Week 6 — Prof. Sean Hartnoll

Hello all,

Our talk next week will be given by Prof. Sean Hartnoll on entropy; details are below.

Title: Entropy: From Steam Engines to Black Holes and Quantum Computers
Speaker: Prof. Sean Hartnoll
Abstract: The notion of entropy was invented in the aftermath of the Industrial Revolution to describe the fact that heat engines could never be perfectly efficient. The irreversible generation of entropy was later understood to occur because everyday macroscopic objects are made up of very many small molecules whose microscopic motion is so complicated that we cannot hope to harness their energy in a useful way. This idea of “inaccessible energy” underpinned Hawking and Bekenstein’s calculation of the entropy of a black hole in the 1970’s: stuff inside a black hole is unknowable to an external observer. As things fall into a black hole it grows, and this is the growth of our ignorance and of entropy. I will describe how, over the past half century, black holes have come to be understood as highly quantum mechanical steam engines. As part of this process, the mathematics of black holes has fed into exciting developments in the seemingly unrelated field of quantum entanglement and quantum computation.
Date: Monday 13 November
Time: 7pm
Location: Winstanley Lecture Theatre – Trinity College

Refreshments will be likely provided following the talk. In addition, there have been slight changes to the Society. We are now sponsored by Jane Street, who have asked us to share the following:

This January, Jane Street is excited to host two in- house programmes, WISE and FOCUS. Details about each programme can be found below. The application deadline is Sunday, 19th November 2023. 

WISE (7th – 10th January 2024 in London) is for first-year undergraduate students who identify as women, transgender, and gender-expansive to spend two days in our London office learning more about who we are, what we do, and how we do it. You will learn about how we use maths, computer science and probability concepts in trading, as well as insight into the different roles that exist within the firm. Jane Street will provide all travel and housing accommodation. Deadline to apply is Sunday, 19th November 2023. 

FOCUS: (10th- 13th January 2024 in London) is crafted for undergraduate students, who self-identify with an underrepresented ethnic or racial minority group. No prior finance experience is required, only an interest in seeing what a career at Jane Street might look like! Over the course of two days, you will participate in classes, discussions, and activities that are structured to provide a broad overview of the work our trading, software development, and strategy and product teams do. Jane Street will provide all travel and housing accommodation. Deadline to apply is Sunday, 19th November 2023. 

Furthermore, following personal circumstances, the previous President has resigned and will be switching roles with the previous Vice President – the updated committee is reflected in the email footer and the TMS’ website.

We hope to see you on Monday!

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