Traditional Class

FRSEMR 27J: Prediction: From Ancient Omens to Modern Computer Simulations

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2018

We will discuss the variety of approaches humans have taken to predicting their own future. Early weeks will focus on Omens, Oracles, Religion and Prophecy. Next, we will move on to the so-called Scientific Revolution, exemplified by the work of Galileo, and the Age of Exploration, enabled by John Harrison's solution to finding longitude at sea. The last several weeks of the seminar will focus on predictive work in epidemiology, finance, and climate, and ultimately on work about the Universe's future. Students will conclude with a discussion of how computer models of health/wealth/...

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Freshman Seminar 27j: Prediction: From Ancient Omens to Modern Computer Simulations

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2017

We will discuss the variety of approaches humans have taken to predicting their own future. Early weeks will focus on Omens, Oracles, Religion and Prophecy. Next, we will move on to the so-called Scientific Revolution, exemplified by the work of Galileo, and the Age of Exploration, enabled by John Harrison's solution to finding longitude at sea. The last several weeks of the seminar will focus on predictive work in epidemiology, finance, and climate, and ultimately on work about the Universe's future. Students will conclude with a discussion of how computer models...

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Freshman Seminar 27j - Prediction: From Ancient Omens to Modern Computer Simulations

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2015

Part of what makes us human is our desire to learn our own future.  Throughout recorded history, people have sought ever-more-powerful methods of Prediction.  In ancient times, sheep were sacrificed and priests read signs from the gods in their entrails; revered oracles were consulted; and astrologers read the future in the heavens.   Great scholars began to debate determinism vs. free will–is there a pre-ordained future, or do our own actions affect the future?–and that debate has never really ended.   Today’s arguments over whether...

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The Art of Numbers, Empirical and Mathematical Reasoning 19

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2014

As data sets get larger and larger, visual tools for exploring them become even more important. "The Art of Numbers" focuses on the insight into quantitative information offered by graphs, tables, charts, maps, and other illustrations. The course explores which graphical tool(s) are best for communicating what kinds of data, and why? Ideas about causality, approximation, statistical significance, credibility, and dimensionality are addressed by analyzing real data and their display. Examples are drawn from epidemiology, astronomy, sports, social-science, finance, geography, politics and...

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Astronomy 215hf: Topics in Contemporary Astrophysics

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2013

Topics in Contemporary Astrophysics

This full year half course will cover a broad range of contemporary topics in observational and theoretical astrophysics through a set of 10-12 two-week modules taught by members of the Astronomy Department faculty. The course will meet twice per week, and each module will be comprised of a stand-alone topic with a single homework assignment. Enrolled students will be required to sign up for the full year and attend half of the offered modules.

Astronomy 201b : Interstellar Medium and Star Formation

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2013

Nature of the Interstellar Medium (ISM): composition, energetics, densities and interactions; observations and theory. Processes leading to the formation of stars and planets, as well as studies of the feedback on the ISM from stellar death.

Paper: Nathan E. Sanders, Chris Faesi, Alyssa A. Goodman (2013) A New Approach to Developing Interactive Software Modules through Graduate Education, (http://arxiv.org/abs/1308.1908v1)

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The Art of Numbers, Empirical and Mathematical Reasoning 19

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2012

This course focuses on the insight into quantitative information offered by graphs, tables, charts, maps, and other illustrations. We analyze which of these tools are best for communicating what kinds of data, and why. Ideas about causality, approximation, statistical significance, credibility, and dimensionality will be addressed by analyzing real data and their display. The data will be drawn from medical, astronomical, social-science, aerospace, financial, and geographic examples. Approximately one-third of the course will focus on web, interactive, and live presentations of data. Much...

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