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Annual Lecture Series in Topology and Geometry
in memory of
Prof. Alexander Zabrodsky

The Institute of Mathematics invites you to this year's Annual Lecture Series in Topology and Geometry in memory of Prof. Alexander Zabrodsky:

Recognising the Unknot

Joel Hass (University of California at Davis)

Thursday, November 30th, 2006 at 4:00 pm in Mathematics Building , Lecture Hall 2
Light refreshments will be served at 3:30 outside the lecture hall.

Determining whether a particular curve is knotted is the fundamental problem of knot theory. The search for an algorithm to solve this problem goes back to Max Dehn in 1910, and has historical ties to the development of the theory of algorithms. The first algorithm was found by Haken, fifty years later.

I will discuss some recent advances in determining the complexity, or running times, of algorithms to solve this type of problem. I will also discuss a recent probabilistic approach which gives a "Zero knowledge proof" that certain curves are knotted.

Alexander Zabrodsky / The Mathematics Genealogy Project
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Last updated: Nov. 28th, 2006