Public lecture – Prof. James Brown: “Proofs and Pictures: The Role of Visualization in Mathematical and Scientific Reasoning”

Hello everyone,

You are cordially invited to a free public lecture hosted by the
Mathematics Undergraduate Union. This Thursday, Nov. 28th, 4-6 pm at

The subject of the talk is “Proofs and Pictures: The Role of
Visualization in Mathematical and Scientific Reasoning.” Given by
Prof. James Brown a philosopher of science and mathematics. More
details below.

Prof. James Brown is a professor of philosophy here at the University
of Toronto. His areas of interests are the philosophy of science and
the philosophy of mathematics. He is one of the foremost modern
advocates of Platonism in the philosophy of mathematics. In the
philosophy of science he is most widely known for his ideas about
thought experiments. In 2007 he was chosen to be a fellow of the Royal
Society of Canada.

Among his numerous books are “Philosophy of Mathematics: An
Introduction to the World of Proofs and Pictures”, “The Laboratory of
the Mind: Thought Experiments in the Natural Sciences”; and a new
books published in 2012: “Platonism, Naturalism, and Mathematical

MUMS Talk November 7 – Samer Seraj: “On Diffusion”

Hi everyone,

This Thursday, Samer Seraj, and undergraduate student here at UofT, will be giving a talk on his original research in cryptographic security. In his talk titled “On Diffusion”, Samer will outline the ideas of his solution to an open problem in security posed to him in an undergraduate research course. Spanning more than one year of work, Samer  prepares from his latest results, in conjunction with materials from his earlier talk in Normandy, the awaited conclusion to his research. Samer will finish his talk by proposing 3 open problems to the audience as directions for further research. This talk is accessible to math students in all years of study at UofT.


Time: 4pm – 5pm, Thursday November 7

Location: BA B024 (Basement of Bahen centre)

Speaker: Samer Seraj

Title: On Diffusion

Abstract: We first precisely define the space and structure of cryptographic information. We then proceed to compare two rival definitions of diffusive (scrambling) functions between such spaces, and produce optimal versions of each. The interesting fact is that some use the two definitions interchangeably, but they are quite different. Finally, we propose new directions of research and open problems. The material is from a paper by the speaker, under the supervision of Dr. Kumar Murty.