UVA Probability Seminar
Wednesdays, 4:30 - 5:30pm
Kerchof 317
Organizers: Christian Gromoll, Tai Melcher, & Leonid Petrov
Mathematics Recent Seminars Other Seminars Maps & Directions

Fall 2014

3 Sep organizational meeting
24 Sep Leo Petrov* (joint with Algebra, meets at 3:30p)
Random tilings, representation theory and Macdonald processes I
1 Oct Leo Petrov* (joint with Algebra, meets at 3:30p)
Random tilings, representation theory and Macdonald processes II
3 Oct Leo Petrov* (joint with Algebra, meets 2-3p)
Random tilings, representation theory and Macdonald processes III
8 Oct Camelia Pop (U Penn)
22 Oct Andrei Martínez-Finkelshtein (University of Almería, visiting Vanderbilt University)
29 Oct Xin Liu (Clemson)
5 Nov Harry Crane (Rutgers)
12 Nov Steve Pincus (joint with Statistics)
Higher Order Dangers and Precisely Constructed Taxa in Models of Randomness
18 Nov Ivan Corwin* (Columbia) meets 4-5p
3 Dec Rob Neel (Lehigh)
* please note time, date, and/or location change

Abstracts

Random tilings, representation theory and Macdonald processes I

Leo Petrov* (joint with Algebra, meets at 3:30p)

I will discuss random lozenge tilings of polygons, their representation-theoretic interpretation (including connections to the character theory of the infinite-dimensional unitary group), and how this circle of ideas leads to Macdonald processes. The latter give rise to other probabilistic models such as random polymers and similar interacting stochastic particle systems
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Higher Order Dangers and Precisely Constructed Taxa in Models of Randomness

Steve Pincus (joint with Statistics)

The certification, construction and delineation of individual, infinite length `random` sequences has been a longstanding, yet incompletely resolved problem. We address this topic via the study of normal numbers, which have often been viewed as reasonable proxies for randomness, given their limiting equidistribution of subblocks of all lengths. However, limitations arise within this perspective. First, we explicitly construct a normal number that satisfies the Law of the Iterated Logarithm (LIL), yet exhibits pairwise bias towards repeated values, rendering it inappropriate for any collection of random numbers. Accordingly, we deduce that the evaluation of higher order block dynamics, even beyond limiting equidistribution and fluctuational typicality, is imperative in proper evaluation of sequential `randomness`. Second, we develop several criteria motivated by classical theorems for symmetric random walks, which lead to algorithms for generating normal numbers that satisfy a variety of attributes for the series of initial partial sums, including rates of sign changes, patterns of return times to 0, and the extent of fairness of the sequence. Such characteristics are generally unaddressed in most evaluations of `randomness`. More broadly, we can differentiate normal numbers both on the basis of multiple distinct qualitative attributes, as well as quantitatively via a spectrum of rates within each attribute. Furthermore, we exhibit a toolkit of techniques to construct normal sequences that realize diverse a priori specifications, including profound biases. Overall, we elucidate the vast diversity within the category of normal sequences.
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