Dr Dmitry Chistikov and Professor Mike Paterson, together with physicists Olga Goulko (Boise State University) and Adrian Kent (Cambridge), have published an interdisciplinary paper Globe-hopping, solving a probabilistic puzzle on the sphere that has applications to quantum information theory.
Suppose a lawn must cover exactly half the area of a sphere. A grasshopper starts from a random position on the lawn and jumps a fixed distance in a random direction. What shape of lawn maximizes the chance that the grasshopper lands back on the lawn? A natural guess would be that a hemispherical lawn is best. It turns out, however, that this is nearly never the case — there are only a few exceptional jump sizes.
This work involving spherical geometry, probability theory, basic number theory, and theoretical physics appears in the Proceedings of the Royal Society A and shows, apart from concern for the well-being of grasshoppers, that there are previously unknown types of Bell inequalities. The Bell inequality, devised by physicist John Stewart Bell in 1964, demonstrated that no combination of classical theories with Einstein's special relativity is able to explain the predictions (and later actual experimental observations) of quantum theory.
A University press release can be found here.
We are pleased to report that members of the department's Theory and Foundations research theme have had 6 papers accepted to the 47th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages and Programming, the main European conference in Theoretical Computer Science and annual meeting of the European Association for Theoretical Computer Science. The papers are:
- On the central levels problem by Petr Gregor, Ondřej Mička and Torsten Mütze
- Matrices of optimal tree-depth and row-invariant parameterized algorithm for integer programming by Timothy Chan, Jacob Cooper, Martin Koutecký, Dan Král and Kristýna Pekárková
- The Complexity of Verifying Loop-free Programs as Differentially Private by Marco Gaboardi, Kobbi Nissim and David Purser
- Rational subsets of Baumslag-Solitar groups by Michaël Cadilhac, Dmitry Chistikov and Georg Zetzsche
- The Strahler number of a parity game by Laure Daviaud, Marcin Jurdzinski and K. S. Thejaswini
- On the power of ordering in linear arithmetic theories by Dmitry Chistikov and Christoph Haase
Dr Bhattacharya has attracted a very competitive EPSRC New Investigator grant and a high-profile UK-Israel collaborative grant with the Weizmann Institute... . Dr Bhattacharya’s high standing in the research community is confirmed by his memberships of the programme committees of prestigious conferences, as well as his organisation of international research events. … Dr Bhattacharya has developed a new 3rd-year core module for Discrete Mathematics students and delivered it for the past three years, as well as now teaching most of a key 1st-year core module for the same degree course.
Dr Gur has attracted a highly prestigious UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship, as well as growing his international leading publications record. He is also growing a successful own research group, having recruited a PhD student and on track to employing several postdocs. … voluntarily exceeding his workload, Dr Gur has developed from scratch and currently teaches a popular 4th-year module on quantum computing. Mentioning here only some of his other contributions, Dr Gur also … is the organiser of the main departmental research seminar, was an active contributor to the department’s recent Athena SWAN submission, and has been developing fruitful links with several industrial partners.
it remains to say many congratulations!
The 17th Warwick Postgraduate Colloquium in Computer Science (WPCCS) was held on Monday 9 December, in the Mathematical Science Building for the first time. This year’s event saw 78 submissions from postgraduate research students in the Department. The submissions were split across six varied tracks, highlighting the breadth and depth of research currently being conducted by PhD students within the Department.
Student presentations were supplemented with two engaging guest talks from academics in the Department. Torsten Mütze captured everyone's attention with the mathematics behind origami, and Feng Hao enlightened the audience on the encryption challenges behind e-voting. The day concluded with a festive drinks reception, sponsored by the Department’s two Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs), at which prizes were awarded to the best posters and presentations.
PhD student attendee Jonathan Davies said, “It was very rewarding for me to present at WPCCS this year. It gave me the opportunity to share my research with others and engage in stimulating conversation with my fellow postgraduate colleagues. The guest talks, in particular, were thought-provoking and engaging. I look forward to presenting at WPCCS in the future."
Hakan Ferhatosmanoglu, Director of Postgraduate Research and CS CDT, said, “It was a pleasure to attend WPCCS this year and to celebrate the excellent work that has been undertaken by our PhD students in the past year. It was great to see how everyone was having research discussions and exchanging ideas with each other.”
- Best Presentation - John Pocock
- Best Poster - Tom Wood
- Best in Computational Biology - John Pocock, Rawan Abulsayli and Hammam Alghamdi
- Best in Theory, Foundations, and Discrete Mathematics - Alex Dixon and Thesjaswini Raghavan
- Best in Computer Security and Networks - Jasmine Grosso and Shin Wan
- Best in Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence - Tom Wood, Abeer Almowallad, Gabriele Pergola, Haoyi Wang, Junyu Li and Helen McKay
- Best in High Performance Computing and Databases - Richard Kirk and Dean Chester
- Best in Urban Science - Jonathan Davies, Teddy Cunningham, Elisa Baioni, Ivana Tosheva and Shanaka Perera
The Department organised an off-campus induction event for the new PhD students in our Centre for Doctoral Training and Research. The agenda included presentations from academics on our large research projects, alongside short tutorials on theoretical computer science and advanced machine learning. There were also informal talks about PhD life, publishing high quality work, and pursuing a research career. The event concluded with a mini data dive using air quality data from London.
The two-day welcome event was held at Heythrop Park in Oxfordshire, which offered the students and academics the opportunity to meet each other in a relaxed environment. The students also met with some of the current PhD students and asked them about their experiences. The programme was very productive with overwhelmingly positive feedback.
We welcome our new cohort of PhD students and look forward to organising similar events across the coming years.
The Department is welcoming our new Assistant Professor, Dr. Igor Carboni Oliveira, who will be associated with the Division of Theory and Foundations (FoCS) and the Centre for Discrete Mathematics and its Applications (DIMAP).
Before joining Warwick, Igor held postdoctoral positions at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Oxford and at the School of Mathematics at Charles University in Prague, and was a research fellow at UC Berkeley's Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing. He obtained his PhD in Computer Science from Columbia University in 2015. He is also Royal Society University Research Fellow 2019.
His research is primarily focused on the limitations of algorithms and computations, with connections to combinatorics and mathematical logic. For more information about his work and interests, please see his web page at https://www.dcs.warwick.ac.uk/~igorcarb/