Video: Prof. Teich on ‘Fractal Point Events in Physics, Biology, and Communication Networks’

in NEWS, Video

Click to view videoIn the College of Engineering 2009 Distinguished Lecture, Malvin Carl Teich, a BU professor of engineering and director of the University’s Quantum Photonics Laboratory, talks about fractals, unusual objects that possess a form of self-scaling whereby a part of the whole can be made to recreate the whole by shifting and stretching.

Examples of random fractals include the length of the coast of Iceland and the variation of water flow in the river Nile. Random phenomena whose individual events occur at discrete points are known as point processes. Examples in time include the arrival of cars at a tollbooth; examples in space include the locations of galaxies and the epicenters of earthquakes. Fractal-based point processes are endowed with both the scaling properties of fractals and the discrete character of random point processes. Teich talks mainly about three applications: optical instrumentations that make use of photon counting; the diagnosis of cardiovascular dysfunction from heart rate variability measures; and congestion control for computer network traffic.

Video length is 01:27:58.

About the speaker:
Malvin Carl Teich is a Boston University professor of electrical and computer engineering, with joint appointments in the departments of biomedical engineering and physics. He is director of the BU Quantum Physics Laboratory and a member of the University’s Photonics Center, Center for Adaptive Physics, Hearing Research Center, and program in neuroscience.

He is widely known for his studies of fractal stochastic processes and information transmission in biological systems. He is a life fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and a fellow of the Optical Society of America. In 1973 he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, and in 1992 he was honored with the Memorial Gold Medal of Palacky University of the Czech Republic.