2014 Seminar Abstracts


Arun Ram

Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Melbourne

Proof Machine

There is one tool that has saved my mathematical confidence (and career) more times than any other, my Proof Machine.  In this talk I will discuss the theory behind how (and why) it works, and power it up and show how it works on a few examples.  With a little practice wielding the hammer anyone can use the Proof Machine to build rock solid proofs, both within mathematics and also outside mathematics.

Professor Ram's Bio

Arun Ram is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Melbourne. His research is in the areas of combinatorics (clever ways of counting) and representation theory. He grew up in a smallish town in New Mexico, before leaving for Boston to do a Bachelor's degree at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After deciding that he needed a lifestyle providing opportunities for travel and sitting in coffee shops it seemed best to get a PhD in Mathematics.  He completed his PhD at University of California San Diego in 1991.  Following a sequence of junior positions he settled at University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1999.  In 2008 he moved to Melbourne where the mathematics, the weather, and the city suit him well.  His passions are beauty, music, languages, cultures, and people.

Arun's research focus is representation theory, but he is most fascinated by where different fields and techniques come together and much of his research agenda is in building bridges across fields.

Ami Radunskaya

Department of Mathematics, Claremont Colleges, Claremont, Los Angeles, California, USA

Of Mice and Math: a link from the lab to clinic

Mathematical models of physical, chemical and behavioral processes can be used to understand the mechanisms behind the process, to hypothesize about how the process can be modified and to predict future behavior. A useful mathematical model can help the laboratory scientist interpret data, and model simulations can suggest ways to translate discoveries into effective clinical treatments. In this talk I will describe several modeling projects with collaborators from the School of Pharmacy at the University of Otago in New Zealand: controlled release cellular automata tablets, simulated liposomes in bile salts, and virtual mice responding to in silico vaccines.

Professor Radunskaya's Bio

A California native, Professor Radunskaya received her Ph.D. in Mathematics from Stanford University under the supervision of Prof. Donald Ornstein.  She is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics at Pomona College in Claremont, California, specializing in ergodic theory, dynamical systems, and applications to various "real-world" problems.  Some current research projects involve mathematical models of cancer immunotherapy, designing time-release tablets, and studying stochastic dynamical systems in order to understand how people balance.  Professor Radunskaya believes strongly in the power of collaboration and that everyone can learn to enjoy mathematics.   She is a co-director of the US national EDGE (Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education) program, which won a "Mathematics Program that Makes a Difference" award from the American Mathematical Society  in 2007.  Professor Radunskaya was awarded an Irvine Fellowship for Excellence in Faculty Mentoring in 2004, she received a Wig Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2012, and she delivered the Association for Women in Mathematics Falconer Lecture at MathFest in 2010.

Areas of study and research

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