Faculty of Mathematics Part III Essays:


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1 Faculty of Mathematics Part III Essays: Titles 1 59 Department of Pure Mathematics & Mathematical Statistics Titles Department of Applied Mathematics & Theoretical Physics Titles Additional Essays 1
2 Contents Introductory Notes 8 1. Automorphisms of Free Groups Garside Groups Modular Curves and the Class Number One Problem Binary Quartics and 2Descent on Elliptic Curves Countable Ordinals, Proof Theory and FastGrowing Functions Quine s Set Theory NF Bounds for Roth s Theorem on Arithmetic Progressions Interlacing Families and the Kadison Singer Problem KZ Equations, Quantum Groups, Gal( Q/Q), Periods Derived Category, Stability Conditions, K3 Surfaces Hodge Theory Algebraic Stacks Tropical Geometry Yau s Solution of the Calabi Conjecture Harmonic Forms Infinite Games for Infinitary Logic The Minimality Principle for the Modal Logic of Forcing Sets, Classes and the Fundamental Theorem on Measurable Cardinals Fibred Categories and Stacks Blow up for Nonlinear Schrödinger Equation Auslander Reiten Theory Quivers with Potentials 31 2
3 23. Denoising Geodesic Ray Transforms Surfaces in P 1 P 1 P Hilbert Schemes of Points in Projective Spaces Toric Geometry Finite Loop Spaces Representation Stability The Thom Conjecture Hochschild Homology and the HOMFLY Polynomial Multiplier Ideals and the Openness Conjecture for Complex Singularity Exponents Flag Algebras in Graph Theory Ramsey Numbers and Algebra Serre s Conjecture Primitive Ideals in Enveloping Algebras Auslander Gorenstein Rings The Heat Equation and the Atiyah Singer Index Theorem Operator K Theory Riemann Surfaces and Teichmüller Theory The Hanna Neumann Conjecture Complexes of Curves Analysis of a Large and Complex Data Set Modern ChangePoint Detection Statistical Analysis for Manifold Data Statistical Neuroimaging SLE and Conformal Restriction Measures 48 3
4 47. Gaussian Multiplicative Chaos Stochastic Scheduling Lorentz/Ehrenfest Wind Tree Model Low Rank Matrix Recovery Problems in Statistics Nonparametric Inference Under Shape Constraints Tuning Parameters for HighDimensional Statistical Methods PostSelection Inference in HighDimensional Statistics LoopErased Random Walk and SLE(2) Statistical Inference and Optimal Auction Design Fair Allocation of MultiType Resources Assigning Tasks to Workers in Crowdsourcing Services Fluid Models for Restless Bandits RiskSensitive Optimal Control Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay Oscillons at the End of Inflation Effective Field Theory The Mathematics of Metal Extrusion Quantum Hamiltonian Complexity Gravity Currents flowing through Porous Obstacles Flying a Canoe: The Fluid Mechanics of a Single Paddle Geometry of Supersymmetric and Superconformal Quantum Mechanics Do Fluids Flow through Rocks? Orthogonality and ComplexValued Measures Structure Formation in Saturn s Rings 66 4
5 71. Synchronisation in Viscous Fluids InteriorPoint Methods in Image Processing Variational Phase Unwrapping Convective Down Draughts and Storm Initiation Natural Ventilation of Tall Buildings Skyrmions Warped Astrophysical Discs Global Modes in Shear Flow Fermion Determinants and Anomalies Large Scale Dynamo Action at Large Magnetic Reynolds Number Lovelock Theories of Gravity Holographic Superconductors Two Dimensional Yang Mills Lattice QCD and Applications How to Build a Calabi Yau from Gauge Theory Mass Transfer in Eccentric Binary Stars The Velo Zwanziger Phenomenon LargeScale and Stochastic Optimisation The Difficulty with NonConvex Energies in Variational Calculus The Mathematics of Image Sequences Granular Collapse: Particle Size and Roughness of the Base Slide, Glide and Turn: Base Roughness Acting on a Particle Localization Transition of the Directed Polymer Applications of Strongly Compact Cardinals 84 5
6 95. Conjectures of Galvin and Rado Strong and Super Tree Properties ModelFree NoArbitrage Bounds Models of Price Impact Numerical Solution to BSDEs The Conjecture of Birch and SwinnertonDyer Bandit Strategies for the Design of Clinical Trials for Rare Diseases Averaging Lemmas and XRay Transform Geometric Analysis of Degenerate Collisional Relaxation Radon Transform and Mixing by Collisions The Erdős Sierpiński Duality for Groups Collaborative Filtering Techniques for Recommender Systems Viscous Capillary PinchOff Strategic Equilibria in Voting Temperature Profiles of Exoplanetary Atmospheres Multilevel Monte Carlo for Finance Demazure Modules Universality Problems in Banach Spaces Scaling Laws for MHD Turbulence with Large Imposed Magnetic Fields The Magnetorotational Dynamo in Accretion Discs Primordial NonGaussianity and Largescale Structure Explicit Form of Zolotarev Polynomials The Price of Anarchy of Proportional Allocation Price s Law for Spherically Symmetric Gravitational Collapse 105 6
7 119. Bayesian Nonparametric Regression Using Gaussian Processes Nonparametric Drift Estimation from LowFrequency Data Random ksat The Erdős Distinct Distances Problem Shimura Varieties Complex Multiplication of Abelian Varieties Classical Solutions to the Minimal Surface Equation viathe De Giorgi Allard Method The LOCC Paradigm in Quantum Information Theory The Method of Auxiliary Sources for Solving Scattering Problems The Method of Efficient Congruencing Models of Angiogenesis in Wound Healing 113 7
8 Introductory Notes General advice. Before attempting any particular essay, candidates are advised to meet the setter in person. Normally candidates may consult the setter up to three times before the essay is submitted. The first meeting may take the form of a group meeting at which the setter describes the essay topic and answers general questions. Choice of topic. The titles of essays appearing in this list have already been announced in the Reporter. If you wish to write an essay on a topic not covered in the list you should approach your Part III Adviser or any other member of staff to discuss a new title. You should then ask your Director of Studies to write to the Secretary of the Faculty Board, c/o the Undergraduate Office at the CMS (Room B1.28) no later than 1 February. The new essay title will require the approval of the Examiners. It is important that the essay should not substantially overlap with any course being given in Part III. Additional Essays will be announced in the Reporter no later than 1 March and are open to all candidates. Even if you request an essay you do not have to do it. Essay titles cannot be approved informally: the only allowed essay titles are those which appear in the final version of this document (on the Faculty web site). Originality. The object of a typical essay is to give an exposition of a piece of mathematics which is scattered over several books or papers. Originality is not usually required, but often candidates will find novel approaches. All sources and references used should be carefully listed in a bibliography. Length of essay. There is no prescribed length for the essay in the University Ordinances, but the general opinion seems to be that 6,00010,000 words is a normal length. If you are in any doubt as to the length of your essay please consult your adviser or essay setter. Presentation. Your essay should be legible and may be either hand written or produced on a word processor. Candidates are reminded that mathematical content is more important than style. Usually it is advisable for candidates to write an introduction outlining the contents of the essay. In some cases a conclusion might also be required. It is very important that you ensure that the pages of your essay are fastened together in an appropriate way, by stapling or binding them, for example. Credit. The essay is the equivalent of one threehour exam paper and marks are credited accordingly. Final decision on whether to submit an essay. You are not asked to state which papers you have chosen for examination and which essay topic, if any, you have chosen until the beginning of the third term (Easter) when you will be sent the appropriate form to fill in and hand to your Director of Studies. Your Director of Studies should countersign the form and send it to the Chairman of Examiners (c/o the Undergraduate Office, Centre for Mathematical Sciences) so as to arrive before the second Friday in Easter Full Term, which this year is Friday 1 May Note that this deadline will be strictly adhered to. 8
9 Date of submission. You should submit your essay, through your Director of Studies, to the Chairman of Examiners (c/o Undergraduate Office, CMS). Your essay should be sent with the completed essay submission form found on page 11 of this document. The first part of the form should be signed by your Director of Studies. The second part should be completed and signed by you. Please do not bind or staple the essay submission form to your essay, but instead attach it loosely, e.g. with a paperclip. Then either you or your Director of Studies should take your essay and the signed essay submission form to the Undergraduate Office (B1.28) at the Centre for Mathematical Sciences so as to arrive not later than the second Friday in Easter Full Term, which this year is Friday 1 May Note that this deadline will be strictly adhered to. Title page. The title page of your essay should bear ONLY the essay title. Please do not include your name or any other personal details on the title page or anywhere else on your essay. Signed declaration. The essay submission form requires you to sign the following declaration. It is important that you read and understand this before starting your essay. I declare that this essay is work done as part of the Part III Examination. I have read and understood the Statement on Plagiarism for Part III and Graduate Courses issued by the Faculty of Mathematics, and have abided by it. This essay is the result of my own work, and except where explicitly stated otherwise, only includes material undertaken since the publication of the list of essay titles, and includes nothing which was performed in collaboration. No part of this essay has been submitted, or is concurrently being submitted, for any degree, diploma or similar qualification at any university or similar institution. Important note. The Statement on Plagiarism for Part III and Graduate Courses issued by the Faculty of Mathematics is reproduced starting on page 12 of this document. If you are in any doubt as to whether you will be able to sign the above declaration you should consult the member of staff involved in the essay. If they are unsure about your situation they should consult the Chairman of the Examiners as soon as possible. The examiners have the power to examine candidates viva voce (i.e. to give an oral examination) on their essays, although this procedure is not often used. However, you should be aware that the University takes a very serious view of any use of unfair means (plagiarism, cheating) in University examinations. The powers of the University Court of Discipline in such cases extend to depriving a student of membership of the University. Fortunately, incidents of this kind are very rare. Return of essays. It is not possible to return essays. You are therefore advised to make your own copy before handing in your essay. Further advice. It is important to control carefully the amount of time spent writing your essay since it should not interfere with your work on other courses. You might find it helpful to construct an essaywriting timetable with plenty of allowance for slippage and then try your hardest to keep to it. 9
10 Research. If you are interested in going on to do research you should, if possible, be available for consultation in the next few days after the results are published. If this is not convenient, or if you have any specific queries about PhD admissions, please contact the following addresses: Applied Mathematics & Theoretical Physics DAMTP PhD Admissions, Mathematics Graduate Office, Centre for Mathematical Sciences, Wilberforce Road, Cambridge CB3 0WA, United Kingdom. Pure Mathematics & Mathematical Statistics DPMMS PhD Admissions, Mathematics Graduate Office, Centre for Mathematical Sciences, Wilberforce Road, Cambridge CB3 0WB, United Kingdom. 10
11 MATHEMATICAL TRIPOS, PART III 2015 Essay submission form To the Chairman of Examiners for Part III Mathematics. Dear Sir/Madam, I enclose the Part III essay of... Signed... (Director of Studies) I declare that this essay is work done as part of the Part III Examination. I have read and understood the Statement on Plagiarism for Part III and Graduate Courses issued by the Faculty of Mathematics, and have abided by it. This essay is the result of my own work, and except where explicitly stated otherwise, only includes material undertaken since the publication of the list of essay titles, and includes nothing which was performed in collaboration. No part of this essay has been submitted, or is concurrently being submitted, for any degree, diploma or similar qualification at any university or similar institution. Signed:... Date:... Title of Essay:... Name:... College:... Home address: (for return of comments)
12 Appendix: Faculty of Mathematics Guidelines on Plagiarism For the latest version of these guidelines please see University Resources The University publishes information on Good academic practice and plagiarism, including a Universitywide statement on plagiarism; Information for students, covering Your responsibilities Why does plagiarism matter? Using commercial organisations and essay banks How the University detects and disciplines plagiarism; information about Referencing and study skills; information on Resources and sources of support; the University s statement on proofreading; FAQs. There are references to the University statement in the Part IB and Part II Computational Project Manuals, in the Part III Essay booklet, and in the M.Phil. Computational Biology Course Guide. Please read the University statement carefully; it is your responsibility to read and abide by this statement. The Faculty Guidelines The guidelines below are provided by the Faculty to help students interpret what the University Statement means for Mathematics. However neither the University Statement nor the Faculty Guidelines supersede the University s Regulations as set out in the Statutes and Ordinances. If you are unsure as to the interpretation of the University Statement, or the Faculty Guidelines, or the Statutes and Ordinances, you should ask your Director of Studies or Course Director (as appropriate). What is plagiarism? Plagiarism can be defined as the unacknowledged use of the work of others as if this were your own original work. In the context of any University examination, this amounts to passing off the work of others as your own to gain unfair advantage. Such use of unfair means will not be tolerated by the University or the Faculty. If detected, the penalty may be severe and may lead to failure to obtain your degree. This is in the interests of the vast majority of students who work hard for their degree through their own efforts, and it is essential in safeguarding the integrity of the degrees awarded by the University. 12
13 Checking for plagiarism Faculty Examiners will routinely look out for any indication of plagiarised work. They reserve the right to make use of specialised detection software if appropriate (the University subscribes to Turnitin Plagiarism Detection Software). See also the Board of Examinations statement on How the University detects and disciplines plagiarism. The scope of plagiarism Plagiarism may be due to copying (this is using another person s language and/or ideas as if they are your own); collusion (this is collaboration either where it is forbidden, or where the extent of the collaboration exceeds that which has been expressly allowed). How to avoid plagiarism Your course work, essays and projects (for Parts IB, II and III, the M.Phil. etc.), are marked on the assumption that it is your own work: i.e. on the assumption that the words, diagrams, computer programs, ideas and arguments are your own. Plagiarism can occur if, without suitable acknowledgement and referencing, you take any of the above (i.e. words, diagrams, computer programs, ideas and arguments) from books or journals, obtain them from unpublished sources such as lecture notes and handouts, or download them from the web. Plagiarism also occurs if you submit work that has been undertaken in whole or part by someone else on your behalf (such as employing a ghost writing service ). Furthermore, you should not deliberately reproduce someone else s work in a written examination. These would all be regarded as plagiarism by the Faculty and by the University. In addition you should not submit any work that is substantially the same as work you have submitted, or are concurrently submitting, for any degree, diploma or similar qualification at any university or similar institution. However, it is often the case that parts of your essays, projects and coursework will be based on what you have read and learned from other sources, and it is important that in your essay or project or coursework you show exactly where, and how, your work is indebted to these other sources. The golden rule is that the Examiners must be in no doubt as to which parts of your work are your own original work and which are the rightful property of someone else. A good guideline to avoid plagiarism is not to repeat or reproduce other people s words, diagrams or computer programs. If you need to describe other people s ideas or arguments try to paraphrase them in your own words (and remember to include a reference). Only when it is absolutely necessary should you include direct quotes, and then these should be kept to a minimum. You should also remember that in an essay or project or coursework, it is not sufficient merely to repeat or paraphrase someone else s view; you are expected at least to evaluate, critique and/or synthesise their position. In slightly more detail, the following guidelines may be helpful in avoiding plagiarism. Quoting. A quotation directly from a book or journal article is acceptable in certain circumstances, provided that it is referenced properly: 13
14 short quotations should be in inverted commas, and a reference given to the source; longer pieces of quoted text should be in inverted commas and indented, and a reference given to the source. Whatever system is followed, you should additionally list all the sources in the bibliography or reference section at the end of the piece of work, giving the full details of the sources, in a format that would enable another person to look them up easily. There are many different styles for bibliographies. Use one that is widely used in the relevant area (look at papers and books to see what referencing style is used). Paraphrasing. Paraphrasing means putting someone else s work into your own words. Paraphrasing is acceptable, provided that it is acknowledged. A rule of thumb for acceptable paraphrasing is that an acknowledgement should be made at least once in every paragraph. There are many ways in which such acknowledgements can be made (e.g. Smith (2001) goes on to argue that... or Smith (2001) provides further proof that... ). As with quotation, the full details of the source should be given in the bibliography or reference list. General indebtedness. When presenting the ideas, arguments and work of others, you must give an indication of the source of the material. You should err on the side of caution, especially if drawing ideas from one source. If the ordering of evidence and argument, or the organisation of material reflects a particular source, then this should be clearly stated (and the source referenced). Use of web sources. Youshouldusewebsourcesasifyouwereusingabookorjournalarticle. The above rules for quoting (including cutting and pasting ), paraphrasing and general indebtedness apply. Web sources must be referenced and included in the bibliography. Collaboration. Unless it is expressly allowed, collaboration is collusion and counts as plagiarism. Moreover, as well as not copying the work of others you should not allow another person to copy your work. Links to University Information Information on Good academic practice and plagiarism, including Information for students. information on Policy, procedure and guidance for staff and examiners. 14
15 Table 1: A Timetable of Relevant Events and Deadlines Sunday 1 February Friday 1 May Friday 1 May Thursday 28 May Thursday 18 June Deadline for Candidates to request additional essays. Deadline for Candidates to return form stating choice of papers and essays. Deadline for Candidates to submit essays. Part III Examinations begin. Classlist read out in Senate House, 9.00 am. Comments. If you feel that these notes could be made more helpful please write to The Chairman of Examiners, c/o the Undergraduate Office, CMS. Further information. Professor T.W. Körner (DPMMS) wrote an essay on Part III essays which may be useful (though it is slanted towards the pure side). It is available via his home page 15
16 1. Automorphisms of Free Groups... Dr C.J.B. Brookes This essay topic combines group theory, graph theory and algebraic topology. The story up to 1977 may be found in Chapter 1 of the book by Lyndon and Schupp [1]. This is presented rather algebraically. Nowadays use is made of the natural actions of a free group on treelike spaces. Using this approach Gersten showed in 1982 that the fixed point subgroup of an automorphism of a free group of finite rank is finitely generated. See [2] for example. In 1986 Culler and Vogtmann [3] defined Outer Space consisting of equivalence classes of certain tree actions of the given free group F. This topological space is acted on by the outer automorphism group Out(F )off and enables one to study the topological properties of Out(F ). A good place to start is to look at Vogtmann s survey article on Automorphisms of free groups and Outer Space and choose what aspect you might want to concentrate on. Useful: Geometric Group Theory [1] R.C. Lyndon, P.E. Schupp Combinatorial group theory, Springer [2] J.R. Stallings Graphical theory of automorphisms of free groups (in Combinatorial group theory and topology, proceedings of the Alta conference, ed. S.M. Gersten, J.R. Stallings, Annals of Math. Studies, Princeton, 1987). [3] M. Culler and K. Vogtmann, Moduli of graphs and automorphisms of free groups, Inventiones Math. 84 (1986), Garside Groups... Dr C.J.B. Brookes The braid groups arise naturally in many parts of mathematics. For example they are closely related to the mapping class groups of npunctured 2spheres and are to be found as groups of automorphisms of free groups. They were first introduced by Artin in 1925 and in more recent times there has been renewed enthusiasm for their study, in particular as a result of applications in knot theory. One important part of the theory concerns Garside s approach to the word and conjugacy problems for braid groups [1]; see also Chapter 6 of [2]. Similar arguments apply more widely and this led to the definition of Garside groups by Dehornoy in the 1990s, for example see [2]. These groups arise as the group of fractions of a monoid with certain nice properties. Other examples are the Artin groups of finite Coxeter type. Useful: The course on Geometric Group Theory. 16
17 [1] F.A. Garside, The Braid Group and Other Groups, Q.J. Math, (20) [2] C. Kassel and V. Turaev, Braid groups, Springer, Graduate Texts in Mathematics [3] P. Dehornoy, L. Paris, Gaussian Groups and Garside Groups: Two Generalizations of Artin Groups, Proc. London Math. Soc., 79 (1999) Modular Curves and the Class Number One Problem... Dr T.A. Fisher The class number one problem of Gauss asks for the complete list of imaginary quadratic fields with class number one. It has long been known that there are at least nine such fields. The first proofs that this list is complete were given by Baker (using linear forms in logarithms) and Stark (using modular functions) in This essay should describe the latter approach, which is related to earlier work of Heegner. The starting point should be the treatment of Serre [5, Sections A.5 and A.6], who reduces the problem to that of determining the integral points on a certain modular curve X + ns(n). Nowadays the proof can be completed in several different ways, that is, by considering different values of N; see [1], [2] and [4]. Useful: Local Fields, Algebraic Number Theory [1] B. Baran, A Modular Curve of Level 9 and the Class Number One Problem, J. Number Theory 129 (2009), no. 3, [2] I. Chen, On Siegel s Modular Curve of Level 5 and the Class Number One Problem, J. Number Theory 74 (1999), no. 2, [3] D.A. Cox, Primes of the Form x 2 + ny 2, Fermat, Class Field Theory and Complex Multiplication, Wiley, [4] M.A. Kenku, A Note on the Integral Points of a Modular Curve of Level 7, Mathematika 32 (1985), no. 1, [5] J.P. Serre, Lectures on the Mordell Weil Theorem, Aspects of Mathematics, Friedr. Vieweg & Sohn, Braunschweig, Binary Quartics and 2Descent on Elliptic Curves Dr T.A. Fisher The Mordell Weil theorem states that the group of rational points E(Q) on an elliptic curve E/Q is a finitely generated abelian group. A key step in the proof involves showing that E(Q)/2E(Q) injects into a certain finite group, called the 2Selmer group. Computing the 2Selmer group then gives an upper bound for the rank of E(Q). This essay should describe how the 2Selmer group may be computed by counting equivalence classes of binary quartics. The original method is due to Birch and SwinnertonDyer [1], but has since been refined in many ways: see for example [2], [3], [4]. This approach to 2descent is also the starting point for the recent work of Bhargava and Shankar on bounding the average rank of elliptic curves. 17
18 Useful: Local Fields, Algebraic Number Theory [1] B.J. Birch an H.P.F. SwinnertonDyer, Notes on Elliptic Curves. I, J. Reine Angew. Math. 212 (1963), [2] J.E. Cremona, Reduction of Binary Cubic and Quartic Forms, LMS J. Comput. Math. 2 (1999), [3] J.E. Cremona, Classical Invariants and 2Descent on Elliptic Curves, J. Symbolic Comput. 31 (2001), [4] M. Stoll and J.E. Cremona, Minimal Models for 2Coverings of Elliptic Curves, LMS J. Comput. Math. 5 (2002), Countable Ordinals, Proof Theory and FastGrowing Functions Dr T.E. Forster A good point of departure for this essay would be Exercise 10 on Sheet 4 of Prof Johnstone s Part II set Theory and Logic course in 2012/3, in which the student is invited to show how, for every countable ordinal, a subset of R can be found that is wellordered to that length in the inherited order. The obvious way to do this involves induction on countable ordinals and leads swiftly to the discovery of fundamental sequences. These can be put to work immediately in the definition of hierarchies of fastgrowing functions. This leads in turn to the Schmidt conditions, which the student should explain carefully. There is a wealth of material on how proofs of totality for the fastergrowing functions in this hierarchy have significant indeed calibratable consistency strength. One thinks of Goodstein s function and Con(PA), or of ParisHarrington. There is plenty here from which the student can choose what to cover. The Doner Tarski hierarchy of functions (addition, multiplication, exponentiation... ) invites a transfinite generalisation and supports a generalisation of Cantor Normal form for ordinals. Nevertheless, the endeavour to notate ordinals beyond ɛ 0 does not use those ideas, but rather the enumeration of fixed points: such is the Veblen hierarchy. From this one is led to the impredicative Bachmann notation, with Ω and the ϑ function. Essential: Part II Set Theory and Logic [1] SchwichtenbergWainer, Proofs and Computations, Cambridge University Press [2] [3] [4] 18
19 6. Quine s Set Theory NF... Dr T.E. Forster The set theory revealed to the world in Quine [1937] was a bit of a backwater for a very long time, largely because of unanswered questions about its consistency. Recently two alleged consistency proofs have come to light, by Randall Holmes and Jamie Gabbay, neither of them yet published, but both of considerable interest. It is asking too much of a Part III essay to cover either of them; they are both of them too long and too complex and, in any case, neither is yet 100% secure. However an essay on NF focussed on setting out the historical and technical background required for at least Holmes proof would not only be feasible but would also be an instructive exercise for the student and helpful to any subsequent reader wishing to master the proofs when they finally appear. Such an essay should cover the following. Specker s results connecting NF and Simply Typed Set Theory; Holmes work on tangled types and tangled cardinals arising from Jensen s proof of Con(NFU); Rosser s counting axiom and the refutation of AC, including a brief treatment of the relevant parts of cardinal arithmetic without choice (cardinal trees, amorphous cardinals). That much would be core, but probably not on its own enough for an essay. A study of the Rieger Bernays permutation method would be a useful (but not essential) preparation for Holmes proof, and in any case the method is a topic of central importance in the study of NF; a treatment of this material can be easily given and the exercise is instructive. (Fraenkel Mostowski permutation methods are relevant but that is an essay topic on its own account, and is in any case unavailable because it was set last year.) Church Oswald models for set theories with a universal set are another topic that could be covered, useful and interesting but less central to the consistency project tho germane to NF. Another interesting topic (under investigation in Cambridge) not directly relevant to the consistency proofs but worthy of treatment is the failure of cartesianclosedness in the category of sets according to NF, and more generally a categorytheoretic treatment of the world of NF sets. The only comprehensive reference at this stage is [1], but there is a wealth of other material linked from and the setter will be happy to supply more detailed information on demand. Essential: Part II Logic and Set Theory or equivalent. [1] Forster, T.E., Set Theory with a Universal set. Oxford Logic Guides. OUP 1992, second edition [2] Holmes, M. R. Elementary set theory with a universal set. volume 10 of the Cahiers du Centre de logique, Academia, LouvainlaNeuve (Belgium), 241 pages, ISBN available online at 7. Bounds for Roth s Theorem on Arithmetic Progressions Professor W.T. Gowers Roth s theorem for arithmetic progressions states that there is a function δ(n) that tends to zero with n such that every subset of {1, 2,...,n} of density at least δ(n) contains an arithmetic 19
20 progression of length 3. Roth s original proof gave a bound δ(n) =C/log log n, which has subsequently been improved by many authors. The current record is held by Thomas Bloom, who has obtained an estimate of C(log log n) 4 / log n and introduced some useful new tools. His proof is the subject of this essay. Essential: Part III Techniques in Combinatorics (parts of). [1] A Quantitative Improvement for Roth s Theorem on Arithmetic Progressions, Thomas F. Bloom, (and references therein) 8. Interlacing Families and the Kadison Singer Problem Professor W.T. Gowers One of the most exciting recent results in mathematics was the solution in 2013 of the longstanding Kadison Singer problem by Adam Marcus, Daniel Spielman and Nikhil Srivastava. The problem was originally formulated as a question about C algebras, but several equivalent formulations were subsequently discovered that involve nothing more advanced than inner product spaces. These formulations were extremely appealing in their own right. As interesting as the fact that the problem was solved is that the authors introduced a new technique, the method of interlacing families of polynomials, that has other applications. Indeed, their first application was not to the Kadison Singer problem but to the construction of Ramanujan graphs that is, graphs for which the second largest eigenvalue of the adjacency matrix is particularly small. This essay would be about interlacing polynomials and the applications just mentioned. Essential: IB Linear Algebra or equivalent. [1] Interlacing Families I: Bipartite Ramanujan Graphs of all Degrees, Adam Marcus, Daniel A. Spielman and Nikhil Srivastava, [2] Interlacing Families II: Mixed Characteristic Polynomials and the Kadison Singer Problem, Adam Marcus, Daniel A. Spielman and Nikhil Srivastava, [3] Ramanujan Graphs and the Solution of the Kadison Singer Problem, Adam Marcus, Daniel A. Spielman and Nikhil Srivastava, (also in the proceedings of the 2014 International Congress of Mathematicians) 20
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