3
votes
1answer
216 views

Conditions for a parametric curve to avoid self-intersection?

Suppose a planar curve $C$ is defined by parametric equations in $t$: $x(t)$ and $y(t)$. Are there conditions on these two functions that guarantee that $C$ does not self-intersect? For example, the ...
12
votes
2answers
705 views

Permuting collinear points on a curve

Let $C \subset {\bf CP}^2$ be an irreducible algebraic smooth (projectively) planar curve over the complex numbers of degree $d$ (we allow finitely many points to be deleted from $C$ to make it ...
2
votes
1answer
224 views

Calculating the local index of intersection of two algebraic curves.

Let $F_1,F_2$ be two polynomials of two variables $(x,y)$ (say complex variables). Suppose that $F_1$ and $F_2$ have no common factors and $F_1(P)=F_2(P)=0$. What is in practice the quickest way to ...
16
votes
1answer
545 views

Do mapping classes have gonality?

(This question was discussed by people at the PCMI workshop on moduli spaces, without any clear resolution, so I thought I'd throw it open to MO.) The hyperelliptic mapping class group is (by ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

What is the Euler characteristic of a Hilbert scheme of points of a singular algebraic curve?

Let $X$ be a smooth surface of genus $g$ and $S^nX$ its n-symmetrical product (that is, the quotient of $X \times ... \times X$ by the symmetric group $S_n$). There is a well known, cool formula ...
6
votes
1answer
291 views

Reference for equivalent definitions of the genus

Let $X$ be a (edit: nonsingular) projective complex algebraic curve. The genus of $X$ can be defined as the dimension of the space of holomorphic $1$-forms on $X$, which in turn can be defined either ...
25
votes
3answers
2k views

Mumford conjecture: Heuristic reasons? Generalizations? … Algebraic geometry approaches?

The Mumford conjecture states that for each integer $n$, we have: the map $\mathbb{Q}[x_1,x_2,\dots] \to H^\ast(M_g ; \mathbb{Q})$ sending $x_i$ to the kappa class $\kappa_i$, is an isomorphism in ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

Ribbon graph decomposition of the moduli space of curves

What is a ribbon graph? What is the ribbon graph decomposition of the moduli space of curves? What are some good references for this material?