Abstract:
We construct a piecewise onto 3-to-1 dynamical system on the positive quadrant of the unit circle, such that for rational points (which correspond to normalized Primitive Pythagorean Triples), the associated ternary expansion is finite, and is equal to the address of the PPT on Barning's ternary tree of PPTs, while irrational points have infinite expansions. The dynamical system is conjugate to a modified Euclidean algorithm. The invariant measure is identified, and the system is shown to be conservative and ergodic. We also show, based on a result of Aaronson and Denker, that the dynamical system can be obtained as a factor map of a cross-section of the geodesic flow on a quotient space of the hyperbolic plane by the group $\Gamma(2)$, a free subgroup of the modular group with two generators.

Abstract:
Loop percolation, also known as the dense O(1) loop model, is a variant of critical bond percolation in the square lattice Z^2 whose graph structure consists of a disjoint union of cycles. We study its connectivity pattern, which is a random noncrossing matching associated with a loop percolation configuration. These connectivity patterns exhibit a striking rationality property whereby probabilities of naturally-occurring events are dyadic rational numbers or rational functions of a size parameter n, but the reasons for this are not completely understood. We prove the rationality phenomenon in a few cases and prove an explicit formula expressing the probabilities in the "cylindrical geometry" as coefficients in certain multivariate polynomials. This reduces the rationality problem in the general case to that of proving a family of conjectural constant term identities generalizing an identity due to Di Francesco and Zinn-Justin. Our results make use of, and extend, algebraic techniques related to the quantum Knizhnik-Zamolodchikov equation.

Abstract:
We consider, following the work of S. Kerov, random walks which are continuous-space generalizations of the Hook Walks defined by Greene-Nijenhuis-Wilf, performed under the graph of a continual Young diagram. The limiting point of these walks is a point on the graph of the diagram. We present several explicit formulas giving the probability densities of these limiting points in terms of the shape of the diagram. This partially resolves a conjecture of Kerov concerning an explicit formula for the so-called Markov transform. We also present two inverse formulas, reconstructing the shape of the diagram in terms of the densities of the limiting point of the walks. One of these two formulas can be interepreted as an inverse formula for the Markov transform. As a corollary, some new integration identities are derived.

Abstract:
We present efficient algorithms for constructing a shortest path between two states in the Tower of Hanoi graph, and for computing the length of the shortest path. The key element is a finite-state machine which decides, after examining on the average only 63/38 of the largest discs, whether the largest disc will be moved once or twice. This solves a problem raised by Andreas Hinz, and results in a better understanding of how the shortest path is determined. Our algorithm for computing the length of the shortest path is typically about twice as fast as the existing algorithm. We also use our results to give a new derivation of the average distance 466/885 between two random points on the Sierpinski gasket of unit side.

Abstract:
The arctic circle theorem of Jockusch, Propp, and Shor asserts that uniformly random domino tilings of an Aztec diamond of high order are frozen with asymptotically high probability outside the "arctic circle" inscribed within the diamond. A similar arctic circle phenomenon has been observed in the limiting behavior of random square Young tableaux. In this paper, we show that random domino tilings of the Aztec diamond are asymptotically related to random square Young tableaux in a more refined sense that looks also at the behavior inside the arctic circle. This is done by giving a new derivation of the limiting shape of the height function of a random domino tiling of the Aztec diamond that uses the large-deviation techniques developed for the square Young tableaux problem in a previous paper by Pittel and the author. The solution of the variational problem that arises for domino tilings is almost identical to the solution for the case of square Young tableaux by Pittel and the author. The analytic techniques used to solve the variational problem provide a systematic, guess-free approach for solving problems of this type which have appeared in a number of related combinatorial probability models.

Abstract:
We derive new results about properties of the Witten zeta function associated with the group SU(3), and use them to prove an asymptotic formula for the number of n-dimensional representations of SU(3) counted up to equivalence. Our analysis also relates the Witten zeta function of SU(3) to a summation identity for Bernoulli numbers discovered in 2008 by Agoh and Dilcher. We give a new proof of that identity and show that it is a special case of a stronger identity involving the Eisenstein series.

Abstract:
We derive combinatorial identities, involving the Bernoulli and Euler numbers, for the numbers of standard Young tableaux of certain skew shapes. This generalizes the classical formulas of D. Andre on the number of up-down permutations. The analysis uses a transfer operator approach extending the method of Elkies, combined with an identity expressing the volume of a certain polytope in terms of a Schur function.

Abstract:
Zeilberger proved the Refined Alternating Sign Matrix Theorem, which gives a product formula, first conjectured by Mills, Robbins and Rumsey, for the number of alternating sign matrices with given top row. Stroganov proved an explicit formula for the number of alternating sign matrices with given top and bottom rows. Fischer and Romik considered a different kind of "doubly-refined enumeration" where one counts alternating sign matrices with given top two rows, and obtained partial results on this enumeration. In this paper we continue the study of the doubly-refined enumeration with respect to the top two rows, and use Stroganov's formula to prove an explicit formula for these doubly-refined enumeration numbers.

Abstract:
We study a further refinement of the standard refined enumeration of alternating sign matrices (ASMs) according to their first two rows instead of just the first row, and more general "d-refined" enumerations of ASMs according to the first d rows. For the doubly-refined case of d=2, we derive a system of linear equations satisfied by the doubly-refined enumeration numbers A_{n,i,j} that enumerate such matrices. We give a conjectural explicit formula for A_{n,i,j} and formulate several other conjectures about the sufficiency of the linear equations to determine the A_{n,i,j}'s and about an extension of the linear equations to the general d-refined enumerations.

Abstract:
We prove a limit shape theorem describing the asymptotic shape of bumping routes when the Robinson-Schensted algorithm is applied to a finite sequence of independent, identically distributed random variables with the uniform distribution $U[0,1]$ on the unit interval, followed by an insertion of a deterministic number $\alpha$. The bumping route converges after scaling, in the limit as the length of the sequence tends to infinity, to an explicit, deterministic curve depending only on $\alpha$. This extends our previous result on the asymptotic determinism of Robinson-Schensted insertion, and answers a question posed by Moore in 2006.