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Two-faced: The Cantor set and notions of size

The department will host the first colloquium of the semester with Dr. Emilie Wiesner of Ithaca College speaking about the Cantor set. The Cantor set is a specially constructed infinite set; it has earned its name from an appearance in an 1883 paper of the mathematician Georg Cantor. The Cantor set has many remarkable properties, and Dr. Wiesner will be talking about a few of them. In particular, she'll discuss how two ways of defining size ("measure" and "cardinality") lead to two very different ideas of how big this set really is! The talk will take place on Thursday, September 29th at 4:45pm in Napier 201. Refreshments will be served beforehand.

Posted 23 September 2011

Departing Faculty

With the beginning of Fall semester, 2011, two faculty members have left the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science. Professor Marc Corliss has accepted a new job working for Google in New York City. Professor Scotty Orr, who for the past few years has worked half time in teaching and half time in system administration, has resigned from that position.

Posted 23 August 2011

Lex Kridler: After Hobart

Lex Kridler '10 sends some news about what he has been doing since graduating from HWS:

"I started work as a front-end developer (css, html, javascript) at Resource Interactive (www.resource.com) a month after graduating from Hobart. Since starting at RI, I have helped develop websites for clients such as Victoria's Secret Pink, Bush's Beans, Kohl's, Hewlett Packard, Dentyne, Bose, Wendy's, Sherwin-Williams, and others. Currently, I am the only front-end web developer on the Purina Cat Chow site redesign, a new responsibility for me.

"This past January, Resource Interactive was named the fourth best digital agency in the country by AdAge magazine, a leading magazine in the digital agency industry. The day after we found out about our award from AdAge we were greeted at work with waffles and champagne in one of the three kitchens in the Columbus office. I either learn or experience something new every day at RI.

"This past spring I helped coach the Junior Varsity lacrosse team at the high school from which I graduated. It was a nice change of pace to go from work to lacrosse practice...

"Also outside of work, about four months ago I created Fluid Ideation LLC through which I do freelance web development. I have worked with two clients through Fluid Ideation, and I have meetings this week with two new clients. Let me know if you need a website!"


Posted 17 August 2011

Back to School

Keenan Simons (Hobart '09) will be starting graduate school at the University of Central Florida in the Fall. He will pursue a Masters Degree there, with a focus on computer vision and computer graphics.

Keenan was a double major in Mathematics and Computer Science at Hobart, and he received the department's John Klein Prize for excellence in Computer Science in 2009.


Posted 28 July 2011

Penrose Mandala

Heading up the stairs to the Math department in Lansing Hall, you'll notice the latest addition to the Department's art collection. It's an eight-foot circular double Penrose tiling in the form of a Mandala. The piece was a project in two sections of Math 110 taught by Professor John Vaughn in the Spring semester of 2011. A Penrose tiling covers the plane with shapes in an aperiodic (non-repeating) pattern. Each half of the Mandala shows (an approximation of) a different pattern.

Posted 14 June 2011

Graph Theory Article Published

An article by Professor Erika King and her students, Trevor Gionet and Yixiao Sha, has been published in the journal Discrete applied Mathematics. The article, which is titled "A revision and extension of results on 4-regular, 4-connected, claw-free graphs," corrects a classification of 4-connected, claw-free, well-covered graphs that was published in 1995.

Posted 2 June 2011

Masters Degree

Joshua Davis (Hobart '10) has completed a Master of Engineering in Computer Science from Cornell University. Josh was a double major in mathematics and computer science at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. While at Hobart, he did an Honors project under the supervision of Professor David Eck, and he was awarded the John Klein Prize for excellence in computer science.

Posted 26 May 2011

Department Prizes 2011

Every Spring, the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science awards several prizes to students in recognition of excellence in mathematics or computer science. These prizes have been endowed at various times in the history of the department, and they carry (small) cash awards in addition to the recognition.

Prizes awarded in Spring 2011 were as follows:

  • The Robert L. Beinert Prize, awarded to a graduating Senior to recognize excellence in Mathematics, to Zhiyou Cao '11.
  • The John S. Klein Prize, awarded to a graduating Senior to recognize excellence in Computer Science, to Reynaldo Kelly '11.
  • The Glen M. Lee Prize, awarded for the first time in 2011, to the Hobart Senior who has displayed the greatest proficiency in Mathematics and Athletics, to Kyle Whitaker '11.
  • The William Ross Proctor Prize, awarded to the William Smith sophomore who have achieved the highest rank in mathematics in their first two years at the Colleges, to Yanfen Wu '13
  • The Irving Bentsen Prize, awarded to the second year student at Hobart College who has the most outstanding record in mathematics and computer science, to Samuel Heinle '13 and Alexander Kittelberger '13.

Posted 30 April 2011

Students Elected to Phi Beta Kappa

ΦBK (Phi Beta Kappa) is a national academic honor society, founded in 1776, and currently having chapters at 280 American colleges and universities. According to its web site, "Phi Beta Kappa celebrates and advocates excellence in the liberal arts and sciences. Its campus chapters invite for induction the most outstanding arts and sciences students at America's leading colleges and universities."

In 2011, the following mathematics students were selected by Zeta of New York, the HWS chapter of ΦΒΚ, for membership:

  • Yaoxin Liu (H'12)
  • Jessica Tarantino (WS'12)
  • Sarah Tarantino (WS'12)

It is noteworthy that all three students were elected to membership as Juniors, which is considered a singular honor.

Posted 30 April 2011

Sigma Xi Nominees

Sigma Xi (www.sigmaxi.org) is an international scientific research society, founded in 1886 to "honor excellence in scientific investigation and encourage a sense of companionship and cooperation among researchers in all fields of science and engineering."

Each year, students who have done research in mathematics or computer science and who are in their last year at the Colleges are nominated by the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science for student membership in Sigma Xi.

For 2011, the nominees are:

  • Max Beckett (H'11)
  • Reynaldo Kelly (H'11)
  • Yixiao (Selena) Sha (WS'12)

(Selena, who is in the 3-2 Engineering program, was nominated as a Junior because she will be moving on to Columbia University next Fall to complete the engineering program.)


Posted 30 April 2011