Playing Tetris with Martin Hairer (2014 Fields Medal)

Martin Hairer (Fields Medal 2014) explains his current research on interfaces using the classic video game Tetris. Interfaces are extremely common in nature – from the progression of a forest fire, to the solidification of liquid crystal – and Martin’s research looks at how we can model the features common to each scenario to develop a law of universality, not too dissimilar to the Gaussian or Normal Distribution. We consider several different examples from a game of random Tetris in which the pieces are generated randomly, and fall in a randomly assigned position, to create a progressing 2D interface. The first game uses the traditional Tetris pieces, the second only square 2×2 blocks, the third single squares, and finally ballistic deposition – single bricks that stick to neighbours.

Interview with Martin Hairer of Imperial College London. Recorded at the 2019 Heidelberg Laureate Forum.

Find out more about Martin’s work for which he was awarded the Fields Medal here.

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