Universality and Randomness in Combinatorics, Geometry and Analysis


Anatoly Vershik

PDMI and Northeastern

Northeastern University

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Talk at 4:30 p.m. in 509 Lake Hall

Tea at 4:00 p.m. in 544 Nightingale Hall


Abstract:   Two examples of universal objects in combinatorics are the well-known Rado graph (1964), and the less known Urysohn universal metric space (1924). Both these objects are generic and random in a precise sense - due to Erdos-Renyi (1963) for the Rado graph, and to the speaker (2003) for the Urysohn space. Similar structures can be found in many other categories. We are mostly interested in the automorphism groups of these universal objects. No preliminary knowledge of the subject is assumed.

Here are some directions to Northeastern University. Lake Hall and Nightingale Hall can be best accessed from the entrance on the corner of Greenleaf Street and Leon Street. The two halls are connected, with no well-defined boundary in between. In particular, 509 Lake Hall is on the same corridor as 544 Nightingale Hall.

There is free parking available for people coming to the Colloquium at Northeastern's visitor parking (Rennaisance Garage). The entrance is from Columbus Avenue. If coming by car, you should park there and take the parking talon. After the lecture, you may pick up the payment coupon from Andrei Zelevinsky.

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Posted:: October 31, 2009    URL: