A Long Now Boston Community Conversation with
Artists Nicole L’Huillier and Nathan Miner

Monday, Oct 5, 02020, 7:30 p.m.

This is a virtual event using Zoom. Login is open at 7:00 p.m. – come early and chat with other Long Now thinkers. Tickets are available on Eventbrite. Presentation starts at 7:30 p.m.

Sometimes forgetting what you know is the best path forward. 

Long Now Boston is excited to welcome artists Nicole L’Huillier and Nathan Miner to our Conversation Series. This conversation will explore artistic research as a place of possibilities; an open-ended strategy of experimentation and failure that can lead to new modes of thinking and that reframes knowledge conventions. 

Knowledge can be a barrier to discovery, and as a species, humans are geared towards preemptive knowing without going deep. Art can undermine our habits of knowing and, as a form of resistance to our preconceived notions, it can erode presumptive knowledge to a core that is alive with multiplicities and alternative possibilities.

Our  speakers this month are artists whose transdisciplinary practices dynamically intersect with technology, science, and philosophy, and creatively challenge preconceptions as they expand the role of art in society.

The conversation will be moderated by Leonie Bradbury, Henry and Lois Foster Chair of Contemporary Art Theory and Practice, and Distinguished Curator-in-Residence at Emerson College.

Join the conversation and be part of the solution.
Audience participation is encouraged.

Login begins at 7:00 p.m.; the conversation begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $5 – students with ID are admitted for free. Get tickets at Eventbrite

About the speakers:

NICOLE L’HUILLIER is a transdisciplinary artist from Santiago, Chile, currently based in Boston, MA. Through installations, performances, sculptures, compositions, and multiple transductions, her work explores human and non-human performativity, rituals of membranal and resonant architectures, as well as vibration and sound as construction materials for spaces, identity, and agency. She works at the intersection of music, art, architecture, science, and technology to challenge perceptual conventions and to open the possibility of new imaginaries. L’Huillier is part of the MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative, where she explores the experimental forms and implications of art, expression and culture in outer space. Nicole is currently a PhD candidate and research assistant at MIT Media Lab’s Opera of the Future group; she also holds a Master’s in Media Arts and Sciences (2017) from MIT Media Lab.

NATHAN MINER lives and works in Boston, MA. Over the past decade, Miner has exhibited in many galleries, alternative art spaces and universities, including recent installations at Steven Zevitas Gallery, and Rafius Fane Gallery (Boston, MA), Montserrat College of Art (Beverly, MA) and the Museum of Art at University of New Hampshire (Durham, NH). His exhibitions have been reviewed by the Boston Globe and his work has been featured in Artpulse and Artscope magazines. Miner’s work belongs to the Wellington collection, among many private collections. Miner has been an artist in residence with Mass MoCA (North Adams, MA) and the Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT). He is currently pursuing a master’s of science in game science and design from the College of Art Media and Design at Northeastern University

We’re proud and excited to welcome Nicole and Nathan to the Long Now Boston community.

Cambridge Innovation Center is an in-kind sponsor of this Long Now Boston conversation. We are very grateful for their support.

How to Drive Social Change in Changing Times

How to Drive Social Change in Changing Times

A Long Now Boston community conversation with Dr. Anton Howes, fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce

Monday, Sept 14, 02020, 6:00pm

This is a virtual event using Zoom. Please note: this event has an earlier start time compared to previous events since our guest speaker is located in the UK. Login is open at 5:30 p.m. – come early and chat with other Long Now thinkers. Tickets are available on Eventbrite.
Presentation starts at 6 p.m.

“Everyone is able to participate in creating a better future.”

The Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA), founded in 1754 in a London coffee house, has been dedicated to the betterment of British life and culture for over 250 years. Since the beginning, the Society has championed innovative practical solutions to social challenges of the day. 

Over its lifetime, the RSA has survived and thrived by constantly reinventing itself and finding new ways to promote civic, cultural, and economic progress. With only minimal infrastructure and no fixed mission, it has constantly supported the improvement of nearly anything and everything, through the long-term support of its worldwide volunteer member base. A handful of examples of the Society’s work include:

  • Holding the first world’s fair
  • Being a platform for Victorian utilitarian reform 
  • Purchasing and restoring an entire village
  • Encouraging the planting of more than 60 million trees
  • Seeking technological alternatives to child labor

Long Now was founded 25 years ago with the mission to foster long-term thinking. As a relative newcomer to the concept and practice of a long-lived organization, what can we learn from our RSA ancestors?

We are excited to welcome Dr. Anton Howes, who volunteers as historian in residence at the RSA. Dr. Howes will showcase the society’s history through the lens of social reform. The lessons learned during three centuries of service are strikingly relevant to many of the issues society faces today.

Among the questions Dr. Howes will address:

  • How does a member-driven organization contribute to a thriving and resilient future across the centuries?
  • What can a small, mission-driven, nonprofit institution do to influence positive social change? 
  • How can we encourage those around us to help with the building of a strong base for a thriving future?
  • Will our focus on long-term innovation shift in the midst, and in the wake, of a pandemic?

Join the conversation and be part of the solution.

Tickets are $5 – students with ID are admitted for free.

Audience participation is encouraged. The conversation will be held virtually using the Zoom platform. Login information and password will be provided upon registration through Eventbrite.

About the speaker:

Dr. Anton Howes is the head of innovation at the Entrepreneurs Network, where he translates his research into practical policy proposals. He also serves the historian in residence at the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA). Dr. Howes was a postdoctoral researcher at Brown University and subsequently held the position of assistant professor in economic history at King’s College in London, where he received his Ph.D.

His recent book, Arts and Minds: How the Royal Society of Arts Changed a Nation, is a definitive history telling the story of Britain’s subscription-funded national improvement agency, the RSA. Dr. Howes is currently writing a book on the causes of the British Industrial Revolution, focusing on the hundreds of individual inventors and innovators who made it possible, and the institutions they created to keep it going.

Dr. Howes regularly shares his research on the history of innovation in his newsletter, Age of Invention. You can follow him on Twitter: @antonhowes.

Cambridge Innovation Center is an in-kind sponsor of this Long Now Boston conversation. We are very grateful for their support.

En-ROADS: Exploring Climate Change Futures

En-ROADS: Exploring Climate Change Futures

An experiential-learning workshop on climate change impact and institutional policy. With Curt Newton, En-ROADS Climate Ambassador.

Date: Monday, June 1st, 02020 7:00-8:30PM (via Zoom)
Zoom Room opens at 6:30PM for music and slides.
Presentations start @ 7pm
Tickets are available on Eventbrite: Tickets for En-ROADS June 1.


Global pandemics aside, climate change remains the most critical threat to human survival. A shortage of collective will, however, continues to be the biggest obstacle to positive change. What’s required for our society/culture/globe of villages to reach consensus, and what type of change is possible? Climate activist Curt Newton can help us answer some of those questions.

Curt uses Climate Interactive’s En-ROADS simulation model to help organizations approach the challenge from a public policy perspective. We’ll look at a variety of factors including energy, transportation, industry, population growth, land use, and others. None of these are siloed. They are all interconnected. What are the consequences, and uncertainties, when the metrics change on any one, or multiples, of these influencers?

The En-ROADS tool is science-based and literally allows us to move the needle on any of the factors, resulting in endless scenarios. With Curt’s help, we’ll analyze the different simulated outcomes. explore ways to increase climate literacy, and discuss reforms institutions can enact now to mitigate future political and environmental risk.

Other questions up for discussion”

  • Studies have shown that more data and more accurate models are not particularly helpful in inspiring action on climate change. How is En-ROADS different?
  • En-ROADS demonstrates that it will be challenging, yet still possible, to achieve a tolerable level of global temperatures and sea-level rise in the next century — how can this work to inspire engagement and action?
  • What are the most successful ways of motivating people and institutions to make the changes necessary in the short run in order to secure significant long term benefits?

This is an interactive workshop with many opportunities for audience participation. Join the conversation and be part of the solution.

Ticket price is $5. Students w/ID free. Members free – please use your code.
Audience participation is encouraged.
Eventbrite tickets may sell out – we are limiting the size of this event.

About the speaker:

Curt Newton is Director of MIT OpenCourseWare, which freely shares materials from thousands of MIT courses used by millions of learners and educators around the world. Prior to joining OCW in 2004, he worked at AT&T/Lucent Bell Labs as a communications network systems engineer and co-founded a data network equipment startup.

Curt serves on the steering team of 350 MA and is a trained Climate Reality Project Leader. Curt co-produced and co-hosted 3 seasons of the Climate Conversations podcast; helped launch and build the ClimateX online climate change community that became MIT’s climate portal; and was staff representative on the MIT Climate Action Advisory Committee.

Curt’s participation in a 2016 World Climate Simulation game introduced him to Climate Interactive’s work. He learned to facilitate World Climate, with a personal interest in reaching high school communities (being a parent of two young people). He has facilitated En-ROADS games and workshops for high school classes and enrichment programs, graduate-level education students, a global network of education innovators, workplaces, citizens, and the MIT community.

We’re proud and excited to welcome Curt to the Long Now Boston community.

Long Now Boston strives to bring cutting-edge content and thoughtful conversations to our community. Please join the conversation and be part of the solution. Charter Membership with Long Now Boston supports our organization and provides access to our conversations, and special opportunities for members-only events. Learn more at Membership.

Cambridge Innovation Center is an in-kind sponsor of this Long
Now Boston conversation. We are very grateful for their support.

Social and Cultural Innovations from COVID-19

Will the social and cultural innovations resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic shift our trajectory in the 21st century and beyond? Long Now Boston invites you to a live conversation exclusively for charter members to discuss this important topic. What cultural shifts are we already seeing? Which societal changes are likely to take root? Please join us for a thought-provoking community-based discussion.

A Long Now Boston Community Conversation exclusively for Charter Members*

Date: Monday, May 11, 02020 7:30-9:00PM (via Zoom). The meeting is free, but we are limiting attendance to 20 Charter Members* and will be emailing Zoom credentials to registered members the day of the event. Please register early on Eventbrite.

The COVID-19 pandemic is the most disruptive global event in a lifetime. As travel bans, social distancing and lock-downs precipitated by the novel Coronovirus have cascaded around the globe, people have been forced into novel patterns of working, living and socializing. The result has been a profusion of social and cultural innovations, some of which may last well beyond the end of the pandemic.

What is your perspective on the innovations that have changed work practices, social interactions, education, entertainment and culture. What innovations have you personally participated in? What has surprised or delighted you? What technologies have been essential in enabling these innovations? What changes are we seeing that you feel have lasting potential to effect positive social, cultural or institutional change in the long term?

This is an opportunity to share ideas with other Long Now Boston members and to be a part of our growing community. The conversation will be held on Zoom.

The Long Now Boston team strives to bring cutting-edge content and thoughtful conversations to our community. Please join the conversation and be part of the solution.

*Charter Membership with Long Now Boston supports our organization and provides access to our conversations, and special opportunities for members-only events. Learn more:

City Nature Celebration 02020

City Nature Celebration 02020: Observing the Urban Environment

April is Global Citizen Science month. People around the world are participating in various citizen projects, from making sourdough bread to observing the night sky. Please join Long Now Boston in celebrating citizen science, from home, by taking part in the City Nature Celebration 2020 for the Greater Boston Area.

Continue reading “City Nature Celebration 02020”

City Nature Celebration 02020 Frequently Asked Questions

City Nature Celebration 02020: Frequently Asked Questions

Tell me more about City Nature Celebration!

This is a global citizen science event, formerly called ‘City Nature Challenge’, that involves the observation and documentation of biological organisms in the city, stressing the importance of biodiversity in urban environments. In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, City Nature Challenge chose to be called ‘City Nature Celebration’ and focus on using nature for relief from a difficult time. CNC encourages  people to go outside and make observations of the wildlife they see in their backyards and neighborhoods, while practicing safe social distancing. Participants upload their observations, as photographic documentation, during the specified time frame (April 24-27) and all observations, if identifiable, are included for the region in which they were taken. Our region is the Greater Boston Area. You learn even more at their website:

Can I participate and still practice social distancing?

Absolutely! Participating from home in a citizen science project is a welcome respite from the isolation we may be feeling as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Keeping track of things, specifically things in nature, may help mitigate any negative feelings. We can join together as a community to document biodiversity, even as we stay apart.

CNC offers the following statement: “In Boston, we encourage documentation of nature in our homes, backyards, and neighborhoods, individually and with our families; and participation online by helping to identify or annotate observations. Together we’ll be making and sharing observations as a global community, celebrating the healing power of nature, documenting our local nature as best we can. Together, we will work with people in cities around the world to celebrate the biodiversity around us – wherever we might be! The CNC is something in which everyone can still participate, even while following all federal & local regulations to keep our communities safe. You can read more CNC Covid-19 FAQs at”

What is iNaturalist?

iNaturalist is a joint initiative by the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society. This social network community consists over 400,000 scientists and naturalists who can help us learn more about the natural world. This is done through photo documentation and subsequent identification of all types of living, wild species. Built on the concept of mapping, sharing observations, and sharing data of biodiversity around the world, it is one of the most popular nature apps. By recording and sharing your observations, you will create research quality data for scientists working to better understand and protect nature. You can learn more at

Download the iNaturalist app from the App Store or Google Play onto your smartphone. You can also use the online version on your desktop.

What is citizen science?

Citizen science is a working effort between scientists and people in a community who are curious and motivated to contribute to a specific scientific endeavor. This public involvement is typically to aid in data collection, but can also be analysis or reporting. Citizen science projects involve one or more people who have shared interests and work toward a common goal.

Do I need a specific level of education to be a citizen scientist?

The short answer is ‘No!’ The great thing about citizen science is that, with the proper training, anyone can participate. Everyone who contributes to a project follows the same procedure. Results gathered through this type of “crowd-sourcing” helps researchers draw conclusions and share the data so that an even broader community has access. These large collaborations allow advancements toward discovery that individual research groups may not be able to achieve on their own.

How can I get more involved in citizen science throughout the year?

There are lots of organizations that provide opportunities to do citizen science, including those that can be done remotely. A great place to start is to visit SciStarter ( They offer a variety of projects and you are sure to find one that suits your interests. If you are looking for something local and inclined toward participating in biodiversity studies, a good resource is Earthwise Aware (EwA). Learn about their activities at

Long Now Boston Calendar Update

Hello friends!

These are difficult times.

Consistent with the broader efforts to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic, Long Now Boston has suspended its public live events until further notice.

With regrets we had to cancel “Craft a Superhero” on April 18 and “Dear Tomorrow” on April 21, our two events planned as part of the Cambridge Science Festival.

We plan to resume live events as soon as possible and are looking at options for hosting online community conversations. In the meantime, we’d love to stay connected. Go to our website where you can sign up for our mailing list, find summaries and videos of our past events on the blog, and learn how to become a Long Now Boston member.

Please also follow us on TwitterFacebook and LinkedIn.

The need for long term thinking is greater now than ever before, and the current pandemic is a powerful reminder of that.

Stay safe, everyone. We’ll see you again soon.

CANCELLED: DearTomorrow – Taking Action on Climate Change

CANCELLED: DearTomorrow – Taking Action on Climate Change

Long Now Boston is disappointed to confirm cancellation of the ‘Dear Tomorrow’ event, along with the rest of the Cambridge Science Festival, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

We plan to reschedule our event for later in the year. Current registrants will be offered the first chance at tickets for a rescheduled ‘Dear Tomorrow’ program. 

Continue reading “CANCELLED: DearTomorrow – Taking Action on Climate Change”

CANCELLED: Long Now Boston at the Science Carnival and Robot Zoo!

CANCELLED: Long Now Boston at the Science Carnival and Robot Zoo!

Long Now Boston is disappointed to confirm cancellation of the ‘Craft a Superhero’ event, along with the rest of the Cambridge Science Festival, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

We plan to propose our event again for a future Cambridge Science Festival. Be sure to look for us next time!

Continue reading “CANCELLED: Long Now Boston at the Science Carnival and Robot Zoo!”