Department of Mathematics Colloquium

University of Idaho

Spring 2012

Thursday,  May 10, 3:30-4:20 pm, room TLC 032

Refreshments in Brink 305 at 3:00 pm

Random Walks on Groups and the Poisson Boundary


Bryan Wilson

Department of Mathematics

University of Utah


A random walk on a group may be performed by beginning with any group element and multiplying by random group generators.  A simple example is a random walk on the integers with generators {-1, 1}, so that in each "step" you take either one step forward or one step back.  In this talk we explore the behavior "at infinity" of a random walk on a group and describe a measure-theoretic boundary called the Poisson Boundary.  Most of the talk is accessible to anyone with basic knowledge of groups and probability.