2008 Talks
Here is the list of courses that were offered at cSplash 2008.
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indicate difficulty rating, in ascending order.
Description of the icon system.

Teacher info: Leslie Greengard (math prof) 

"The whole of science is nothing more than a refinement of everyday thinking." Being a scientist requires little more than an eagerness to Length: 150 minutes (2 periods) Prerequisites: A desire to try being a scientist. Mathematical Sophistication Required: None Teacher info: Will Findley (findley at nyu.edu), NYU Physiology and Neuroscience Departments, Grad student 
You may have seen fractals appear on teeshirts, desktop Length: 75 mins Prerequisites: Not much. Just the will to learn new (and cool) things! Teacher info: Enkeleida Lushi (lushi at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 2nd year PhD student 
It's tempting to believe you are an expert in how you learn. Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: A willingness to question how your own mind works. Teacher info: Paul Hand (hand at math.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 4th year Grad student 
If you know someone who has lost their hearing due to an injury Length: 60 minutes (9:3010:30am) Prerequisites: Teacher info: Maria TerMikaelian (maria at 
For all our intelligence and genetic complexity, humans are Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Basic knowledge of probability and biology would be helpful. Teacher info: 
Draw five dots on a page. Can you connect them without crossing any Related to: An Introduction to Graph Algorithms and Complexity, The Euler characteristic Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Marisa Debowsky (mad464 at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 3rd year grad student 
In this class, we will try to understand why there still is such This class is rated blue/black. Related to: Formal Deduction and Type Theory Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Antoine Cerfon (antoine.cerfon at gmail.com), MIT Department of Physics, 3rd year PhD Student 
Infinity is big. No, really really big. You can count all your In this class, we will ask (and answer!) whether there are more Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: None. Teacher info: Michael Shaw (mshaw at mit.edu), Stanford University Physics Department, 1st year PhD student 
You use computers every day, but have you ever wondered how they Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Prerequisites: Basic Algebra is helpful. Some programming experience in any Teacher info: Eric Hielscher (hielscher at gmail.com), NYU Computer Science Department, 1st Year PhD student 
Paul is trying to find a number from one to one hundred by BTW: Paul is Paul Erdos, the legendary questioning mathematician. Carole is an anagram  for what? Length: 60 minutes (9:4510:45am) Prerequisites: No calc, no trig. Only that elusive mathematical maturity. Teacher info: Joel Spencer (spencer at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math and Computer Science Departments, Professor 

We do not realize how we are all impacted by the controversial Length: 60 minutes (11am  noon) Prerequisites: A biology class will enhance your appreciation for this course. Teacher info: Sharon Monassebian (srm309 at nyu.edu), NYU College of Arts and Sciences, Junior Undergrad 
When Ph.D. candidates in Physics at the University of Chicago The This is not your parents' Length: 60 minutes (11am  noon) Prerequisites: 9thgrade algebra. Teacher info: Daniel Stein (daniel.stein at nyu.edu), NYU Dean of Science, Professor of Physics and Mathematics. 
We will take a 75minute journey through the world of group This class is rated green/blue. Related to: Introduction to Number Theory and Cryptography Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: High school algebra. Teacher info: Karol Koziol (karolkoziol at nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, Junior Undergrad 
See part 1 above for details. 
How do you understand what you see? You may remember that your Length: 60 minutes (11am  noon) Prerequisites: Little to none. Teacher info: Aaditya Rangan (rangan at math.nyu.edu), NYU Applied Math Department, Assistant Professor 
We will study the spreading of different diseases using a Most of the time in this class will be spent on developing the Length: 60 minutes (11am  noon) Prerequisites: None. Teacher info: Shilpa Khatri (khatri at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 5th year PhD student. 
If you think you have interest in hardware, and software alike, Length: 60 minutes (11am  noon) Prerequisites: none Teacher info: Zeeshan Mughal (zeeshan.jp at gmail.com), Stony Brook Computer Engineering 
It is all about survival of the fittest in problemsolving Length: 60 minutes (11am  noon) Prerequisites: Basic mathematical knowledge in algebra and system of binary numbers will be required. Other concepts will be introduced in Teacher info: Preeti Parikh (preeti10583 at gmail.com), NYU Math Department, Graduated in Sept 2007 with Master's in Scientific Computing 
A linkage can be thought of a robotic arm in the plane  a graph Related to: Graph Theory and the Donut Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Michael Burr (burr at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 3rd year PhD student 
There are some twodimensional surfaces that we all know about: Related to: Graph Theory and the Donut Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: If you can figure out how many edges appear in an icosahedron (or maybe Teacher info: Carl Gladish (gladish at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 1st year PhD student 

In this class, you will learn about the fundamentals of computer Length: 75 minutes (Block 3a: 12:30  1:45pm) Prerequisites: Teacher info: Trishank Karthik (trishank.karthik at nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, 1st year MS student 
This course reveals the inner workings of the CPU, the heart of Length: 75 minutes (Block 3a: 12:30  1:45pm) Prerequisites: You need to know what binary (base 2) numbers are and have some basic boolean logic (and, or, not). Teacher info: Yotam Gingold (gingold at cs.nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, 5th year PhD student 
Are you interested in studying mathematics, but shy about being Length: 75 minutes (Block 3a: 12:30  1:45pm) Prerequisites: Interest in Mathematics! Teacher info: Jessica Lin (jessicalin at nyu.edu), NYU Math and Physics Departments, Junior Undergrad 
In this class you will be learning the basics of Processing, an Length: 150 (two 75minute blocks: 3b and 4) Prerequisites: None. Teacher info: Samantha Richman (scr259 at nyu.edu), NYU, Gallatin, computer programming, and art concentration. 
So you think you can beat the house? Even if the game is fair... If instead of a single body we set many bodies out for random Length: 75 minutes (Block 3b: 1:15  2:30pm) Prerequisites: Teacher info: Saverio Spagnolie (saverio at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 6th year PhD Student 
According to Einstein, if you watched a 100 ft. long train car Related to: General Relativity and Black Holes. Length: 75 minutes (Block 3a: 12:30  1:45) Prerequisites: Teacher info: John Thompson (jdt257 at nyu.edu), NYU Physics Department, 3rd Year Undergraduate 
Have you ever wondered how websites keep your credit card number Related to: Group Theory and its Applications Length: 75 minutes (Block 3b: 1:15  2:30pm) Prerequisites: Basic algebra, quick elementary school long division; you should also know what a prime number is. Teacher info: Dan Mitchell (dam444 at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 1st Year MS student 
Suppose you have an infinite sequence of numbers. Maybe it's a Length: 75 minutes (Block 3b: 1:15  2:30pm) Prerequisites: No previous knowledge will be assumed, but we'll see a lot of material in a short time. Teacher info: Juliana Freire (jufreire at gmail.com), NYU Math Department, 3rd year PhD student 
What is Fourier Analysis and why is this subject so profoundly Related to: Formal Deduction and Type Theory Length: 75 minutes (Block 3b: 1:15  2:30pm) Prerequisites: Teacher info: Spencer Greenberg (willfind at gmail.com), NYU Math Department, 2nd year PhD student 
To begin with, we introduce relatively standard Laws of Logic, Related to: Goedel, Euclid, Hilbert Length: 75 minutes (Block 3a: 12:30  1:45pm) Prerequisites: Familiarity with Lambda Calculus or Formal Logic will be helpful, but not required. I will introduce them as we go. Teacher info: Igor Shikanyan (igor at cs.nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, 7th year PhD student 

See part 1 above for details. 
This talk takes excerpts from a book of biographies (Out of
Length: 60 minutes (34pm) Prerequisites: Junior high school math. Teacher info: Dennis Shasha (shasha at cs.nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, Professor 
Flash, the seemingly everpresent Web multimedia and Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Basic understanding of simple computer skills. A background in beginning programming will be helpful, but not necessary. Teacher info: Nathan Hull (hull at cs.nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, Clinical Associate Professor 
To store or transmit images, music or videos using computer Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Some elementary probability. Teacher info: Felix Krahmer (krahmer at courant.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, grad student. 
Ever wonder how the piano works? or why the violin sounds This class will be followed by Math of Music II: Tuning Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Arthur Yu (xy244 at nyu.edu), NYU Math and Physics Deparments, Senior undergrad, music enthusiast. 
Neurons are, loosely speaking, the cells in the brain that do We'll start with a discussion of how Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Robert Levy (rlevy at cns.nyu.edu), NYU Center for Neural Science, Postdoctoral Fellow 
We live in an age of smart machines. Netflix knows your movie In this class, we will formalize the task of learning and Related to: Will Computers Ever Understand Language? Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Familiarity with vectors. Knowledge of probability and statistics helpful, but not necessary. Teacher info: Alex Rubinsteyn (ar1738 at nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, 1st year Masters student 
Real Analysis. Compact metric space. Finite subcover of an open Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: Algebra I. Understanding of distance between two points on a plane. Teacher info: Michael Shaw (mshaw at mit.edu), Stanford University Physics Department, 1st year PhD student 
The famous Halting Problem is the "representative Turing Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: It would be nice if you know the difference between countable and uncountable sets, but if not, I plan to tell you. Teacher info: Chee Yap (yap at cs.nyu.edu), NYU Department of Computer Science, Professor 
We describe some of the foundational computer science algorithms One of the first success stories of modern computer science was Then, we look at the case where we are looking for the Related to: Graph Theory and the Donut Length: 75 minutes Prerequisites: You should be familiar with the concept of a graph. Mathematical maturity is useful. Teacher info: Carl Bosley (bosley at cs.nyu.edu), Computer Science, 5th year PhD student. 

Play a major scale. CDEFGABC. In fact, there is no right answer for how this scale should be This class will be preceded by Math of Music I: The Physics of Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Miranda Holmes (holmes at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Applied Mathematics and AtmosphereOcean Sciences, 3rd year PhD student 
Do you find yourself juggling your schedule around, trying to We illuminate the connections between mathematics and juggling, and develop a theory of juggling patterns. This class is rated green/blue. Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: None. This is combinatorics, which is just a fancy word for "counting". Teacher info: Carl Bosley (bosley at cs.nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, 5th year PhD student 
How do clouds form? Why do some clouds rain and some don't? Why Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: None Teacher info: Sam Stechmann (stechman at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department and Center for AtmosphereOcean Science, 5th year PhD student 
Things are small in the molecular world! If we can't see these Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: No special math background is required; basic chemistry knowledge would help, and a little familiarity with physics. Teacher info: Jennifer Quinn (jkq202 at nyu.edu), NYU Biology Department, Junior Undergrad 
LaTeX is the most popular document preparation tool in the Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: Programming experience will help but is not necessary. No advanced math or science knowledge needed. Teacher info: Alec Jacobson (alecjacobson at nyu.edu), NYU Math and Computer Science Departments, Junior Undergraduate 
There are many different aspects of computational linguistics. Related to: Introduction to Machine Learning Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Marilyn Cole (mcole at nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department, graduating MS student 
Machines "see" the world through a variety of sensors ranging In this class, I will discuss some strategies (in software as Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: Will appreciate best with some trigonometry. Geometry OK, too. Teacher info: Rob Lockhart (bobbylox at gmail.com), 4th year NYU Undergraduate Film Student and Professional Robotics Teacher 
The writer of puzzles often invents puzzles to illustrate a principle. The dilemma is that the puzzle inventor sometimes can't solve those variants. We discuss a few upstarts inspired originally Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: Junior high school algebra. Teacher info: Dennis Shasha (shasha at cs.nyu.edu), NYU Computer Science Department Professor 
Would your life be easier if you could predict the future? You This class is rated blue/purple. Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites:
Teacher info: Lyuba Chumakova (lyubov at cims.nyu.edu), NYU Math Department, 4th year PhD student 
General Relativity is the most beautiful and elegant physical This class is rated purple/black. Related to: Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity. Length: 60 minutes Prerequisites: Teacher info: Abhishek Kumar (abhishek at nyu.edu), NYU Physics Department, 4th year PhD student 
We have delopved a color grading system in an attempt to indicate the overall difficulty of each talk. A green icon indicates that
anyone with a standard highschool mathematics background should be able to follow. A black icon indicates that the talk will be fastpaced, and that students without extracurriculuar exposure to more advanced mathematicsthrough math camps, college courses, competition preparations, and so onare likely to find the talk challenging. These are the two extremes, and blue and purple icons indicate the midpoints of the difficulty spectrum. It is, of course, impossible to determine the objective difficulty of a talk, and the icons should only be taken as a crude approximation. The best way to figure out whether the talk is at the right level for you is to talk to the lecturer. Instructors' emails are listed on this page, so ask away!