The seminar meets on Tuesdays, 10:50-12:00, in Math -101

Spring 2017 meetings

Apr 25 Approximate groups and applications to the growth of groups Matthew Tointon
Given a set A in a group, write $A^n$ for the set of all products $x_1…x_n$ with each $x_i$ belonging to A. Roughly speaking, a set A for which $A^2$ is “not much larger than” A is called an “approximate group”. The “growth” of A, on the other hand, refers to the behaviour of $ A^n $ as n tends to infinity. Both of these have been fruitful areas of study, with applications in various branches of mathematics.

Remarkably, understanding the behaviour of approximate groups allows us to convert information $A^k$ for some single fixed k into information about the sequence $A^n$ as n tends to infinity, and in particular about the growth of A.

In this talk I will present various results describing the algebraic structure of approximate groups, and then explain how to use these to prove new results about growth. In particular, I will describe work with Romain Tessera in which we show that if $ A^k $ is bounded by $Mk^D$ for some given M and D then, provided k is large enough, A^n is bounded by $M’n^D$ for every n > k, with M’ depending only on M and D. This verifies a conjecture of Itai Benjamini.
May 23 Quantitative multiple recurrence for two and three transformations. Sebastián Donoso (University of O'higgins)

In this talk I will provide some counter-examples for quantitative multiple recurrence problems for systems with more than one transformation. For instance, I will show that there exists an ergodic system with two commuting transformations such that for every there exists such that for every $n \in \mathbb{N}$. The construction of such a system is based on the study of ``big’’ subsets of and satisfying combinatorial properties.

This a joint work with Wenbo Sun.

Jun 13 Mixing Time Estimation in Reversible Markov Chains from a Single Sample Path Aryeh Kontorovich (BGU)

We propose a procedure (the first of its kind) for computing a fully data-dependent interval that traps the mixing time t_mix of a finite reversible ergodic Markov chain at a prescribed confidence level. The interval is computed from a single finite-length sample path from the Markov chain, and does not require the knowledge of any parameters of the chain. This stands in contrast to previous approaches, which either only provide point estimates, or require a reset mechanism, or additional prior knowledge.

The interval is constructed around the relaxation time t_relax, which is strongly related to the mixing time, and the width of the interval converges to zero roughly at a sqrt{n} rate, where n is the length of the sample path. Upper and lower bounds are given on the number of samples required to achieve constant-factor multiplicative accuracy. The lower bounds indicate that, unless further restrictions are placed on the chain, no procedure can achieve this accuracy level before seeing each state at least \Omega(t_relax) times on the average. Finally, future directions of research are identified.

Join work with Daniel Hsu and Csaba Szepesvári

Jun 20 On weak nets Amir Yehudayoff (Technion)

We will discuss an equivalence between the existence of weak nets and the Radon number, in an abstractly convex space. Based on work with Shay Moran.

Jun 27 Furstenbergʼs conjecture on intersections of times 2 and times 3-invariant sets Meng Wu (HUJI)

In 1969, H. Furstenberg proposed a conjecture on dimension of intersections of and -invariant sets. We will present some of the steps involved in a recent solution of this conjecture.

Wed, Jul 12, 11:00–12:00 Definition of Chaos In Sense Of Devaney Basheer Abu Khalil

Devaney’s definition of chaos is one of the most popular and widely known. A continuous map f from a compact metric space (X, d) to itself is chaotic in the sense of Devaney if (1) f is transitive, (2) the set of all periodic points of f is dense in X, and (3) f has sensitive dependence on initial conditions. we will show that (1) and (2) imply (3) in Devaney’s definition in any metric space. We will show (1) and (3) do not imply (2) and (2) ; (3) do not imply (1). We will also show that for continuous maps on an interval in R; transitivity implies that the set of periodic points is dense. It follows that transitivity implies chaos, and we will give some examples to note that there are no other trivialities in Devaney’s definition when restricted to interval.