On Colour, January 27 2010

Biphoton Wave Functions: Pictures from Quantum Optics
Luke Helt, Physics

Although explored by Newton as early as 1672, optics is still an intense area of current research. We can produce various colours for displays (with phosphors, or liquid crystals), reduce glare (with polarized sunglasses), and send information at high speeds (with fiber-optic cables and diode lasers). However, we have yet to fully explore the quantized, or ‘photon’, nature of light to make unbreakable codes, or ‘entanglement’ to perform incredibly fast computations. In this talk I will present a theory that predicts the properties of ‘biphotons’ generated in current experiments, and their utility for quantum cryptography or quantum computing.

Colour Perception and the Importance of Context (with Special Reference to Bees)
Jessica Forrest, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Humans admire the beauty and variety of flowers; however, most floral diversity has not evolved to please us. Pollinating animals, notably bees and some birds, have been the primary agents of natural selection on floral shape and colour. But these animals differ both from humans and from each other in the way they see colours. In this talk, I will discuss how differences in colour perception between birds and bees have influenced floral evolution, and how colour perception—in pollinators and people—can depend on context.

Colour: On the Concept of Race in Canadian Criminology
Akwasi Owusu-Bempah, Criminology

Optical Sciences Professor Emanuel Istrate will round out the workshop with a short presentation on the objectives of his Holography class. (Holograms will be in attendance).

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