SkeptiCamp NYC 2013: Share the apple of knowledge

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SkeptiCamp NYC 2013 Sessions and Attendees

So far, 51 people have registered for SkeptiCamp NYC 2013! However, not all of those attendees will be listed on this page. Some people may have chosen not to make their attendance public. In additional, there are also 0 people on the waiting list.

Session Proposals So Far

Here are the session topics submitted, so far. Please note that placement here does NOT guarantee the topic will be discussed. We are sure most of them will be on the schedule. However, various things, some beyond anyone's control, could force us to change it. The "final" version of the schedule should be available on November 25nd, 2013.

To submit your idea, see the Session Host's Guide.

TitleDescriptionName of Leader
Conflict Resolution and the Secular MovementRecently the secular movement has experienced a fair amount of conflict. In order to have a more unified and peaceful movement, conflict resolution initiatives should be used.georgina capetillo
Of High Heels and Peacocks; Darwin in the House of DiorIt will be on the evolutionary significance of women wearing high heels as a sexual selective criterion, much like peacock’s tails. Please don’t put me down for sure yet, as I want to be sure I can do a good job.Spiro Condos
ADVENTURES IN SUBJECTIVE PROBABILITY: “You keep using that word... I do not think it means what you think it means.”Ambiguity has a quantifiable effect on the decisions human beings make on probabilities. Research indicates that the effects of ambiguity on an individual’s decision-making are actually a reflection of the individual’s personal preferences and perceptions, instead of relating to the actual statistic probability of whatever it is we’re talking about. We'll talk about subjective probability, and use an experiment to evaluate why certain words don't mean what we think they mean.Amy Frushour Kelly
Skepticism & Moral ValuesAs skeptics, we accept that certain beliefs follow naturally from established facts: global warming is real, and creationism is false, and no competent application of scientifically-informed skepticism would say otherwise. But moral decisions are based not only on established facts but also moral values that are not derived from empirical facts alone. Does skepticism lead us to particular, rational moral conclusions the way it does to empirical ones? What does that imply for ongoing debates over the relationship between skepticism and social issues such as feminism or gay rights? I would like to analyze these questions, and offer my own proposed answer.Kevin Keith
Putting Science and Philosophy in Their Places: The Great Morality Debate!My opponent, Gregory Lopez, and I shall debate the existence of objective moral truths, and how this impacts the roles science and the rest of philosophy play in morality. After short opening statements and cross-examination by both sides, the bulk of the debate will involve questions from the audience. Both of us will then issue brief closing statements.Mitchell Lampert
Strategic Reliablism: An Epistemology for SkepticsEpistemology is the philosophy of knowledge. However, modern epistemology has become more and more irrelevant to actual clear thinking and useless to those who want to engage in it. Over the past 15 years, two philosophers have spoken out against "standard analytic epistemology" and proposed what one person has called "an epistemology for James Randi" called strategic reliablism. The purpose of this talk will be to summarize the problems with the modern state of epistemology and give an overview of strategic reliablism.Gregory Lopez
Humanism and the Secular CommunityHumanism's place within the secular community.norman roscoe
Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia: a Skeptical ApproachThe coming "silver tsunami" of the aging population is most often portrayed in an alarmist way that highlights degenerative processes like dementia. The story of "Alzheimer's Disease" is typically told as a medical saga, with a narrative that emphasizes the heavy costs placed on caregivers and society, on the one hand, and the frantic hope for a "cure" on the other. As skeptics, we can examine this narrative and question its prevailing assumptions, especially the emphasis on medical pathology and "loss of personhood."Tony Saunders

Note that the opinions of SkeptiCamp presenters do not necessarily reflect those of its organizers.

Other Attendees

These are folks who say they are going. But, they have not submitted a session idea, yet. (If you registered, and do not see your name on the list, you can Sign In to Edit your profile. On there is an option to have your name show up on the public list.)

Name of Attendee
Larry Auerbach
Marc David Barnhill
Gregory Cox
Paul Curtis
Russ Dobler
Janice Gherardi
Brian Gregory
Pat Gunn
Natalie Jaran
AJ Johnson
M. Hans Liebert
Jonathan Nelson
craig sachs
David Taunton
Michael Trollan
Cressida Wasserman

Some of session topics from previous years included:

  • "Promoting Skepticism via Wikipedia", by Tim Farley of
  • Comedy pieces by a comedian and reality show star named Joshie
  • The Science and Nonsense in Martial Arts, with John Rennie, former editor of Scientific American Magazine
  • Stupid Bayesian Tricks
  • "Critical Thinking for Dummies"
  • How to Write an Essay
  • A Skeptic's Guide to the Art Scene
  • Anti-Vaccine Movement Fallacies and Tactics
  • How to Preserve a Skeptic Community
  • Teaching Critical Thinking in New York City Colleges
  • Discussions about Atheism with Michael De Dora, executive director of CFI NYC
  • Mercury and Dental Fillings; Safer than You Think
  • Science-based opera compositions performed by Hai-Ting Chin

Some of these past topics could be resurrected this year, with updates and new twists.

Contact us with questions or comments: