Nutshells

“Shells” paper to appear in Duke

My paper Shells of twisted flag varieties and the Rost invariant, joint with Victor Petrov and Nikita Semenov, will appear in Duke Mathematical Journal.  We introduce new techniques for studying the Krull-Schmidt decomposition of mod p Chow motives of projective homogeneous varieties, by generalizing Vishik’s notion of shells on quadrics to arbitrary projective homogeneous varieties.  We then apply our techniques…

Indy lottery story

Even Hoosiers are up to something with the lottery

The Indiana Lottery has said it will improve its security procedures in response to an ABC News 6 (WRTV Indianapolis) story.  The station, with my assistance, investigated frequent lottery winners in Indiana and found several who had claimed “suspiciously many” prizes and were affiliated with lottery retailers.

Balls in bins

“Birthday problem” paper to appear in Random Structures & Algorithms

My paper Asymptotic distribution for the birthday problem with multiple coincidences, via an embedding of the collision process, joint with Richard Arratia (a probabilist) and Joe Kilian (a computer scientist), will appear in the journal Random Structures & Algorithms. It contains several new results on the birthday problem: how many people do you need to have c birthdays in…

Scratcher

Lottery spending analysis paper published

My paper Lottery-spending: a non-parametric analysis has appeared. This was written jointly with undergrads Kayla Frisoli, Li Ke, and Melody Lim, and describes the results of a project we did last spring. The problem is to understand those people who spend a lot on lottery tickets and how much they actually spend. We made use…

San Diego Air & Space Museum logo

MathAlive! comes to San Diego

MathAlive! will open at the San Diego Air & Space Museum on January 31st and run through September.  This exhibit aims to show kids unexpected ways that math appears in recreation as well as in working life, promising “unique, interactive experiences to transform math from its native form into the fascinating applied worlds of design,…

AFSAB logo

Joining the Air Force Scientific Advisory Board

I have been appointed to the Air Force Scientific Advisory Board, and I will be formally sworn in this January.  I’m excited by this opportunity to serve, and to do so with such accomplished experts from such varied backgrounds.  The Board’s purpose is to provide independent advice and recommendations to the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of the Air…

New Jersey lottery clerk

Suspicious lottery winners investigated in New Jersey

Shannon Mullen of the Asbury Park Press uncovered several lottery New Jersey lottery retailers who have won suspiciously many lottery prizes, see the story here.  I helped with the analysis. Update (12/12/14): As a consequence of the Asbury Park Press story, New Jersey Assemblyman Burzichelli says the state Legislature should take a closer look. Update (2/18/15): And now…

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Hernando Bermudez joins Microsoft

Congratulations to Hernando Bermudez, who has started work at Microsoft in Bellevue, Washington!  Hernando received his PhD in mathematics and a master’s in computer science from Emory in August 2014, along the way writing three papers: Linear preservers and representations with 1-dimensional ring of invariants (preprint) (journal), with Victor Larsen and me, Transactions of the AMS 366 #9 (2014), 4755-4780…