Madison Math Circle Abstracts

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September 18 2017

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Title: TBD

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September 25 2017

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October 2 2017

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October 9 2017

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October 16 2017

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October 23 2017

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October 30 2017

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November 6 2017

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November 13 2017

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November 20 2017

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January 29 2018

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February 5 2018

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February 12 2018

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February 19 2018

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February 26 2018

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March 5 2018

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March 12 2018

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March 19 2018

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April 2 2018

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April 9 2018

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High School Meetings

October 17 2016 (JMM)

Daniel Erman
Title: What does math research look like?

Using a concrete problem in combinatorics, I will try to give a feel for what math research looks like. We’ll discuss the various aspects of research including: gathering data, making conjectures, proving special cases, and asking new questions.

October 24 2016 (West)

DJ Bruce
Title: Shhh, This Message is Secret

gur pbearefgbar bs gur zbqrea jbeyq eribyirf nebhaq orvat noyr gb rnfvyl pbzzhavpngr frpergf, jurgure gubfr frpergf or perqvg pneq ahzoref ba nznmba, grkg zrffntrf ba lbhe vcubar, be frpher tbireazrag nssnvef. va guvf gnyx jr jvyy rkcyber gur zngu haqrecvaavat bhe novyvgl gb qb guvf, naq frr whfg ubj fgheql gung pbearefgbar npghnyyl znl or.

October 31 2016 (East)

DJ Bruce
Title: Shhh, This Message Is Secret

gur pbearefgbar bs gur zbqrea jbeyq eribyirf nebhaq orvat noyr gb rnfvyl pbzzhavpngr frpergf, jurgure gubfr frpergf or perqvg pneq ahzoref ba nznmba, grkg zrffntrf ba lbhe vcubar, be frpher tbireazrag nssnvef. va guvf gnyx jr jvyy rkcyber gur zngu haqrecvaavat bhe novyvgl gb qb guvf, naq frr whfg ubj fgheql gung pbearefgbar npghnyyl znl or.

December 5 2016 (JMM)

Philip Matchett Wood
Title: The game of Criss-Cross

Some say that mathematics is the science of patterns, and patterns are everywhere. You can find some remarkable patterns just by drawing lines connecting dots, and that is just what we will do in the game of Criss-Cross! Bring your pencils and be ready to play.

December 5 2016 (East)

Uri Andrews
Title: How to split an apartment

So you go off to college and after a year or two, you and some of your friends decide to get an apartment together. It'll be a lot of fun living with your best friends. Then move-in day comes, and you realize that everyone wants the room by the kitchen (for easy late-night snacking). You have 4 rooms and 4 people. Surely there must be some way to make everybody happy. People are willing to settle for their second-favorite room instead if maybe they pay a little less rent or do some less chores. How do you navigate this issue to make everybody happy? I'll share a way to do this based on a mathematical theorem which also explains the following fact: If you stir up a cup of hot chocolate, when the liquid has come to rest, some point in the liquid will end up in exactly the same place in the cup as before you stirred it.

February 13 2017 (East)

Eva Elduque
Title: Pick's Theorem

In this talk, we will work to discover a beautiful formula that allows us to quickly and easily compute the area of a polygon whose vertices are points of a grid. We will prove that this formula works!

February 20 2017 (JMM)

Megan Maguire
Title: Coloring Maps

Have you ever noticed that in colored maps of the US bordering states are never the same color? That's because it would be super confusing! But how many different colors do we need in order to avoid this? Come find out and learn more cool things about coloring maps.

March 20 2017 (East)

DJ Bruce
Title: Doodling Daydreams

As a high schooler I occasionally got bored, would zone out, and would doodle on my paper. Often repeatedly tracing around something on my paper creating doodles like this:

In this bored state my mind would often wander, and I would wonder about important things like "Will I have a date for prom?" or "What is the cafeteria serving for lunch?", but germane to this talk were my wonderings about, "What’s happening to the shape of this doodle?" It turns out that these idle daydreams and doodles provide a good taste for how mathematicians "do" math. We will start by doodling and asking questions, and then we'll see where these lead us mathematically.

April 3 2017 (JMM)

Polly Yu
Title: Are we there yet?

When you are told to clean your room, you have to first clean half of it; then half of what's left, and half of what's left, and so on. Seems like you will never be done! In fact, an ancient Greek philosopher, Zeno, used an argument like this to claim that it is impossible to move! Disclaimer: we are not saying that it's impossible to clean your room. What we will do is look at a special case of adding infinitely many numbers together, and use the resulting formula to calculate areas of fractals.