Columbia Mathematics Department Colloquium


"Noncommutative geometry of random surfaces"


Andrei Okounkov

Columbia and Princeton


I will talk about a particular and very simple random surface model, the so-called

stepped surfaces. Their macroscopic shape is dictated by the law of large numbers

that makes a very large random surface to have a nonrandom shape in first

approximation.  This nonrandom shape is found from a variational problem and

turns out to be an algebraic curve in disguise.  The finer, random details of

the random surface may be determined from a certain quantization of this algebraic

curve. This quantized, noncommutative curve will be the main character in my talk.



  October 29th, Wednesday, 5:00-6:00 pm

Mathematics 520

Tea will be served at 4:30pm