PACM Colloquium: Optics and optimization

Eitan Bachmat, Ben-Gurion University (Israel)
Oct 10 2016 - 4:00pm
Event type: 
PACM Colloquium
214 Fine Hall

We will consider the following airplane boarding policy which was recently implemented by a few airlines:

"Passengers with no overhead bin luggage board before those with such luggage"

The reasoning for the policy was explained by the CEO of one of the companies as follows. Passengers with no overhead bin luggage tend to occupy the aisle for less time, therefore by boarding them first, the airline is able to push more people more quickly into the airplane, thus expediting the boarding process as a whole.

In the talk we will show that what the airline wanted to do is to construct a thin focal lens in some space-time domain. Unfortunately, the shapes that correspond to the airline's policy are neither focal nor thin. In the talk we will construct nice some lenses, discuss the airplane boarding implications and consider some higher dimensional analogues which exhibit concentration of measure.

The talk will be self contained. In preparation for the talk, I recommend flying as much as possible and answering the following question. 

Rank the following 3 policies by boarding time speed starting with the fastest

A. Board slow passengers first.

B. Board fast passengers first.

C. Do not separate passengers, just let them board.