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Sam Houston State To Host Meet On Algebraic Combinatorics

( Sam Houston State University ) The National Security Agency and the National Science Foundation have awarded grants to Sam Houston State University to support a conference on algebraic combinatorics April 16-17.

The conference program will include seven plenary presenters who are established authorities in the field and "contributed talks" and "poster sessions" selected from among mathematicians, including graduate and undergraduates, who submit proposals.

The deadline for proposals and poster sessions is April 1. Deadline for late registration is April 14.

Algebraic combinatorics is a key mathematical tool to understanding digital signals.

"That includes everything from medical imaging to coding and decoding secure encryptions," said Ken Smith, SHSU professor of mathematics and one of the conference organizers.

"Hence, the strong interest in the subject from the National Security Agency and the National Science Foundation," said conference organizer and SHSU professor of mathematics Ken Smith.

"The National Security Agency uses encrypted communications to protect military units on the battlefield. The rest of us use encrypted communication when we provide our credit card number to make a purchase over the internet," Smith said.

"Algebraic combinatorics weaves higher algebra, topology, and geometry with the theory of discrete structures to improve our understanding of digital signals, such as cell phones, wireless computing, radar imaging and medical imaging, for example."

"Anywhere there is a finite structure, such as a string of 0's and 1's in a digital signal, there are applications of algebraic combinatorics."

Besides Smith, others on the organizing committee are Martin Malandro, Luis David Garcia-Puente, also from SHSU, and Daniela Ferrero, Texas State University, San Marcos.