Letter from the Director, May 2022
Dear theorists and friends of theorists!
In the last week of May, we celebrated a decade of innovation and discovery at the Simons Institute at our 10th Anniversary Symposium. It was delightful to see so many friends whose lives and research have been enhanced by the Institute. The symposium showcased topics in which researchers at the Institute and beyond have made enormous strides in recent years. The talks are viewable now on SimonsTV.
We will present a full report on the symposium in the June issue of the newsletter, but for now let me share some memorable quotes I received from participants:
“The event reinvigorated my appreciation for theoretical computer science as a subject and a community. I'm grateful I had the opportunity to participate”; “It was a really great meeting! I feel very energized afterwards”; and “We had a wonderful and unforgettable time at the symposium and gala.”
There are many highlights to cover during this month of May (for lovers of show tunes, as I am, this may be appropriate background music). We said goodbye this month to the participants in our programs on Causality and on Learning and Games. And we are embarking on the most ambitious summer since the opening of the Institute:
- From May 23 through June 24, we are hosting extended convenings related to our Spring 2020 programs to make up for lost face time during the early months of the pandemic: Extended Reunion: The Quantum Wave in Computing and Summer Cluster: Lattices and Beyond.
- From June 27 through August 5, we’ll be hosting summer clusters on Interpretable Machine Learning and on AI and Humanity.
- And from July 5 through August 5, we have a summer program on Computational Innovation and Data-Driven Biology, funded in part by a generous grant from the Koret Foundation.
In our SimonsTV corner this month, we are sharing a few of our favorite talks from the past semester: Mark Zhandry’s Quantum Colloquium presentation on Verifiable Quantum Advantage Without Structure; Lenny Susskind’s talk in the same series, on Black Holes and the Quantum-Extended Church-Turing Thesis; and Nika Haghtalab’s tutorial on Learning and Incentives, from the Learning and Games Boot Camp. And as part of our 10th anniversary Flashback series, we present one of our most popular videos of all time, then-Senior Scientist Luca Trevisan’s 2014 tutorial, Introduction to Spectral Graph Theory.
I look forward to seeing many of you here this summer!
Director, Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing