Past Events

Culinary Arts: There Is No Such Thing As Indian Cooking
Aseem Inam
Hosting Scholar:
Aseem Inam
Now ask yourself, when was the last time you experienced Indian food? Yes, there is an incredible range and variety of cuisines in the Indian subcontinent. But, what most people don't realize is that Indian cooking is a total experience. Good meals take hours took cook and are enjoyed with all our senses -- smell, colors, textures, the sounds of sizzling, boiling and roasting spices and even ambient music all add to the flavor. Come learn more about this experience this Friday in the Country Kitchen. Of course ... just the experience won't fill your belly so, for that, there will also be plenty of Indian Food to enjoy as well!
2009
Spring
Talk: Climate Change in a Changing World: Meeting the Needs of Humanity and the Planet
Guest Speaker: Steven Hamburg
Hosting Scholar:
The Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi
Steven Hamburg is an ecosystem ecologist specializing in the impacts of disturbance on forest structure and function. He came to Brown in 1995 after spending a year at Environmental Defense working on climate change related issues and nine years at the University of Kansas where he directed the Environmental Studies Program and served as Environmental Ombudsman. At Brown he is the concentration advisor for the environmental science concentration and serves as Research Director of the Global Environment Program at the Watson Institute in International Studies. He has published widely including in Nature and Science and has served as a lead author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He currently works on climate change mitigation issues with the corporate sector.
2009
Spring
Talk: Towards Flexible Robotic Bodies that Can Co-Exist with Trained Rodents in Tropical Minefields
Guest Speaker: Thrishantha Nanayakkara
Hosting Scholar:
Carol Espy-Wilson
A method that combines trained mongooses with semi-autonomous robots to improve the safety and accuracy of detecting landmines in tropical environments like Sri Lanka. The presenter has trained three mongooses to work in conjunction with a robot to literally sniff out the mines. Once a mine is spotted, the mongoose will stand up on its hind legs to signal the location of the mine, and then the metal detector of the robot will perform additional confirmation. In an initial test run on a 10 x 10 meter plot, the mongoose-robot duo found every mine. Thrishantha Nanayakkara is currently a Radcliffe Fellow at Harvard where he is perfecting his work.
2009
Spring
Culinary Arts & Culture: The Fine Art of Tea: An Evening of Tea Tasting with Residential Scholar Tenzin Priyadarshi
The Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi
Hosting Scholar:
The Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi
Join us for an evening exploring the world of Tea (of course, you get to try some too!). Learn about its origin and history, and why it remains the most popular drink since 2737 BCE. Hear stories of Tea and Calligraphy, and how can they help cultivate a calm, meditative mind. Samosas, Japanese cakes, and other assorted tea snacks will be served.
2009
Spring
Film Screening: Part II: A Mini Portuguese & Brazilian Film Festival: Central Station
Patricia Carvalho
Hosting Scholar:
Patricia Carvalho
We will be showing part two of the Portuguese-Brazilian mini film festival, Central Station. In addition to be nominated for 2 Academy Awards, Central Station won 29 awards internationally including a Golden Globe. Director Walter Salles presents an emotive journey of a former school teacher, who writes letters for illiterate people at Rio de Janeiro's central station, Central do Brasil; and a young boy, whose mother has just died in a car accident, to Brazil's remote Northeast, in search for the father he never knew.
2009
Spring
Film Screening: Part I: A Mini Portuguese & Brazilian Film Festival: Blindness
Patricia Carvalho
Hosting Scholar:
Patricia Carvalho
Blindness is a movie based on the novel essay, by the Nobel Laureate José Saramago, and directed by Fernando Meirelles, Director of City of God. Saramago's novel begins with the sudden white blindness of a driver stopped at a red light. From then on, each person the man encounters becomes blind. The white blindness plague sets off panic. Throughout the narrative, one character remains sighted, the ophthalmologist's wife. Claiming to be blind so she is interned with her husband, she eventually becomes the guide and protector for an impromptu family. She is the reader's guide and repository of human decency.
2009
Spring
Talk: Digital Apollo: How MIT's Computers Landed on the Moon
Guest Speaker: David Mindell
Hosting Scholar:
Steve Hall
The 40th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing is fast approaching, so our residential scholar event this week is very timely. Prof. David Mindell, housemaster of Edgerton House, and the Frances and David Dibner Professor of the History of Engineering and Manufacturing, will be giving the talk Digital Apollo: How MIT's Computers Landed on the Moon this Friday at 6:00 pm in the Simmons multipurpose room, The presentation will describe the last ten minutes of the Apollo 11 moon landing, when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon using computers and software developed at MIT. It's a story of engineers, human operators, software, bugs and triumphs, and has much to teach us about engineering and life critical systems today.
2009
Spring
Movie Screening: Momento
Steve Hall
Hosting Scholar:
Steve Hall
Leonard (Guy Pearce) is an insurance investigator whose memory has been damaged following a head injury he sustained after intervening on his wife's murder. His quality of life has been severely hampered after this event, and he can now only live a comprehendable life by tattooing notes on himself and taking pictures with a Polaroid camera. Leonard badly wants revenge for his wife's murder, but, as numerous characters explain, there may be little point if he won't remember it in order to provide closure for him. So that the viewer can share Leonard's experience of not knowing the past, the story is told backwards. Come and enjoy this critically acclaimed movie.
2009
Spring
Talk: Chasing Heparin: How an MIT professor Solved the 2008 Heparin Crisis
Guest Speaker: Ram Sasisekharan, MIT Professor of Toxicology, Biological Engineering and Director of the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.
Hosting Scholar:
John Essigmann
Presentation on the detective work that led to restoration of the quality of the Global heparin supply. You will also hear of the political tensions that arose between the US Congress and a foreign power over the role of lax regulatory policy in that nation in the deaths of Americans and others around the world. Ram Sasisekharan is a professor in the Department of Biological Engineering and the Director of the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.
2009
Spring
Talk: The Attention Revolution: a Multimethod Inquiry into Meditation, Cognition, Emotion, and Motivation
Guest Speaker: Clifford Saron & B. Alan Wallace
Hosting Scholar:
The Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi
Recent studies of the effects of meditation practices on stress management and emotional stability and of meditation as a therapeutic agent have produced exciting results. But the studies conducted to date have been short-term and have generally used non-intensive interventions. The Shamatha Project includes a team of talented neuroscientists and psychologists in a longer-term study, with state-of-the-art methods, to examine the effects of intensive meditation training on attention, cognitive performance, emotion regulation, and health. The expected benefits included greater attentional control and increased ability to regulate emotions and apply prosocial values and motives.
2009
Fall

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