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Life is just an algorithm; love is a chemical reaction; a human is nothing but a sequence of 0’s and 1’s. But is this so?
We live in the age of artificial intelligence, with math-driven information technology invading our lives at an accelerating pace, bringing us new opportunities and unprecedented connectivity but also multiple challenges to our sense of identity and reality, our culture, and even the truth. It’s not surprising that in this environment, many people look to mathematicians for some clarity and perhaps even guidance on how to navigate today’s world. Often times, the answers we hear go something like this: life is just an algorithm; love is a chemical reaction; a human is nothing but a sequence of 0’s and 1’s. But is this so? Or are there other dimensions in our lives that go beyond logical reasoning and computation?
Whom better to ask these questions than Edward Frenkel, a Berkeley professor and one of the world’s leading mathematicians, who is also a filmmaker and author of an international bestseller “Love and Math” that has been published in 18 languages, including the Italian, and which New York Times described as “powerful, passionate, and inspiring.”
As a starting point, Frenkel has chosen this quote from Albert Einstein: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world.” Frenkel is also an admirer of such filmmakers as Stanley Kubrick, Federico Fellini, and Roberto Benigni. So expect his conversation with Mauro Aprile Zanetti — who among other things has been collaborating with computer scientist Federico Faggin, and has also written a book about Federico Fellini’s “La Dolce Vita” and Giorgio Morandi’s art of painting — to be free-wheeling, unscripted, full of passion and humor, science, tech, movies and poetry.
Speakers:Edward Frenkel - Professor of Mathematics at UC Berkeley, author of the bestseller “Love and Math”
Edward Frenkel is a professor of mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, which he joined after being on the faculty at Harvard University. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Fellow of the American Mathematical Society, and the winner of the Hermann Weyl Prize in mathematical physics. Frenkel has authored 3 books and over 80 scholarly articles in academic journals, and he has lectured on his work around the world. His YouTube videos have garnered over 6 million views combined.
Frenkel's latest book "Love and Math" was a New York Times bestseller, has been named one of the Best Books of the year by both Amazon and iBooks, and won the Euler Book Prize from the Mathematical Association of America. It has been published in 17 languages.
Frenkel co-produced, co-directed (with Reine Graves) and played the lead in the film "Rites of Love and Math". He has also written (with the author Thomas Farber) a screenplay for a full-length feature film "The Two-Body Problem".