# Tagged Questions

**45**

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1k views

### Intersecting Family of Triangulations

Let $\cal T_n$ be the family of all triangulations on an $n$-gon using $(n-3)$ non-intersecting diagonals. The number of triangulations in $\cal T_n$ is $C_{n-2}$ the $(n-2)$th Catalan number. Let $\...

**39**

votes

**0**answers

691 views

### Which region in the plane with a given area has the most domino tilings?

I just finished teaching a class in combinatorics in which I included a fairly easy upper bound on the number of domino tilings of a region in the plane as a function of its area. So this led to ...

**35**

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**0**answers

1k views

### Does every triangle-free graph with maximum degree at most 6 have a 5-colouring?

A very specific case of Reed's Conjecture
Reed's $\omega$,$\Delta$, $\chi$ conjecture proposes that every graph has $\chi \leq \lceil \tfrac 12(\Delta+1+\omega)\rceil$. Here $\chi$ is the chromatic ...

**31**

votes

**0**answers

1k views

### Curious $q$-analogues

Consider the Fibonacci polynomials
$$F_n (x) = \sum_{j = 0}^{\left\lfloor {n/2} \right\rfloor }\binom{n-j}{j} x^{n - 2j} $$
and the Lucas polynomials
$$L_n (x) = \sum_{j = 0}^{\left\lfloor {n/2} \...

**30**

votes

**0**answers

2k views

### A Combinatorial Abstraction for The “Polynomial Hirsch Conjecture”

Consider $t$ disjoint families of subsets of {1,2,…,n}, ${\cal F}_1,{\cal F_2},\dots {\cal F_t}$ .
Suppose that
(*)
For every $i \lt j \lt k$
and every $R \in {\cal F}_i$, and $T \in {\cal F}_k$, ...

**29**

votes

**0**answers

731 views

### 3-colorings of the unit distance graph of $\Bbb R^3$

Let $\Gamma$ be the unit distance graph of $\Bbb R^3$: points $(x,y)$ form an edge if $|x,y|=1$.
Let $(A,B,C,D)$ be a unit side rhombus in the plane, with a transcendental diagonal, e.g. $A = (\...

**24**

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980 views

### Do all possible trees arise as orbit trees of some permutation groups?

I.Motivation from descriptive set theory
(Contains some quotes from Maciej Malicki's paper.)
The classical theorem of Birkhoff-Kakutani implies that every metrizable topological group G admits a ...

**23**

votes

**0**answers

783 views

### tiling a rectangle with the smallest number of squares

This is based on another thread. For $m,n\in \mathbb N$, let $f(m,n)$ be the minimum number of squares with integer sides needed to tile a $m\times n$ rectangle. Recently, a table of values for $n\le ...

**22**

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**0**answers

477 views

### probability of zero subset sum

Almost 17 years ago, I asked the following question on USENET, motivated by a method in numerology (I kid you not).
Pick integers $n \ge 2$, $k \ge 1$. Toss $n$ $k$-sided dice. The sides of each die ...

**21**

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348 views

### Minimal number of intersections in a convex $n$-gon?

For a convex polygon $P$, draw all the diagonals of $P$ and consider the intersection points made by those diagonals. Let $f(n)$ be the minimal number of such intersections where $P$ ranges over all ...

**20**

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609 views

### Time for Langton's ant to cover a “square” torus

Langton's ant is a cellular automaton running as follows:
Squares on a plane are colored variously either black or white. We
arbitrarily identify one square as the "ant". The ant can travel ...

**20**

votes

**0**answers

571 views

### Combinatorics of Quantum Schubert Polynomials

Let $S_n$ be the symmetric group. Let $s_i$ denote the adjacent transposition $(i \ i+1)$. For any permutation $w\in S_n$, an expression $w=s_{i_1}s_{i_2}\cdots s_{i_p}$ of minimal possible length is ...

**20**

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612 views

### Cauchy matrices with elementary symmetric polynomials

$\newcommand{\vx}{\mathbf{x}}$
Let $e_k(\vx)$ denote the elementary symmetric polynomial, defined for $k=0,1,\ldots,n$ over a vector $\vx=(x_1,\ldots,x_n)$ by
\begin{equation*}
e_k(\vx) := \sum_{1 \...

**20**

votes

**0**answers

2k views

### Why do polytopes pop up in Lagrange inversion?

I'd be interested in hearing people's viewpoints on this. Looking for an intuitive perspective. See Wikipedia for descriptions of polytopes and the Lagrange inversion theorem/formula (LIF) for ...

**20**

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1k views

### Trigonometry related to Rogers--Ramanujan identities

For integers $n\ge2$ and $k\ge2$, fix the notation
$$
[m]=\sin\frac{\pi m}{nk+1} \quad\text{and}\quad
[m]!=[1][2]\dots[m], \qquad m\in\mathbb Z_{>0}.
$$
Consider the following trigonometric numbers:...

**19**

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332 views

### Zero curves of Tutte Polynomials?

There is an extensive theory of the real and complex roots of the chromatic polynomial of a graph, a substantial fraction of this being due to the connections between the chromatic polynomial and a ...

**19**

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274 views

### Coloring a Ferrers diagram

I've shopped the problem below around a bit and it seems like it might be known, or not that hard to resolve, but so far I've come up empty-handed.
Say that a coloring of the dots of a Ferrers ...

**19**

votes

**0**answers

914 views

### What is the best lower bound for 3-sunflowers?

A collection of $t$ sets $A_i$ is called a t-sunflower if $A_i \cap A_j = Z $ for all $i \neq j$ for some fixed $Z$. A well-known conjecture of Erdos and Rado says that there is a constant $C_t$ such ...

**19**

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312 views

### Is the Poset of Graphs Automorphism-free?

For $n\geq 5$, let $\mathcal {P}_n$ be the set of all isomorphism classes of graphs with n vertices. Give this set the poset structure given by $G \le H$ if and only if $G$ is a subgraph of $H$.
...

**18**

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585 views

### A Linear Order from AP Calculus

In teaching my calculus students about limits and function domination, we ran into the class of functions
$$\Theta=\{x^\alpha (\ln{x})^\beta\}_{(\alpha,\beta)\in\mathbb{R}^2}$$
Suppose we say that $...

**18**

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503 views

### Which sets of roots of unity give a polynomial with nonnegative coefficients?

The question in brief: When does a subset $S$ of the complex $n$th roots of unity have the property that
$$\prod_{\alpha\, \in \,S} (z-\alpha)$$
gives a polynomial in $\mathbb R[z]$ with ...

**18**

votes

**0**answers

392 views

### Hall's Marriage Theorem and intervals

In Hall's Marriage Theorem, we have a set $B$ of brides and $G$ of
grooms, where each bride $b$ has an acceptable set $A_b \subseteq G$
of grooms. A matching $m:B\to G$ is an injection such that $m(b)
...

**18**

votes

**0**answers

1k views

### The Fourier Transform of taking Eigenvalues

The purpose of this question is to ask about the Fourier transform of the map which associate to an $n$ by $n$ matrix its $n$ eigenvalues, or some function of the $n$ eigenvalues. The main motivation ...

**18**

votes

**0**answers

1k views

### Origins of the Nerve Theorem

Recently, I've read two papers which have cited the Nerve Theorem, one crediting Borsuk with the result and another Leray. Here is the question:
Who was the first to prove the Nerve Theorem?

**17**

votes

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378 views

### Need explicit formula for certain “$q$-numbers” involving gcd's

The question is motivated by yet another possible approach to a combinatorial problem formulated previously in "Special" meanders. I'm not giving details of the connection as I believe the ...

**17**

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271 views

### Deforming a basis of a polynomial ring

The ring $Symm$ of symmetric functions in infinitely many variables is well-known to be a polynomial ring in the elementary symmetric functions, and has a $\mathbb Z$-basis of Schur functions $\{S_\...

**16**

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289 views

### Simpler proofs of certain Ramsey numbers

The reason for the gorgeous simplicity of the classic proofs of $R(3,3)$, $R(4,4)$, $R(3,4)$ and $R(3,5)$ is that essentially all you need is the trivial bound and a picture.
But for bigger Ramsey ...

**16**

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546 views

### Is there a n/2 version of the Erdős-Hanani conjecture?

This question comes out of REU research from this past summer. Unfortunately weeks of thought led to only trivial observations and the conclusion that the problem is quite hard.
Fix $k,t$. Let $F$ be ...

**15**

votes

**0**answers

477 views

### Spencer's “six standard deviations” theorem - better constants?

This question is about Joel Spencer's famous "six standard deviations" theorem. The theorem says that when
$$
L_i(x_1,\dots,x_n) = a_{i1} x_1 + \dots + a_{in} x_n, \quad 1 \leq i \leq n,
$$
are $n$ ...

**15**

votes

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167 views

### realization spaces of 3-dimensional polytopes

It is a well-know result (Steinitz, 1922) that the realization space of 3-dimensional convex polytopes with fixed combinatorics is contractible.
A proof of this theorem can be found for instance in ...

**15**

votes

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323 views

### Maximum automorphism group for a 3-connected cubic graph

The following arose as a side issue in a project on graph reconstruction.
Problem: Let $a(n)$ be the greatest order of the automorphism group of a 3-connected cubic graph with $n$ vertices. Find a ...

**15**

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1k views

### Covers of $Z^k$

This is a question related to covers of $Z^\infty$. Is it possible to cover $Z^k$, $k>1$, with the $l_1$-metric by a constant (not depending on $k$) number of collections of subsets $U^0,...,U^c$ ...

**15**

votes

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858 views

### Is every k-edge-connected graph also k-trail-ordered?

This is an old question of Aradhana Narula-Tam and Philip Lin that I think deserves wider circulation. It appeared in Discrete Math. 257 (2002), page 613, but not many people have looked at it and it ...

**15**

votes

**0**answers

795 views

### Optimal Monotone Families for the Discrete Isoperimetric Inequality

Background: the Discrete Isoperimetric Inequality
Start with a set X={1,2,...,n} of n elements and the family $2^X$ of all subsets of X.
For a real number p between zero and one, we consider a ...

**14**

votes

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296 views

### An algebraic strengthening of the Saturation Conjecture

The Saturation Conjecture (proved by Knutson-Tao) asserts that
$c_{n\mu,n\nu}^{n\lambda}\neq 0\Rightarrow c_{\mu,\nu}^{\lambda} \neq
0$, where $c$ denotes a Littlewood-Richardson coefficient and $n$ ...

**14**

votes

**0**answers

472 views

### Probability of many overlapping zero inner products on a circle

[Question edited and changed a little on June 14 2015]
Consider an $n$-dimensional vector $v$ with $v_i \in \{-1,1\}$. Now consider an $n$-dimensional vector $w$ with $w_i \in \{-1,0,1\}$. The ...

**14**

votes

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592 views

### What's the big deal about $M_{13}$?

$M_{13}$ is the Mathieu groupoid defined by Conway in
Conway, J. H. $M_{13}$. Surveys in combinatorics, 1997 (London), 1–11,
London Math. Soc. Lecture Note Ser., 241, Cambridge Univ. Press, ...

**14**

votes

**0**answers

316 views

### Monotone embedding of complete binary tree in hypercube

Embedding different graphs, especially binary trees, in the hypercube has a huge literature. However, I could not find anything if we restrict the embedding to be monotone. So I would like to ...

**14**

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667 views

### A Conjecture About Directed Graphs that are the Union of Two Trees

Let D=(V,E) be a directed graph that is the union of two edge-disjoint directed
spanning trees. Suppose that
There no subset X of vertices so that
there is precisely one directed edge
from X ...

**14**

votes

**0**answers

2k views

### Minimum tiling of a rectangle by squares

Given the $n\times m$ rectangle, I want to compute the minimum number of integer-sided squares needed to tile it (possibly of different sizes).
Is there an efficient way to calculate this?

**13**

votes

**0**answers

387 views

### Chasing a 1950s thesis from the University of Dhaka on block designs

On behalf of a friend I am searching for a thesis on block designs from the 1950s. The details are below.
Author: Qazi Motahar Husein (Sometimes Husain or Hussein).
Title of the Thesis: Symmetrical ...

**13**

votes

**0**answers

325 views

### Grothendieck on polyhedra over finite fields

In Grothendieck's Sketch of a Programme he spends a few pages discussing polyhedra over arbitrary rings and concludes with some intriguing remarks on specializing polyhedra over their "most singular ...

**13**

votes

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603 views

### Capelli determinant = Duflo ( determinant) - was it known ?

Question briefly. Was this fact known: Capelli determinant = Duflo (determinant) ? (This is an equality of the two central elements in universal enveloping of Lie algebra $gl_n$).
I googled a lot ...

**13**

votes

**0**answers

434 views

### Catalan objects associated to a univariate polynomial

Given a monic degree $n$ polynomial $f(z)$ with no double roots, and a phase $0\leq \theta < \pi$, there are natural constructions which associate to this data:
a noncrossing matching on $2n$ ...

**13**

votes

**0**answers

522 views

### $\epsilon$-nets with respect to the cut norm

The cut norm $||A||\_C$ of a real matrix $A = (a_{i,j}) \in \mathcal{R}^{n\times n}$ is the maximum over all $I \subseteq [n], J \subseteq [n]$ of the quantity $\left|\sum_{i \in I, j \in J}a_{i,j}\...

**13**

votes

**0**answers

368 views

### How much must deleting a spanning tree reduce edge-connectivity?

Suppose you have a 100-edge connected graph (e.g. an infrastructure network). You want to delete the edges of a spanning tree, any spanning tree you choose (e.g. to sell a connected subnetwork). What ...

**13**

votes

**0**answers

706 views

### Polynomials with presumably positive coefficients

After seeing that some positivity problems get their solutions on MO,
I am quite enthusiastic of posing my (and not only) problem of positive flavour.
In order to state it, I have to introduce the ...

**13**

votes

**0**answers

456 views

### Where do stable Kronecker coefficients live “in nature”?

Background:
For a partition $\lambda$, let $\lambda[N] = (N - |\lambda|, \lambda_1, \lambda_2, \lambda_3, \dots)$, also let $\chi_\lambda$ be the corresponding irreducible character of the symmetric ...

**12**

votes

**0**answers

174 views

### Reference request: exponential growth rates of subword-closed languages are integers

For a language $L$ over the finite alphabet $\Sigma$, let $L_n$ denote the set of words in $L$ of length $n$. The word $u$ is a subword of $w$ if $u$ can be obtained from $w$ by deleting letters. The ...

**12**

votes

**0**answers

190 views

### How does a permutation $P$ affect the singular value $\sigma_{\text{max}}(Q^\top P^\top Q)$ for orthogonal $Q$?

Let $q_i$ for $i=1,\ldots,m$ be the columns of the matrix $Q\in\mathbb{R}^{n\times m}$, $n\geq 2m$, which are pairwise orthonormal ( i.e.
$q_i^\top q_j = \begin{cases} 1 & \text{if}\quad i=j \\ 0 &...