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Mathematics Department

Basic Notions Seminar

Spring 2021

All talks are from 1200-1300 in the Conference or Seminar room, unless otherwise specified.

  • Feb
    23
  • Complexity from Simplicity: Dimensions, Fractals, and Chaos
    Darren Creutz
    USNA
    Location: Virtual
    Time: 03:45 PM

    View Abstract

    Picture a (equilateral) triangle. Choose a point at random inside the triangle. Now pick a corner of the triangle at random and move halfway from your point toward that corner. Repeat: pick a corner at random and move halfway to it. Repeat this indefinitely. Where can we end up? Can it be anywhere inside the triangle? (The answer may surprise you; it certainly got my attention). By a series of examples, I will present the sorts of simple systems that give rise to complicated behavior, leading us to conceptual questions about dimensionality, chaos, and the oft-mentioned but not always well-explained fractals. The talk will be *very* accessible, assuming minimal mathematical knowledge (e.g. if you know what complex numbers that would be good but not necessary).
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