The deformation-theory tag has no usage guidance.

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### Intuition about the cotangent complex?

Does anyone have an answer to the question "What does the cotangent complex measure?"
Algebraic intuitions (like "homology measures how far a sequence is from being exact") are as welcome as ...

**27**

votes

**5**answers

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### Deformation theory of representations of an algebraic group

For an algebraic group G and a representation V, I think it's a standard result (but I don't have a reference) that
the obstruction to deforming V as a representation of G is an element of ...

**26**

votes

**6**answers

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### Deformation theory and differential graded Lie algebras

There is supposed to be a philosophy that, at least over a field of characteristic zero, every "deformation problem" is somehow "governed" or "controlled" by a differential graded Lie algebra. See for ...

**24**

votes

**9**answers

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### What is a deformation of a category?

I have several naive and possibly stupid questions about deformations of categories. I hope that someone can at least point me to some appropriate references.
What is a deformation of a (linear, dg, ...

**21**

votes

**2**answers

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### Accumulation of algebraic subvarieties: Near one subvariety there are many others (?)

Let's work over the field $\mathbb{C}$ of complex numbers, and let $X\subset \mathbb{P}^n$ be a projective variety. Let $\tilde{X}\subset \mathbb{P}^n$ be any small open neighborhood of $X$, in the ...

**20**

votes

**2**answers

924 views

### Strict applications of deformation theory in which to dip one's toe

I hesitate to ask a question like this, but I really have tried finding answers to this question on my own and seemed to come up short. I readily admit this is due to my ignorance of algebraic ...

**20**

votes

**4**answers

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### algebraic group G vs. algebraic stack BG

I've gathered that it's "common knowledge" (at least among people who think about such things) that studying a (smooth) algebraic group G, as an algebraic group, is in some sense the same as studying ...

**19**

votes

**1**answer

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### Almost Complex Structure approach to Deformation of Compact Complex Manifolds

I don't know much about the deformation of compact complex manifolds, I've only read chapter 6 of Huybrechts' book Complex Geometry: An Introduction. There are two parts to this chapter. The second ...

**19**

votes

**4**answers

1k views

### A matrix algebra has no deformations?

I have often heard the slogan that "a matrix algebra has no deformations," and I am trying to understand precisely what that means. While I would be happy with more general statements about ...

**18**

votes

**5**answers

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### Is a 'generic' variety nonsingular? Or singular?

I'd like to know whether there's some coherent meaning of 'generic' for which one can say that a 'generic' variety over an algebraically closed field $K$, say, is nonsingular or singular. We could ...

**18**

votes

**3**answers

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### Why are derived categories natural places to do deformation theory?

It seems to me that a lot of people do deformation theory (of schemes, sheaves, maps etc) in derived category (of an appropriate abelian category). For example, the cotangent complex of a morphism ...

**17**

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### Introduction to deformation theory (of algebras)?

So I know that the idea of deformation theory underlies the concept of quantum groups; I haven't found any single introduction to quantum groups that makes me fully satisfied that I have some kind of ...

**17**

votes

**2**answers

958 views

### Massey Products vs. $A_\infty$-Structures

Does anyone know a good reference for a proof of the fact that given a dga $A$, an $A_\infty$-structure on $HA$ is ''the same'' as coherent choices for all of the higher Massey products of $HA$? More ...

**16**

votes

**4**answers

1k views

### Example of a smooth morphism where you can't lift a map from a nilpotent thickening?

Definition. A locally finitely presented morphism of schemes $f\colon X\to Y$ is smooth (resp. unramified, resp. étale) if for any affine scheme $T$, any closed subscheme $T_0$ defined by a square ...

**16**

votes

**2**answers

702 views

### What is an explicit example of a variety X which is finite over Spec F_p but which does not lift to a scheme Y which is finite and flat over Spec Z_p?

What is an explicit example of a variety X which is finite over Spec F_p but which does not lift to a scheme Y which is finite and flat over Spec Z_p?

**16**

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**2**answers

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### Why do my quantum group books avoid homotopical language?

I am sitting on my carpet surrounded by books about quantum groups, and the only categorical concept they discuss are the representation categories of quantum groups.
Many notes closer to "Kontsevich ...

**16**

votes

**1**answer

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### Accumulation of algebraic subvarieties: Near one subvariety there are many others (?), 3

Part 3 of this series of questions. In the meantime, I realized that there is some very simple question that was left open in Accumulation of algebraic subvarieties: Near one subvariety there are many ...

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**2**answers

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### Kontsevich's conjectures on the Grothendieck-Teichmüller group?

Reading Kontsevich's "Operads and Motives in Deformation Quantization", I was wondering about the state of the many conjectures concerning the Grothendieck-Teichmüller group in chapter 4. (Also, where ...

**15**

votes

**2**answers

458 views

### Proof of Hensel's lemma by using the deformation theory

I am thinking about the simplest version of Hensel's lemma. Fix a prime $p$. Let $f(x)\in \mathbf{Z}[x]$ be a polynomial. Assume there exists $a_0\in \mathbf{F}_p$ such that $f(a_0)=0\mod p$, and ...

**14**

votes

**2**answers

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### obstruction theories in algebraic geometry

I'd like to know about the history of obstruction theories in algebraic geometry, as well as the relationship with concepts of the same name in topology. I would also like to know where obstruction ...

**13**

votes

**1**answer

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### Grothendieck-Messing theory for finite flat group schemes

Classical Grothendieck-Messing theory relates deformations of $p$-divisible groups to lifts of the Hodge filtration (if the ideal defining the nilpotent immersion is equipped with a PD-structure). If ...

**13**

votes

**1**answer

480 views

### Les deux théorèmes d'existence en théorie formelle des modules

In Exposé 195 of the Séminaire Bourbaki, Grothendieck states the following two theorems of non-flat descent.
Theorem 1. Let $\Lambda$ be a noetherian ring and $C$ the category of ...

**13**

votes

**1**answer

372 views

### Unobstructedness of braided deformations of symmetric monoidal categories in higher category theory

Let $k$ be a field of characteristic zero, and $\mathcal{C}$ be a $k$-linear additive symmetric monoidal category. A braided deformation of $\mathcal{C}$ over a local artin ring $R$ with residue ...

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**5**answers

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### Deformations of semisimple Lie algebras

In the questions Is "semisimple" a dense condition among Lie algebras? and What is the Zariski closure of the space of semisimple Lie algebras?, something equivalent to the following is ...

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**1**answer

721 views

### Lie groups vs. algebraic groups and deformations

I am interested in deformations of (discrete subgroups of) Lie groups. But, as I understand it, deformation theory, as a theory, prefers to speak schemes.
At least the classical Lie groups can be ...

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**1**answer

1k views

### Deformations of the punctured affine plane

Let $k$ be some field, algebraically closed and of characteristic $0$, if you like.
Let $U= \mathbb{A}^2_k \setminus \{ (0,0) \}$ be the punctured affine plane over $k$. Write $U$ as the union of ...

**11**

votes

**1**answer

363 views

### Obstructed automorphisms of schemes

Let $X$ be a smooth projective scheme over a field $\mathbf{k}$ of characteristic zero such that $\mathrm{H}^0(X, \mathrm{T}X)$ vanishes, and let $f$ be an automorphism of $X$. I would like to have an ...

**11**

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**1**answer

639 views

### Associativity of Kontsevich's star product up to second order

In Deformation quantization of Poisson manifolds, Kontsevich gives the quantization formula
$$f \star g = \sum_{n=0}^\infty \hbar^n \sum_{\Gamma \in G_n} w_\Gamma B_{\Gamma,\alpha}(f,g).$$
He gives ...

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**0**answers

198 views

### Squeezing physics out of formal deformation quantizations

I am reading various texts concerning the concept of "quantization". I am interested in quantization on Riemannian manifolds (as opposed to just on $\Bbb R ^n$); for absolute clarity, I am interested ...

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**2**answers

360 views

### Infinitesimal deformations of the formal group of $\mathbb{G}_m$

For a commutative ring $R$, consider the formal group $\widehat{\mathbb{G}}_m$ over $R$ that is the completion of $\mathbb{G}_{m, R}$ along its identity section (naively, $\widehat{\mathbb{G}}_m$ is ...

**10**

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**1**answer

805 views

### Accumulation of algebraic subvarieties: Near one subvariety there are many others (?), 2

This is a sequel to the question Accumulation of algebraic subvarieties: Near one subvariety there are many others (?) .
Let $Y$ be some projective variety, over $\mathbb{C}$. Let $X\subset Y$ be ...

**10**

votes

**3**answers

989 views

### Deformation theory over the field of algebraic numbers

Let $X_0$ be a smooth projective variety over $\mathbb{C}$ and let $\Theta_{X_0}$ be the locally free sheaf of $O_{X_0}$-module corresponding to tangent space of $X_0$.
Goal: To find a sufficient ...

**10**

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**1**answer

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### Kontsevich's formality theorem from an explicit homotopy

Suppose that $X$ is a smooth manifold, whose $C^{\infty}$-functions we denote by $A$. Let $D_{poly}^*(A):=\bigoplus_{n\geq -1}Hom(A^{\otimes n+1},A)$ be the Lie algebra of polydifferential operators ...

**10**

votes

**2**answers

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### “Spec” of graded rings?

From the discussion here, it seems that general Hochschild cohomology classes correspond to deformations where the deformation parameter can have nonzero degree.
So I have some naive and maybe stupid ...

**10**

votes

**1**answer

487 views

### Are periods of rigid Calabi-Yau threefolds over $Q$ algebraic?

Let $X$ be a (smooth) compact complex manifold, and suppose that $H^1(X, \Theta_X) = 0$, where $\Theta_X$ is the tangent sheaf. In other words, suppose that $X$ is rigid.
Suppose moreover that $X$ ...

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**0**answers

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### Maurer-Cartan equation for Lie groups/homogeneous space vs. Maurer-Cartan of deformation theory

What is the relationship between the Maurer-Cartan equation
$$
d\theta + \dfrac{1}{2}[\theta,\theta] = 0
$$
satisfied by Maurer-Cartan forms on Lie groups, or by pullbacks of Maurer-Cartan forms along ...

**10**

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**0**answers

449 views

### Deformations of some simple quotient stacks.

I am interested in stacks of vector bundles on varieties and how deformations of the variety (including non-commutative ones) reflect themselves in deformations of the stack of vector bundles.
I will ...

**9**

votes

**1**answer

441 views

### Motivation behind the definition of hochschild cohomology

For an associative algebra $A$ one can define the Hochschild cohomology of $A$ as $ HH^n(A,A):= Hom_{\mathcal{D}(A^{op} \otimes A)}(A, [n]A)$ (this definition also works for the graded and dg cases as ...

**9**

votes

**1**answer

336 views

### Extended Deformation Theory (dg-Lie algebra principle in positive characteristic?)

Recently, I looked at articles that make use of Deligne's idea that "in characteristic 0 every deformation problem is governed by a differential graded
Lie algebra" as explained first in ...

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votes

**2**answers

450 views

### Geometric meaning of small extensions ?

Let $(A,\mathfrak{m}_A)$ be a local Artinian $k$-algebra with residue field $k$. Then the scheme $\mathrm{Spec}(A)$ can be loosely seen as a "fat point", or an "infinitesimal neighbourhood" of a point ...

**9**

votes

**1**answer

385 views

### Reverse Engineering to find deformation problem (from cohomology groups)?

One of my favorite explanation of the cohomology groups of low degree is that they arise as the automorphism group, tangent space and obstruction space (or where the obstruction lives) of a certain ...

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**0**answers

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### Are deformations of a scheme some kind of a “derived gerbe” under the cotangent complex?

(This is probably a very naive question. My understanding of the cotangent complex is quite vague.)
Let me first recall the picture for deformations of a smooth morphism:
If $f:X_0\to S_0$ is a ...

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votes

**2**answers

884 views

### A simple proof of the Weyl algebra's rigidity.

I am wondering if there is a nice presentation of the Hochschild cohomology of $A_n$ the Weyl algebra. It is known that $H^m(A_n,A_n)=0$ for $m>0$, and thus it is rigid. A proof can be found in ...

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### Deformations and the dual numbers

The question I have is pretty straightforward, and its answer could very well be contained in some more complicated question(s) asked previously. Here it is:
Why are deformations typically ...

**8**

votes

**2**answers

748 views

### Algebraic definition of the Kuranishi map

Let $X$ be a smooth projective algebraic variety over an algebraically closed field $k$. If $k=\mathbb{C}$, we know by work of Kuranishi that the base of the versal deformation of $X$ is the germ at ...

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**2**answers

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### When does the categorical definition of a module work?

$\DeclareMathOperator{\ab}{Ab}\DeclareMathOperator{\qcoh}{QCoh}$
This entry in the nlab shows that for $A$ a (commutative unital) ring, the category $\mathsf{Mod}_A$ of $A$-modules is equivalent to ...

**8**

votes

**1**answer

583 views

### obstruction to smooth lifting of smooth schemes

According to general theory, for a square zero thickening defined by an ideal I: SpecA -> SpecA', there is an obstruction of lifting a smooth scheme X over A to a smooth scheme over A' living in ...

**8**

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**1**answer

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### Why can you deform singularities in two dimensions but not in higher dimensions?

I've been trying to read this paper to understand deformations of surface quotient singularities. I'm particularly interested in when one can deform certain cyclic quotient singularities into other ...

**8**

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**1**answer

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### What is the universal deformation of the formal additive group $\widehat{\mathbb{G}}_a$ over $\mathbb{F}_p$?

Lubin and Tate show in their paper Formal moduli for one-parameter formal Lie groups that for any formal group over a field $k$ of characteristic $p>0$ with height $h<\infty$, the functor of ...

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### Kodaira-Spencer map in a concrete instance

Let $\pi:X_{\epsilon} \rightarrow \Delta$ be a family of (say smooth) projective plane curves parametrized by $\Delta:=\operatorname{Spec}(k[\epsilon])$, and let $X=X_0$ be the closed fiber.
Suppose ...