Jeremy.Gibbons | 5 Sep 15:55 2013

Oberwolfach Seminar on Mathematics for Scientific Programming

Call for Participation


Mathematisches Forschunginstitut Oberwolfach
24th to 30th November 2013


Computational science today depends crucially on simulations, which are typically based on algorithms
that have a sound mathematical justification.  For example, an iterative procedure such as Newton's
method is motivated by appealing to the properties of twice continuously differentiable functions and
their Taylor expansion, which also yield convergence conditions and approximation estimates.

These algorithms are then implemented on a computer, using a programming language such as Fortran or C++. 
Often, the implementation will introduce new computational steps and otherwise modify the structure of
the mathematical algorithm - for handling or reducing round-off errors, enabling more efficient memory
access, exploiting parallelization, and so on.  As a result, the final implementation usually looks very
different from the mathematical algorithm, and the justification given for the latter does not directly
extend to the former.  But if we are to ensure the correctness of simulations, we need mathematical
certainty for both.

We aim to bring to the scientific programming community mathematical techniques that allow us to achieve
the transition from mathematical algorithm to efficient implementation in a principled manner, with
each step motivated by the application of a mathematical theorem. The intended participants are
students and researchers in computational science (including areas such as engineering, biology, and
economics), and any scientists dissatisfied with state of the art in transforming mathematics into
code. They will be equipped subsequently to make a significant contribution to increasing the
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