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Utpal Chattopadhyay

Utpal is senior mentor and course designer at GenWise. His passion in life is "to firmly establish science as a wonderful culture in developing young minds."

Since 2010, Utpal has been teaching Advanced Physics to talented undergraduate students at the Indian Statistical Institute in Bangalore. He was one of the founders of Curiouscity Science Education, where he conducted numerous science sessions with middle school children. Utpal has been also been facilitating courses on Physics and Mathematics to gifted school students for the past several years.

Utpal has a bachelor's degree with honours in Physics from IIT Kharagpur (1st in his class), and a PhD from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. His corporate/ professional work experience includes stints at Bell Labs and Motorola (where he was a Director). Post 2005, he cannot imagine life without a chalk and the blackboard!

Graph Theory & Routing: The Math Behind Google Maps & Amazon Delivery

Graph theory is a fascinating branch of mathematics that has exploded in recent years. Not only does it have many practical applications, but it also has a certain aesthetic appeal that comes from its ability to concisely and elegantly describe complex structures and processes.

Donald Knuth, Mathematician & Computer Scientist

Date(s):

May 14-21, 2023

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Perhaps we are unaware that we are employing graph theory in our daily lives. In fact, graph theory is used in many of our daily routine activities.


We know that everything in our world is interconnected; for example cities are connected by road, rail and air networks; hyperlinks connected webpages on the internet; an electric circuit or a computer chip’s various components are interconnected; and so on. Graph theory can assist engineering, scientists, and other professionals who want to analyze, comprehend and optimize these interconnected networks.


For instance - every time we use Google Maps to find the best route between two locations, order food on Swiggy or a package on Amazon, they employ sophisticated versions of graph theory to share the most optimal route or recommend dishes or products.


Why is graph theory so useful in solving these problems?  The most basic answer lies in the fact that graphs can be easy and straightforward models of objects that make up complicated real life situations.


In this course we will explore mathematics of graphs and network routing using examples and problems that are basic and yet which bring out the key aspects of the more sophisticated problems in this domain. Additionally, this topic presents an opportunity for young, gifted students to experience how mathematics develops and how mathematicians approach their subject. This is an important learning experience for students as they rarely get a chance to discover mathematical material for themselves.

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