Thursday, April 05, 2007

E8, AIM, and PR

I was very happy to hear the voice of M. Vazirani, who served on my dissertation committee (see the evidence below) on last week's episode of KQED's California Report. It's a great little piece, accessible to all. You can download it, or stream it from the page linked above.

In some sense it seems perfectly natural for a radio station whose call letters are a common mathematical initialism (or is it a physical one?) to report on mathematical news. As I mentioned before, this story in particular is catching a lot of attention. At a conference I attended last week, the topic of E8 and its broad media exposure arose; I attributed this phenomenon to the fact that this is one of the first major milestones to be reached by an AIM-sponsored project, and that AIM puts a much greater (and much needed) emphasis on public relations than do other mathematical research institutions.

In the meantime, I found another connection between my own work and the E8 project. The big character table calculation was carried out on SAGE, a multi-processor AMD Opteron machine built by Western Scientific, who also built my multi-processor AMD Opteron machine, frost. Hopefully some adaptation of the adage on great minds thinking alike can be applied to these systems.


Anonymous said...

I think about math

Anonymous said...

Aye, think about math.