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29
votes
14answers
3k views

Fantastic properties of Z/2Z

Recently I gave a lecture to master's students about some nice properties of the group with two elements $\mathbb{Z}/2\mathbb{Z}$. Typically, I wanted to present simple, natural situations where the ...
26
votes
9answers
2k views

How many groups of size at most n are there? What is the asymptotic growth rate? And what of rings, fields, graphs, partial orders, etc.?

Question. How many (isomorphism types of) finite groups of size at most n are there? What is the asymptotic growth rate? And the same question for rings, fields, graphs, partial orders, etc. ...
41
votes
6answers
2k views

How to recognise that the polynomial method might work

A couple of days ago I was at a nice seminar given by Christian Reiher, during which he told us about a short proof of the following special case of a theorem of Olson. Theorem. Let ...
17
votes
3answers
900 views

Non-split extensions of $GL_n(F_q)$ by $F_q^n$ ?

A very naive question : I just learned that there is a non-split extension of $GL_3(F_2)$ by $F_2^3$ (with standard action). It can be realized as the subgroup of the automorphism group $G_2$ of ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Truncated Exponential Series Modulo $p$: Deeper meaning for a Putnam Question.

Apparently B6 of the Putnam this year asked: Suppose $p$ is an odd prime. Prove that for $n\in \{0,1,2...p-1\}$, at least $\frac{p+1}{2}$ of the numbers $\sum^{p-1}_{k=0} k! n^{k}$ are not ...
11
votes
3answers
810 views

Probability of coprime polynomials

Given positive integer $N$, we choose $m_1, m_2, n_1, n_2$ independently and with equal probabilities from $\{0,1,\ldots,N\}$, and let $f_1 = x^{m_1} + (1+x)^{n_1}$ and $f_2 = x^{m_2} + (1+x)^{n_2}$ ...
2
votes
0answers
260 views

Enumerating certain types of permutation polynomials

Given a prime power $q$, I would like to enumerate (preferably up to isomorphism*) all the permutation polynomials $f(x)$ on $K = GF(q^3)$ satisfying the following conditions: $f(ax) = af(x)$ for ...
7
votes
2answers
967 views

What is an example of a smooth variety over a finite field F_p which does not lift to Z_p?

Somebody answered this question instead of the question here, so I am asking this with the hope that they will cut and paste their solution.
4
votes
2answers
952 views

Calculus over finite fields

$P(x,y,z)$ is a polynomial function on an algebraic surface $S$ in $F_{q}^{3}$. Suppose that the derivative of $P$ along any tangent vector of $S$ is zero. Can we say that $P$ is constant on $S$? ...
6
votes
3answers
340 views

On the rank of a matrix $S$ with coefficients in $\mathbb F_{2^m}$

Let $\mathbb F$ be a finite field with characteristic 2 and let $S \in M(2k, 2k, \mathbb F)$ be the matrix defined as follows $$ S=\left[\begin{array}{ccccccc} 0 & ...
5
votes
1answer
164 views

Which criteria for “uniformly splitting” polynomials?

Let $P(x)$ be an irreducible monic polynomial of degree $\ge4$ with integer coefficients. We all know that over a finite field $\mathbb F_p$, $P$ will often split, and I am interested in polynomials ...
5
votes
1answer
381 views

More expanders?

Having received several exhausting answers to my recent question about the expansion properties of a certain graph, I now wonder whether anything is known on the following graphs of a similar nature: ...
0
votes
0answers
79 views

Polynomial generated with primitive element modulo p

This question is equivalent to the question "Normal basis in cyclotomic number fields" that I asked recently. I am posing this question because maybe in this format somebody can have an answer: Let ...