Saturday, January 16, 2021

Harvard CMSA talks (video)

I recently came across this channel on YouTube, produced by CMSA at Harvard.
The new Center for Mathematical Sciences and Applications in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences will serve as a fusion point for mathematics, statistics, physics, and related sciences. Evergrande will support new professorships, research, and core programming. 
Shing-Tung Yau, Harvard’s William Caspar Graustein Professor of Mathematics, will serve as the center’s first director. 
“The Center for Mathematical Sciences and Applications will establish applied mathematics at Harvard as a first-class, interdisciplinary field of study, relating mathematics with many other important fields,” Yau said. “The center will not only carry out the most innovative research but also train young researchers from all over the world, especially those from China. The center marks a new chapter in the development of mathematical science.”
If I'm not mistaken Evergrande is a big real estate developer in China. It's nice to see them supporting mathematics and science in the US :-) 

In 2010 I accompanied S.T. Yau and a number of other US academics and technologists to visit Alibaba, which wanted to establish a center for data science in China. Unfortunately this never really got off the ground, but CMSA looks like it is off to a good start. 

Here are some talks I found interesting. There are quite a few more.

The talk on Atiyah, Geometry, and Physics led me to this poem which I like very much. Sadly, Atiyah passed in 2019. I believe we met once at a dinner at the Society of Fellows, but I hardly knew him.
In the broad light of day mathematicians check their equations and their proofs, leaving no stone unturned in their search for rigour. 
But, at night, under the full moon, they dream, they float among the stars and wonder at the mystery of the heavens: they are inspired. 
Without dreams there is no art, no mathematics, no life. 
—Michael Atiyah

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