Programme of the Pure Mathematics Colloquium

The colloquium takes place on Thursdays at 4pm in Theatre C of the Mathematical Institute (unless indicated otherwise).

  • 20th June, 2016 (NOTE UNUSUAL DAY): Colm Mulcahy (Spelman)
    Title: Martin Gardner, The Best Friend Mathematics Ever Had
    Abstract: Martin Gardner, The Best Friend Mathematics Ever Had, was best known for his 300 "Mathematical Games" columns in Scientific American, in which he introduced thousands of budding mathematicians to elegant problems and magical items which still lead to "Aha!" moments today. "Celebration of Mind" is an international initiative each October to continue what he did best, connecting Mathematics, Magic and Mystery. Gardner also asked simple questions that inspired serious research, and some of those questions remain unanswered today. We'll survey what he achieved and the legacy he leaves behind.
  • 21st July, 2016: Justin Moore (Cornell) in Theatre B (NOTE UNUSUAL ROOM)
    Title: A nonamenable group of piecewise projective homeomorphisms
    Abstract: Recently Nicolas Monod showed that the group of all piecewise projective homeomorphisms of the unit interval is nonamenable and yet does not contain a nonabelian free subgroup. This provided a new, very accessible example of a group admitting no finitely additive translation invariant probability measure yet not containing a nonabelian free subgroup. This talk will explore a finitely presented subgroup of Monod's group which is closely related to Thompson's group F and already exhibits these striking properties. This is joint work with Yash Lodha.
    Past colloquia can be found here.
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