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This Week at Physics

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Events on Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

Chaos & Complex Systems Seminar
Algorithmic music composition - Philosophy, methods, implications, and possible applications
Time: 12:05 pm
Place: 4274 Chamberlin
Speaker: Dave Smith, UW Space Science and Engineering Center
Abstract: Most modern music composition methods are based on the music of previous successful artists, like Mozart, the sonification of complex data sets and mathematical processes, or by combining a large number of manipulation methods and searching for interesting sounds....

My approach is drawn more from cognitive science - determining what types of coherence we can recognize, and presenting these as structure, content and boundaries. One advantage of this approach is that the resultant music can be well defined in both cognitive and aesthetic domains....

In the larger (non-musical) view, by looking at these methods as mechanisms for coping with chaotic and complex phenomena, we end up with a rough map of consciousness which brings surprising questions about our knowledge and educational systems.... For example: How do "what we like" and "what we know" interact?... How do classification systems compete with non-discrete phenomena?

And some groovy music!
Host: Clint Sprott
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Astronomy Colloquium
Special Astronomy Colloquium
"Sample formation and AGN Outflows in a Sample of Local AGN's"
Time: 3:30 pm
Place: 4421 Sterling Hall
Speaker: Lisa Winter, University of Colorado
Abstract: While feedback from the central supermassive black hole likely affects the host galaxy evolution in the distant universe, through suppressing star formation, we can not directly observe these processes at work. We can, however, easily observe the host galaxy and AGN properties of nearby sources. To understand the outflow and host galaxy properties in a local sample of AGN, we present our results from optical and X-ray spectroscopic follow-ups of a sample of 50 Seyfert 1s detected in the very hard X-rays (14-195 keV) with the Swift Burst Alert Telescope. Due to the high energy selection, this survey is largely unbiased to the gas and dust which obscures softer bands. We find that outflows are detected in a majority of the sample and may be present in all local Seyfert 1s. We investigate how these outflows affect their host galaxies through searching for correlations between star formation rate and both accretion rate and outflow strength.
Host: Professor Amy Barger
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