The Cubical Route to Understanding Groups

School of Mathematics Colloquium
Friday, December 9, 2016 - 16:00
1 hour (actually 50 minutes)
Skiles 006
McGill University
Cube complexes have come to play an increasingly central role within geometric group theory, as their connection to right-angled Artin groups provides a powerful combinatorial bridge between geometry and algebra. This talk will introduce nonpositively curved cube complexes, and then describe the developments that have recently culminated in the resolution of the virtual Haken conjecture for 3-manifolds, and simultaneously dramatically extended our understanding of many infinite groups.