# ESP Biography

## REUBEN ARONSON, MIT junior in MechE and Ancient/Medieval Studies!

Major: 2

College/Employer: MIT

## Brief Biographical Sketch:

I like building things and old books. Weird? Maybe. But that's okay. I'm dreaming about reconstructing Roman siege equipment for a double thesis, but that may not be happening.

## Past Classes

(Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

E5935: Toilets! in Spark! 2012 (Mar. 10, 2012)
Toilets are one of the best examples of purely mechanical systems that are everywhere and easy to open up and figure out. In this class, we’ll do just that: open up a toilet and try to figure out how it works. Not only will you get the experience of figuring something out, but you can take home your new knowledge and fix your own plumbing!

E5393: Toilets! in Splash! 2011 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2011)
Toilets are one of the best examples of purely mechanical systems that are everywhere and easy to open up and figure out. In this class, we’ll do just that: open up a toilet and try to figure out how it works. Not only will you get the experience of figuring something out, but you can take home your new knowledge and fix your own plumbing!

W5547: Candy Creations! in Splash! 2011 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2011)
Come be a civil engineer! Build elaborate constructions out of graham crackers and frosting. Build a bridge or the Empire State Building. And then eat them. :-)

H4214: Things You Could Do in Ancient Rome but Not Today in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
A brief survey of ancient Roman history from the Regal Period to the fall of the Empire through compelling narratives, with a special attention to the stranger stories. Come learn about deadly figs, collapsible boats, political manipulation, civil wars, insane emperors, and well-honored horses. This course will also equip its students with the necessary responses in case they are ever trapped in an awkward yet deadly conversation with a deranged emperor. Note: some raunchy yet historical material may not be suitable for younger grades.

E4216: Toilets! in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
Toilets are one of the best examples of purely mechanical systems that are everywhere and easy to open up and figure out. In this class, we'll do just that: open up a toilet and try to figure out how it works. Not only will you get the experience of figuring something out, but you can take home your new knowledge and fix your own plumbing!

E4218: Take stuff apart! in Splash! 2010 (Nov. 20 - 21, 2010)
Ever wonder what the inside of a computer looks like? What about a blender? We'll bring in a bunch of random devices people use and a bunch of screwdrivers -- you get to take them apart!

S2842: Harmonic Oscillation is Everywhere in Splash! 2009 (Nov. 21 - 22, 2009)
We'll take a look at one differential equation, $$x'' + kx = 0$$, and how it shows up in so many different places in nature. We'll do some mathematical demonstrations and have some physical demos, too.

S2322: Electricity and Magnetism by Experiment in HSSP Spring 2009 (Mar. 14, 2009)
The first reference to electrical effects, such as static electricity and lightning, were recorded over 2500 years ago. Ancient man believed electricity to be a form of magic; Greek philosophers noticed that when a piece of amber was rubbed with cloth, it would attract pieces of straw; Indian priests used electromagnets to impress religious followers. Far from demystifying the mechanics of Electricity and Magnetism, this class aims to introduce students to the full beauty and elegance of this field of physics by theoretical discussion and by experimentation. In 1861 James C. Maxwell summarized almost everything we know about Electricity and Magnetism in four equations: $$\epsilon_0 \displaystyle \bigcirc \hspace{-1.42em} \int \hspace{-.8em} \int E \cdot ds = \int\!\!\!\!\int\!\!\!\!\int\! q_v\;dV \\ \mu_0 \displaystyle \bigcirc \hspace{-1.42em} \int \hspace{-.8em} \int B \cdot ds = 0 \\ \oint\! E \cdot dl = -\mu_0\frac{d}{dt}\int\!\!\!\!\int\! B \cdot ds \\ \oint\! B \cdot dl = I + \epsilon_0 \frac{d}{dt}\int\!\!\!\!\int\! E \cdot ds$$ These four equations describe one of the most universal and elegant relations in physics. Don't let the notation scare you off -- this class has no prerequisites (that is, all you have to be able to do is graph a function), but we will rigorously derive Maxwell's explanation of electromagnetic phenomena including light, electricity, magnets, motors and generators, batteries, and the circuitry of your home computer. (See syllabus.) Labs will include a Van de Graaff generator, making solenoids, making an electric motor, and playing with bread board circuitry.

M1630: Counting Infinity in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
It's easy to tell when finite sets have the same size. We can just count the number of elements. But what if we can't count them? How can we tell if infinitely large sets have the same size? Which is bigger, the whole numbers or the even numbers? The whole numbers or the real numbers? Does "having the same size" even mean anything for infinitely large sets? We'll talk about all these things. Don't worry if you don't understand something in this description: we'll explain everything we need in class.

C1651: Scheme in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
Ever wanted to learn to Scheme? Want to take over the world? We recommend a class in the social studies category. Ever wanted to learn Scheme? Have you heard of functional programming, but never learned any functional languages? Come to our class, and we'll teach you the basics of Scheme, and how to learn more.

M1717: Big Numbers! in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
You can probably think of functions that get big pretty quickly. $$x^3$$ is fairly fast, $$2^x$$ even faster. But those are tiny compared to some other functions we can come up with. Want to see some really really big numbers? Come to this class! Note: You should not come if you are afraid of expressions like $$7(2*3^7 + 1)(2*3^{7*(2*3^7 + 1)} + 1).$$

C1759: Websites: The Good, The Bad, And Best Of All, The Ugly in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
Website design is far from an exact science. However, there are a number of things that web designers should keep in mind when designing websites. We'll figure out some of these by looking at some of the worst sites out there and figuring out what they do wrong. And some of these sites are bad. At the end, we might go through a sample website (say, this one) and think of what changes we should make. And who knows? They might even show up in the next version of this site.

L1774: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Amusing! in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
Reuben: Can you write the description? Paul: Why should I? Reuben: Do you know what it's about? Paul: Isn't it about existentialism, with lots of schtick? Reuben: Why would anyone want to take that class? Paul: Because Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are amusing! Reuben: Statement, one-love.

L1989: Write a Novel In 3 Hours in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
Sound insane? Well, yeah. And yet, we shall boldly venture forth, writing without a prayer of proofreading, hacking out our chapters as fast as our fingers can type them. Be a part of this crazy experiment! In the first 90 minutes, we will come up with a plot, sketch out chapter summaries, and divide them up. In the second 90 minutes, we will write, write, write! If you take bookbinding, you'll get to bind this novel afterwards. Those who expect quality may be disappointed. Those few, brave, creative souls who want to see what happens anyway are warmly invited!