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3/17/17 Nick Trefethen

A Tour of Chebfun

Dr. Nick Trefethen, Professor of Numerical Analysis
University of Oxford
March 17, 2017 – Noon – 1:00 PM
ENGR 110

About the Presentation

Chebfun is a vision for scientific computing and an open-source software project ( based on the idea of continuous analogues of Matlab operations: vectors are overloaded to functions and matrices to operators.  The result is a powerful tool for all kinds of problems of rootfinding, numerical integration, optimization, and ODEs.  More recently Chebfun has extended much of its functionality to 2D and 3D, including disks and spheres (thanks to contributors from BSU) and reaction-diffusion equations.  Attendees who wish to play along are encouraged to bring laptops with Matlab and download the software in advance from

About the Speaker

Professor Trefethen is head of the Numerical Analysis Group in the Mathematical Institute at Oxford University.  He was educated at Harvard and Stanford and held professorial positions at NYU, MIT, and Cornell before  moving to Oxford in 1997.  He is a Fellow of the Royal Society and a member of the US National Academy of Engineering. As an author he is known for his books Numerical Linear Algebra (1997), Spectral Methods in MATLAB (2000), Schwarz- Christoffel Mapping (2002), Spectra and Pseudospectra (2005), Trefethen’s Index Cards (2011), and Approximation Theory and Approximation Practice (2013).  He is an ISI Highly Cited Researcher, with about 100 journal publications in numerical analysis and applied mathematics, and has served as editor for many of the leading numerical analysis journals.  He has lectured in about 20 countries and 30 American states, including invited lectures at both ICM and ICIAM congresses. Some of Trefethen’s recent activities include the SIAM 100-Dollar, 100-Digit Challenge, the notion of Ten Digit Algorithms (“ten digits, five seconds, and just one page”), and the Chebfun software system for numerical computation with functions.  During 2011-2012 he served as President of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM).

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