Today’s post is about something we’ve been wanting to write for some time. Although it is not related to web scraping it has to do with taking a decision without needing to use a very large number of resources, having proven its efficiency in a number of cases.

Guesstimation, a concept first used in the early 30’s (not quite new as we can see) means exactly the two purposes of the two words of which is made. On the one hand we have the word Guess, denoting a not very accurate way of determining things and on the other the word Estimation, which is the process of finding an approximation which value is used for finding out a series of factors. Altogether, the word regards an estimate made without using adequate or complete information, or, more strongly, as an estimate arrived at by guesswork or conjecture.

Guesstimations in general are a very interesting subject because of the factors that led to the result. Some examples of such rather amusing results given by Sarah Croke and Robin Blume-Kohout from the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics and Robert McNees from Loyola University in Chicago. When asked how much memory would a person need to store a lifetime of events the answer was simply calculated at 1 exobyte on the assumption that the human eye works just as a video camera recording everything that happens around us.

Funny or not, guesstimations began step by step to be a part of our life through rough conclusions based on economy and used by the marketers.