Programme of the Pure Mathematics Colloquium
20th June, 2016 (NOTE UNUSUAL DAY):
Colm Mulcahy (Spelman)
Title: Martin Gardner, The Best Friend Mathematics Ever Had
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)
Title: A nonamenable group of piecewise projective homeomorphisms
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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