Monday, August 31, 2009

Casey & Michelle present poster

Casey McKnight and Michelle Zagardo presented a poster on
"Spectral Theory of Mele Graphs" at the Young Mathematicians Conference
at Ohio State. The poster represented the work that they did
along with Peter Muller under the supervision of UW Math faculty
Jeff Selden.

Jeff also attended the conference.

See the photos to the right.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Monday and Tuesday

Monday students worked in their groups on their projects.

Tuesday afternoon two of Anne Gelb's students presented their research. They are working on frames as an alternative to orthonormal bases and cleaning up medical resonance images. These presentations were well done.

Tuesday evening Bryan had all of us over for Korean barbecue, it was wonderful! Good to get to talk with all of the students and everyone involved outside of the academic setting. We look forward to the presentations this afternoon!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Wednesday,Thursday, and Friday

Wednesday afternoon Lynne Ipina spoke with the student about the mathematical community. In her presentation she encouraged the students to become a part of the community, and also stressed the necessity of such communities. Lynne also brought in some of the old books that she has found over the years. She also stressed the need for problem solvers as well as problem posers in mathematics.

Thursday Students traveled to NCAR (the National Center for Atmospheric Research) and were given a behind the scenes tour of the facilities in Boulder. Students were given a chance to see the supercomputer, the imaging lab, a presentation on building the supercomputer as well as the airport facilities owned by NCAR. This experience was very unique for the students and hopefully will give them motivation through this last week of their experience.

Friday afternoon Anne Gelb from ASU gave the students a presentation about image processing. The students then went on to give their presentations. The projects are looking good and hopefully the reports will be in top shape this final week of the REU.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Students worked in groups this morning.

After lunch Bryan Shader and Beth Buskirk talked with the students about graduate school. The students had some good questions about graduate school and all that is involved. Bryan also handed out a practice exam for the Mathematics subject GRE, as well as a handout about choosing a mentor. If students have any questions about graduate school they can contact Beth or Bryan.

Now students are back working on their projects.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Friday and Monday

Friday students worked on their projects.

This morning students worked on projects.

After lunch two former University of Wyoming students came and talked about working for the DOD. The students had many good questions and were able to find out more about working for the government as a mathematician. Now the students are back to their projects, keeping in mind that there will be presentations on Friday and they need to have a second draft prepared by Friday.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


This morning students worked in groups.

After lunch Craig Douglas spoke with the students about his current research with sensors in the quality control of production of pharmaceuticals. Craig gave the students an overview of the problems involved and gave the students an idea of some of the difficulties as well as the solutions with these problems. This gives students yet another wonderful opportunity for consideration when they apply to graduate schools.

Now students will be working in groups, they don't have reports this afternoon so they will be very productive.


Today students worked in groups in the morning.

After lunch students met with Steve Barrett and Cameron Wright in the engineering building. The students were given a presentation about current work in their field. This work includes automating laser surgery on the retina, patient care for emergency personnel in war zones, as well as fly eye sensors. The last topic was well covered and we will all view flies differently now. We then went for a tour of the labs where this work is being done. It appears that this will benefit many different fields. The students are also encouraged to email any questions they might have to Steve or Cameron, who knows they might even accept our students for graduate school.

After this tour the students split up again into groups to work a bit more on their write-ups for Friday.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


This morning students met in groups and worked on their projects.

After lunch Michael Stoellinger gave a presentation on modeling turbulent flames. The students were able to see where the stochastic differential equations that they are looking at are applied. This also gave students a good introduction to some computations that can be done efficiently on computers that they will be seeing at NCAR in Boulder. After the talk Mike gave a short derivation of the new stochastic model for turbulent flow in combustion reactions.

Now students are meeting with Bryan and Greg to talk about the paper that they submitted last week and where they need to go in the next few weeks. Keep up the good work everyone!!

Friday and Monday

Students worked on their projects on Friday.

Sunday evening Jeff and Nicole had the students, and faculty, over for a barbecue. The night was filled with fun and wonderful food! Thanks to Jeff and Nicole for a great time!

On Monday the students went to the two bar 7, or as their brand has it equals 7. There we had a great lunch and four of the students went horseback riding. The rest went hiking during this time, it was great fun, a good break from our normal days.

Now it's back to work with a talk this afternoon and meetings with Bryan and Greg to discuss the draft that was turned in on Friday.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Michael Pernice

Michael Pernice from Idaho National Labs talked to REU students about
working at a national lab, and emerging area of scientific computing
and engineering.


Wednesday morning students met with their groups and worked diligently!

After lunch Michelle Chamberlin spoke with the students about mathematics education and her job as an assistant professor at UW. The students asked many good questions about research, teaching and service. The session ended with some examples of dividing fractions and just how complicated it can be to explain "invert and multiply" to students.

Now students are again working on their projects hopefully preparing for their presentations tomorrow afternoon! We look forward to seeing where the groups are now.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


Monday students worked on their projects.

Tuesday morning students continued working on projects.

After lunch Michael Pernice from Idaho National Lab spoke about opportunities at INL. This talk included nuclear energy, natural resource recovery, network security, and armor survivability. The students were given a brief introduction to computational aspects of projects at INL.

Now students will continue working on their projects.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Wednesday and Thursday

Wednesday morning students worked in groups.

Wednesday afternoon students were given the opportunity to talk with graduate students about graduate school. The students asked many good questions and hopefully learned a lot about graduate school and what they need to consider when thinking about graduate school. We really appreciate all of the help that these graduate students were able to offer for our students!

Thursday students worked on projects and gave three wonderful presentations about their research. Keep up the good work!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Monday and Tuesday

Monday and Tuesday morning students worked in their groups.

Tuesday after lunch we had Daniell Toth talk to us about his work at the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Students learned what it means to give up academic life for a job in the government, you have to love the zero zero load... Students also learned a bit about what goes on in the Bureau, from complex data sets to binary trees.

Now students are back in their groups working on their individual projects.

Friday, June 26, 2009


Today students worked in groups in the morning.

After lunch Peter Polyakov talked about Mathematical Modeling of Conductivity, this talk fit well with the overarching theme for the summer, that is discrete versus continuous. Peter first introduced his research in the discrete setting, then moved to the continuous setting (1 dimensional to 2 dimensional and beyond). Cloaking was another topic of Peter's talk as well as homogenization.

After this talk Bryan gave the students their goal for next week, they will be giving a more formal talk using Beamer next Thursday. The students will definitely rise to the occasion and we're all looking forward to the talks next Thursday.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Students began this morning working on their projects.

After lunch Matt Leonard gave a riveting talk about knot theory! Students learned about the general properties of knots as well as some of the invariants that are known for knots. Some of the highlights were proof by roller coaster, tricoloring using the paint bucket, performing Reidemeister moves, and unknotting algebraic knots.

The students will be giving updates at 4:00 and we are looking forward to seeing their progress.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


This morning students worked in groups.

After lunch Diana Spears gave a wonderful talk for the students about swarm robotics. The applications and problems seem to be such that research in this area will continue for years to come.

This weekend students are on their own. On Saturday Butch Cassady days will take place at the territorial prison, in west Laramie. The weather looks like it will be pretty nice, so hiking and biking are also good options.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Monday and Tuesday

Monday students worked in groups on their projects, it was beautiful and hopefully the weather will hold out for this weekend.

Tuesday morning was spent working in groups again. Tuesday afternoon I gave a really short presentation introducing beamer as a tool to give presentations. Hopefully this will help when it comes time to present the results from each of the projects.

Now students are working in their groups and will hopefully continue to make progress. Keep up the hard work everyone!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Thursday and Friday

Thursday afternoon Eric Moorhouse gave a presentation about giving math presentations. Like a fugue it is as much an art form as it is a technical talk. Hopefully the students will get plenty of experience presenting this summer.

After the talk students gave updates on their projects. It sounds like each group has met some roadblocks, but that they are moving quickly to overcome the difficulties.

Students met with groups on Friday and worked hard.

This weekend is the 12th annual discrete math days, the students are going to the University of Colorado Denver and will be present at many good talks. These include our own Bryan Shader and Mike Sollami, as well as Jason Williford, who will be joining the department next semester. It will be a fun weekend and hopefully everyone has an opportunity to enjoy themselves.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Photos from Science Ethics Seminar


Today the students participated in the second session of ethics in science with the Chemistry REU. They faced tough problems including alien bacteriology, chemical warfare, fabricated data, and paper authorship. The last was probably the least understood and definitely the problem most of us will face.

After the ethics session groups met and discussed projects. Keep up the good work!!!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Monday and Tuesday

Monday was spent working in groups. Hopefully we all got, or will get, a chance to get out in this beautiful weather...

Tuesday students took part in a mock review board for a "student" who was having trouble with his adviser. This was a good opportunity for students to see that there are many situations that fall into the category of ethics in science.

After lunch Myron Allen gave a wonderful presentation about writing mathematics. The students now have many of the tools to start writing for their research groups.

Now students are working with their research groups...keep up the good work!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Thursday and Friday

Thursday David Anton gave an introduction to LaTeX, even with some problems with lab computers.... The students should be able to start typesetting using LaTeX on their home computer or the school computers.

Next the students gave a brief presentation about their research so far, this is a good way to keep on task and ask for help whenever needed.

Friday afternoon Kiona Ogle came and gave a talk about biostatistics. This was the first of our professionals in the field talking with the students.

Hope the weekend was as fun for you all as it was for me!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Taco Tuesday and Wednesday

Tuesday evening the students went out to dinner at Corona Village with the speaker for Wednesday and me. Taco Tuesday was in full swing (all you can eat tacos for $5), and the students even told them that it was my birthday...

Wednesday morning the RMMC began bright and early. Students all received the first part of the time scales book. Allan Peterson began by giving another example of the Variation of Constants and then introduced the regressive vector space.

After the break Martin Bohner went into some examples of Logistic Dynamic Equations. He also showed how the Bernoulli Dynamic Equation boils down to one of the Logistic Equations.

The students returned from lunch and were treated to a wonderful talk on research tools, given by Mike Sollami. Now we are meeting in our groups and working on each of the respective problems.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


Tuesday morning again started bright and early at 8:00 am for most REUers. Martin Bohner started the morning by talking about the exponential function on time scales.

After the coffee/tea break Allan Peterson gave an introduction to dynamic equations defined on time scales.

Following lunch Bryan Shader gave a brief description of some the main types of proof. Bryan gave some good examples that should help the students when they come upon some results.

The next three days will be filled with many good presentations. The talks will be, an introduction to research tools by Mike Sollami, an introduction to LaTeX by David Anton, and a talk about Biostatistics by Kiona Ogle.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Monday Morning

We got a bright and early start at 8 am for the first meeting of the RMMC (Rocky Mountain Mathematics Consortium). Allan Peterson gave a brief introduction (definitions and theorems) of the delta derivative.

After a coffee break Martin Bohner gave an introductory lecture to integration over time scales, as well as a start into Taylor series expansion of functions on a time scale, a subtle and difficult topic.

We reconvened after lunch and have broken into groups and started to get serious about some of the research topics that our three professors have chosen.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Friday, June 5, 2009

Thursday and Friday

Thursday afternoon Greg gave the first of many talks about professional development. Greg highlighted the expectations for our students and the hopes (and dreams) of each of the professors involved in research. We were then given an opportunity to listen to a short presentation from each of the professors after which students gave a preference ranking for each project.

Friday morning two conflicts arose, first was rabbits versus sheep, wherein our model resolved this conflict showing victory for one of the two species, except in a very specific region! Our second conflict arose with Jeff's talk on time scales, this was discrete versus continuous. This conflict was not resolved and promises to give the students ample opportunity to debate (or just form an opinion) in the 7 weeks that remain.

This afternoon students will have an initial meeting with their group as well as another opportunity to see MatLab at work.

This weekend (weather permitting) students are going on a hike at Vedauwoo. Have a great weekend!!
Our project teams have been selected:

Good Vibrations Team
Jeff Selden
Mike Bostick
Casey McKnight
Michelle Zagardo
Peter Muller

Dynamic Systems Team
Hakima Bessaih
Eric Quade
Josh Keller
Kristen Campilonga
Dennis Gucker

Chaos & Computations Team
Dan Stanescu
Patricia Jibben
Daniel McElhaney
Sarah Nowak
Eric Smith

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Wednesday into Thursday

Wednesday afternoon Dan Stanescu gave a wonderful introduction to discretization of differential equations. The students were set to work on several problems and were given the chance to interact and work in small groups.

Thursday morning the sun was shining and it was a beautiful day, unfortunately there is still much work to be done. Greg Lyng gave a stimulating continuation of a continuous talk... Again students were given some problems to work through, and this time were told to be prepared to present their work.

Hakima Bessaih gave our second talk on difference equations, and gave an introduction to the logistic equation, which will lead discussion into fractals. After a long morning of talks students were allowed a lunch time, we will see what the afternoon holds.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

A successful first day and a half

Our first day started with a tour of Laramie and some of the many business and restaurants around town. If anyone would like a reminder of any of these they can email me or call my cell phone.

After the students checked in, we were treated to a wonderful Campus tour from Eric Quade. The main points on the tour were the libraries, main and science, as well as the Half Acre recreation center.

In the evening we all made the trek to Bryan's for a barbecue and many laughs.

Wednesday morning, bright and early, Bryan gave a brief introduction to the project and we dove right into our first immersion lecture with Greg Lyng. After a stellar talk we had a brief break and then began to work in collaboration with one another, we will have images of weights and springs dancing in our heads tonight.

Thursday, May 28, 2009


Welcome to the U. Wyoming Mathematics REU blog.
This site will be used to keep you posted on all exciting events happening during the 2009 Summer.