Math Table/Open Neighborhood Seminar: All the pictures of all of the surfaces


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September 2, 2020 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
via Zoom Video Conferencing

Mike Hopkins - Chair, Harvard University Math Department

Math Table/Open Neighborhood Seminar

You've probably seen pictures drawn on the chalkboard of a torus (the surface of a donut) or the Klein bottle, a torus with many holes, and perhaps other surfaces.  In this talk we will take up the question of whether or not it is possible to make a list of all of the possible pictures of surfaces. The question turns out to have a surprising and beautiful answer, but it takes some real insights to make it into an actual question in mathematics.  The story here is not only one of a striking theorem, but also one about mathematicians find, ask, and refine questions.

via Zoom Video Conferencing:

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