Courant Splash is an annual one-day lecture series at the Courant Institute of New York University, aimed at mathematically-inclined high school students in the New York metropolitan area. If you're new here, please have a look at the talks and the photos from the previous years. Have we already met? Let's keep in touch, then! Come visit our Facebook page; say hello. You could also email us at csplash [at] cims [dot] nyu [dot] edu.

The 10th annual cSplash will take place on April 18th, 2015—see the cSplash day page and the current talks page for details. This year, Miranda Holmes-Cerfon will be giving the morning colloquium talk:

Packing Problems in Math and Science

How many things can you pack in a suitcase? How many ways are there of putting them in? If you are really bad at suitcase-packing, what is the smallest number of things you could put in and still not be able to shut it?

These are examples of packing problems — questions about the best, worst, or total number of ways to arrange objects in space. Such problems are mathematically fascinating but also very important in many real-world situations, so they have captured the attention of pure and applied mathematicians, computer scientists, physicists, and more. I will discuss several examples of packing problems and tell the stories of how they were tackled. I will also tell you about a current research problem, for which you may even have your own original ideas for how to solve.

Professor Holmes-Cerfon is a founder of cSplash, and her partner is one of the most frequent contributors to cSplash. Could we have found a better person to celebrate cSplash's 10th birthday with? We don't think so!