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Hilldale Lecture in Physical Sciences – Computer Science Theory: Past, Present, and Future

October 16, 2017 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm


Computer Science Theory: Past, Present, and Future
Professor Richard Lipton, Georgia Tech University
Hilldale Lecture in the Physical Sciences, 2017-2018

reception 4:00-4:30 pm; lecture 4:30-5:30 pm

Professor Richard Lipton, Georgia Tech University,

will discuss what he believes are the biggest insights in computer science theory. They are not the obvious ones—at least not all are obvious. The talk should be accessible to almost anyone. Although some experts may disagree with his list of insights. Lipton will also make an attempt to outline what he sees as the future of computer science theory: what will happen in the next five, ten, and twenty years.

Richard Jay Lipton is a Computer Scientist of wide ranging interest. He has made multifaceted contributions to the foundation of Theoretical Computer Science. With Tarjan, he proved the planar separator theorem which is applied everywhere. With Karp, he proved a fundamental theorem in circuit complexity showing that NP-complete problems are unlikely to be efficiently solved by the best of algorithms even with specially-designed hardware. He also proved the enormous applicability of random walks, showing that on an arbitrary graph and starting at an arbitrary point, a random walk will visit every point in no more than O(n^3) steps with high probability. His contributions also extend into program testing and software engineering. Along with Adleman, Lipton is considered one of the original pioneers of DNA computing. Lipton is the Frederick G. Storey Chair in the College of Computing at Georgia Tech. Previously he held faculty positions at Yale, Berkeley, and Princeton. A winner of the Knuth Prize, he is a member of National Academy of Engineering, and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.


October 16, 2017
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Event Category:


Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery
Deluca Forum, 330 N Orchard St
Madison, WI United States


Office of the Secretary of the Faculty