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The Geometry Center Experience:

I was a post-doctoral research fellow at the Geometry Center from the fall of 1993 until the summer of 1996. The Geometry Center is the Center for the Computation and Visualization of Geometric Structures, a National Science Foundation Science and Technology Center at the University of Minnesota. Its mission is "to develop, support, and promote computational tools for visualizing geometric structures, for facilitating communication among mathematical and computer scientists and between these scientists and the public at large, and for stimulating research in geometry." Post-docs at the Center are involved in all aspects of this mission. In addition to performing his or her own research, a post-doc is expected to be involved in software projects of the Center, the Center's visiting faculty program, Center workshops, the Center's educational programs, and presentations for groups visiting the Center.

My own experience at the Center was a rich one. Aside from my research and teaching duties, I was active in several software development projects, including: the Pisces project, where I developed an adaptive-mesh algorithm for computing level sets of functions in arbitrary dimension and co-dimension that pays particular attention to singularities; and the Geomview project, where I designed external modules for Geomview that provide a scripting language for making videotapes and electronic movies, and for manipulating parametric surfaces in arbitrary dimensions. These modules now form the StageTools suite of tools that are described in my research statement.

During my last year at the Center, I was in charge of their Web project. This involved overseeing their entire web site, from its day-to-day maintenance to planning future initiatives. I am particularly interested in issues of communicating mathematics electronically, and have supervised several efforts in this direction, including the beginnings of an electronic reference library that features geometric facts and formulas, a graphics archive, and an interactive "visual dictionary" of important mathematical objects. Currently, I am involved in a project funded by the National Science Foundation and administered by the Mathematical Association of America to implement a totally electronic journal, Communications in Visual Mathematics, specifically for developing innovative techniques in communicating mathematics using hypertext and multimedia documents.

Since the Center does not have a permanent faculty of its own, it runs an extensive visitor program. Visitors usually stay from one day to several months, and interact closely with the staff and post-docs at the Center. I have had an opportunity to meet a diverse group of researchers and teachers from all over the country working in a variety of areas.

Finally, the Center hosts several workshops a year, and has frequent visits from the NSF and other government agencies, industrial contacts, and educational groups. I have given numerous presentations to such groups at the Center. For example, there were three NSF site visits while I was at the Center, and several meetings of the Board of Governors and the External Advisory Board of the Center; I made presentations concerning the projects of the Center and my own work at all of these meetings.

[HOME] Davide P. Cervone's web pages
Created: 01 Sep 1997
Last modified: 06 Jan 2002 21:31:27
Comments to: dpvc@union.edu
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