Events Calendar

YINS Seminar: Daniel Spielman

Weekly Seminar
Event time: 
Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Yale Institute for Network Science See map
17 Hillhouse Avenue, 3rd Floor
New Haven, CT 06511
Event description: 

YINS Seminar Series, ”Physical metaphors for graphs and networks”

Speaker: Daniel Spielman
Henry Ford II Professor of Computer Science and Statistics and Data Science at Yale University

Talk summary: We will show how physical metaphors can help us understand the structure of a graph. The graphs arising in different disciplines can have very different characteristics: social networks, protein-protein interactions networks, road networks, and scientific meshes are all graphs. But, they can look very different from each other. This diversity makes it difficult to understand arbitrary graphs.

We will explore an approach to understanding graphs that has been unreasonably successful: imagining that a graph represents a physical object. For example, we may pretend that the edges of a graph are springs, rubber bands, or resistors.  Linear algebraic techniques for understanding these physical systems naturally lead to the development of spectral and algebraic graph theory.  We will survey some of the fundamental ideas from these fields.