Friday, April 29th, 2022

Letter from the Director, April 2022

Dear friends,

At the Simons Institute, we are busy preparing for our 10th anniversary symposium, which will take place in Berkeley from May 25 through 27. This three-day conference will celebrate a decade of discovery at the Simons Institute, as we embark on a new decade of collaboration and innovation. You can read about the event here (we will add titles of talks as they come in). Personally, I am honored to be the director of the Simons Institute on the occasion of our 10th anniversary. I hope to be able to celebrate with many of you in person at the symposium.

Congratulations to Simons-Berkeley postdoctoral fellows Jason Li and Jan van den Brand, whose PhD dissertations were among the three that were honored with the EATCS Distinguished Dissertation Award! Jason Li's thesis deftly applies the modern algorithmic techniques of preconditioning and locality along with several other ideas to break long-standing time complexity barriers for fundamental graph-theoretic problems. Jan van den Brand's thesis studies dynamic algorithms that maintain solutions to linear algebra problems with surprising implications for dynamic graph algorithms and optimization tasks, including linear programming. 

In this month’s newsletter, we have two SimonsTV offerings. In his Theoretically Speaking talk this month, Judea Pearl shared a fascinating perspective on the science of cause and effect. We’re pleased to share that presentation with you. And as part of our anniversary flashback series, we have Uri Alon’s 2020 Theoretically Speaking talk on the mathematics of aging

All my best,

Shafi Goldwasser
Director, Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing