Events 2008-09


Dirichlet’s Theorem, by Prof Thomason

Date of event unknown

Dirichlet’s theorem states that, if a and b are coprime integers then there are infinitely many primes of the form am + b. This note discusses a simple way to approach this theorem, what snags arise, how these snags naturally give rise to a modification, and how the modified approach leads to an actual proof. The note, including the proof itself, is aimed at first year undergraduates.

Mathematics and Smallpox, by Prof Tom Koerner

Date of event unknown

300 years ago Daniel Bernoulli made one of the first attempts at using mathematics to estimate the value of a medical procedure. The issues raised are still important today.

Trisecting Angles, by Dr Karne

Tuesday 25th November 2008, 6pm

No description of this talk was given (or it has been lost to time).


Evolution of Biological Complexity, by Prof Ray Goldstein

Tuesday, 10th February 2009, 6pm

Simple organisms like bacteria possess the ability to do all the functions of life while being but a single cell. We, of course, have evolved to have many different types of cells specialised for various functions (nerves, muscle, eyes, etc.). One of the most fascinating questions in evolutionary biology concerns what pressures led single cell organisms to evolve into multicellular ones, and to divide up life’s tasks among different cells. This lecture will explain how concepts and experimental techniques from mathematics and physics can help us answer this question.

The Law of Large Numbers, by Dr Richard Nickl

Tuesday, 17th February 2009, 6pm

The Law of Large Numbers and The Central Limit Theorem are the foundation of frequentist statistics. After a historical sketch of these two results, I will try to explain in which way the constitute the main pillar of modern (frequentist) statistics. I will focus in particular on the Glivenko-Cantelli theorem (sometimes called the ‘fundamental theorem of mathematical statistics’) and its ramifications.

The Riemann Hypothesis, by Prof Ben Green

Tuesday, 10th March 2009, 6pm

The Riemann Hypothesis is perhaps the most famous open problem in mathematics. But what is it? What would it be good for? And what attempts have been made to prove it?


Adams Society Garden Party

Thursday, 11th June 2009, 12 noon

Come to our free garden party with; Pimms, good food, croquet and all your favourite mathmos. Everyone is welcome to come and those who are not freshers are asked to bring their own alcoholic drinks. Non-alcoholic drinks and snacks will be provided by the society.