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Seminars, Colloquia, and Conferences

Colloquia

The colloquium meets on Fridays at 4:00pm in Bromfield-Pearson 101, unless otherwise indicated.

Fall 2018

September 7
Zhengwei Liu, Harvard University
Title: Quantum Fourier Analysis
Abstract: We first recall some classical inequalities and uncertainty principles in Fourier analysis. Then we discuss our recent work on Fourier analysis in various subjects, including subfactors, planar algebras, Kac algebras, locally compact quantum groups, modular tensor categories. Moreover, we provide a 2D picture language to study Fourier analysis. Finally, we discuss some applications and open questions.

September 14
No colloquium this week.

September 21
Christina Sormani, CUNY
Title:
Abstract: The spacelike universe is curved by gravity forming deep wells around massive objects. A black hole is formed when it is curved so strongly that a neck forms and the apparent horizon is the minimal sphere around that neck. The ADM mass of an asymptotically flat region in space is measured by the decay of the curvature near infinity. Shing-Tung Yau and Richard Schoen proved that in such spaces the ADM mass must be nonnegative, and if the ADM mass is 0 then the space is flat Euclidean space with no curvature at all. Here we present recent joint work with Dan Lee, Lan-Hsuan Huang, and Iva Stavrov proving that in special settings, spaces with small ADM mass are almost Euclidean space. All students who have completed vector calculus are welcome to attend.

September 28
Anna Haensch, Duquesne University
Title: 17 Facts About Science Writing That Will Totally Blow Your Mind
Abstract: Scientists are always doing research. Occasionally, they do something catchy and it gets covered by the mainstream media. I'm going to talk about how that science gets from the lab bench to the Twitter feed, and trace the evolution of facts as science becomes journalism and what gets lost and gained along the way. Next, I'll show you all the ways that math and science actually show up in mainstream journalism even when the stories have nothing to do with science! Finally, I'll make the case for scientific and numerical literacy as a necessary skill for understanding the news, promoting social justice and participating in the democratic process.

October 5 *NOTE: Talk will be held in Science & Engineering Complex (SEC), Anderson Room 206*
Shing-tung Yau, Harvard University
Title: Quasilocal Mass in General Relativity
Abstract: I will talk about the problem of defining conserved quantities in general relativity and explain their properties.

October 12
Student Presentations from the Directed Reading Program

Eva Sachar (graduate student mentor: Casey Cavanaugh)
Title: An Application of Clustering to Socioeconomic Data
Abstract: When analyzing socioeconomic data we wish to uncover its inherent and underlying structure. We will be presenting a few approaches to clustering and discussing their advantages and disadvantages when applied to a housing dataset, and see if the results of clustering on property characteristics and census block demographics accurately reflect tiering in housing prices.

Carter Silvey (graduate student mentor: Matthew Friedrichsen)
Title: Fractal Geometry
Abstract: Fractals are some of the most beautiful and mysterious things to come out of mathematics. I’m going to discuss the geometry behind these fractals, such as how they are created and their dimensions. Specifically, I will talk about the Middle Third Cantor Set, Julia Sets, and the Mandelbrot Set as well as some applications that fractal geometry has in both the realm of mathematics and the real world.


October 19
Michael Geline, Northern Illinois University
Title: The conjectures of Brauer's block theory, and the role of integral representations
Abstract: Frobenius's local to global principle for finite groups asserts that properties of G, related to a prime p, should be controlled by analogous properties of normalizers of proper p-subgroups of G. Examples of properties of interest include the existence of normal subgroups with index p and the existence of irreducible representations with dimension divisible by a fixed power of p. Brauer, Alperin, and Broue have given quite a few specific conjectures of this nature which remain open to the present day, partly because no one knows whether to expect proofs to depend on the classification of finite simple groups. I will state several of these conjectures and summarize how they have influenced my work on p-adic representations.

October 26

Dubi Kelmer, Boston College
Title: Shrinking target problems, homogenous dynamics and Diophantine approximations
Abstract: The shrinking target problem for a dynamical system tries to answer the question of how fast can a sequence of targets shrink so that a typical orbit will keep hitting them indefinitely. I will describe some new and old results on this problem for flows on homogenous spaces, with various applications to problems in Diophantine approximations.

November 2
Daryl DeFord, MIT/Tufts University
Title and Abstract TBA

November 9
Jennifer Balakrishnan, Boston University
Title and Abstract TBA

November 16
Bob Holt, University of Florida
Title and Abstract TBA

November 30
Carolyn Abbott, UC Berkeley
Title and Abstract TBA

December 7
Gianluca Caterina, Endicott College
Title: The diagrammatic logic of C.S. Peirce: An approach via generic figures
Abstract: At the turn of the 20th century, the American philosopher and logician Charles Sanders Peirce developed a logical system based on diagrams ("existential graphs") that capture the essential features of what is currently know as first-order logic. We will present an introduction to Peirce's work in logic, along with a tentative model aimed to represent the existential graphs within a category-theory framework.
The talk will be accessible to undergraduates in both Mathematics and Philosophy.