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May Public Lecture | How Quantum Physics Democratized Music: A Meditation on Physics and Technology

The IMA will welcome Sir Michael Berry, a senior research fellow and professor emeritus of physics at the University of Bristol, for a public lecture on Monday, May 17, 2017 at 7 p.m. Berry will speak about the connections between physics and technology.

Connections between physics and technological invention and aspects of human life that seem far from science are both unexpected and unexpectedly common. Rather than flowing one way – from physics to gadgets – the connections form an intricate web, linking all aspects of human culture in a way that frustrates our convenient compartmentalizations and coarse interventions aimed at promoting technology transfer. Berry will discuss this theme not abstractly but with examples, ranging from music to the color of gold, and explain how quantum physics helps him do quantum physics.

Berry is a theoretical physicist who specializes in the border between physics and mathematics and is known for his research on geometric phases and optics. He has received numerous awards, including the Maxwell Medal and the Dirac Medal of the Institute of Physics, the Royal Society’s Royal Medal, the London Mathematical Society’s Pólya Prize, the Wolf Prize, and the Lorentz Medal, as well as being knighted in 1996.

The third lecture for the 2016-2017 series will be held in Smith Hall 100, 207 Pleasant St. SE, East Bank, University of Minnesota.

IMA Public Lectures