Mathematics of Doodling

Speaker: Ravi Vakil

Date: Tue, Oct 2, 2012 to Wed, Oct 3, 2012

Location: PIMS, University of Calgary

Conference: Louise and Richard K. Guy Lecture Series

Subject: Mathematics, Topology

Class: Scientific


The Richard & Louise Guy Lecture Series is an annual lecture event bringing world-renowned mathematicians to Calgary to share the joy of mathematics with a public audience. The lecture series celebrates the joy of discovery and wonder in mathematics for everyone. Indeed, the lecture series was a 90th birthday present from Louise to Richard in recognition of his love of mathematics and his desire to share that love with the world.

This year's lecture is "The Mathematics of Doodling" delivered by Dr. Ravi Vakil (Stanford University):

"Doodling has many mathematical aspects: patterns, shapes, numbers,and more. Not surprisingly, there is often some sophisticated and fun mathematics buried inside common doodles. I’ll begin by doodling, and see where it takes us. It looks like play, but it reflects what mathematics is really about: finding patterns in nature, explaining them, and extending them. By the end, we’ll have seen important notions in geometry, topology, physics, and elsewhere; some fundamental ideas guiding the development of mathematics over the course of the last century; and ongoing work continuing today."