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[Sy-cg-global] Announcement: Reconnect 2004 at St. Mary's: Folding and Unfolding in Computational Geometry

Christine Spassione spassion at
Tue Mar 30 17:02:29 EST 2004

Dear list members,

Fred Roberts asked me to contact you about publicizing the
Reconnect Programs to Graduate students.

Can you please forward the announcement below to your graduate
students and grad students of your colleagues? We are accepting
applications from those students who either have already taught in
a college/university setting or are about to teach in such a setting.

Thank you for your assistance,

Christine Spassione
Reconnect Program Coordinator

Folding and Unfolding in Computational Geometry
St. Mary's College, Moraga, CA
Principal Speaker: Joseph O'Rourke, Smith College, orourke at
July 11 - July 17, 2004
(Sunday evening through Saturday afternoon)

This workshop offers the opportunity for junior faculty as well as 
mid-level and senior faculty to advance to research questions in a new area 
of the mathematical sciences. Participants will also acquire materials and 
gain ideas for seminar presentations and for undergraduate research 
projects. To immerse themselves in the area, they will be involved in 
writing educational modules based on the conference research lectures.

The folding of flat material (e.g., paper or metal), and the unfolding of a 
surface in 3D to a planar state, are complementary processes of increasing 
importance at the nexus between pure mathematics and a variety of 
application areas. Folding one-dimensional (1D) "linkages" is a model for 
protein folding. Designing origami foldings of (2D) flat paper from the 
desired final folded shape is an ancient problem with recent advances. 
Unfolding a (3D) polyhedron to a nonoverlapping piece is a first step in 
manufacturing objects by bending aluminum.

This course will cover the mathematical and algorithmic issues of folding 
and unfolding, touching upon the application areas as appropriate. O'Rourke 
will be following the outline of a book nearing completion, co-authored 
with Erik Demaine at MIT.

There is room in these topics for both pure mathematical research, and pure 
computer science theory research, but the richest aspects lie at the 
junction between the two. Progress on the mathematical questions seems to 
demand computation, and algorithmic progress is impossible without 
geometric understanding. Participants who bring expertise in either area 
will benefit from the cross exposure.

Prerequisites: Most of the material is accessible to any Mathematics or 
Computer Science professor. Familiarity with Discrete Mathematics, in 
particular, the basics of graph theory, will help. Some material can only 
be fully appreciated by those who understand the concepts of Algorithms. 
The theory of NP-completeness is used, but not extensively; knowledge of 
that is not essential. Knowledge of the basics of Differential Geometry 
will enhance the experience, but again is not essential.

Funds for Lodging, Meals and Travel: Lodging and meals will be provided 
through anticipated NSF funding. Limited funds are expected to be available 
for travel awards.

Who may apply? Anyone may apply for this program or any of the other 
conferences listed at the end of this announcement. You can apply for more 
than one program. Preference will be given to faculty whose primary job is 
undergraduate teaching. Two-year college faculty are welcome to apply. 
Faculty from groups under-represented in mathematics and computer science 
are encouraged to apply. Application deadline: April 1, 2004. Applications 
will be reviewed as they are received. Late applications will be considered 
if space is available.

Conference Organizers: Lidia Luquet, St. Mary's College, and Fred S. 
Roberts, Rutgers University

To receive more information, visit our web site at  Or, contact the Reconnect 
Program Coordinator, at lluquet at , or telephone at 925-631-4423.

To view additional 2004 Satellite Reconnect Programs, please visit the 
following program web pages:
Lafayette College, June 20 - June 26, 2004		DIMACS/Rutgers University, 
August 8-14, 2004

DIMACS was founded as a National Science Foundation Science and Technology 
Center and a joint Project of Rutgers, Princeton University, AT&T Labs, 
Bell Labs, NEC Laboratories America  and Telcordia Technologies. Affiliate 
Members: Avaya Labs, HP Labs, IBM Research, Microsoft Research.

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