About Me | Contact Me
Overview Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Chapter 6 Appendix Online Material

  About Me...

My family and I live in the Chicago, Illinois, area of the U.S., and I work as a Systems Engineer for the Northrop Grumman Corporation. In the past I have worked as an electrical and software engineer at Sundstrand Aerospace, AT&T, and Lucent Technologies.

I have BS degrees in Physics and Mathematics from Illinois College in Jacksonville. I also have an MS in Physics from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, and for 4 years pursued a doctorate in experimental nuclear physics at the same university.

My interests seem to fall along the lines of the technically elegant but nearly forgotten. This includes sundials, astrolabes, volvelles, and other antique scientific instruments; sophisticated techniques for mental calculation and approximation; stereo photography; pendulum clockwork; and piano and music theory. I also enjoy a good paper that's sleuthing some new and wild Sherlock Holmes theory.

I am available for talks on sundials, astrolabes and mental calculation, particularly in the Chicago area. As far as mental calculation presentations, I want to make it clear that I am not a performer, though I do demonstrate some fascinating techniques. While lightning calculators provide refreshing motivation and I certainly enjoy their shows, I believe my approach of providing the mathematical reasoning behind old and new methods benefits people in a more useful and lasting way.

--Ron Doerfler

ron at

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| About Me | Contact Me | ©2006-2008 Ron Doerfler