MATH Colloquium: Using Mathematics to Try to Understand Information—a Story From the Early Days of the World Wide Web

Apr 19, 2023 , 4:00pm
Darwin 103 or Zoom
Math & Statistics Department

Keith Devlin, Stanford University Emeritus; Mathematician in Residence, Sonoma State University

With the growth of the Internet in the 1980s (the Web was launched in 1991, Google was still ten years in the future), researchers were trying to come to grips with the concept of “information.” Though the term “information technology” had been introduced back in 1958, there was no agreed definition of “information", and no formal theories to guide development of those new technologies. In 1987, I was invited to join a large, multi-disciplinary research group at Stanford University that was created in 1983 to try to develop a mathematically-grounded theory of information. (Perhaps something akin to physics, which provides a mathematically-grounded basis for engineering, or chemistry and biology that support health care and medicine.) The project provides a good illustration of the way mathematics can be developed and used to understand, and act in, a changing world.


Zoom Link for Spring 2023 M*A*TH Colloquium Talks (Zoom will open at approximately 3:45 before each talk)

The M*A*T*H Colloquium is our weekly public lecture series. Talks are on Wednesdays at 4:00 p.m. in Darwin 103 and on Zoom; see link above (first four talks are on Zoom only). Maps to and of campus are available. A parking permit is required to park on campus, and is available for $5.00 at machines in the parking lots. Talks are otherwise free.

The M*A*T*H Colloquium has been in operation during every semester since Fall, 1974. See below for previous posters.

Sonoma State University
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April 19, 2023
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