Mathematics Department - Graduate Pizza Seminar - Spring 2017

Graduate Pizza Seminar - Spring 2017


Emily Kukura, Justin Semonsen



Upcoming Talks

Friday, March 24th

√Črik Amorim, Rutgers University

" The first big test of Einstein's General Relativity"

Time: 1:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge
Abstract: Any introductory book on Relativity Theory will tell you of a couple of real-life situations that cannot be explained by Newtonian physics alone, but rather require Einstein's theory. Two very common examples are the precession of Mercury and the functioning of GPS. In this talk I'd like to give an elementary introduction to General Relativity and then apply it to show how GPS works. Unfortunately it turns out GPS really is a complicated thing, so instead I'll show you how GR correctly predicts the orbit of Mercury. Einstein himself considered this as one of the three most important tests of the validity of his theory, so we'd better not fail it. And even though all this may sound like a physics talk, don't worry, it's also math. There's even differential geometry and stuff. (No prerequisite required).

Friday, March 31st

Bryan Ek, Rutgers University


Time: 1:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge

Past Talks

Friday, March 3rd

Emily Kukura, Rutgers University

" On the Logic of Time Travel: Paradoxes, Banana Peels, Cheshire Cats, and (maybe) Einstein"

Time: 1:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge
Abstract: We've all seen popular time travel stories on screen, from Back to the Future, to Harry Potter to Star Trek, and so on. While some popular depictions may do a decent job, from a logical perspective many more are fraught with problems, often because they rely on some version of the premise that changing the past is possible. But just because we can't change the past doesn't mean that we can't travel to it, have an impact on it, and maybe even have a nice chat with our younger selves. In this talk we'll take a trip with Tim the Time Traveler to explore whether or not we can do better than Hollywood. Along the way we will likely encounter many banana-peels, disappearing cats, and other oddities, and to see where we end up you'll just have to hop along for the ride. Time (no pun intended) permitting, we may even talk about more math-y things like relativity, and how they could potentially accommodate some apparent paradoxes we may encounter on our trip.

Friday, February 24th

Corrine Yap, Rutgers University

" Origametry"

Time: 1:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge
Abstract: The art of paper-folding extends far beyond paper cranes; indeed, working with "infinite" paper allows us to analyze crease patterns as line configurations and gives us tools to tackle classical geometric constructions. We will work out some of these constructions and find out if origami is more powerful than our old friends, the straightedge and compass (spoiler: it is). For those who want to get their hands dirty, finite paper will be provided.

Friday, February 17th

Matt Charnley, Rutgers University (ACTUAL START TIME WAS 1:40PM)

"Why you should never get your bird drunk, and other random facts"

Time: 2:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge
Abstract: No, we aren't actually going to be getting people or animals drunk, but we are going to be talking about Random Walks and Brownian Motion. We'll start with random walks on the integers, talk about some properties, and use that to motivate the definition of Brownian Motion on the real numbers. And don't worry, this will all come back to PDEs eventually.

Friday, February 17th

Matt Charnley, Rutgers University


Time: 1:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge

Friday, February 10th

John Chiarelli, Rutgers University

"This Computer Does and Does Not Work: Using Quantum Mechanics in Computing Systems"

Time: 1:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge
Abstract: While the mathematics behind quantum mechanics has been known for close to a century, it is only within the last 35 years that researchers have started asking its phenomena could be used in efficient computation of difficult problems. In this talk, I will go over some of the known algorithms that use quantum mechanics to solve otherwise time-consuming problems quickly, as well as some of the historical background behind them. Viewers can expect to leave with a full understanding of quantum computation - provided that they adjust their use of the term "understand."

Friday, February 3rd

Yonah Biers-Ariel, Rutgers University

"Signal Processing and Filtering"

Time: 1:40 PM
Location: Hill Grad Student Lounge
Abstract: I thought that my car insurance premiums were too high. I made a simple model to show AAA that they were charging too much. Now I still pay too much, but I also have a captive audience to complain to.

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