Scientific General Events

  • This event will celebrate Dale Rolfsen's 70th birthday.
    There will be a special conference dinner.

  • During the last few years, the workshop has facilitated discussions on a variety of topics of interest to college and university faculty. Topics in the past have included connections between automorphic forms and other areas or mathematics, how to find the right job, encouraging and retaining under-represented groups in number theory, grant writing, how to choose the right journal, and balancing a career with a personal life.


    Based on the success of previous sessions, we plan to hold discussions again this year. 

  • Abstract:

    Central to Alan Turing's posthumous reputation is his work with British codebreaking during the Second World War. This relationship is not well understood, largely because it stands on the intersection of two technical fields, mathematics and cryptology, the second of which also has been shrouded by secrecy. This lecture will assess this relationship from an historical cryptological perspective. It treats the mathematization and mechanization of cryptology between 1920-50 as international phenomena. It assesses Turing's role in one important phase of this process, British work at Bletchley Park in developing cryptanalytical machines for use against Enigma in 1940-41. It focuses on also his interest in and work with cryptographic machines between 1942-46, and concludes that work with them served as a seed bed for the development of his thinking about computers.


  • Cellular reconstitution: Rebuilding biological systems from the bottom-up


    Abstract:Understanding the molecular basis of cellular behaviour is a central goal in biology and a critical guide for medical research. Increasing knowledge of the essential proteins in a complex process such as crawling motility raises the tantalizing question: Do we know enough to build it? In vitro reconstitution provides an import tool for identifying the roles of individual molecules, but defining components is not enough. Progress towards reconstitution of micron-scale cellular structures and processes has been limited by the challenges of generating in vitro reconstitutions that capture the spatial organization, physical constraints, and dynamics of living cells. This talk will describe on-going efforts to create functional reconstitutions of cytoskeletal and membrane processes involved in cellular protrusions and membrane transport. The lessons of what works – and what doesn’t – are helping to guide efforts to build biological systems from molecular parts.

  • The Eleventh Colloquiumfest will present talks on valuation theory, number
    theory and algebraic geometry.


    For abstracts, please visit

  • Topics in this session include:


    Some simple triangulations


    Twist knots and the uniform thickness property


    Right-angled Coxeter polytopes, hyperbolic 6-manifolds, and a problem of Siegel


    Geometric representatives of homology classes in the space of knots


    + more topics to follow


    The 2011 Birnbaum Lecture in Probability will be delivered by Steven Evans (University of California, Berkeley).


    Circular Distributions and Fisheries Models


    On Friday October 14, 2011, we are holding the Pacific Northwest Seminar in honour of Dr. Bill Reed who retired from the University of Victoria on July 1, 2011. The seminars will focus on two areas that Bill has worked in: assessing goodness-of-fit and applied statistics.  Michael Stephens will offer a theoretical discussion of assessing the fit of circular distributions and emerging issues in this field.  Jon Schnute will discuss applied fisheries models and will look at what further research is required in this area.


  • The Langevin process and the trace formula.

  • Buffon's needle probability for rational product Cantor sets

  • The content of the course will be based on the interests and expertise of the participants.  Topics of 3-lecture series will include, but be in no sense limited to:


    1. Bousfield Localization and Axiomatic Stable Homotopy Categories


    2. Moduli Spaces of Riemann Surfaces


    3. Transfer in Stable Homotopy Theory


    4. Ring Spectra