GSAC Colloquium

Fall 2019
Tuesdays, 4:35-5:35 PM, JWB 335
MATH 6960-001

Date Description
August 20 Organizational Meeting
August 27 Proofs Without Words | Hannah Hoganson
Abstract: A proof without words, or picture proof, is as it sounds: A proof of a mathematical identity or statement which can be demonstrated as self-evident by a diagram without explanatory text. Many argue that proofs without words are not really proofs, and are thus not acceptable as real mathematics. I will instead argue the viewpoint of popular mathematics and science writer Martin Gardner: "In many cases a dull proof can be supplemented by a geometric analogue so simple and beautiful that the truth of a theorem is almost seen at a glance." We will start with picture proofs that one could use in trigonometry and calculus courses, and conclude with a picture proof about serial isogons of 90 degrees.
September 3 Billiards in Polygons | Matt Smith
Abstract: Mathematical billiards are particles which move without friction or other external forces within some rigid container. Despite being relatively simple to define, some problems about billiards have been open for over a hundred years. Recent progress towards solving these problems unites several fields of mathematics in surprising and beautiful ways. The goal of this talk is to give a gentle introduction to ergodic theory and some other tools that have been used to attack open problems in billiards.
September 10 Which numbers are divisible by 5? | Daniel McCormick
Abstract: Many of us learned a simple test for divisibility by 5 sometime during early education: check if the last digit is 0 or 5. The key property which makes these divisibility tricks easy to apply is that they exploit patterns in the way we represent numbers with symbols, allowing us to reduce computation to pattern matching. It turns out that these patterns can be understood through the lens of grammar. This talk will explore the deep connection between computation and the theory of formal languages, using divisibility by 5 as a guiding example.
September 17 TBA | Justin Baker
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September 24 TBA | Claire Plunkett
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October 1 TBA | Carlos Ospina Trujillo
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October 8 Fall Break | No talk
Abstract: Have fun! :)
October 15 TBA | Cameron Zhao
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October 22 TBA | Jake Madrid
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October 29 TBA | Alex Beams
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November 5 TBA | AWM Speaker
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November 12 TBA | Professor panel
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November 19 TBA | Jose Yanez
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November 26 TBA | Ryleigh Moore
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December 3 TBA | Peter McDonald
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