ESP Biography


Major: 8, 6-1

College/Employer: MIT

Year of Graduation: 2017

Picture of Allan Sadun

Brief Biographical Sketch:

Not Available.

Past Classes

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

M11119: Communicating as Efficiently as Possible in Splash 2016 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2016)
There's a precise, scientific definition of speed, energy, and heat. We can write down equations that describe these things, and fundamental laws of physics that govern them. But science hasn't defined love, or information, or unity, or beauty ... has it? Actually, one of these things - information - IS well-defined, thanks to the tireless work of telephone engineers in the 1940's and 1950's to communicate as efficiently and quickly as possible. In this class, we'll lay down the equations that describe what it means, in a mathematical sense, to communication, and what information, according to the scientists, truly is. We'll play a couple of games and I'll also talk a little bit about the way this math relates to entropy and physics.

E11121: How Not to Talk Over Each Other in Splash 2016 (Nov. 19 - 20, 2016)
How is it that my phone, and my laptop, and all of your phones, can talk to the same WiFi router without getting in each other's way? How do people coordinate their speech so that they can talk to each other without interrupting? How can I reliably send you a message, if part of the message might get lost in transit? In this class, we'll lay out these problems more mathematically, and explore and analyze various strategies - called "MAC algorithms" and "transport protocols" - that can be used to solve them. We'll play some communication games to illustrate, and hopefully you'll go home with some new insights about the way you and your friends talk to each other.

M7455: The Ear and the Uncertainty Principle in Splash! 2013 (Nov. 23 - 24, 2013)
If I play you a note, can you tell me when I played it and what note it was? On the one hand, even if you have infinite time and resources, there’s a mathematical limit to how accurately you can do that. On the other hand, scientists found in February that human hearing is better than that limit. In this class, we'll explore sound waves. We’ll play that game a little bit, then prove (or at least explain) why the limit exists. We’ll learn what a “basis” and the “Fourier transform” are, and explain one of the more famous aspects of quantum mechanics - the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. Then, if we have time, we’ll look at how we think our ears are able to cheat.