[talks] Distinguished colloquium on Tues Feb 19: Christos Papadimitriou

Sanjeev Arora arora at CS.Princeton.EDU
Sun Feb 17 13:34:54 EST 2008

Christos Papadimitriou of UC Berkeley will speak in our Distinguished 
Colloquium series on Tues  Feb 19 at 4:15pm. He gave this talk as a 
plenary speaker at FCRC and also at several depts around the country. I 
recommend it highly.

Please let me know if you would like to meet with Christos on Mon or 
Tues afternoon.


*The Algorithmic Lens: How the Computational Perspective is Transforming 
the Sciences *

*Christos Papadimitriou*
UC Berkeley

    Computational research transforms the sciences (physical,
    mathematical, life or social) not just by empowering them
    analytically, but mainly by providing a novel and powerful
    perspective which often leads to unforeseen insights. Examples
    abound: quantum computation provides the right forum for questioning
    and testing some of the most basic tenets of quantum physics, while
    statistical mechanics has found in the efficiency of randomized
    algorithms a powerful metaphor for phase transitions. In
    mathematics, the P vs. NP problem has joined the list of the most
    profound and consequential problems, and in economics considerations
    of computational complexity revise predictions of economic behavior
    and affect the design of economic mechanisms such as auctions.
    Finally, in biology some of the most fundamental problems, such as
    understanding the brain and evolution, can be productively recast in
    computational terms. My talk is structured around eight vignettes
    exemplifying this pattern. 

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