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Ask a Scientist is a casual, educational, entertaining lecture series that takes place at cafes and other informal venues around San Francisco. Founded in 2003, Ask a Scientist was a pioneer in the now-familiar world of science night life, and holds the title of the oldest "science cafe" in the western U.S. Our talks feature an expert speaker on a scientific topic, a short presentation, and the opportunity to ask all those burning questions that have been keeping you up at night. No tests, grades, or pressure — just food, drinks, socializing, and conversation about the universe’s most fascinating mysteries!

UPCOMING EVENTS

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014 | 7:00 pm

Mysteries of Sleep

We spend one third of our lives asleep, yet doctors and scientists still have no complete understanding as to why. It is one of the last great scientific mysteries. UC Berkeley's Matt Walker will talk with us about new discoveries suggesting that, far from being a time when the brain is dormant, sleep is a highly active process essential for a constellation of different functions. These include learning, memory and brain plasticity. Furthermore, a role for sleep in intelligently synthesizing new memories together will be examined, the result of which is next-day creative insights. Finally, a new role for sleep in regulating emotional brain networks will be discussed, optimally preparing us for next day social and psychological challenges.

Speaker: Matt Walker, Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience, UC Berkeley

Location: SoMa StrEat Food Park, 428 11th Street, San Francisco. (This awesome venue has a huge indoor seating area.)

Eats: Bring your appetites! SoMa StrEat Food Park is San Francisco’s first permanent food truck pod. They host up to ten gourmet food trucks at a time, along with the city’s only beer and wine truck.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Watch some videos!

The Neuroscience of Magic. November 19, 2013.
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New Science Smorgasbord: Viruses, Stars, Brains, & Shapes. December 11, 2013.
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amateur astronomers share their telescopes at ask a scientist

Amateur astronomers share their scopes after Jennifer Heldman's talk about the moon. More photos.

Ask a Scientist
has been making news

Read about Ask a Scientist in Chemical Heritage Newsmagazine. Spring 2009.

best of the bayAsk a Scientist is the SF Bay Guardian's "Best Place to Get an Expert Opinion." (PDF)

And 7x7 Magazine calls us San Francisco's "Best Way to Get Smart Quick."

Visit our press page for more.

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