Seminars and Colloquia by Series

Wednesday, April 17, 2019 - 12:05 , Location: Skiles 006 , Christian Houdré , Georgia Tech , Organizer: Trevor Gunn

I will briefly present our Stochastics Group and its main interests, and will continue with some of the problems I have worked on in recent years.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019 - 10:00 , Location: Skiles 006 , Haoyan Zhai , Georgia Tech , hzhai8@gatech.edu , Organizer: Haoyan Zhai

Optimal transport is a thoroughly studied field in mathematics and introduces the concept of Wasserstein distance, which has been widely used in various applications in computational mathematics, machine learning as well as many areas in engineering. Meanwhile, control theory and path planning is an active branch in mathematics and robotics, focusing on algorithms that calculates feasible or optimal paths for robotic systems. In this defense, we use the properties of the gradient flows in Wasserstein metric to design algorithms to handle different types of path planning and control problems as well as the K-means problems defined on graphs.

Series: PDE Seminar
Tuesday, April 16, 2019 - 15:00 , Location: Skiles 006 , Li Chen , University of Mannheim , pdebird@gmail.com , Organizer: Ronghua Pan

I this talk I will summerize some of our contributions in the analysis of parabolic elliptic Keller-Segel system, a typical model in chemotaxis. For the case of linear diffusion, after introducing the critical mass in two dimension, I will show our result for blow-up conditions for higher dimension. The second part of the talk is concentrated in the critical exponent for Keller-Segel system with porus media type diffusion. In the end, motivated from the result on nonlocal Fisher-KPP equation, we show that the nonlocal reaction will also help in preventing the blow-up of the solutions.  

Tuesday, April 16, 2019 - 12:00 , Location: Skiles 005 , Kathlén Kohn , ICERM and University of Oslo , kathlen_kohn@brown.edu , Organizer: Greg Blekherman
Wachspress defined barycentric coordinates on polygons in 1975. Warren generalized his construction to higher dimensional polytopes in 1996. In contrast to the classical case of simplices, barycentric coordinates on other polytopes are not unique. So the coordinates defined by Warren are now commonly known as Wachspress coordinates. They are used in a variety of applications, such as geometric modeling.

We connect the constructions by Warren and Wachspress by proving the conjecture that there is a unique polynomial of minimal degree which vanishes on the non-faces of a simple polytope. This is the adjoint polynomial introduced by Warren. Our formulation is the natural generalization of Wachspress' original idea.

The algebraic geometry of the map defined by the Wachspress coordinates was studied in the case of polygons by Irving and Schenk in 2014. We extend their results to higher dimensional polytopes. In particular, we show that the image of this Wachspress map is the projection from the image of the adjoint. For three-dimensional polytopes, we show that their adjoints are adjoints of K3- or elliptic surfaces. This talk is based on joint works with Kristian Ranestad, Boris Shapiro and Bernd Sturmfels.

Monday, April 15, 2019 - 14:00 , Location: Skiles 006 , Patrick Orson , Boston College , patrick.orson@bc.edu , Organizer: JungHwan Park

The question of which high-dimensional knots are slice was entirely solved by Kervaire and Levine. Compared to this, the question of which knots are doubly slice in high-dimensions is still a largely open problem. Ruberman proved that in every dimension, some version of the Casson-Gordon invariants can be applied to obtain algebraically doubly slice knots that are not doubly slice. I will show how to use L^2 signatures to recover the result of Ruberman for (4k-3)-dimensional knots, and discuss how the derived series of the knot group might be used to organise the high-dimensional doubly slice problem.

Monday, April 15, 2019 - 13:55 , Location: Skiles 005 , Shuyang Ling , New York University , sling@cims.nyu.edu , Organizer: Wenjing Liao

Information retrieval from graphs plays an increasingly important role in data science and machine learning. This talk focuses on two such examples. The first one concerns the graph cuts problem: how to find the optimal k-way graph cuts given an adjacency matrix. We present a convex relaxation of ratio cut and normalized cut, which gives rise to a rigorous theoretical analysis of graph cuts. We derive deterministic bounds of finding the optimal graph cuts via a spectral proximity condition which naturally depends on the intra-cluster and inter-cluster connectivity. Moreover, our theory provides theoretic guarantees for spectral clustering and community detection under stochastic block model. The second example is about the landscape of a nonconvex cost function arising from group synchronization and matrix completion. This function also appears as the energy function of coupled oscillators on networks. We study how the landscape of this function is related to the underlying network topologies. We prove that the optimization landscape has no spurious local minima if the underlying network is a deterministic dense graph or an Erdos-Renyi random graph. The results find applications in signal processing and dynamical systems on networks.

Monday, April 15, 2019 - 12:50 , Location: Skiles 005 , Kalina Mincheva , Yale University , kalina.mincheva@yale.edu , Organizer: Yoav Len

Tropical geometry provides a new set of purely combinatorial tools, which has been used to approach classical problems. In tropical geometry most algebraic computations are done on the classical side - using the algebra of the original variety. The theory developed so far has explored the geometric aspect of tropical varieties as opposed to the underlying (semiring) algebra and there are still many commutative algebra tools and notions without a tropical analogue. In the recent years, there has been a lot of effort dedicated to developing the necessary tools for commutative algebra using different frameworks, among which prime congruences, tropical ideals, tropical schemes. These approaches allows for the exploration of the  properties of tropicalized spaces without tying them up to the original varieties and working with geometric structures inherently defined in characteristic one (that is, additively idempotent) semifields. In this talk we explore the relationship between tropical ideals and congruences to conclude that the variety of a prime (tropical) ideal is either empty or consists of a single point. This is joint work with D. Joó.

Monday, April 15, 2019 - 12:45 , Location: Skiles 006 , Patrick Orson , Boston College , patrick.orson@bc.edu , Organizer: JungHwan Park

I will give a brief survey of concordance in high-dimensional knot theory and how slice results have classically been obtained in this setting with the aid of surgery theory. Time permitting, I will then discuss an example of how some non-abelian slice obstructions come into the picture for 1-knots, as intuition for the seminar talk about L^2 invariants.

Monday, April 15, 2019 - 11:15 , Location: Skiles 005 , L. Serdukova , School of Mathematics, Georgia Institute of Technology , Organizer: Larissa Serdukova

Stability and bifurcation conditions for a vibroimpact motion in an inclined energy harvester with T-periodic forcing are determined analytically and numerically. This investigation provides a better understanding of impact velocity and its influence on energy harvesting efficiency and can be used to optimally design the device. The numerical and analytical results of periodic motions are in excellent agreement. The stability conditions are developed in non-dimensional parameter space through two basic nonlinear maps based on switching manifolds that correspond to impacts with the top and bottom membranes of the energy harvesting device. The range for stable simple T-periodic behavior is reduced with increasing angle of incline β, since the influence of gravity increases the asymmetry of dynamics following impacts at the bottom and top. These asymmetric T-periodic solutions lose stability to period doubling solutions for β ≥ 0, which appear through increased asymmetry. The period doubling, symmetric and asymmetric periodic motion are illustrated by bifurcation diagrams, phase portraits and velocity time series.

Friday, April 12, 2019 - 15:05 , Location: Skiles 005 , Cynthia Vinzant , North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC , Organizer: Prasad Tetali

Stability is a multivariate generalization for real-rootedness in univariate polynomials. Within the past ten years, the theory of stable polynomials has contributed to breakthroughs in combinatorics, convex optimization, and operator theory. I will introduce a generalization of stability, called complete log-concavity, that satisfies many of the same desirable properties. These polynomials were inspired by work of Adiprasito, Huh, and Katz on combinatorial Hodge theory, but can be defined and understood in elementary terms. The structure of these polynomials is closely tied with notions of discrete convexity, including matroids, submodular functions, and generalized permutohedra. I will discuss the beautiful real and combinatorial geometry underlying these polynomials and applications to matroid theory, including a proof of Mason’s conjecture on numbers of independent sets. This is based on joint work with Nima Anari, Kuikui Liu, and Shayan Oveis Gharan.

(*Refreshments available at 2:30pm before the colloquium.*)

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