(SEMINAR) Rob Scharein, PhD

event date: 30 September 2022

The Centre of New Technologies invites to a seminar by

Rob Scharein, PhD

Title: Why Knots? ~ A Tangled Tale

The Mathematics, Art & Science of Knotting and Tangling

Date:  30th September 2022, Friday

Time: 1:00 pm (Central European Time)

Host: Prof. Krzysztof Kazimierczuk

The seminar will be in the CeNT aula hall (00.142) on the ground floor

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Knots and tangles are everywhere, from hair braids and knotted fish to tangled extension cords and DNA molecules. Knot theory is also an exciting branch of modern mathematics, with interesting and sometimes unexpected applications to Physics, Biology, Chemistry and even the movement of dancers and robots. It’s often said that Mathematics is the science of patterns. Of all patterns, knots are among the most robust, the most universal. For this reason their scientific applications are so widespread. In addition, knots find themselves as universal forms of cultural and artistic expression. Knot tying is one of humanity’s oldest technologies. We will follow the common thread tying these subjects to one another, interleaving the cultural and scientific ways of knowing.

The presentation will be highly visual and interactive using the speaker’s own software KnotPlot (knotplot.com). In addition to a wide ranging survey, the speaker will discuss his research into topological drawing and entanglement problems involving DNA molecules. The talk should appeal to a wide audience, mathematicians and artists, biologists and physicists, or anyone who simply enjoys the visual beauty of knots.

All things are interwoven with one another; a sacred bond unites them; there is scarcely one thing that is isolated from another. Everything is coordinated, everything works together in giving form to the one universe. The world-order is a unity made up of multiplicity.
— Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
(Roman Emperor, 2nd century)

To me the simple act of tying a knot is an adventure in unlimited space.
— Clifford Ashley, The Ashley Book of Knots
(Artist and knot tyer extraordinaire, mid 20th century)

Knots are fun!
— Greg Buck, personal communication
(Mathematician and evangelist of tangles, 21st century)