About Me

When not at work with students, I spend my time in my room either reading, calculating something using pen and paper, or using a computer. I read almost anything: from the pornographic to the profound, although my main interests are mathematics and physics. "When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes." -Erasmus

Saturday, March 19, 2011

end of the semester

We had our last lectures yesterday. Next week will be the start of the final exams, and for my own coursework, I have a week to calculate scattering cross-sections for a scalar field interacting with a Dirac field. Part of the work involved will be a derivation of the Feynman rules, and I dread having to do Dyson's expansion and showing all the details.

For my other class, I have four functions that I need to find asymptotic expansions for. Some of them I can do using methods that I know, but these methods will probably be not allowed. The only methods to be used are limited to those that can be found in Wong's book, Asymptotic Approximation of Integrals.

After reading the preface, I realized that the pace at which we went through the lectures was probably too fast for most people in our class. I had an advantage because of the time I spent teaching complex variable methods to our undergraduate apprentices. So some of the material was known to me from other sources. The new thing was the Mellin transform approach to deriving asymptotic expansions, uniform asymptotics and the use of the theory of distributions. .

I'll probably teach the methods as a seminar for our subgroup so that I can better absorb the ideas.We do have a pool of undergraduates who know complex analysis, so it's doable during the spring break.

I have to mark some papers this weekend so that by Tuesday I could give a list of exemptions from the final exam. The work will be for today and tomorrow, so I'll go to school and spend the whole Sunday on marking them all.

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