Trinity College Science Society
is the most active science society in Cambridge, providing a rich programme of seminar series, panel discussions, film nights, and other social events. While based in Trinity College, all talks are free and open to all members of the university and the general public, and are accompanied by generous refreshments. Browse through our programme for the coming year to see the remarkable speakers and events we have lined up.


Latest news:

TCSS and the Trinity College Mathematical Society are jointly organising the Cambridge Puzzle Hunt, due to take place in January 2017. For more information, visit the Cambridge Puzzle Hunt website.
posted on 19 Oct 2016

Our next event:

Tue
24
Jan
Dr Christopher Lester speaking on
The Large Hadron Collider and Murphy’s Law
Scientific progress is rarely achieved without some form of pain. All experiments, whether big or small, face numerous challenges from forces of bad luck, human error, and the thoroughly unexpected. This is inevitably true also for the LHC. This talk will describe a small set of the minor and un-reported (and not so minor) engineering “surprises” that were encountered when the LHC began to take its first steps onto the world stage back in 2008.
18:15   ·   Winstanley Lecture Theatre

Events

Tue
24
Jan
Dr Christopher Lester speaking on
The Large Hadron Collider and Murphy’s Law
Scientific progress is rarely achieved without some form of pain. All experiments, whether big or small, face numerous challenges from forces of bad luck, human error, and the thoroughly unexpected. This is inevitably true also for the LHC. This talk will describe a small set of the minor and un-reported (and not so minor) engineering “surprises” that were encountered when the LHC began to take its first steps onto the world stage back in 2008.
18:15   ·   Winstanley Lecture Theatre
Tue
31
Jan
Prof Richard Barker speaking on
TBA

18:15   ·   Winstanley Lecture Theatre
Tue
7
Feb
Professor Chris Hunter speaking on
Sequence Polymers
The chemical compositions of biological polymers such as proteins and nucleic acids are usually well-defined sequences of different monomer units. In contrast, the synthetic polymers that form our material world are generally composed of multiple repeats of the same monomer unit. In this presentation, I will discuss the possibilities for developing synthetic polymeric materials composed of defined sequences of different monomer units. These systems would combine the functional programmability of biological molecules with the chemical diversity available in synthetic systems.
18:15   ·   Junior Parlour
Tue
14
Feb
Dr Stephen John speaking on
Why scientists should not be sincere, honest, open or transparent
Many central ethical problems in science concern communication: should scientists always declare conflicts-of-interest? Is it ethical to report results which others may use for evil ends? When are scientists responsible for how others use their words? In this talk, I consider four common claims about the ethics of scientific communication: that scientists should be sincere, honest, open and transparent. Using the case study of climate change, I argue against each of these claims. Does that mean that anything goes? Not quite...
18:15   ·   Winstanley Lecture Theatre
Tue
21
Feb
Dr Peter Murray Rust speaking on
Can machines understand the scientific literature?
Every 15 seconds a new Scientific/Technical/Medical (STM) article is published - text, images, tables, diagrams and it's impossible for anyone to keep up. We need machines to help and I'll describe systems that can "understand" chemistry, evolutionary trees, etc. It's much easier when everything is Open, and we are downloading and analysing papers in bioscience, astrophysics, clinical trials. I believe that Wikidata will become the primary means to index STM material and we can use this to build specialist search tools.
Technically it's becoming easy to create and deploy "text and data mining" (TDM) - or more widely "Content Mining" and very accessible to students (our youngest developer is 15 years old). But TDM has caused huge controversy in Europe. The UK made a small step in 2014 - it's legitimate for personal non-commercial research - but similar legislation in Europe hit serious pushback from publishers. I'll contend that Science is being held back by copyright.
The audience is invited to participate so bring your laptops/mobiles and hopefully we'll try some simple experiments.

18:15   ·   Winstanley Lecture Theatre
For more events, see our full programme or download our latest term card.
You can also subscribe to a calendar of our events here.