At our next meet-up, Aaron Santos will be talking about how mathematics can be a tool for applying skepticism.
Over at his blog, A Diary of Numbers, Santos states he “likes solving geeky Fermi problems.” For example, Santos has tackled questions such as:
- How much gas do you waste by turning on the headlights of your car?
- How sensitive would a shark’s nose have to be in order to detect a drop of blood from one mile away?
- How many people spinning anti-clockwise would it take to counteract the Earth’s spin, assuming that the premise is sound.
- Assorted Death Statistics
So what other good hypothetical questions could Santos try and solve? Here’s a few that came to mind:
- How much hair throughout the entire world is grown in one day? I wonder if it would cover my driveway? Or the Eastern Michigan University Water Tower? Or the University of Michigan Football Stadium?
- According to wikipedia, it took over three years, two months, fourteen days and sixteen hours, for Forest Gump to run coast to coast across the country several times. What was his average speed?
- If the sun disappeared, how quickly would the temperature drop on Earth? And how powerful of an artificial heat source would you have to have in order to compensate for the decreased temperature?
Are there any others? Post them in the comments section.