Jeffrey Harvey, Ph.D.Professor, University of Chicago
Simons Foundation Lectures are free public colloquia related to basic science and mathematics. These high-level talks are intended for professors, students, postdocs and business professionals, but interested people from the metropolitan area are welcome as well.
Mathematicians have attached fanciful names to some of the objects they study. In group theory, the Monster is a special kind of symmetry group. Moonshine refers to the unexpected appearance of the Monster in certain functions appearing in number theory. Remarkably, string theory provides some of the tools needed to understand Moonshine. Recently new kinds of Moonshine have been discovered and are being connected to other aspects of string theory including the properties of black holes. In this lecture Jeff Harvey will discuss Moonshine, the Monster, and visions of a new synthesis of number theory, geometry and physics.