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Events at the Mechanics' Institute

Classes
Tuesday, April 25, 2017 - 12:15pm to 1:15pm

Find Your Next Favorite Book on Goodreads

Web Exploration Series

Learn how to create an account and use the popular book recommendation website Goodreads.  We’ll explore how to add books to your virtual shelf, find recommendations and read-alikes, and discover fun extras, including blogs, groups, and giveaways.

Members Only; Free

Book Group Meetings - World Literature
Wednesday, April 26, 2017 - 6:45pm to 8:00pm

The Castle

by Franz Kafka

A protagonist known only as K. arrives in a village governed by a mysterious bureaucracy operating in a nearby castle.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 12:15pm to 1:15pm

Key Financial Magazines & Newspapers Every Astute Investor Should Read

Financial Literacy Series

Discover publications providing useful investment information.

Members Only; Free

Activities
Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 6:30pm

Transforming SF: THE FUTURE OF PRIVACY/SECURITY--For Your Eyes Only: Keeping your Online Information Private and Secure

Moderated by Mechanics' Institute Trustee Lindsey Tonsager

How can we have maximum online access as consumers and users and still be protected from surveillance, data abuse and identity fraud? What are best practices? How can we use our social platforms and data to enhance our lives? What policies or regulations should be in place to protect us?

Members Free
Public $15

CinemaLit Films
Friday, April 28, 2017 - 6:00pm

Stranger than Fiction (2006)

April 2017: Literary License

A sweet, smart fable about an IRS auditor who, struck by the realization that he's the main character in a novel, tracks down the author.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Activities
Saturday, April 29, 2017 - 2:00pm

Shaping the Soul of China: Religion and the Search for Meaning in the Middle Kingdom

A conversation with Ian D. Johnson, Jennifer Lin, and Mary Kay Magistad.

Mao Zedong tried to shut down religious practice in China, sometimes brutally, but once Mao was gone, many Chinese renewed their search for meaning.

Members & Public Free

Activities
Monday, May 01, 2017 - 6:00pm

Mechanics' Institute Tour @ Night

If you are a new, long-time, or prospective member the Tour of the Institute will orient you to our building, include an overview of our history and mission, and outline our current services and the benefits of membership.

Members & Public Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, May 02, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Meet the Author(s)
Wednesday, May 03, 2017 - 6:00pm

Tides: The Science and Spirit of the Ocean

Surfer, sailor, & author Jonathan White and intertidal specialist Rebecca Johnson in conversation

Join this conversation on the status of global ocean tides, the effects of climate change, and the new developments of tidal power; as well as the current ecology of California’s coastline.

Members Free
Public $15

Activities
Thursday, May 04, 2017 - 5:00pm to 7:00pm

Chess & Tech

Come play bughouse, blitz chess, and more with fellow tech workers from around the city each month in the oldest chess club in the United States, home to Grandmasters Sam Shankland and Daniel Naroditsky. Sets, boards & clocks, and light refreshments will be provided. All tech workers are welcome.

Tech Community Only - Free

Classes
Thursday, May 04, 2017 - 6:30pm to 7:30pm

Researching Articles on Popular Culture, Current Events, Sports and More

Web Exploration Series

How do you find the information you want, quickly, with intuitive searching that mirrors Internet searching, while making sure you tap into quality sources? Gales's General Reference Center Gold database provides access to the latest content covering current events, popular culture, the arts and sciences, sports, hobbies, and more.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free

CinemaLit Films
Friday, May 05, 2017 - 6:00pm

Wonder Boys (2000)

May 2017: Critic’s Choice

Michael Chabon’s dryly comic midlife coming-of-age story explores the bond between a struggling English professor and a gifted student.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Chess Tournaments
Saturday, May 06, 2017 - 10:00am

The 17th Charles Powell Memorial

5 Round Swiss - One Day G/45,d5

Members $30
Public $35

Classes
Saturday, May 06, 2017 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Annie Barrows—Establishing Time and Place in Your Historical Novel (or, One Hoopskirt Does Not a Civil War Novel Make)

The hilarious and brainy Annie Barrows will impart her wisdom on historical fiction.

Members & Public $105

Chess Tournaments
Sunday, May 07, 2017 - 1:00pm

The 11th Ray Schutt Memorial Blitz

6 Round Double Swiss

Members & Public $10

Book Group Meetings - Brown Bag Mystery Readers
Monday, May 08, 2017 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

A Shark Out of Water

by Emma Lathen

Wall Street banker-cum-sleuth extraordinaire John Putnam Thatcher finds himself caught in an international investment scandal, this time involving a quasi-government commission to modernize the Kiel Canal.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Second Tuesday TED Talk
Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Second Tuesday TED Talk

Topic TBD

Bring your lunch and curiosity to talk about ideas, stories, and concepts with fellow Mechanics' Institute members and staff. An informal discussion will follow the viewing.

Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - World Literature
Wednesday, May 10, 2017 - 6:45pm to 8:00pm

A House and Its Head

by Ivy Compton-Burnett

This book casually pokes fun at the art of idle gossip while exploring gender struggles and the family dynamic. The New York Review of Books says,

The long, endlessly surprising conversational duels at the center of Compton-Burnett's works are confrontations between the unspoken and the unspeakable, and in them the dynamics of power and desire are dramatized as nowhere else.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Thursday, May 11, 2017 - 10:00am to 4:00pm

Technology Office Hours

Every Second Thursday of the Month

Reserve a 30-minute appointment to work with a librarian for one-on-one help with a device, software, email, or have other internet-related questions.

Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Thursday, May 11, 2017 - 6:30pm

Mechanics' Today: Will VR Change the World?

Moderated by James Nestor

What are the latest developments in VR technology and what are the best uses as seen in the areas of entertainment, travel and medical practice?  How does VR affect our cognition and our sense of reality?  How will consumers use VR in the future?

Members Free
Public $15

Activities
Friday, May 12, 2017 - 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Lefty O'Doul: Baseball's Forgotten Ambassador

Join author Dennis Snelling for a discussion on his new book and the introduction of baseball to Japan.

Members & Public Free

CinemaLit Films
Friday, May 12, 2017 - 6:00pm

They All Laughed (1981)

May 2017: Critic’s Choice

This little-seen, unassuming romantic comedy about New York private eyes and the women they’re tailing is a valentine to its leading ladies.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Classes
Saturday, May 13, 2017 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Sarah Ladipo Manyika—Using Performance to Explore Character's Voice

This workshop, led by a self-described non-actor, will focus on how performance helps to bring characters alive.

Members & Public $105

Activities
Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Library Downloads Workshop: eBooks, eMagazines, eComics, eAudiobooks

Every Third Wednesday of the Month

Bring your device to this hands-on workshop where you'll set up an account, have your questions answered, and get started downloading eBooks, eMagazines, eComics, and eAudiobooks.

Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 5:30pm to 6:30pm

The Internet Archive and Its Wayback Machine

Web Exploration Series

The Internet Archive provides access to millions of open source files. Come learn how to find and download free ebooks, movies, music, audiobooks, artwork, software, and even video games. We’ll also be learning how to use their Wayback Machine to digitally transport back to the internet of yesteryear.

Members Only; Free

Activities
Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 6:30pm

Transforming SF: The Future of Renewable Energy

With David Hochschild, California State Energy Commissioner

California’s State Energy Commissioner will talk about new developments, incentives and initiatives for renewable energy such as solar, wind and hybrid models; and their environmental and economic impact in the Bay Area and the state.

Members Free
Public $15

Activities
Friday, May 19, 2017 - 12:00pm

Writers' Lunch with Edward Hasbrouck

Making a Living as a Writer in the Digital Age

Join the Mechanics' Institute and the Northern California Chapter of the National Writers Union in a discussion with author and activist Edward Hasbrouck on the challenges and opportunities of making a living as a writer in the digital age.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

CinemaLit Films
Friday, May 19, 2017 - 6:00pm

Shine (1996)

May 2017: Critic’s Choice

Australian piano prodigy David Helfgott struggles with an overbearing father and schizophrenia in this vibrant, stunningly acted drama.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Classes
Tuesday, May 23, 2017 - 5:30pm to 6:30pm

Find Your Next Favorite Book on Goodreads

Web Exploration Series

Learn how to create an account and use the popular book recommendation website Goodreads.  We’ll explore how to add books to your virtual shelf, find recommendations and read-alikes, and discover fun extras, including blogs, groups, and giveaways.

Members Only; Free

Meet the Author(s)
Tuesday, May 23, 2017 - 6:30pm

Easternization: Asia's Rise and America's Decline From Obama to Trump and Beyond

with author Gideon Rachman

Join this conversation on the status of global ocean tides, the effects of climate change, and the new developments of tidal power; as well as the current ecology of California’s coastline.

Members Free (with promo code)
Public $20

Book Group Meetings - World Literature
Wednesday, May 24, 2017 - 6:45pm to 8:00pm

Speedboat

by Renata Adler

Jen Fain is a journalist negotiating the fraught landscape of contemporary urban America. Party guests, taxi drivers, brownstone dwellers, professors, journalists, presidents, and debutantes fill these dispatches from the world as Jen finds it.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

CinemaLit Films
Friday, May 26, 2017 - 6:00pm

The Artist (2006) -- Season Finale!

May 2017: Critic’s Choice

The arrival of talkies radically alters the fortunes of a star and an extra in this delightful silent black-and-white film that won the Oscar for Best Picture.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Activities
Thursday, June 01, 2017 - 5:00pm to 7:00pm

Chess & Tech

Come play bughouse, blitz chess, and more with fellow tech workers from around the city each month in the oldest chess club in the United States, home to Grandmasters Sam Shankland and Daniel Naroditsky. Sets, boards & clocks, and light refreshments will be provided. All tech workers are welcome.

Tech Community Only - Free

Chess Tournaments
Saturday, June 03, 2017 - 10:00am to 5:00pm

The 54th Arthur Stamer Memorial

6 Round Swiss

Members $45
Public $50

Activities
Tuesday, June 06, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Thursday, June 08, 2017 - 10:00am to 4:00pm

Technology Office Hours

Every Second Thursday of the Month

Reserve a 30-minute appointment to work with a librarian for one-on-one help with a device, software, email, or have other internet-related questions.

Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - Brown Bag Mystery Readers
Monday, June 12, 2017 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

The Tiger in the Smoke

by Margery Allingham

Meg Elginbrodde's wedding plans with millionaire Geoffrey Levett stop dead when she begins receiving snapshots of a man who could be her husband - if he hadn't been killed at war five years before...

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Second Tuesday TED Talk
Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Second Tuesday TED Talk

Topic TBD

Bring your lunch and curiosity to talk about ideas, stories, and concepts with fellow Mechanics' Institute members and staff. An informal discussion will follow the viewing.

Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - World Literature
Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - 6:45pm to 8:00pm

Richard II

by William Shakespeare

Shakespeare’s Richard II presents a momentous struggle between Richard II and his cousin Henry Bolingbroke. Richard is the legitimate king; he succeeded his grandfather, King Edward III, after the earlier death of his father Edward, the Black Prince. Yet Richard is also seen by many as a tyrant...

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Thursday, June 15, 2017 - 5:30pm to 6:30pm

Knit Happens

Group Activity

Bring a knitting or crochet project and get to know your fellow Mechanics’ Institute members and staff.

Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Chess Tournaments
Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 10:00am

The 17th William Addison Memorial

6 Round Swiss - One Day G/30,d5

Members $30
Public $35

Classes
Tuesday, June 20, 2017 - 12:15pm to 1:15pm

Encrypting Your Digital Life

Web Exploration Series

Learn tips for making sure the information you want to keep private, stays private. We’ll talk about passwords, hard drive encryption, texting versus email, and avoiding trackers as you browse the web.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free

Activities
Tuesday, June 20, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Wednesday, June 21, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Library Downloads Workshop: eBooks, eMagazines, eComics, eAudiobooks

Every Third Wednesday of the Month

Bring your device to this hands-on workshop where you'll set up an account, have your questions answered, and get started downloading eBooks, eMagazines, eComics, and eAudiobooks.

Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Tuesday, June 27, 2017 - 12:15pm to 1:15pm

Adding Branches to Your Family Tree Using Ancestry

Web Exploration Series

The Mechanics' Institute subscribes to the Ancestry database for libraries, which provides access to billions of records in census data, vital records, directories, photos, and more. This class will provide tips on searching, how to download records, and plenty of time for hands-on practice.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free

Classes
Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

The Internet Archive and Its Wayback Machine

Web Exploration Series

The Internet Archive provides access to millions of open source files. Come learn how to find and download free ebooks, movies, music, audiobooks, artwork, software, and even video games. We’ll also be learning how to use their Wayback Machine to digitally transport back to the internet of yesteryear.

Members Only; Free

Book Group Meetings - World Literature
Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - 6:45pm to 8:00pm

The Noise of Time

by Julian Barnes

In 1936, Shostakovich, just thirty, fears for his livelihood and his life. Stalin, hitherto a distant figure, has taken a sudden interest in his work and denounced his latest opera. Now, certain he will be exiled to Siberia (or, more likely, executed on the spot), Shostakovich reflects on his predicament, his personal history, his parents, various women and wives, his children—and all who are still alive themselves hang in the balance of his fate.

Mechanics' Institute Members Only; Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, July 04, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, July 18, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, August 01, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, August 15, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, September 05, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, September 19, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, October 03, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, October 17, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, November 07, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, November 21, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, December 05, 2017 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Dwelling Dreamers Discussion Group

Join our informal monthly club for Mechanics’ Institute members of all ages who want to improve their living environment.

Members only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, December 19, 2017 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Indie Publishing Working Group

The Indie Publishers' Working Group was started by author and editor C J Verburg in response to the rapidly changing landscape of publishing and the diverse needs of Mechanics' Institute member writers. If you're working on a book project and you're curious about independent publishing, or publishing in general, you're welcome to attend.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.