Research Highlights

Topology Provides Tools for Intrusion Detection with Robot Swarms
June 2014Robotic swarms are increasingly being designed for tasks deemed too difficult, timeconsuming, or hazardous for humans, such as underwater exploration, wildlife sampling, surveillance, and search and rescue. These cheap, simple robots move using collective behaviors that emerge from local interactions with each other and their environment, functioning much like social insects. One use of robot […]

Polygon Iterations
April 2014In the Fall of 2013, ICERM had a semester program on experiental geometry, topology, and dynamics. One of the many projects undertaken during this semester was the study of polygon iterations – geometrically defined maps on the space of polygons. Perhaps the simplest polygon iteration is the midpoint map. Starting with an […]

Modeling the Prevention and Reversal of Type 2 Diabetes
February 2014A highlight of the August 2013 Workshop for Young Researchers in Mathematical Biology held at MBI was a presentation by Dr. Arthur Sherman of the National Institutes of Health, describing work with NIH postdoctoral fellow, Joon Ha, on modeling the disease process in type 2 diabetes (T2D). Diabetes is an unfortunate byproduct of the phenomenal success […]

Mathematics and Cosmology
December 2013The subject of cosmology has progressed dramatically in the last 1020 years. This is illustrated by, among other things, the Nobel prizes in 2006 (cosmic microwave background) and in 2011 (observations of supernovae). In particular, the observations of supernovae led to the unexpected conclusion that the uni verse is expanding at an accelerated rate. As […]

Stochastic Models of Disease Spread
August 2013At a yearlong program at MBI, mathematicians, engineers, and bioscientists discussed new ways of analyzing the effects of random events on the long term behavior of large biological systems. A particular topic of interest was the development of stochastic methods in the study of infectious diseases. Within an individual, disease development involves both the stochastic […]

Homotopy Type Theory
August 2013During the academic year 201213, the School of Mathematics conducted a special program on a new approach to the foundations of mathematics entitled Univalent Foundations of Mathematics. The program was coorganized by Professor Vladimir Voevodsky of the School and Members Steve Awodey of Carnegie Mellon University and Thierry Coquand of the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. […]

Mathematics Enables Effective Screening of Recessive Genetic Disorders
August 2013Yaniv Erlich directs a human genetics lab at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). One of his research projects is to identify carriers of recessive genetic disorders that affect a large proportion of the Ashkenazi Jewish population. These genetic disorders are known to cause devastating diseases, such as […]

The Importance of Chemotaxis to the Health of Coral Colonies
August 2013Chemotaxis is a mechanism by which organisms navigate their environment using chemical sensors. When mathematician Sasha Kiselev, University of Wisconsin, heard a lecture at the IMA by Jeffrey Weiss, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences at the University of Colorado, about broadcast spawning, when egg and sperm are released at separate locations are then brought […]

Crystals in Number Theory
July 2013During the spring semester of 2013, the Institute for Computational and Experimental Mathematics hosted a special program devoted to common themes in automorphic forms, combinatorial representation theory and multiple Dirichlet series. A particular focus was placed on computer exploration and the joint development of the required computational tools within the open source mathematical system Sage. […]

Disproof of Wall’s Conjecture
July 2013During the June 2012 AIM workshop, “Cohomology bounds and growth rates” a counterexample was found to a group theory conjecture formulated by G. E. Wall in 1961. A mathematical group is a set along with an operation that combines two elements to form a third element […]