Pure Math Grad Student Colloquium

Tuesday, September 28, 2021 4:30 pm - 4:30 pm EDT (GMT -04:00)

Andrej Vukovic, Department of Pure Mathematics, University of Waterloo

"Why You Should Care about Discriminants"

You've all made the acquaintance of the humble discriminant b^2 - 4ac of a binary quadratic form because of its appearance under the square root in the quadratic formula. And if you've studied algebraic number theory, you know that algebraic number fields have discriminants too. But did you know that discriminants have connections to the study of vision and black hole thermodynamics? 

In this talk, I will explain what motivated mathematicians to care about discriminants and the connections between different types of discriminants. I will also talk about the theory of discriminants, their role in number theory, and some surprising applications.

Zoom meeting: https://uwaterloo.zoom.us/j/96167089691?pwd=M2VrOVpENzI4VHZIYkhsckJTZE4xUT09