It is often the case that one of the crucial factors underpinning wide scale adoption of any computational procedure is the availability of easy to use packages containing that procedure, usable by people who have only a passing familiarity with the innards. Topological data analysis is one such toolbox, the inner workings of which have often […]

# Geometric and topological methods in control and robotics

I am off to a workshop on this topic, in (hopefully, a bit sunny) Madrid: http://webpages.ull.es/users/gmcnet/GTMCR2010/Home.html. Over the past few years, there has been a slow build up of interest in this topic. I am especially excited to see algorithmic versions of classical mathematical ideas slowly take shape – to the point where non-mathematicians can […]

# EPSRC Grant: Topology-based Motion Synthesis

Taku Komura, Sethu Vijayakumar and I have secured an EPSRC grant on this topic. The project abstract is available here: http://gow.epsrc.ac.uk/ViewGrant.aspx?GrantRef=EP/H012338/1. Advertisements

# Visualizing Higher Dimensional Spaces

Through an internal mailing list, I came across this really interesting set of movies. Apparently, most of them are aimed at high school or early college students but I am sure more experienced folks would benefit from them as well. Advertisements

# Braided Highways

Following a link from the Low Dimensional Topology blog, I found this really interesting tidbit of information about a highway interchange in the US that has nontrivial structure. This particular interchange combines the American clover leaf pattern resulting from the standard right turn along a loop with the ‘British pattern’ of left turns. And the […]

# Scalable versions of differential game theory

Dr. Benjamin Mann, a program manager at DARPA, outlines 23 mathematical challenges for this century. Many of them are fairly well known problems that would appear in any such list. One challenge question that may not have been so easy to guess (although I fully support its selection) is “What new scalable mathematics is needed […]

# Discrete/continuous representations of systems – shall the twain ever meet?

The 2008 Sidney Michaelson memorial lecture was delivered yesterday by Prof. Muffy Calder, as part of the Edinburgh Science Festival. I got free entrance to this event due to my BCS branch committee role. Prof. Calder did a good job of providing an accessible, yet substantial, account of some recent work that brings together ideas […]

# Using topology to overcome uncertainty.

Over the past few years, I have been thinking quite a bit about what I consider to be a central issue at the interface of machine learning and robotics – can we incorporate prior knowledge regarding dynamical behavior into learning algorithms in such a way that it remains invariant with respect to the inevitable quantitative […]