How can we know the truth? Do facts matter? What distinguishes justified belief from opinion, and why do our personal biases keep us from seeing the whole picture? Join us to learn more about the anchors of scrupulous science and diligent data, how they can be exploited, and tools to find the facts for yourself.
Why Do People Reject Good Science?
With Eugenie Scott 7:30 p.m. | Osher Gallery 1, Kanbar Forum
Scientists often find themselves puzzled when members of the public reject what they consider to be well-founded science data, concepts, and theory. Join Eugenie Scott for a discussion of the research behind what prompts people to remain unconvinced by scientific facts, including how personal ideology affects our scientific assessments and speculation on why proven concepts like climate change and evolution have become the targets of controversies.
Disinformation: The Threat We Are Facing is Bigger Than Just "Fake News”
With Rachel Thomas 8:30 p.m. | Osher Gallery 1, Kanbar Forum
In the past few years there have been remarkable leaps in machine learning, including models that generate text, videos, and audio. While there is vast potential for these tools to have transformative impacts in a number of fields, their power to proliferate fraudulent material is immense. Get an overview from Rachel Thomas, Director of the Center for Applied Data Ethics at USF, on ways in which emerging AI tools are being used to create and disseminate disinformation, the increasing risks to society, and how we can address these risks.
Personal Truth (2017) With Charlie Lyne 6:00-10:00 p.m. | Osher Gallery 1, Microcinema
Inspired by "pizzagate," this short film essay considers the power of fake news and our capacity to let healthy skepticism slip into conspiratorial conviction. Filmmaker Charlie Lyne approaches the idea from a place of empathy, framing his probing through the lens of his own bygone conspiratorial beliefs. Constructed in a quick-paced and enthralling style that blends crime television tropes and personal diary, Lyne poses urgent questions. At what point does healthy skepticism become firm conviction? How easy is it to believe in a conspiracy theory? And once you do, is there any way to shake off that belief?
Spurious Correlations With Tyler Vigen 6:00-9:00 p.m. | Osher Gallery 1 screen
Correlation does not equate causation and Tyler Vigen’s book-turned-website Spurious Correlations examines this golden rule to hilarious effect. Vigen designed software that scours large data sets to uncover unlikely statistical correlations. He then creates graphs of the most bizarre, confounding, and comedic. Leave your mathematical sense behind and enjoy a best-of-show of selections from his project that will, at the very least, leave you saying, “Wait, what?”
Prove Your Paranormal Skills With Bay Area Skeptics, East Bay Skeptics Society, and San Francisco Independent Investigations Group 6:30-9:30 p.m. | Osher Gallery 1
Do you think you have a paranormal power? Join the Bay Area Skeptics, East Bay Skeptics Society, and San Francisco Independent Investigations Group as they pit the paranormal against scientific rigor with a selection of entertaining exercises. From debunking horoscopes to moving objects with your mind, these activities will showcase how a little bit of science and a little bit of statistics can unmask the supernatural.
Contact:Website: Click to Visit
Cost:$19.95, 14.95 explO members, AD members free
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San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: (415) 528-4444
Website: Click to Visit