[PAST EVENT] Saturday Morning Physics: "Guesstimation" (Prof. Larry Weinstein, ODU)

March 23, 2013
11am - 12pm
Small Hall, Room 111
300 Ukrop Way
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
Why don't we all drive electric cars? Does it really matter if you don't recycle that plastic water bottle? If the Sun were made of gerbils, would the Earth be incinerated? How can we answer these questions without relying on experts? Understand powers of 10 and guesstimating on your feet are essential skills in today's world, whether you're trying to distinguish between a billion-dollar subsidy and a trillion-dollar stimulus, a megawatt wind turbine and a gigawatt nuclear plant, or parts-per-million and parts-per-billion contaminants. This talk will cover the principles of estimating, introduce the "Goldilocks" categories of answers, and then look at some of the big (and small) questions of our time, including: Paper or plastic? Gasoline or electric cars? Windmills, nuclear power plants, or gerbils?

Prof. Larry Weinstein (Old Dominion University) is the author of the successful book "Guesstimation" and "Guesstimation 2.0".

[[wdeconinck, Wouter Deconinck]]