Monday, April 12, 2010 - 5:00pm
1 hour (actually 50 minutes)
In 1854 Riemann extended Gauss' ideas on curved geometries from two dimensional surfaces to higher dimensions. Since that time mathematicians have tried to understand the structure of geometric spaces based on their curvature properties. It turns out that basic questions remain unanswered in this direction. In this lecture we will give a history of such questions for spaces with positive curvature, and describe the progress that has been made as well as some outstanding conjectures which remain to be settled.