Sunday, April 25, 1999

7:30 p.m., Founder's Hall 118

Thomas Banchoff

Professor of Mathematics
Brown University
President of the Mathematical Association of America

"Beyond the Third Dimension:
From `Flatland' to Internet Hypergraphics"

Interactive computer graphics makes it possible for the first time to experience direct visual contact with one of the most fascinating and challenging mathematical worlds: The Fourth Dimension.  More than a hundred years ago, a remarkable book, "Flatland", laid out the challenge, and only now are we able to view and manipulate the objects in four-dimensional space.  The Fourth Dimension--It's not just time anymore.

Prof. Banchoff will present computer generated slides and videos to illustrate the ways that the fourth dimension has inspired not only mathematicians and physicists, but also philosophers, writers, and surrealist artists.  Also included in the presentation will be a trip to a virtual art gallery filled with surfaces "beyond the third dimension."

Special Mathematics Colloquium:

Singularities of Projections of Surfaces
into the Plane and Three-Space

Sunday, April 25, 1999
1:30 - 3:00 p.m.
Siemans Hall 128
Post-colloquium tea and reception from 3:15 - 3:45 p.m.,
Basement of the Library Foyer

Professor Banchoff will discuss some theorems about singularities of projections of surfaces into the plane and  three-space. Using interactive computer graphics Professor Banchoff will illustrate that the way we do mathematics and the way we communicate it to our students and our colleagues is changing daily. Most of the content of the lecture will be accessible to anyone who has completed at least 3 semesters of calculus and linear algebra.

 Professor Banchoff received his BA from the  University of Notre Dame in1960  and his Ph.D. in1964 from theUniversity of California at Berkeley. He was Benjamin Peirce Instructor at Harvard from 1964 to 1966 and was then at the University of Amsterdam 1966-7 as a Fulbright post-doctorate fellow before his appointment to the faculty at Brown University in 1967. He has been a visitor at numerous institutions including  UCLA, IHES, Technical University of Denmark, the Geometry Center, the University of Notre Dame, and most recently he was G. Leonard Baker Visiting Professor at Yale University for fall, 1998. Professor Banchoff has received several awards for his teaching, including the Haimo National Teaching Award from the Mathematical Association of America in 1996 and RI Professor of the Year 1998 from the Carnegie Foundation.  He is currently Walter H. Annenberg Distinguished Professor for 1998-9 at Brown.

Professor Banchoff  is the author of over 50 research articles and of three books, Introduction to Flatland for Princeton U Press, Beyond the Third Dimension, Scientific American Library 1990, 1996 , and Linear Algebra Through Geometry, Springer-Verlag, revised and expanded second edition, Springer-Verlag (1991).  His film, "The Hypercube", 1978, won the Prix de la Recherche Fondementale at the Brussells Festival of Scientific and Technical Films.
Professor Banchoff is currently the president of the Mathematical Association of America.