Presentation on theme: "Unit 8 The Art of Smart Guessing. Detailed Study of Paras 1-5 (1) Why and for what purpose did the writer decide on the one-question quiz? Several years."— Presentation transcript:
Unit 8 The Art of Smart Guessing
Detailed Study of Paras 1-5 (1) Why and for what purpose did the writer decide on the one-question quiz? Several years before, interviewing candidates for a job, the writer had grown tired asking "what experience do you have?" Therefore, he decided on the one- question quiz to find out how resourceful a thinker the new hire might be.
(2) What do you think of the one-question quiz? Though it includes only one question, the quiz is absolutely challenging. That was why most of the candidates simply made a wild guess, and rarely did somebody have the courage - approximation. To get the right answer, you have to know how deep the Mariana Trench is and how fast a cannonball might fall through the water, and then hazard a guesstimate. This is really the scope of the knowledge of most people. Only those who are highly intelligent, knowledgeable, and resourceful are likely to solve the problem. Therefore, this one-question quiz is really a helpful way to find talented and resourceful candidates.
Language Work a one-question quiz: a quiz which consists of one question only; a competition during which one question is asked and answered resourceful adj. clever at finding ways of doing things e.g. (1)The senator is a keen, resourceful politician. (2) He is the most resourceful and well-supplied cook in the town. (3) A resourceful man is clever and quick at finding ways of doing things.
trench n. a long, narrow usu. deep ditch; this kind of ditch dug by troops to stand in and be sheltered from enemy fire; a long narrow deep depression in the ocean bed e.g. (1)The villagers dug a chest-high irrigation trench. (2) The Mariana Trench is the deepest depression in the bed of the Pacific Ocean. cannonball n. a large metal ball fired from a cannon
a wild guess: a foolish or unreasonable guess; guess which is not carefully aimed or planned. e.g. (1) How could you believe him? His answer was only a wild guess. bog sth. down : (usu. passive) to cause sth. to sink into mud or wet ground; (fig.) cause sth. To become stuck and unable to make progress e.g. (1) The truck got bogged down in the mud. (2) Our discussions got bogged down in irrelevant details.
zero in on sb./sth.: to aim guns, etc. at or find the range of a particular target; fix attention on sb. or sth.; focus on sb. or sth. e.g. (1) The female spy zeroed in on the speaker and found a few bullets and finished her job. (2) After making a few preliminary remarks, the chairman zeroed in on the key issues.
to risk an approximation: to risk or hazard an estimate that is not exactly right but nearly so e.g. (1) In the face of our cross-questioning of how much was to be spent on his new project, he risked an approximation of $ 500,000. (2) Approximation n. an amount or estimate that is not exactly right but nearly so (3) That is a close approximation to the truth.
Detailed Study of Paras 6-18 (1) Why is smart guessing universally applicable? Smart guessing has much to do with business or creativity. In the real world, we frequently need to make decisions when full information is not available. From what foods we eat, to how to raise our kids, we must think creatively for ourselves. We are not always in a position to make the exactly right decision. Our best guess, i.e. the best approximation will often be the best we can do.
(2) What do you think of the three actual examples provided in the body of the essay? The first example is the first Fermi problem. It is most typical of Fermi problems because it involves a series of reasonable guesses and assumptions before the approximate answer is available. The second example is equally challenging and highly demanding. But the solution reported is elegant. This example shows that Ben Franklin is imaginative and intelligent or resourceful. The last example is of particularly great significance, because it demonstrates how scientific experimentation, careful observation and smart approximation help scientists or inventors make scientific discoveries or inventions.
Language Work Your best guess will often be the best you can do. ： Your most reasonable guess will often be the utmost you can do. marketing plan: a plan about commercial selling; plan as regards conditions or opportunities buying and selling a product
visual display: a device which displays data on a screen conventional outlets: traditional shops which sell goods made by a particular company outlet n. a way out (for water, steam, etc.); means of releasing (energy, strong feelings, etc.) [commerce] shop, etc. that sells goods made by a particular company e.g. (1) This creek is the outlet of the lake. (2) Children need an outlet for their energy. (3) This cosmetics firm has 34 outlets in Britain.
assumption n. sth. accepted as true or as sure to happen, but not proved e.g(1) The theory is based on a series of wrong assumptions. (2) We are working on the assumption that the rate of inflation will not increase next year.
To answer the question, he recommended breaking it down into smaller, more manageable questions, and then having the courage to make some guesses and assumptions. ： To answer the question, he suggested that his students render it into smaller questions that are easier to deal with, and then they should be bold enough to estimate and assume approximate answers.
tune vt. to put a musical instrument in tune; adjust a radio receiver to the particular frequency of the required signals balance out : to offset; keep or put in a state of balance
He tuned his11. At any point, your assumptions may be too high or too low. But because of the law of averages, your mistakes will frequently balance out.: At any point, what you have accepted as true or assumed to be light may actually not be so. But because of the application of the law of averages, the effect of your mistakes will frequently be minimized.
In a few hours," he reported, "the black, being warmed most by the sun, was sunk so low as to be below the stroke of the sun's rays; the dark blue, almost as low; the lighter blue not quite so much as the dark; the other colors, less as they were lighter, and the quite so much as the dark; the other colors, less as they were lighter, and the quite white remained on the surface of the snow, not having entered it at all.” This is a complicated coordinate sentence, which consists of three coordinate clauses. The second and the third clauses are elliptical. The whole sentence can be paraphrased as follows: “In a few hours,” he reported, “the black broadcloth, which was warmed most by the sun, went down so low as to out of the reach of the sun rays: the dark cloth was sunk almost that low; the lighter blue cloth was no sunk quite so much as the dark; the other colors were sunk less as they were lighter, and the off-white remained on the surface of the snow, not having sunk into the snow at all.”
He discovered a pattern in the oven's hottest rays: they weren't in the comers or at the centers but in the shape of a mushroom cloud.: He found out that the oven's hottest rays focused not in the corner or at the center, but in the shape of a mushroom cloud. mushroom cloud: a cloud suggesting the shape of a mushroom, esp. from a nuclear explosion;
He had come up with a resourceful way to approximate the answer rather than using scientifically sophisticated testing equipment.: He had cleverly solved the problem by finding the approximate answer rather than by using technologically complicated and refined resting equipment. To approximate the answer: to find or obtain the almost correct exact answer Fermi would have approved.: If he had been alive, Fermi would have approved of Stan Mason’s resourceful way to approximate the answer.
Detailed Study of Paras (1) What do you think of the conclusion? The conclusion is informative, enlightening and satisfying, for it tells us what we expect to know. In the beginning the challenging question is put forward, but no answer is given, which creates suspense. The conclusion removes the suspense by supplying the solution process as well as the answer.
(2) Can an average person solve or guess the correct answer to the challenging question? Give reasons for your answer. No, it is impossible for an ordinary person to find the right answer because it is not likely for him to know the depth of the Mariana Trench or the falling rate of a cannonball dropping through water. And it is absolutely out of the question for him to guesstimate the correct answer. Only those who are imaginative, knowledgeable and resourceful like the writer of the text are capable of solving the Fermi problem.