André Boivin (1955-2014) passed away at University Hospital on Friday, October 17, 2014, as a result of heart failure.

Professor Boivin completed his PhD at the Université de Montréal in 1984 under the direction of Paul Gauthier. He came to the University of Western Ontario as an Assistant Professor in 1986, after holding postdoctoral fellowships at UCLA and University College, London. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1991, and then to Professor in 2004. He was appointed as Chair of Western's Department of Mathematics in 2011.

His research specialties were complex analysis and approximation theory, and he was the author of multiple papers in these areas. He gave tireless service to granting agencies and selection committees in Québec and Ontario, and was a frequent conference organizer.

He served with distinction as Graduate Student Chair before becoming Chair of the Department, and supervised many graduate students during the course of his career at Western. Caring, warmth and passion were the hallmarks of his relationships with students and colleagues.

André Boivin is survived by his wife Yinghui Jiang, son Alexandre, daughter Melanie and step son JP. He was well loved and respected by his colleagues, students and coworkers throughout the University, and he will be sorely missed.

Each week the Department of Mathematics hosts a wide variety of seminars and events. For a comprehensive list of events, please consult our departmental calendar.

After reviewing very quickly some algebraic geometry, I will define the Hilbert scheme which parameterizes closed subschemes of projective space $P_{k}^{n}$ and state its basic properties, for k an algebraically closed field of characteristic 0. I will then define various notions of deformations (deformations sheaves, deformations over the dual numbers etc). Finally, I will use obstruction theory for a local ring to prove a lower bound on the dimension of irreducible components of the Hilbert scheme of Cohen-Macauley curves of genus g and degree d in $P_{k}^{3}$

Every category $C$ looks locally like a category of sets, and further structure on $C$ determines what logic one can use to reason about these "sets". For example, if $C$ is a topos, one can use full (higher order) intuitionistic logic.
Similarly, one expects that every higher category looks locally like a higher category of spaces. A natural question then is: what sort of logic can we use to reason about these "spaces"? It has been conjectured that such logics are provided by variants of Homotopy Type Theory, a formal logical system, recently proposed as a foundation of mathematics by Vladimir Voevodsky.
After explaining the necessary background, I will report on the progress towards proving this conjecture.

I shall discuss two elementary inequalities relating capacity to coverings. They provide an approach to determining whether a set has positive capacity and, if so, to estimating the value of the capacity. (Joint work with Quentin Rajon, Jeremie Rostand and Alexis Selezneff).