A talk by Václav Kučera, PhD, Charles University, Prague
Tues, February 23 at 7pm
At Bohemian National Hall
321 E 73 Street, 3rd floor, New York
Clouds are not spheres nor are mountains cones! What then is the shape of a cloud? Or a mountain? Or a tree? Classical geometry we all learned in school does not provide the answers. So can the shapes of nature be described using mathematics? Is there a formula for a fern leaf? Answers to these questions are surprisingly simple, intuitive and beautiful though it took two millennia to discover them. The resulting theories and mathematical tools are now routinely used in applications ranging from stock market analysis to modelling of tumor growth. However, they also have an alluring visual aesthetic.
The lecture will present the basic ideas behind fractals and chaos theory and the elegance and beauty they possess.
VÁCLAV KUČERA, PhD, is senior assistant professor at the Department of Numerical Mathematics at Charles University in Prague, Václav specializes in the theory and practice of numerical methods for partial differential equations, especially computational fluid dynamics. He makes a living by performing simulations of complicated physical and biological phenomena on computers and proving theorems on methods used and results obtained. Currently, he is a Fulbright Lecturer and Research Scholar at Brown University in Providence, RI.