SMS scnews item created by Sean Gardiner at Tue 1 Apr 2014 1611
Type: Seminar
Distribution: World
Expiry: 4 Apr 2014
Calendar1: 3 Apr 2014 1300-1400
CalLoc1: New Law 020
Auth: (sgar9702) in SMS-WASM

SUMS: Vasak -- "Everyone Hates Vector Calculus"

This week’s SUMS talk is by Cambridge student David Vasak.  

Abstract: One of the core insights of relativity is that the world is 4 dimensional.
Why then do we persist in teaching most of modern physics using 3 dimensional
operations, like divergence, gradient and curl? We will discuss a more geometric
approach to calculus, generalising the intuitions most students of mathematics have
picked up in low dimensional situations.  The payoff will be a beautifully simple
description of Maxwell’s equations in language even pure mathematicians can love.  Along
the way, time permitting, we will touch on subjects as varied as complex analysis and
the deformations of coffee cups into donuts.

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