Science of Connections Topic of 2008 Magnus Lecture Jan. 22

Desmond J. Higham, a  professor of mathematics at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland, and elected fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, will deliver Colorado State University’s 2008 Arne Magnus Lectures.

Higham will present a public lecture titled "Network Science: Joining the Dots" at 7 p.m. on Jan. 22 in room 104 of Yates Hall on the main campus of CSU. The lecture is free and open to the public.

His lecture will focus on the pattern of interactions between individual components and will focus on contributions that mathematicians and other scientists have made towards understanding how large networks evolve, discovering universal properties and developing tools to indentify and analyze interesting details.

Higham will give examples of large, complex networks including connections of proteins arising in cells, connections of neural regions in the brain and connection of actors on the Web site Internet Movie Database.

"These connections are prevalent in everything from how Google ranks your home page to why Kevin Bacon is the center of the universe," Higham said. "Improvements in computing power have allowed us to store and analyze these massive data sets, and a new discipline, network science, have emerged."

The Magnus Lectures are delivered annually at Colorado State in honor of former Colorado State mathematics professor Arne Magnus. Each spring since 1993, Colorado State’s mathematics department has welcomed an outstanding researcher to campus to deliver a series of lectures for the general public and for professionals within mathematics and related fields.

For more information on the Magnus Lecture and Higham’s presentations, visit online at or call the mathematics department at (970) 419-1303.