Mathematics Department

Colloquium Series

Spring 2015

All talks are from 3:45-4:45 p.m. in the Colloquium Room, unless otherwise specified.

  • Apr
  • Fast Times in Linear Programming: Early Success, Two Revolutions, and Continuing Mysteries
    Prof. Margaret Wright
    New York University
    Time: 07:30 PM

    View Abstract

    Linear programming (LP), which isn't really about programming, is a simple-to-state mathematical problem of enormous practical importance. The dramatic saga of LP solution methods began immediately after World War II with unexpected practical success that continued for more than 30 years despite theoretical reservations; next came two sweeping revolutions whose effects are often misunderstood. This talk will describe mathematical and computational issues from the history of LP, enlivened by controversy and international politics, as well as some remaining mysteries.
  • Apr
  • Tools from Computational Topology, with applications in the life sciences
    Prof. Sarah Day
    College of William and Mary
    Time: 03:45 PM

    View Abstract

    The field of topology, and in particular computational topology, has produced a powerful set of tools for studying both model systems and data measured directly from physical systems. I will focus on three classes of topological tools: computational homology, topological persistence, and, very briefly, Conley index theory. To illustrate their use, I will discuss recent projects studying coupled-patch population dynamics, flickering red blood cells, and pulse-coupled neurons.
  • Mar
  • Strong shift equivalence and algebraic K-theory
    Prof. Mike Boyle
    University of Maryland
    Time: 03:45 PM

    View Abstract

    This will be a colloquium talk, assuming no background in K-theory. Let R (always assumed to contain 0 and 1) be a subset of a ring. Let A,B be square matrices over R (not necessarily of equal size). A and B over R are elementary strong shift equivalent over R (ESSE-R) if there exist matrices U,V over R such that A=UV and B=VU. A and B are strong shift equivalent over R (SSE-R) if they are connected by a chain of elementary strong shift equivalences. If R is a ring, what does it mean for A and B to be strong shift equivalent? This question is motivated by classification problems in symbolic dynamics, as I'll describe, but is natural enough on its own. In his 1973 Annals paper, Williams took the first step, introducing shift equivalence (SE) as an invariant of strong shift equivalence. Whether SE implies SSE for a ring R remained open. It turns out that for a ring R, the refinement of SE by SSE can be nontrivial, and is captured exactly by the algebraic K-theory group NK_1(R). This is joint work with Scott Schmieding.
  • Jan
  • Special loci for the moduli space of rational maps
    LT Brian Stout
    Time: 03:45 PM
go to Top