Colloquium: Guesstimation: solving problems on the back of a napkin – 4 p.m. tomorrow

Larry Weinstein

Professor Larry Weinstein of Old Dominion University will give the Colloquium tomorrow at 4 p.m. in One West.

Weinstein is the author of Guesstimation: Solving the World’s Problems on the Back of a Cocktail Napkin with John Adam and Guesstimation 2.0: Solving Today’s Problems on the Back of a Napkin, soon to be a major motion picture. Weinstein also edits the monthly Fermi Problems column for the journal The Physics Teacher. In his spare time, he smashes atoms at Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, work for which he was named a fellow of the American Physical Society.

Weinstein’s talk will cover the principles of estimating, introduce the “Goldilocks” categories of answers and look at how we can answer big (and small) questions of our time without relying on experts, such as: Gasoline or electric cars? Does it really matter if you don’t recycle that plastic water bottle? What does it really take to stop a neutrino?