Joint GT-UGA Seminar at GT - Geometric Topology Meets Computational Complexity

Geometry Topology Seminar
Monday, February 19, 2018 - 15:30
1 hour (actually 50 minutes)
Skiles 005
UC Davis
Now that the geometrization conjecture has been proven, and the virtual Haken conjecture has been proven, what is left in 3-manifold topology? One remaining topic is the computational complexity of geometric topology problems. How difficult is it to distinguish the unknot? Or 3-manifolds from each other? The right approach to these questions is not just to consider quantitative complexity, i.e., how much work they take for a computer; but also qualitative complexity, whether there are efficient algorithms with one or another kind of help. I will discuss various results on this theme, such as that knottedness and unknottedness are both in NP; and I will discuss high-dimensional questions for context.