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This summer my students Brendan Fong and Blake Pollard visited me at the Centre for Quantum Technologies, and we figured out how to understand open continuous-time Markov chains! I think this is a nice step towards understanding the math of living systems. Admittedly, it’s just a small first step. But I’m excited by this […]

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8:01 PM | Whiplashed

I recently watched the movie Whiplash, about a college jazz band director, Fletcher played by J.K. Simmons, who torments his musicians to force them to be their best. The movie focuses on a drummer, Andrew, which makes for a great audio/video feast but in its essentials Whiplash is a story of a professor and his student.
I can imagine playing the role, “Do you think your proof is correct? Yes or No? Are you applying Toda’s theorem correctly or are you using the same crazy logic your dad […]

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6:00 PM | Basal Ingredients Of Society • 2

Re: Michael Hays • How to Fix the College Debt Problem The rationale for Universal Free Public Education is that a certain level of education is necessary for a person to function as a full-fledged citizen in a well-tempered and … Continue reading →

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The relative merits (and problems) of the conference and journal publication models are a ubiquitous topic of conversation at almost every conference/workshop I’ve ever attended. It’s been great to see lots of experiments with adjustments to the models in recent years at, e.g., ICML, VLDB, SIGGRAPH, etc. For various reasons, these venues have […]

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3:12 PM | Knuth on Knowing Your Audience

Donald Knuth has a great ability to summarize things in pithy, quotable nuggets. A good example is the following sentence from his 2001 book Things a Computer Scientist Rarely Talks About: The amount of terror that lives in a speaker’s … Continue reading →

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2:03 PM | MaTEAmatics

The height of civilisation: mathematics, comfy chairs and afternoon tea. #Reasons_why_I_like_my_fieldwork

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7:54 AM | Alive, not alife, look!

Filed under: Uncategorized Tagged: artificial life, chemlambda, experia, quiner

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5:57 AM | FOCS 2015 and KARPFest80

[Forwarding an announcement by Prasad Raghavendra –Boaz] FOCS 2015 will be held at Berkeley, California on October 18–20, 2015. Registrations are open at: http://focs15.simons.berkeley.edu/registration.html The deadline for early registration is Sept 25th. KARPfest80 On Saturday October 17, the day immediately before FOCS 2015, the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing will host a celebration […]

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If you've ever written a computer program you probably learned a little bit about context-free grammars, a formal method of describing the syntax of most programming languages that can be turned automatically into code for parsing those languages through the magic of compiler-compilers such as yacc. They're used for most other kinds of formal language, too: see for instance the JSON home page, which includes a grammar describing the syntax of data-description language JSON.Go look again at the […]

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This upcoming fall, I am teaching a special topics course at the Math Department in MIT, called Topics in Mathematics of Data Science. This will be a mostly self-contained research-oriented course focusing on the theoretical aspects of algorithms that aim to extract information from data. I have divided the content of the class in ten topics (or “lectures”), … Continue reading 10 Lectures and 42 Open Problems in Mathematics of Data Science →

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7:44 PM | Gaussian Rings and Flat Dimension

Let $R$ be any commutative ring. The content of a polynomial $f\in R[x]$ is by definition the two-sided ideal in $R$ generated by the coefficients of $f$. If $f,g\in R[x]$, then $c(fg)\subseteq c(f)c(g)$, because each coefficient of $fg$ is a linear combination of elements of $c(f)c(g)$. Sometimes, however, this inclusion is strict. For example, if […]

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2:45 PM | Has 1984 Arrived?

Answer: No. This isn’t going to be some conspiracy theory post about living in a police state and carrying around devices that constantly spy on us even when they’re off: Big Brother is watching. That’s been done to death. This … Continue reading →

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1:00 PM | Basal Ingredients Of Society • 1

What was it called? — spinthariscope? — a bit of apparatus I got in a science kit as a kid … I might as well jump in medias res … Re: Michael Hays • How to Fix the College Debt … Continue reading →

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Publishing conference proceedings and other kinds of edited collections as special issues of journals has a long history. But lately (partly as a reaction to perceived shortcomings of the more traditional CS system of publishing a preliminary version of a paper in a conference and then a full version in a journal) there's been increasing pressure to do this for more conferences. Which raises the question: how are we supposed to format these things in our bibliographies and bibtex files?Some […]

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5:10 PM | BMC looking to begin its second year

The Boise Math Circle is for local middle and high school students looking to connect with with the creative side of mathematics. We go outside many standard curriculums to explore fun and challenging topics. The goal is to give our participants little hints of modern math research and its applications.
If you are curious about interacting with more math, then apply to join us! You can find a lot more information as well as an application form on our web site: boisemathcircles.org.
Our first
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2:00 PM | Basal Ingredients Of Society • Prologue

I chose the acronym BIOS to suggest the vital elements of life in society, a life in association with others, and not just any form of association but one whose flickers of life are sustainable for more than a few … Continue reading →

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The Princeton Companion to Applied Mathematics just appeared: It includes an introductory article on kinetic theory I wrote together with Cédric Villani, and many other interesting papers.Filed under: mathematical post Tagged: Boltzmann equation, kinetic theory

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4:33 AM | Linkage

The Tutte–Coxeter graph and its construction from the outer automorphisms of S6 (G+)Google's S2 spatial data structure (G+)Question: how many arXiv papers are updated to their final journal versions? (Answer: about half of them have non-empty journal-reference metadata; G+)Keleti's conjecture on the ratio of perimeter to area of a union of unit squares (G+)Reference for mixed graph acyclicity testing? (Still not adequately answered, but the bounty has since expired; G+)Purifying spoiled
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2:16 AM | The Paradox of Replication, and the vindication of the P-value (but she can go deeper) (i)

The Paradox of Replication Critic 1: It’s much too easy to get a small P-value. Critic 2: We find it very difficult to replicate small P-values; only 36 of 100 psychology experiments were found to replicate in the recent Open Science collaboration. Is it easy or is it hard? You might say, there’s no paradox, […]

Editor's Pick

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7:30 PM | 7 contro il caos

7 è un numero magico in molte culture. Quarto numero primo, era il numero di fanciulli e fanciulle che dovevano essere sacrificati al Minotauro, o il numero dei vizi capitali, e l'elenco potrebbe continuare ancora a lungo. 7 è, dunque, un numero molto importante, tanto che raggruppiamo i giorni in settimane (insieme di 7 giorni), ed è utilizzato spesso nel mondo della fiction sin dal mitico I 7 samurai di Akira Kurosawa.Dal film di Kurosawa in poi spesso i gruppi di eroi sono composti da 7 […]

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3:58 PM | The enigma of Robert Hooke

In 1675, Robert Hooke published the “true mathematical and mechanical form” for the shape of an ideal arch. However, Hooke wrote the theory as an anagram, abcccddeeeeefggiiiiiiiillmmmmnnnnnooprrsssttttttuuuuuuuux. Its solution was never published in his lifetime. What was the secret hiding … Continue reading →

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1:10 PM | Romeo and Juliet, through a Wormhole

Originally posted on 4 gravitons:Perimeter is hosting this year’s Mathematica Summer School on Theoretical Physics. The school is a mix of lectures on a topic in physics (this year, the phenomenon of quantum entanglement) and tips and tricks for using the symbolic calculation program Mathematica. Juan Maldacena is one of the lecturers, which gave me…

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It has been noted that while there are 17 Republican candidates for the nomination, of which 10 have been declared serious by FOX News via the first debate, there are far less democratic candidates for the nomination and only one has been declared serious by the powers that be. This may change if Biden runs.
I want to suggest two Democrats who I think should run. They have not made ANY moves in that direction, so it won't happen... until they see that this blog post endorsing them and they […]

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The first of a series of special issues from STOC, FOCS, and SODA has been published in Games and Economic Behavior; it contains papers invited from the 2011 conferences. The papers in the issue cover topics including mechanism design, the price of anarchy, networks, and learning in games. As the introduction to the special issue […]

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6:40 PM | The distance of the moon

Having just re-read the delightful Italo Calvino story of this name (which you can read here), I was also entranced by the following animation: Also: my take on the pronunciation of the name of the narrator: the first f is … Continue reading →

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4:30 PM | Pedagogy and Phrenology

Re: Gene V Glass • Why I Am No Longer a Measurement Specialist When I was learning research statistics, the standard cautionary tale on construct validity featured the foibles of Phrenology, the onetime pseudoscience that sought to psych out a … Continue reading →

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7:26 AM | The Inverse Cube Force Law

Here you see three planets. The blue planet is orbiting the Sun in a realistic way: it’s going around an ellipse. The other two are moving in and out just like the blue planet, so they all stay on the same circle. But they’re moving around this circle at different rates! The green planet is […]

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8:13 PM | Topolino #3118: misteri misteriosi

Come da consuetudine delle settimane precedenti, ecco la del numero di Topolino attualmente in edicola, assemblata integrando al testo utilizzato per la brevisione su LSB (che dovrebbe uscire domani) i commenti sul resto del sommario, che inizia con Paperink e il nipote ribelle.A differenza di quanto scritto nel titolo tale nipote non è Paperino, ma Felipe De Donlon y Pesetas, nipote di Dona Manuela Danarosa, introdotta da Marco Bosco, sceneggiatore de Il nipote ribelle, e Giorgio Cavazzano in […]

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7:26 PM | New CEA Overview of GDO

The U.S. Council of Economic Advisors has a nice new review of "Gross Domestic Output" (GDO), a simple average of expenditure- and income-side GDP estimates now published by the BEA.In an earlier post I wrote rather negatively about GDO as compared to GDPplus, which is an optimally-weighted blend rather than a simple average. (See the FRB Philadelphia GDPplus site and the corresponding Aruba et al. paper available there.) My view has not changed.But I want to be very clear
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2:49 PM | Meeting new people at ICFP

This afternoon I’ll be getting on a plane to Vancouver for ICFP. I’m looking forward to seeing many friends, of course, but I also enjoy meeting new people—whether or not they are “famous”, whether or not I think they can … Continue reading →

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di diffusione della scienza e rivoluzioni cc @aubreymcfato @CristianCantoro Utilizzare i dati sulle citazioni in Wikipedia per misurare la diffusione dell'open accessScrivevo all'inizio del 2011 per i festeggiamenti del wiki-decennale di una rivoluzione irreversibile. E' stato piuttosto interessante leggere il titolo che technology review ha utilizzato per raccontare dell'ultimo degli articoli dedicati all'enciclopedia libera: Why Wikipedia + Open Access = Revolution.L'idea degli autori, Misha
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Nielsen, F. (2007). Scientific citations in Wikipedia, First Monday, 12 (8) DOI: 10.5210/fm.v12i8.1997

Heather Ford, Shilad Sen, David R. Musicant & Nathaniel Miller (2013). Getting to the source: where does Wikipedia get its information from?, Proceedings of the 9th International Symposium on Open Collaboration, DOI: 10.1145/2491055.2491064

Misha Teplitskiy, Grace Lu & Eamon Duede (2015). Amplifying the Impact of Open Access: Wikipedia and the Diffusion of Science, Wikipedia Workshop at 9th International Conference on Web and Social Media (ICWSM), arXiv: 1506.07608v1

Citation

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After (or before?) @StartsWithABang's balloon animals' post? A couple of week ago Ethan Siegel published a post about ballon animals, so I decide to repost an old piece that I wrote in 2011 for my italian blog: the english version is lost, but it is magically reposted here! Two one-balloon constructions and their associated graphsI recently discovered this interesting site, vihart. In the site there are some interesting paper and today I want to write something about Computational Balloon
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Demaine E.D., Demaine M.L. & Hart V. (2008). Computational balloon twisting: The theory of balloon polyhedra., Proceedings of the 20th Canadian Conference on Computational Geometry (CCCG2008), 139-142.

Bryś K. & Lonc Z. (2009). Polynomial cases of graph decomposition: A complete solution of Holyer's problem, Discrete Mathematics, 309 (6) 1294-1326. DOI: 10.1016/j.disc.2008.01.054

Citation

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Supponiamo di doverci confrontare con un animale, ad esempio un cane o un lupo (o più in generale con un animale, addomesticato o selvaggio). Secondo Konrad Lorenz il comportamento aggressivo di un cane viene influenzato da due stati d'animo differenti: l'ira e la paura.Si può allora provare a prevedere il comportamento del cane in funzione di quale dei due stati domina: nel caso in cui l'animale è dominato da paura o da ira, proporre una previsione è abbastanza semplice; nel caso in cui il […]

Zeeman E.C. (1976). Catastrophe Theory, Scientific American, 234 65-83. DOI: 10.1038/scientificamerican0476-65

Jean Petitot (2013). Complexity and self-organization in Turing, The Legacy of A.M. Turing, (E. Agazzi, ed.), Franco Angeli, Milano, 149-182. arXiv: 1502.05328v1

Citation

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Non prevedevo di scrivere la versione italiana di un post sull'ultima news proveniente dal RHIC, ma mi è stato gentilmente chiesto, e provvedo ben volentieri. Inizio, però, con un piccolo cappello, alla fine del quale saprete che c'è anche un piccolissimo pezzetto (il doppio diminutivo è perché i firmatari del papero su arXiv sono veramente tanti) d'Italia in questa interessante scoperta.Tutto nasce da un post, nel flusso twittero, di Annalisa Arci, in cui racconta, in maniera e con un […]

Belavina A.A., Polyakova A.M., Schwartza A.S. & Tyupkina Y.S. (1975). Pseudoparticle solutions of the Yang-Mills equations, Physics Letters B, 59 (1) 85-87. DOI: 10.1016/0370-2693(75)90163-X

Hooft G.'. (1976). Symmetry Breaking through Bell-Jackiw Anomalies, Physical Review Letters, 37 (8) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.37.8

Hooft G.'. (1976). Computation of the quantum effects due to a four-dimensional pseudoparticle, Physical Review D, 14 DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.14.3432

Fukushima K., Kharzeev D.E. & Warringa H.J. (2008). The Chiral Magnetic Effect, Physics Review D, 78 (7) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.78.074033

Kharzeev D.E. & Yee H.U. (2011). Chiral Magnetic Wave, Physical Review D, 83 DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.83.085007

STAR Collaboration (2015). Observation of charge asymmetry dependence of pion elliptic flow and the possible chiral magnetic wave in heavy-ion collisions, arXiv, arXiv: 1504.02175v2

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A new clue about the #quarkgluonplasma from @RHIC_STAR at @BrookhavenLabWithin the particles that constitute atomic nuclei, protons and neutrons, there are the quarks, the elementary particles with fractional charges, linked to each other thanks to the gluons, bosons that carry the nuclear interaction. Thanks to the gluons it is impossible to observe, at present, free quarks, but it is expected that in the very first stage of the universe, matter was in a state called quark-gluon plasma. Thanks […]

Belavina A.A., Polyakova A.M., Schwartza A.S. & Tyupkina Y.S. (1975). Pseudoparticle solutions of the Yang-Mills equations, Physics Letters B, 59 (1) 85-87. DOI: 10.1016/0370-2693(75)90163-X

Hooft G.'. (1976). Symmetry Breaking through Bell-Jackiw Anomalies, Physical Review Letters, 37 (8) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.37.8

Hooft G.'. (1976). Computation of the quantum effects due to a four-dimensional pseudoparticle, Physical Review D, 14 DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.14.3432

Fukushima K., Kharzeev D.E. & Warringa H.J. (2008). The Chiral Magnetic Effect, Physics Review D, 78 (7) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.78.074033

Kharzeev D.E. & Yee H.U. (2011). Chiral Magnetic Wave, Physical Review D, 83 DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.83.085007

STAR Collaboration (2015). Observation of charge asymmetry dependence of pion elliptic flow and the possible chiral magnetic wave in heavy-ion collisions, arXiv: 1504.02175v2

Citation

DrMathochist tweeted: @DrMathochist

RT @AlyssaRosenberg: One of my favorite things to do with male actors and directors is to ask them about stuff often reserved for women: sa…

2015-09-04 14:08:44

MindAfterMath tweeted: @MindAfterMath

2015-09-04 14:07:22

OraclMachine tweeted: @OraclMachine

shenzhenpunk http://t.co/O7mIIfR0qy

2015-09-04 13:59:59

OraclMachine tweeted: @OraclMachine

迎面走来的是摇滚方队，摇滚乐手们为了这次阅兵，克服了常人难以想，象的困难，突破自身地生理极限居然实现了：准时到达了排练现场。 http://t.co/EIfjnmcv13

2015-09-04 13:59:26

JohnDCook tweeted: @JohnDCook

"Whom the gods wish to destroy, they give unlimited resources." -- Twyla Tharp

2015-09-04 13:50:11

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @mersenne_tweets: Call for Papers — SHARP 2016 Panel: The Languages of the Medical Book: Dear Colleagues,I am putting together a... http…

2015-09-04 13:23:52

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @Jamie_Woodward_: John Collins Warren (1778-1856), the pioneering American surgeon, produced this superb volume in 1855 #FossilFriday ht…

2015-09-04 13:22:57

rmathematicus tweeted: @rmathematicus

RT @Conciatore_org: The methodology of c17 alchemy lives-on today in kitchens around the world http://t.co/eAsN2nX38p #histSTM #alchemy htt…

2015-09-04 13:14:11

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