The core group is small but highly diverse, including fields such as physics, mathematics, meteorology, geology, computer sciences, economics, communicative disorders, and psychology. Many others attend only occasionally, depending on the topic. On any given week, the attendance may range from about a dozen to several dozen. The audience will range from undergraduate students to retired faculty with some members from the general public. We ask speakers to talk in rather general terms and to avoid jargon that would be unfamiliar to nonspecialists. Try to use only the level of mathematics that is essential for discussing your topic and to explain qualitatively the meaning of any equations and variables you use. Feel free to discuss speculative and undeveloped ideas.
The best seminars are those in which the audience is encouraged
to interact with the speaker rather than just listen to a
lecture. This can be done in two ways. Either you can
establish a dialog from the outset, or you can limit your
presentation to about 40 minutes to allow 10-15 minutes of
questions and discussion afterward. Many speakers feel they
have benefited from audience suggestions and questions, and the
question period is usually the liveliest part of the
seminar. If you need more time to present your topic, we can
often arrange multiple seminars in successive weeks. In any
case, expect to be interrupted if you say something that is not
We post the title and a short abstract for your talk on the Web (http://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/Chaos-Complexity/) and distribute them weekly to our rather large e-mail list. If you want to include references, links to Web resources, a PowerPoint presentation, or other supplementary material, we can also post those on our Web site or put a link to yours. The lead time for getting adequate publicity is usually 3-4 weeks prior to your talk. You will be contacted then for a title and abstract if you have not provided them, but the sooner you can provide them the better.
The seminars are held at 12:05 pm on Tuesdays in 4274 Chamberlin
(1150 University Avenue). You may enter through the entrance
on University Avenue or on Charter Street. Once in the
building, make your way toward the center of the building where
you will find an elevator, which you can take to the fourth
floor. Room 4274 is then just a few steps from the elevator.
The room has a chalkboard, overhead projector with screen, a 35
mm carousel slide projector, and an LCD projector. Most
speakers bring their own laptop computer to connect to our
projector. If your computer is a Macintosh, please bring an
adaptor for connecting to the VGA input of the projector.
The room also has a Mac Mini with Microsoft Office and a PDF
viewer connected to the projector if you prefer just to bring a
USB memory key. We can arrange for a videotape player and
monitor with VGA input upon request. The room has wired
(DCHP) and wireless (802.11b) Internet access, but you should
allow some time before the talk to test it. Some speakers
have made computer presentations from cached versions of Web
documents. If you have other special needs, let us
know. The room is usually open the hour before the seminar
if you want to set up and test your equipment then.
If you are unfamiliar with the campus, you may want to access a map
of Chamberlin Hall. If you are driving to campus, you
can park at the Lake Street ramp about four blocks east of
Chamberlin Hall near the intersection of Lake Street and the
700-block of University Avenue, from which Chamberlin Hall is
about a ten-minute walk.
Finally, we would like to encourage you to become a regular participant in the seminars if you are not already attending. You will find the experience stimulating, and your participation will contribute to their continued success.