Strange Bedfellows—Quantum Mechanics and Data Mining
One often hears that physics not only benefits the world by increasing our knowledge of how the world around us works, but through the social benefits of spin-off technologies. Next Monday, Weinstein will talk about a very surprising form of spin-off that comes from understanding how quantum physics works and applying that knowledge to problems that have nothing to do with quantum mechanics. He will discuss an algorithm he invented with his colleague David Horn of Tel Aviv University, which is related to problems in data mining: a highly visual approach called Dynamic Quantum Clustering, or DQC. Weinstein promises to tell you what the fifty-billion-dollar-a-year data mining industry is interested in, explain the nature of their problems and remind you of enough quantum mechanics (through movies) to tell you how his trick works to capture clustering information. He will show a simple example of how the computer algorithm works, as well as some of the problems in biology, business, astrophysics and particle physics to which it has been applied. The talk is free and open to all.