Monthly Archives: October 2012

Morning ride

The view from Skyline Boulevard this morning… …hard to compare! Oh, and how I missed this guy: One of the best things about living in Berkeley were the ever changing views of the bridge. The varying shades of fog, the … Continue reading

Posted in random | Tagged , | 1 Comment

FOCS 2012

FOCS 2012 just took place in New Brunswick, and it was a lot of fun. Instead of commenting on the food, which was already debated enough on site, here are a few randomly selected highlights from the talks. Constructive Discrepancy … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Levin and the Church-Turing thesis

FOCS 2012 had a special session today dedicated to the award of the Knuth prize to Leonid Levin, in recognition of four decades of visionary research in complexity, cryptography, and information theory. Levin was introduced by Joan Feigenbaum, who honored … Continue reading

Posted in Conferences, Talks | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

It happens in real life too

Everyone’s heard one of these legendary horror stories, in which this weird-looking guy at the back of the room sleeps through your whole Ph.D. dissertation talk…but when question time comes, stands up, and asks whether you’ve heard of the work … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Morning ride

Early morning, just off the minuteman… And a little later in Lincoln. It’s not obvious from the picture, but the sun is only about to show up! When are we switching to daylight wasting time, that I get my sunrise … Continue reading

Posted in random, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Tsirelson’s bound

Boris Tsirelson (or Cirel’son, or Цирельсон, or צְיךרלסון) is an Israeli (born Russian) mathematician currently at Tel-Aviv university. Here is the picture from his Wikipedia entry: he has such an incredible stare, he irresistibly reminds me of Orson Welles (picture … Continue reading

Posted in CHSH | Tagged , , | 12 Comments


The Physics Nobel prize has just been announced. It goes to Serge Haroche and David Wineland, “for ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems”. Not quite Aspect’s experiments on nonlocality, but not too far either…in any … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Theory retreat

This year, grad students in MIT’s theory of computing group were organizing their first theory retreat. The idea is that the students go on a trip together over a a long week-end, have some fun, maybe even discuss some research, … Continue reading

Posted in random, Tourism | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Connectomics: mapping the brain

Today was the first talk in a seminar series organized by MIT’s theory of computation group and entitled “Theory and beyond”. The talk was given by Jeff Lichtman  from Harvard, and it was absolutely excellent. So, although I was going … Continue reading

Posted in Talks | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

A good year for nonlocality?

I just started reading a beautiful paper by Ben Reichardt, Falk Unger, and Umesh Vazirani that recently appeared on the arXiv, with the tongue-in-cheek title “A classical leash for a quantum system” (and the maybe less entertaining subtitle “Command of … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 3 Comments