Prof. Martin Hyland (DPMMS) – Why Euclid was a genius and (maybe) other stories

Hi all!

The Trinity Mathematical Society is continuing its run of great speakers with Prof. Martin Hyland (DPMMS) coming to talk to us at 8:30PM Monday 8 February in the Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College. Note that, at the talk, our President Josh Lam will be announcing the time and date the tickets for the TMS Annual DInner will be released. (Last year the tickets were sold out within ten minutes!)

Speaker: Prof. Martin Hyland (DPMMS)
Title: Why Euclid was a genius and (maybe) other stories
Abstract: It is often said that we know very little about Euclid. But we do have (most of) his Elements – perhaps the most widely studied secular book of all time. I claim that it is the expression of a remarkable mathematical personality. There are two distinct proofs of Pythagoras’ Theorem in Euclid’s Elements. I believe that we can reconstruct Euclid’s thinking in giving these two proofs. When we do so, we see what is an unrecognised depth to Euclid: not only was he a remarkable geometer and arithmetician but he also had the instincts of a modern logician.

As always, there will be complimentary port and juice served before the talk at 8:15PM. This talk is for members only, but there will be a chance to sign-up for TMS membership for £2.50. So, come on down to the Winstanley this Monday if you’d like to listen!

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Double Talk Week!

The TMS are proud to present two talks in the coming week. In addition to our usual Monday night talk, given by Prof. Ray Goldstein, we will also be having a special event on Tuesday evening, given by Prof. Don Zagier of the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics (MPIM) in Bonn. They both promise to be fantastic events and, if nothing else, you will have the excuse to see TMS’s one and only Joshua Lam as many as two times a week. More details for these two events are as follows: Monday 1st Feb 8.30pm in the Winstanley Lecture Theatre.

Speaker: Prof. Ray Goldstein FRS (Schlumberger Professor of Complex Physical Systems, DAMTP)

Title: Upside down and inside out: the biomechanics of cell sheet folding

Abstract:  Deformations of cell sheets are ubiquitous in early animal development, often arising from a complex and poorly understood interplay of cell shape changes, division, and migration. In this talk I will describe an approach to understanding such problems based on perhaps the simplest example of cell sheet folding: the “inversion” process of the algal genus Volvox, during which spherical embryos literally turn themselves inside out through a process hypothesized to arise from cell shape changes alone.  Through a combination of light sheet microscopy and elasticity theory a quantitative understanding of this process is now emerging.

Tuesday 2nd Feb in MR2, Centre for Mathematical Sciences (time TBC)
Speaker: Prof. Don Zagier (MPIM, Bonn)

Title: Sums of squares and sums of cubes

Abstract to follow, but here is a biography to whet your mathematical appetite:

Prof. Zagier finished high school aged 13 and subsequently studied at MIT for three years, completing his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the age of 16. He then received his Phd under Friedrich Hirzebruch aged 20 and was named professor when he was 24. He has been a scientific member of the MPIM in Bonn since its founding and has been one of its directors since 1995.

Prof. Zagier’s main area of work is in number theory, but he has also done extensive work in seemingly unrelated areas. In collaboration with Benedict Gross he proved the Gross-Zagier formula which played an instrumental role in the solution of the Class Number Problem. He has also done work relating modular forms to string theory and black holes. Together with his former doctoral student Maxim Kontsevich he introduced the notion of ‘periods’ in a paper which features, among other things, L-functions and motives. He is perhaps best known for his “one-sentence proof of Fermat’s two squares theorem”. He is the winner of both the Cole Prize and the Von Staudt Prize.

TL;DR:
There will be two talks next week, one by Prof. Ray Goldstein and one by Prof. Don Zagier. More details for the Tuesday talk will follow shortly.
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Dr. Stergios Antonakoudis, “On Schmidt’s games, badly approximable numbers & winning sets”

Hi all!

The Trinity Mathematical Society is kicking off our extensive 2016 schedule of mathematical events with a talk from Dr. Stergios Antonakoudis (DPMMS) at 8:30PM Monday 25 January in the Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College. Further details of the event including the title and abstract can be found below.

Speaker: Dr. Stergios Antonakoudis (DPMMS)
Title: On Schmidt’s games, badly approximable numbers & winning sets.
Abstract: Schmidt introduced a simple and powerful way to study certain important sets of real numbers, that although they exhibit remarkable rigidity features, they are ‘too thin’ to be detected using classical methods in analysis. The set of real numbers which badly approximable by rationals is an important example of such a set. In this talk, we will discuss Schmidt’s games, their applications and generalisations in geometry and dynamics.

I should also note that Dr. Antonakoudis has given enterprising members of the audience a warm-up problem to mull over before the talk: Is every real number the difference of two badly approximable numbers? Use the link below to find the definition of that term.

[1]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diophantine_approximation#Badly_approximable_numbers

As always, there will be complimentary port and juice served before the talk at 8:15PM. This talk is for members only, but there will be a chance to sign-up for TMS membership for £2.50. So, come on down to the Winstanley this Monday if you’d like to explore this burgeoning area of mathematics!

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TMS Lent 2016 Termcard

TMS EVENTS

18 January: Film Night (8PM)

25 January: Stergios Antonakoudis (DPMMS), “On Schmidt’s games, badly approximable numbers & winning sets”

1 February: Ray Goldstein (DAMTP), “Upside down and inside out: the biomechanics of cell sheet folding”

8 February: Martin Hyland (DPMMS), “Why Euclid was a genius and (maybe) other stories”

16 February (Tue): Konstantin Ardakov (Oxford) (TBC)

21 February (Sun): Symposium and Annual Dinner

29 February: Michael Green (DAMTP)

7th March: Geoffrey Grimmett (Statslab)

JOINT TMS AND TCSS EVENTS

26 February (Fri): Bela Bollobas (DPMMS) (TBC)

1st March (Tue): Mike Cates (DAMTP), “Mathematical models of cellular locomotion”

Unless specified, all events are on Mondays at 8:30PM at the Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College

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Slides for Prof. Davis – The Accelerating Universe

For those interested, Prof. Davis has kindly agreed to put up the slides from her talk on the TMS website. Click the link below to access them.
Davis slides

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Dr. Gourab Ray – Random Fractal Surfaces

Are you feeling bogged down by the Week 6 Blues? Have you been flummoxed by the sudden influx of example sheets? Do you secretly wish that you were studying economics instead of maths? Don’t worry because the Trinity Maths Society will be hosting a talk this Monday night that will rekindle your love for mathematics!

It is our sixth talk of the year and will be given by Dr. Gourab Ray (DPMMS) at 8:30PM Monday 16 November in the Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College. The talk is on the talk of “Random Fractal Surfaces” and is in the new, exciting field of random geometry, which manages to connect the fields of probability, geometry and analysis.

Dr. Gourab Ray is one of our newest postdoctoral research associates at the University of Cambridge and is part of the New frontiers in random geometry program. His broad research interest is in probability theory, but in particular random planar graphs, random graphs, random walks and percolation.

Speaker: Dr. Gourab Ray (DPMMS)
Title: Random Fractal Surfaces
Abstract: How does a typical random surface or curve look like? How different are they from the “flat” surface we are familiar with? How are they related? These are some of the biggest questions in the field of random geometry these days and this will be the subject of this talk. There will be many nice pictures and simulations.

As always, there will be complimentary port and juice served before the talk at 8:15PM. This talk is for members only, but there will be a chance to sign-up for TMS membership for £2.50. So, come on down to the Winstanley this Monday if you’d like to explore this burgeoning area of mathematics!

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Prof. Mark Gross (DPMMS) – An Introduction to Tropical Geometry

As we enter the second half of the term, we’ve got our fifth talk of the year and second pure maths talk, which will be given by Prof. Mark Gross. It will be at the usual time and place of 8:30PM Monday 9 November at Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College. The topic of the talk is “An Introduction to Tropical Geometry” and promises to examine the lovely connections between combinatorics and algebraic geometry.

Prof. Gross was a full Professor at the University of California, San Diego and is currently a Professor of Pure Mathematics at the University of Cambridge. His research interests are primarily in the two fields of algebraic geometry and differential geometry.

Speaker: Prof. Mark Gross (DPMMS)
Title: An introduction to tropical geometry.
Abstract: Algebraic geometry is the study of solution sets to polynomial equations. Usually, one is interested in solving equations over algebraically closed fields such as the complex numbers, but these solutions sets can be quite hard to visualize. However, a recently discovered type of geometry, which is called “tropical geometry” for rather silly reasons, helps us visualize these solution sets and at the same time solve rather difficult problems in algebraic geometry via purely combinatorial arguments. I will give an introduction to some of the basic ideas of the subject.

As always, there will be complimentary port and juice served before the talk at 8:15PM. This talk is for members only, but there will be a chance to sign-up for TMS membership for £2.50. So, come on down to the Winstanley this Monday if you’d like to sit down with a glass of port in a cushioned seat and find out more about the wonders of pure mathematics!

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Prof. Anne-Christine Davis, “The Accelerating Universe”

The TMS Committee was very pleased to see yet another packed audience for last Monday’s Jump Trading talk. Let’s try and continue the trend – mathmos like their patterns – with our fourth talk of the year, which will be given by Prof. Anne-Christine Davis (DAMTP) at 8:30PM Monday 2 November in the Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College.

The talk will be on the topic of “The Accelerating Universe” and promises to be an excellent talk on one of the most vexing and curious questions in mathematical physics. Prof. Davis has been one of Cambridge’s most distinguished mathematical physicists during her long career and will aim to impart her knowledge to our willing audience. Moreover, she is also the University Gender Equality Champion for STEM subjects.

Title: The Accelerating Universe
Speaker: Prof. Anne-Christine Davis (DAMTP)
Abstract: Observations suggest the Universe had undergone periods of accelerated expansion during the course of its evolution. I will discuss modern ideas about the evolution of the early Universe from the big bang to the present time and consider a model of the late Universe which goes beyond the usual theories of gravity. Ways of testing this will be discussed. I will not assume knowledge of cosmology or general relativity, but the talk will contain some simple differential equations.

As always, there will be complimentary port and juice served before the talk at 8:15PM. This talk is for members only, but there will be a chance to sign-up for TMS membership for £2.50. So, come on down to the Winstanley this Monday if you’d like to sit down with a glass of port in a cushioned seat and find out more about this incredible universe!

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Dr. Richard Louth (Jump Trading) – Inside the Black Box: from big data to quant trading algorithms

Firstly, the Trinity Mathematical Society is proud to announce that we have a second major sponsor in the form of Jump Trading! Since being founded in 1999, it has been one of the world’s leading algorithmic trading firms with over 450 people across London, Chicago, New York and Singapore. We had another fantastic turnout with last week’s talk with Dr. Jonathan Luk and hope to continue the high attendance numbers for this week’s talk.

As such, our third talk of the year will be given by Dr. Richard Louth (Jump Trading) at 8:30PM Monday 26 October at the Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College. It has the title of “Inside the Black Box: from big data to quant trading algorithms” and is an exciting opportunity to listen to someone who uses maths in industry rather than from academia.

Dr. Richard Louth, a former Cambridge alumnus, will discuss the approach he takes when formulating Jump Trading’s predictive models, using statistics, probability, machine learning and other mathematical techniques. Moreover, Dr. Louth will talk about how they use one of the largest supercomputers in the world to take on the challenge of dissecting terabytes of data from financial exchanges. Furthermore, for those thinking about a career after Cambridge, he will also speak about why so many maths and science students go into quant trading and how your skills can be transferable to the world of quant trading.

I should also note that Jump Trading is actively recruiting for internship and graduate positions in their two major groups: namely, their Trading division and Technology division. They have previously hired a number of Cambridge graduates and are constantly looking for talented analytical people with strong skills in quantitative analysis and/or programming.

This talk will be free for members and non-members, but there will be a chance to sign-up for TMS membership for £2.50. In order to help us with refreshments (including complimentary port), RSVP at http://tinyurl.com/jumpcambridge15. Since the last two weeks have been quite packed and I suspect that this talk will be quite popular as well, I suggest that those planning to get the best seats should get to the talk a little early.

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Dr. Jonathan Luk (DPMMS), “Stability of Minkowski Spacetime”

The Trinity Mathematical Society is off to a cracking start to the year with near-record attendance numbers at last Monday’s talk from Prof. Leader; I counted about 270 people in the theatre and two used crates of port! The TMS will be rolling along with our second talk of the year, which will be given by Dr. Jonathan Luk (DPMMS) at 8:30PM Monday 19 October at the Winstanley Lecture Theatre, Trinity College. It will be on the subject of the “Stability of Minkowski spacetime” and promises to an exhilarating foray into the world of mathematical physics and, in particular, general relativity. Dr. Luk is one of the newest members in the Cambridge maths faculty and will hope to impart his vibrant enthusiasm to the TMS audience.

As always, there will be complimentary port and juice served prior to the talk. The talk is for members only, but you will have a chance to become a life member by paying 2 pounds fifty or 250p at the door (probably one of the cheapest society fees in Cambridge). I should also note that, if you are a member and you haven’t joined the TMS Facebook group, then please do so https://www.facebook.com/groups/674599352609435/?fref=ts

Speaker: Dr. Jonathan Luk (DPMMS)
Title: Stability of Minkowski spacetime
Abstract: General relativity is a theory of gravity described by the celebrated Einstein equations, which relate the geometry and matter content of spacetime. The Minkowski spacetime, the spacetime of special relativity, is a special solution to these equations. It depicts a vacuum spacetime with no curvature. A monumental result in mathematical physics, discovered in 1993, is the proof that Minkowski spacetime is dynamically stable in the framework of the evolution problem in general relativity. I will describe the theorem and some of the fascinating ideas behind it.

We hope to see everyone there!

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