Student colloquium

Thursday, August 7, 2014 3:30 pm - 3:30 pm EDT (GMT -04:00)

Cameron Williams, Department of Pure Mathematics, University of Waterloo

“Fractional Calculus: A Tale of Mystery and Intrigue”

Fractional calculus is the generalization of calculus beyond simply integer order derivatives and integrals to arbitrary real - or, more generally, complex! - order. Historically, fractional calculus has struggled more than its traditional counterpart, as the notions are much more subtle and drastically less intuitive. In this talk, I will discuss what fractional calculus is, present some of the historical challenges fractional calculus has met, and give general expressions for the fractional derivative and integral. Some peculiarities and applications of fractional calculus within mathematics and physics will be discussed. Animated plots for various fractional derivatives and integrals will be shown.