Rep this year.

Bio: Brynjar is a kink activist that has been active in the local BDSM scene since 2011/2012, boardmember of The Icelandic national BDSM organization since 2014 ,represented The Icelandic national BDSM organization at the national queer organization Samtökin ‘78 representatives council from 2016-2018 and is currently an elected member of it’s “trúnaðarráð” since 2018. He started assisting with educational events in 2013 and has been an educator in his own right since 2015 and has co-hosted a nearly monthly semi-open play event since 2015 or 2016.

Jess is a queer student in leisure studies here at HÍ and in her leisure likes to produce events that push at the edges of what is acceptable. She has been involved with the BDSM community on and off since 2007. Currently Jess is a director of the Reykjavík Fringe Festival, co-produces The Poetry Brothel Reykjavík and has co-produced the Smut Slam. She’s passionate about where kink and art intersect, has a background in theater and activism and can talk your ear off about it!

Nerd Nite Reykjavik #3: Clitoris and Cults

1. “Famous yet? Why not join a cult: Celebs & Brainwashing“
by Alex Akesson

Alex, a writer from Sweden, grew up in an infamous cult. Her childhood was far from normal, e.g. she had never seen any popular movies until she escaped at age 17! At January NNR, she will share her hands-on experience / knowledge about cults and brainwashing techniques with us.

As usual, there will be a Q&A session after the talk!

2. “The Final Frontier, The Clitoris”
by Anna Eir Guðfinnudóttir & Arna Garðarsdóttir

In this talk, sexologists Anna Eir and Arna will spill the beans on the mysterious clitoris, the organ that is smaller on the outside and bigger on the inside. In media there’s rarely a focus on the sexual pleasure of the vulva and we are here to change that focus.

Anna Eir Guðfinnudóttir has a B.Sc. in psychology, M.Ed. in upper secondary school teaching and post-graduate diplomas in public health sciences and sexology. Currently works as a psychology and sex education upper secondary school teacher and is the secretary of Kynís, the Icelandic Sexology Association.
Arna Garðarsdóttir has a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in nursing and a post-graduate diploma in sexology. Currently works in a nursing home as assistant nursing mangager and is the treasurer of Kynís, the Icelandic Sexology Association.

Nerd Nite Reykjavík #2: Visual Illusions, Tattoos, Evolution of Pockets

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Topics and Speakers

“Grandmas with tattoos. A journey through body modifications and becoming a modified alien ????”
by Julia Amigo

Did you know that some rebellious princesses got tattoos back in the victorian-era? From some curiosities about tattoos in the old days until the current wave/fashion of body modifications, this speech will try to create a canvas about the science and art of tattooing. Personal stories, rebellions, tributes, reminders, collections, cultures… Tattoos are much more than ink under the skin! Prepare yourself to discover fun facts and interesting stuff on this absolutely amazing world.

Julia Amigo is a Spanish researcher on tattooing and politics of the body. She was born in Granada, Spain and has worked as a piercer in 4 different tattoo shops. In her free time, she has studied nursing, anthropology, sexology and a master on gender studies. She has released two thesis on tattooing, one of them about tattoos as a form of narrative and the other one about tattoos from a feminist perspective. But, letting aside all the theory, she loves to get tattooed, and to combine academic research with online activism and personal projects related to writing and exploring bodies and personal stories. She is currently working on a doctorate on body modifications. And, of course, she is always planing her next tattoo!

“Visual Illusions: We are all living in the Matrix”
by Daglar Tanrikulu

#Thedress was a viral photo that became a sensation in 2015 because people could not agree on the color of a dress.
However, #thedress is only one of many examples that show us how our visual system creates what we see, rather than perceiving what is actually out there! In this talk, you will enjoy demonstrations of simple visual illusions, and as we move along, the distinction between what is illusion and what is real will become fuzzy. But don’t get frustrated when you learn that the main function of our visual system is to create illusions, because it has a good reason for doing that: For the survival of our species… in the Matrix!

Dağlar Tanrıkulu is a Postdoctoral researcher at the Icelandic Vision Lab, under the Psychology Department of Háskóli Íslands. He is originally from Turkey, where he completed his Master’s degree in Cognitive Science, focusing on Philosophy and Psychology. Then, he got his Ph.D. on visual perception from Rutgers University in the U.S. He likes challenges and he now moved to Iceland in order to work on building computational models of visual processes.

“Evolutionary biology and why The Doctor needs pockets”
by Alex Akesson

Alex is a writer and science lover from Sweden living in Iceland!

Nerd Nite Reykjavik #1

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???? “The hidden truths about Spacetime“
by Daniel Fernandez

To understand what Daniel is going to tell you, you’ll need to do something first: you need to be ready to accept what sounds impossible. Can you do that? Then get ready to explore the concepts of space and time in an eye-opening way, to see the beauty underlying Einstein’s Relativity, and to re-evaluate your assumptions about the nature of reality itself. If by the end of this exposé you’re feeling shocked, it’s because you got the message right!

About the Speaker

Daniel is a research specialist at the University of Iceland. His fields of expertise include the holographic principle, gravitational dualities and superhero comics. In his free time, he enjoys throwing stuff through wormholes.

???? “Seduction and Love for Nerds“
by Jonathan Cano

A lot of us have committed years of our life to studying and getting good grades, but when it comes to love and relationships it seems like we are at the biggest disadvantage of all. It almost seems like books was the only thing that we were meant to fall in love with! We will look at the science of seduction & love. We will approach the “art” of seduction with an analytical eye, deciphering elements of how humans are attracted to each other. We will talk about the probabilities and mathematics of love and how we can finally find satisfaction and happiness in these areas of our lives.

About the Speaker

Raised in the UK, the speaker attended King’s College London and studied Mechatronics engineering. He received offer to study theoretical physics at UCL and Materials Engineering at Imperial College London (the MIT of the UK). Having finished his studies he simultaneously finished a religious seminary and was sent on a mission to Iceland to help refugees brought by the Icelandic Red Cross.

???? “The History of Modern Yo-Yoing”
by Páll Valdimar Guðmundsson

He is the famous European yo-yo champion…
What do we need to say more?

Nerd Nite Reykjavik

Welcome to Nerd Nite Reykjavik! Nerd Nite is an evening of entertaining yet thought-provoking presentations. Bringing together remarkable people since 2018.