Many mathematical concepts and applications can be illustrated or motivated using physical models. We will explore some interesting examples using ropes, chains, tuning forks, chemical reactions, pendulums, and other devices. These toys will motivate a discussion of problems from physics, chemistry and engineering and their mathematical analysis. We will also gain new insights into the airport security screening process.
" To Lay or Not to Lay: A Model for Insect Oviposition Strategies"
Thursday, November 29, 2001
Natural Resources 101
Pre-colloquium tea and reception at 3:30 outside Library 56.
Most animals move about their environment in search of food, shelter and mates. These activities and behavior represent "investments" of time and energy. The returns for such an investment, such as food and reproductive success, are vital in the success of the individual and the species. An important question that arises in the study of animal behavior is the following: Are there "optimal" strategies that individuals can pursue that will improve the benefits that result from a given investment? In addition, is there evidence that animals actually pursue optimal strategies? In this talk, we will examine a (relatively simple) mathematical model for how certain insects "ought" to distribute the eggs they lay. The predictions of the model will be compared to data from natural populations of the moth Greya subalba. The mathematical results will shed new meaning on the old saying, "Don't put all your eggs in one basket."
Following graduate school, he spent two years as a USPHS post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Genetics at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. In 1981 he joined the faculty at Washington State University, with a joint appointment between the Department of Pure and Applied Mathematics and the Department of Genetics and Cell Biology. He had a Fulbright Fellowship for research to the Institute for Mathematics at the University of Vienna 1990-91.
In 1994 Dr. Moody moved to Harvey Mudd College as the Diana and Kenneth
Jonsson Professor of Mathematics and mathematics
Dr. Moody's research in biomathematics focuses on genetic models for
evolving populations. His developmental work in teaching is concentrated
on designing and implementing curricular models and technological tools
to improve mathematics education for engineers
and scientists. Dr. Moody was co-designer and developer of the award-winning multi-media ODEArchitect software program for teaching
and solving ordinary differential equations. He has also published two books for integrating technology into the calculus curriculum through laboratory experiments. All of this work has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation. He has given numerous talks and workshops at national meetings on these topics.