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February 24, 2008

IPAM Workshops: (1) River Networks and (2) the Internet

IPAM has two workshops coming up that look interesting.

The first is part of the Optimal Transport long program, and focuses on, among other things, resource transportation via network structures. Some of the impetus for this workshop stems from recent theoretical work on river networks (summarized well by Dan Rothman and Peter Dodds in a series of three review articles from 2000: 1, 2, and 3), which suggests that many of their complicated-looking structures are driven directly by properties of turbulent flows. My admittedly shallow dive through this literature a few years ago gives me the impression that the mathematical models being used are pretty cute, and may even by right. On the other hand, I'm not sure how good the empirical data and the statistical analyses are. Anyway... River networks, of course, are only distantly related to the kind of networks that I typically study, since they're basically shaped like trees rather than the complex hair balls I usually contemplate. But, they do make very beautiful, space-filling trees. While I was flying into PHL this afternoon, I couldn't help but notice the beautiful fractal-like structures carved into the wet lands by waterways of all sizes.

The second event at IPAM is a long program on the Internet and so-called "multi-resolution analysis" (MRA). I'm not sure the term MRA is a particularly helpful one, but generally the program seems to be focused on measurement and modeling of Internet structure and traffic, at and across different layers of the internet protocol stack. There are a lot of interesting questions involved here (e.g., check out Allen Downey's research), and in general, the idea behind a lot of this research is to help build a better Internet (i.e., it's ostensibly related to the enormously unfocused GENI project).

Workshop on Transport Systems in Geography, Geosciences, and Networks

May 5-9, 2008 at IPAM (UCLA)

Organizers: Andrea Bertozzi (UCLA), Bjorn Birnir (UC Santa Barbara), Dan Rothman (MIT), and William Zame (UCLA).

Description: In recent years a large number of scaling laws in geomorphology have been found to be equivalent to only two scaling laws. Recent results on river meanders indicate that there may be only one universal scaling law, implying all the others. Moreover, recent theoretical results on turbulent flow in rivers indicate that turbulent flow is the source of the universal scaling of river basins and river networks.

These results provide a key to the understanding of the fundamental structure of the surface of the earth, that layers of complexity such as tectonic uplift, earthquake rifts and the action of glaciers can then be added to. It provides a way of quantifying transport of water, sediments and chemicals over the surface and exchanges of dissolved chemicals between the water and the atmosphere. In particular this seems to provide a method to quantify the transfer of carbon dioxide from rivers to the atmosphere. This workshop will explore why and how this transport due to turbulent flow takes place and is optimal.

Other transport such as transport of magma in volcanoes will also be covered and how similar ideas can be used to identify and quantify transport in social networks and economics.

Internet Multi-Resolution Analysis: Foundations, Applications and Practice

September 8 - December 12, 2008 at IPAM (UCLA)

Organizers: Paul Barford (UW Madison), John Doyle (CalTech), Anna Gilbert (UMich), Mauro Maggioni (Duke), Craig Patridge (Bolt Beranek and Newman), Matthew Roughan (U. Adelaide), and Walter Willinger (AT&T).

Description: The main focus of this IPAM program will be on innovations and breakthroughs in the theoretical foundations and practical implementations of a network-centric multi-resolution analysis (MRA); that is, a structured approach to representing, analyzing, and visualizing complex measurements from Internet-like systems that is (i) specifically designed to accommodate the vertical (e.g., layers) and horizontal (e.g., domains) decompositions of Internet-like architectural designs, (ii) flexible enough to account for the highly heterogeneous (i.e., ``scale-rich'') nature of these designs and the high semantic content of the available measurements, and (iii) capable of retaining some of the mathematical elegance of more traditional MRA schemes. Critical capabilities of the envisioned Internet MRA, in particular, and network MRA, in general, include support for the exploration of multi-scale representations of very large and diverse network-specific annotated graph structures, novel techniques for the study of the dynamics of as well as the dynamic processes over these structures, and new methodologies and tools for dealing with aggregated spatio-temporal-functional network data representations and their associated analysis and visualization.

By leading the way towards the development of a mathematical foundation for network-centric MRA techniques, this IPAM program will be firmly grounded in a number of key Internet MRA target problems (e.g., cyber-security, traffic/network engineering, network control), with close ties to activities that can be expected to arise in the context of a major NSF-led initiative called Global Environment for Networking Innovations or GENI (www.cise.nsf.gov/geni or www.geni.net). At the same time, this IPAM program will also be strongly influenced by developments in other scientific disciplines where informed multiscale approaches to the study of highly engineered or evolved networked systems have proved to be essential for advancing our understanding of their properties, behaviors, and evolution.

  • Workshop I: Multiscale Representation, Analysis and Modeling of Internet Data and Measurements. September 22 - 26, 2008.
  • Workshop II: Applications of Internet MRA to Cyber-Security . October 13 - 17, 2008.
  • Workshop III: Beyond Internet MRA: Networks of Networks. November 3 - 7, 2008.
  • Workshop IV: New Mathematical Frontiers in Network Multi-Resolution Analysis. November 17 - 21, 2008.

posted February 24, 2008 03:26 PM in Conferences and Workshops | permalink