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15
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the best way explain to undergraduates that all 1-dimensional manifolds are orientable?

Let's suppose that $M$ is a connected $1$-dimensional smooth manifold (Haussdorf and paracompact). We know that there are exactly two types, up to diffeomorphism (even up to homeomorphism), namely ...
14
votes
4answers
840 views

What is the analog of the “Fundamental Theorem of Space Curves,” for surfaces, and beyond?

The "Fundamental Theorem of Space Curves" (Wikipedia link; MathWorld link) states that there is a unique (up to congruence) curve in space that simultaneously realizes given continuous curvature ...
14
votes
2answers
549 views

How useful/pervasive are differential forms in surface theory?

Every year I teach an introductory class on the differential geometry of surfaces, including numerical aspects (e.g., how to solve PDEs on surfaces). Historically this class has included an ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Surfaces containing curves of arbitrarily negative self-intersection

Olivier Wittenberg and I are curious about the following : Let $S$ be a smooth projective complex surface. Are the self-intersection numbers of integral curves on $S$ always bounded below ? Or can ...
12
votes
2answers
497 views

On closed simple curve with curvature at most 1

I am looking for the reference to the following theorem. I have to apply a similar statement, and it would be nice to trace the source. Please note, I know few proofs in fact it is Problem 3 in my ...
12
votes
1answer
665 views

Minimizing geodesic on a convex surface

Let $\Sigma$ be a smooth convex surface in Euclidean 3-space and $\gamma$ be a unit speed minimizing geodesic in $\Sigma$. Assume that for some $a < b < c$, we have ...
11
votes
7answers
1k views

Walking around Santa Cruz, track around the soccer field

I was recently walking around the track at UCSC, and I noticed that the track didn't always curve inward. Sometimes it curved the other way. Compare this (A convex track): ...
11
votes
0answers
697 views

Hamiltonian cycles and fundamental groups

I'm interested in the interplay between the Hamiltonian cycles of graphs and the compact surfaces they embed in. I was doing some reading on the Lovász conjecture for Cayley graphs, I started noticing ...
10
votes
4answers
409 views

How to detect a simple closed curve from the element in the fundamental group?

(1) Given a fundamental group representation of a hyperbolic surface, i.e. $<a_j,b_j|\prod[a_j,b_j]=1>$, and given an element in this group, can we determine whether this element can be ...
9
votes
3answers
410 views

Flips of triangulations on non-orientable surfaces

Let $N_{k,r}$ be a non-orientable surface of genus $k$ (i.e the connected sum of $k$ projective planes) and with $p\geq 1$ punctures. I'm looking at ideal triangulations of the surface, namely ...
9
votes
3answers
796 views

Extending birational isomorphisms between planar curves to the P^2

Let $k$ be a field and let $C,D$ be two integral curves in $\mathbb{P}^2_k$. Now let $f:C \to D$ be a birational isomorphism. Can $f$ be extended to $\mathbb{P}^2_k$. To be precise, does there exist a ...
9
votes
1answer
435 views

Including a Jordan arc into a Jordan loop (Can the Magi go home by another way?)

The title refers, of course, to Matthew (2:12) ''And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way''. To be honest, it is not that specific ...
8
votes
1answer
376 views

Can curves differentiate vector bundles on P^2?

Not much is known about vector bundles on $\mathbb{P}^2$ but I wonder if the following is a tractable question: If $E,E'$ are non-isomorphic vector bundles on $\mathbb{P}^2$, then is there always a ...
8
votes
1answer
505 views

Geodesics on the twisted pseudosphere (Dini's surface)

I wonder how difficult it is to compute geodesics on Dini's Surface, a twisted pseudosphere? Here is one parametrization, from Alfred Gray's Modern Differential Geometry of Curves and Surfaces, ...
8
votes
2answers
340 views

Surface in 3D that realizes all pairs of principal curvatures

This is a question that Willie Wong raised in comments after he answered my question, Surface analog of clothoid: curvatures covering $\mathbb{R}^3$. Willie's question is more interesting (and ...
8
votes
0answers
556 views

What is the relation between hypocycloids and ideals in polynomial rings as alluded to in Arnold's text on teaching mathematics?

While browsing through this site, I came upon the text of Arnold: "On teaching mathematics". http://pauli.uni-muenster.de/~munsteg/arnold.html containing the phrase ... it can be said that a ...
7
votes
2answers
458 views

The number of singular fibres of a semi-stable arithmetic surface over \Z

This is an arithmetic follow-up to my previous question Does there exist a non-trivial semi-stable curve of genus >1 with only 4 singular fibres Let $k$ be an algebraically closed field and let ...
7
votes
1answer
100 views

A procedure to determine if an automorphism of a closed 2-manifold extends to an automorphism of a handlebody

In a paper of Casson and Gordon's "A loop theorem for duality spaces and fibred ribbon knots. Invent. Math. 74 (1983), no. 1, 119–137" they give a necessary criterion for a fibred knot to be a ribbon ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Geometric meaning of derivatives of the curvature

Let $\Gamma$ be a sufficiently smooth, closed, convex curve in the plane parametrized by arclength $s$. Further assume that $\kappa>0$ and that the second derivative of $\kappa$ with respect to $s$ ...
6
votes
1answer
224 views

Representation of surface group

Is there a faithful representation of a surface group of genus $>2$ into $GL(n,\mathbb{C})$ for some $n$ for which, for each conjugacy class of each embedded loop in the fundamental group, the ...
6
votes
0answers
496 views

Bezout Theorem in $\mathbb P^3$

For a $\mathbb C P^2$ is known a result: if through the generic points $p_1,p_2,\dots p_n$ with multiplicities $m_1,m_2\dots, m_n$ correspondingly a degree $d$ curve passes then $d^2\geq ...
5
votes
2answers
366 views

Besides the tracioid are there other surfaces of revolution that have a constant negative curvature?

There is no surface in $ R^3 $ that can represent the complete hyperbolic plane (Hilberts theorem) so we always have to do with a surface that is not completely equivalent, has a cusp somewhere, but ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Proof without words for surface area of a sphere [closed]

I love the book Proofs Without Words by Roger B. Nelsen. One of the proofs I liked the most was this: Area under one arch of a cycloid is 3 times the area of the wheel that traces it. You break the ...
5
votes
1answer
148 views

Curvature flows for PL closed curves in the plane?

I'm curious to what extent people have studied "curvature flows" on PL closed curves in the plane. There's a paper by Gage and Hamilton from 1986 that describes the long-term behaviour of smooth ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Nagata's conjecture, Seshadri constant

What is it known now about Nagata's conjecture and Seshadri constant (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nagata%27s_conjecture_on_curves and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seshadri_constant) for toric ...
5
votes
1answer
131 views

Injective simplicial maps between Arc complexes

Let $A(S)$ denotes the Arc complex of a finite type hyperbolic surface $S$ with nonempty boundary. Let $\lambda:A(S)\rightarrow A(S)$ be a map such that on triangulations of $S$ i.e. on the top ...
5
votes
1answer
125 views

Curvature and Failure to return to starting point

Assume I have a geodesic polygon $P$ in a Riemannian manifold $M$ that is given by the image of a piecewise geodesic closed curve $\gamma(t)$ (parametrized by arclength), with vertices $x_i = ...
4
votes
3answers
273 views

Automorphisms of a smooth quadric surface $Q\subset\mathbb{P}^{3}$

Let $Q\cong\mathbb{P^{1}_{1}}\times\mathbb{P^{1}_{2}}\subset\mathbb{P}^{3}$ be a smooth quadric surface. We have the following two actions on $Q$: $$S_2\times Q\rightarrow Q,\; ...
4
votes
1answer
276 views

Divisorial contraction: when is the image an algebraic space or a stack?

Let $X$ be a smooth projective surface (in the category of varieties, or schemes), and let $C\subset X$ be a curve (a priori not irreducible, but the irreducible case in itself is already ...
4
votes
1answer
410 views

Del pezzo surfaces in positive characteristic

For me a Del Pezzo surface $X$ over an algebraically closed field of characteristic $p$ is an algebraic surface where the anticanonical bundle $\omega^{-1}_X$ or $-K_X$ is ample. (I prefer the second ...
4
votes
1answer
79 views

Angle between geodesics in hyperbolic surface

Let $F$ be an oriented surface of finite type with $\chi(F)<0$. Let $\gamma_1$ and $\gamma_2$ are two oriented closed curves which intersect transversally in double points. Given a hyperbolic ...
4
votes
1answer
576 views

Example of cone of numerically effective curves which is not polyhedral

I think I have seen more than one reference in which the cone of numerically effective curves can be 'not polyhedral', i.e. with an infinite number of extremal rays I cannot remember where I read ...
4
votes
1answer
160 views

is there some condition I can impose on families of curves on a surface such that the second Ext between the ideal sheaf and the structure sheaf is zero?

(the title got out of hand) Say I have a surface $X$, then I also have M, the Hilbert scheme of curves and points on X. This can be seen as a moduli space of quotients $O_X \to O_Z$. If $I_Z$ is the ...
4
votes
3answers
280 views

On discrete version of curve shortening flow

One can define an analogous version of the curve shortening flow for polygons in $\mathbb R^2$, namely defined by the differential equation $\dot{p_i}(t)=\frac{v_i(t)}{|v_i(t)|^2}$, where $p_i$ is the ...
4
votes
2answers
499 views

Directional Distortion of a Surface

Hi everyone, I am facing a math road block. I have two surfaces (3D) described by two functions $f_1$ and $f_2$ (known). I would like to create some sort of directional distortion along the loading ...
3
votes
5answers
245 views

Variation of curvature with respect to immersion?

Let $M$ be a smooth surface and let $f: M \to \mathbb{R}^3$ be a family of immersions given by $$ f(t) = f_0 + tuN_0, $$ where $f_0$ is some initial immersion, $N_0$ is the associated Gauss map, and ...
3
votes
2answers
444 views

Surfaces in $\mathbb R^3$ with negative curvature bounded away from zero

Is there a surface in $\mathbb R^3$ which is a closed subset and whose curvature is negative and bounded away from zero? And the small-print... By surface I mean smooth surface without ...
3
votes
1answer
114 views

A query about Hatcher flow on arc complex

In the paper "Triangulations of Surfaces" Hatcher proved that the arc complex associated to a punctured surface is contractible. The main proof is divided into two parts. In the first part he assumes ...
3
votes
1answer
69 views

How to approximate volumes of m-dimensional manifolds with m-dimensional polyhedra

The areas of a sequence of polyhedra approaching a surface need not approach the area of the surface, but there are theorems guaranteeing that this be so. (T. Rado, On the Problem of Plateau, Chapter ...
3
votes
2answers
160 views

Points of a linear system on a cubic surface

Let $S$ be a generic cubic surface and let $C$ be its intersection with a generic quadric surface. In the linear system of hyperplane sections of $S$, how many points represent the planes $H$ tangent ...
3
votes
1answer
438 views

How to find the action of an automorphism on the 27 lines on a cubic surface?

Assume $C\subset \mathbb{P}^2$ is a smooth cubic curve. Then there is a cyclic triple cover $\pi: S\rightarrow \mathbb{P}^2$ ramified in $C$. Let $\sigma$ be the covering automorphism (sheet ...
3
votes
1answer
261 views

Defining ideals for rational curves in space

A rational normal curve $C_d\subset\mathbb{P}^d$ is defined by quadrics. I guess, for the generic projection $\mathbb{P}^d\stackrel{\pi}{\to}\mathbb{P}^n$ the image $\pi(C_d)$ is still defined by ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Gaussian curvature radius

In the paper Surface sampling and the intrinsic Voronoi diagram (2008), Ramsay Dyer defines the Gaussian curvature radius at a point $x$ of a surface $S$ to be $\rho_K(x) = 1/\sqrt{K(x)}$ where ...
3
votes
2answers
246 views

Realizing homology classes on surfaces with boundary by simple closed curves

Let $\Sigma$ be a compact oriented surface with boundary. Assume that the genus of $\Sigma$ is positive. We say that an element $h \in H_1(\Sigma)$ can be realized by a simple closed curve if there ...
3
votes
1answer
504 views

Does this surface contain all perfect cuboids?

Probably this is wildly known, but the closest I found was a surface with additional restrictive conditions. A perfect cuboid is a cuboid having integer side lengths, integer face diagonals and an ...
3
votes
1answer
192 views

Bezier Curves question

Hi everyone I have a fairly simple question about bezier curves: can you represent n bezier curves that have been continuously joined together by a single bezier curve of degree 3n? My instinct is ...
3
votes
0answers
138 views

Mapping One Curve to another using Dehn Twists

Let $M$ be an orientable surface with genus $g>1$. Let $\alpha$ and $\beta$ represent two different isotopy classes of essential curves on the surface. Is anyone aware of a technique or algorithm ...
3
votes
0answers
101 views

The central fiber of this family of surfaces?

I have a question on a description of a central fiber of the following family of surfaces. Let $B,C \subset \mathbb{P}^2$ be smooth curve of degree $2d$ and $d$ respectively. Let's consider the ...
2
votes
3answers
622 views

A simple closed curve on a surface

How to describe a simple closed curve on an oriented surface of genus g? I know the answer only for the torus. It would be nice to find an article or a book where proof can be found.
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Formulas for equidistant curves

Hello, I'm trying to draw on the computer a curve that keeps always the same distance(given as parameter) from a given curve. I know the formula for the given curve. I tried moving perpendicular to ...