Seminars and Colloquia by Series

Wednesday, November 4, 2009 - 11:00 , Location: Skiles 269 , Tanya Berger-Wolf , Department of Computer Science, University of Illinois at Chicago , Organizer: Christine Heitsch
Computation has fundamentally changed the way we study nature. Recent breakthroughs in data collection technology, such as GPS and other mobile sensors, are giving biologists access to data about wild populations that are orders of magnitude richer than any previously collected. Such data offer the promise of answering some of the big ecological questions about animal populations. The data are not unique to animal domain but is now prevalent in human interactions: emails, blogs, and online social networks. Unfortunately,  our ability to analyze these data lags substantially behind our ability to collect it. In particular, interactions among individuals are often modeled as social networks where nodes represent individuals and an edge exists if the corresponding individuals have interacted during the observation period. The model is essentially static in that the interactions are aggregated over time and all information about the time and ordering of social interactions is discarded. We show that suchtraditional social network analysis methods may result in incorrect conclusions on dynamic data about the structure of interactions and the processes that spread over those interactions. We have extended computational methods for social network analysis to explicitly address the dynamic nature of interactions among individuals.  We have developed techniques for identifying persistent communities, influential individuals, and extracting patterns of interactions in dynamic social networks. We will present our approach and demonstrate its applicability by analyzing interactions among zebra populations.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009 - 16:00 , Location: Skiles 255 (Note unusual time and location) , Ivan NOURDIN , Paris VI , Organizer:
My aim is to explain how to prove multi-dimensional central limit theorems for the spectral moments (of arbitrary degrees) associated with random matrices with real-valued i.i.d. entries, satisfying some appropriate moment conditions. The techniques I will use rely on a universality principle for the Gaussian Wiener chaos as well as some combinatorial estimates. Unlike other related results in the probabilistic literature, I will not require that the law of the entries has a density with respect to the Lebesgue measure. The talk is based on a joint work with Giovanni Peccati, and use an invariance principle obtained in a joint work with G. P. and Gesine Reinert
Series: PDE Seminar
Tuesday, November 3, 2009 - 15:05 , Location: Skiles 255 , Qing Han , University of Notre Dame , Organizer: Zhiwu Lin
We prove a conjecture of Bryant, Griffiths, and Yang concerning the characteristic variety for the determined isometric embedding system. In particular, we show that the characteristic variety is not smooth for any dimension greater than 3. This is accomplished by introducing a smaller yet equivalent linearized system, in an appropriate way, which facilitates analysis of the characteristic variety.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009 - 15:00 , Location: Skiles 269 , Sheldon Lin , Department of Statistics, University of Toronto , Organizer: Liang Peng
The discounted penalty function proposed in the seminal paper Gerber and Shiu (1998) has been widely used to analyze the time of ruin, the surplus immediately before ruin and the deficit at ruin of insurance risk models in ruin theory. However, few of its applications can be found beyond, except that Gerber and Landry (1998) explored its use for the pricing of perpetual American put options. In this talk, I will discuss the use of the discounted penalty function and mathematical tools developed for the function for perpetual American catastrophe put options. Assuming that catastrophe losses follow a mixture of Erlang distributions, I will show that an analytical (semi-closed) expression for the price of perpetual American catastrophe put options can be obtained. I will then discuss the fitting of a mixture of Erlang distributions to catastrophe loss data using an EM algorithm.
Monday, November 2, 2009 - 14:00 , Location: Klaus 1116W , Alexander Barvinok , University of Michigan , Organizer:

Tea and light refreshments 1:30 in Room 2222.  Organizer: Santosh Vempala

I will discuss recent progress on the construction of randomized algorithms for counting non-negative integer matrices with prescribed row and column sums and on finding asymptotic formulas for the number of such matrices (also known as contingency tables). I will also discuss what a random (with respect to the uniform measure) non-negative integer matrix with prescribed row and column sums looks like.
Monday, November 2, 2009 - 14:00 , Location: Skiles 269 , Brett Wick , Georgia Tech , Organizer:
We continue our study of Seip's Interpolation Theorem in weighted Bergman spaces.  This lecture should cover the necessary direction in the characterization of the Theorem.
Monday, November 2, 2009 - 13:00 , Location: Skiles 255 , Rustum Choksi , Simon Fraser University , Organizer:

A density functional theory of Ohta and Kawasaki gives rise to nonlocal perturbations of the well-studied Cahn-Hilliard and isoperimetric variational problems. In this talk, I will discuss these simple but rich variational problems in the context of diblock copolymers. Via a combination of rigorous analysis and numerical simulations, I will attempt to characterize minimizers without any preassigned bias for their geometry.

Energy-driven pattern formation induced by competing short and long-range interactions is ubiquitous in science, and provides a source of many challenging problems in nonlinear analysis. One example is self-assembly of diblock copolymers.  Phase separation of the distinct but bonded chains in dibock copolymers gives rise to an amazingly rich class of nanostructures which allow for the synthesis of materials with tailor made mechanical, chemical and electrical properties. Thus one of the main challenges is to describe and predict the self-assembled nanostructure given a set of material parameters. 
Monday, November 2, 2009 - 11:00 , Location: Skiles 269 , Wen Huang , USTC, China and SoM, Georgia Tech , Organizer: Yingfei Yi
Stable sets and unstable sets of a dynamical system with positive entropy are investigated. It is shown that in any invertible system with positive entropy, there is a measure-theoretically ?rather big? set such that for any point from the set, the intersection of the closure of the stable set and the closure of the unstable set of the point has positive entropy. Moreover, for several kinds of specific systems, the lower bound of Hausdorff dimension of these sets is estimated. Particularly the lower bound of the Hausdorff dimension of such sets appearing in a positive entropy diffeomorphism on a smooth Riemannian manifold is given in terms of the metric entropy and of Lyapunov exponent.
Friday, October 30, 2009 - 15:05 , Location: Skiles 255 , Asaf Shapira , Math and CS, GT , Organizer: Robin Thomas
A graph G is k-critical if every proper subgraph of G is (k-1)-colorable, but the graph G itself is not. We prove that every k-critical graph on n vertices has a cycle of length at least logn/100logk, improving a bound of Alon, Krivelevich and Seymour from 2000. Examples of Gallai from 1963 show that this bound is tight (up to a constant depending on k). We thus settle the problem of bounding the minimal circumference of k-critical graphs, raised by Dirac in 1952 and Kelly and Kelly in 1954. This is joint work with Robin Thomas.
Friday, October 30, 2009 - 15:00 , Location: Skiles 269 , Shea Vela-Vick , Columbia University , Organizer: John Etnyre
In this talk I will discuss a generalizations and/oo applications of bordered Floer homology.  After reviewing the basic definitions and constructions, I will focus either on an application to sutured Floer homology developed by Rumen Zarev, or on applications of the theory to the knot Floer homology. (While it would be good to have attended the other two talks this week, this talk shoudl be independent of them.)  This is a 2 hour talk.