3:30 p.m., Friday
Dr. Terry Gannon
University of Alberta
In 1978 John McKay noticed that 196884=196883+1. The first
number is the first interesting coefficient of the j-function,the canonical
generator of the modular functions. 196883 is the first interesting
dimension of an irreducible representation of the Monster finite simple
group. Monstrous moonshine is a collection of conjectures created to try
to understand and generalise McKay's fact. The main conjecture was finally
proved by Borcherds, and was one of the reasons for him being awarded a
Fields Medal in August. This talk -- an introduction to Monstrous
Moonshine -- is intended for a general mathematical audience.
Refreshments will be served in Math Annex Room 1115, 3:15 p.m.