The gm.general-mathematics tag has no usage guidance.

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### Basic results with three or more hypotheses

Consider the following statement of the Arzela-Ascoli theorem.
Theorem. Let K be a compact topological space and let S be a subset of C(K). Then S is relatively compact if and only if S is uniformly ...

**15**

votes

**7**answers

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### Is this a rational function?

Is $$\sum_{n=1}^{\infty} \frac{z^n}{2^n-1} \in \mathbb{C}(z)\ ?$$
In a slightly different vein, given a sequence of real numbers $\{a_n\}_{n=0}^\infty$, what are some necessary and sufficient ...

**30**

votes

**4**answers

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### Famous vacuously true statements

I am interested to know other examples vacuously true statements that are non-trivial. My starting example is Turan's result in regards to the Riemann hypothesis, which states
Suppose that for each ...

**137**

votes

**37**answers

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### Demonstrating that rigour is important

Any pure mathematician will from time to time discuss, or think about, the question of why we care about proofs, or to put the question in a more precise form, why we seem to be so much happier with ...

**114**

votes

**16**answers

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### When should a supervisor be a co-author?

What are people's views on this? To be specific: suppose a PhD student has produced a piece of original mathematical research. Suppose that student's supervisor suggested the problem, and gave a few ...

**40**

votes

**9**answers

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### How does a mathematician choose on which problem to work?

Main question:
How does a mathematician choose on which problem to work?
An example approach to framing one's answer:
What is a mathematical problem - big or small - that you solved or are ...

**90**

votes

**94**answers

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### What would you want to see at the Museum of Mathematics?

EDIT (30 Nov 2012): MoMath is opening in a couple of weeks, so this seems like it might be a good time for any last-minute additions to this question before I vote to close my own question as "no ...

**1**

vote

**1**answer

55 views

### Discrete summation of Gaussian functions. Decay time problem

I am facing the following problem. I have a function which is defined through a discrete sum of Gaussians
$$F_M(t) = 2\sum\limits_{n=1}^{M}e^{-t^2 \sigma^2 n^2}\times \sum\limits_{k=n}^{M}p_k p_{k-n} ...

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votes

**2**answers

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### What might extraterrestrial mathematics look like? [closed]

In an extensive anthropological joint research project concerning the necessities in the development of life and civilisation my group is concerned with mathematics. This forum seems to be extremely ...

**46**

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**8**answers

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### Has anyone thought about creating a formal proof wiki with verifier?

Mathematics has undergone some rather nice developments recently with the adoption of new techologies, things like on-line journals, the arXiv, this website, etc. I imagine there must be many further ...

**16**

votes

**4**answers

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### What is the term for combining functions $f_1,f_2,\dots,f_n$ into a tuple $(f_1,\dots,f_n)$?

This is an embarrassingly simple question, but I was not able to find a definitive answer from literature search.
Suppose one has some collection of functions $f_1: X \to Y_1, \dots, f_n: X \to Y_n$ ...

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votes

**9**answers

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### Dimensional Analysis in Mathematics

Is there a sensible and useful definition of units in mathematics? In other words, is there a theory of dimensional analysis for mathematics?
In physics, an extremely useful tool is the Buckingham Pi ...

**8**

votes

**1**answer

242 views

### Geometric meaning of unimodular matrix

Rotations are given by unitary matrices.
What is the geometric meaning of unimodular matrices that are not unitary?

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vote

**0**answers

36 views

### Find Moment condition for generalized method of moments

Consider a scalar system with 2K outputs and K+2 unknowns
$y_{k,1}=x_ka_1+n_{k,1} \quad y_{k,2}=x_ka_2+n_{k,1}$.
The variables $n_{k,\ell}$ are zero mean noise variables.
To estimate $a_1$ and $a_2$, ...

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votes

**1**answer

730 views

### Windows into new mathematical worlds [closed]

Yitang Zhang's Annals of Mathematics primes-gap result
opened a new window, which
Polymath's reduction from $70\times 10^6$ to $246$ attests.
Perhaps
Harald Helfgott's
celebrated proof of the odd ...

**5**

votes

**1**answer

113 views

### Solution to $(A+x^2)e^x=B$ with Lambert W function

Is it possible to obtain a analytical solution for $(A+x^2)e^x=B$, where we want to solve for $x$ with $A,B$ as constants?

**56**

votes

**8**answers

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### Have you solved problems in your sleep?

I have hit upon major (for me—relative to my trivial accomplishments)
insights in my research
in various sleep-deprived altered states of consciousness,
e.g., long solo car-drives extending ...

**2**

votes

**1**answer

453 views

### What is the rate of convergence? [closed]

How quickly does the series defined by $$x_0 = 0, \ x_{n+1} = \frac{x_n^2+1}{2}$$ converge to $1$?

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votes

**2**answers

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### Find the expansion of the exact solution (beyond Taylor)

In a paper by Kitagawa & Ueda Squeezed spin states they give an argument that the minimum variance in one-axis twisting Hamiltonian scales like $V_{min} \propto S^{-2/3}$. I will shortly describe ...

**28**

votes

**2**answers

854 views

### Applications of Lawvere's fixed point theorem

Lawvere's fixed point theorem states that in a cartesian closed category, if there is a morphism $A \to X^A$ which is point-surjective (meaning that $\hom(1,A) \to \hom(1,X^A)$ is surjective), then ...

**16**

votes

**1**answer

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### Why do people use “formal calculation” to describe informal calculations?

Many times, I see the word formal being used to describe a calculation that is not rigorous. I would think that such calculations should rather be termed informal than formal. What is the explanation ...

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vote

**0**answers

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### General procedure to find the determinant of an operator?

I want to learn to find the determinant of an operator.
I am given an operator like
$\Sigma _{\alpha\beta}=-k^2g_{\alpha\beta}+i\theta\epsilon_{\alpha\beta\gamma} k^\gamma$
$k^2=k^μk_μ$, $g^{αβ}$ ...

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votes

**3**answers

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### Which way for reading the proofs?

I am a master student in mathematics. For me a large part of doing mathematics is thinking about, reading and verifying the proof of theorems that I find them in my field of study. I can do this ...

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votes

**6**answers

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### Proofs by induction [closed]

Background
I'm interested in the issue of "explanatory" mathematical proofs and would like to try to find out what intuitions mathematicians have about induction, because there seems to be some ...

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**5**answers

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### Collaboration or acknowledgment?

This post is a sequel of: When should a supervisor be a co-author?
This time the topic is about the interaction between two professional mathematicians (in particular junior-senior, but not ...

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votes

**2**answers

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### What are the applications of operator algebras to other areas?

Question: What are the applications of operator algebras to other areas?
More precisely, I would like to know the results in mathematical areas outside of operator algebras which were proved by ...

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votes

**20**answers

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### Mathematical habits of thought and action which would be of use to non-mathematicians

Once again I come to MO for help with something I'm writing for the public.
Which habits of mathematicians -- aspects of the way we approach problems, the way we argue, the way we function as a ...

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votes

**8**answers

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### Published results: when to take them for granted?

Two kinds of papers. There are two kinds of papers: self-contained ones, and those relying on published results (which I believe are the vast majority).
Checking the result. Of course, one should ...

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votes

**11**answers

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### What advanced Area of Mathematics can be delved into with only basic Calculus and Linear Algebra

Hello Mathoverflow Community,
I would really appreciate some advice on this:
All I know is Basic Calculus and Basic Linear Algebra,
I want to start learning more advanced material on my own while ...

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votes

**6**answers

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### Good ways to engage in mathematics outreach?

Greetings all, I have often heard that it would be good if we as a community did more in the way of mathematics outreach: more to explain what it is we do to the community at large, more to expose ...

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**5**answers

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### Where do surreal numbers come from and what do they mean?

I know about Conway's original discovery of the surreal numbers by way of games,
as well as Kruskal's way of viewing surreal numbers in terms of asymptotic behavior
of real-valued functions, leading ...

**3**

votes

**1**answer

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### Mathematics of Computer science and AI [closed]

Computer science and Artificial Intelligence have been fertile grounds for research for decades, not only for Engineers but particularly for Mathematicians. What kinds of Mathematics have emerged ...

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votes

**2**answers

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### link to a paper by Ramanujan

Hi friends,
Does anybody know of a pdf version of the following paper ?
Ramanujan, S. “Modular Equations and Approximations to Pi.” Quart. J. Pure Appl. Math. 45, 350-372, 1913-1914.
It's ...

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votes

**2**answers

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### Popular books written by great mathematicians [closed]

I read:
H. Poincare. Value of science
F. Klein. Development of Mathematics in the 19th Century
J.E. Littlewood. A Mathematicians Miscellany
G.H. Hardy. A Mathematician’s Apology
R. Courant, ...

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votes

**1**answer

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### Compiling self-referential forms

Fix $1\leq d\in\mathbb{N}$ and set $D:=\{0,1,\ldots,d-1\}$.
Consider the system of equations
\begin{equation}
x_i=c_i + \sum_{j\in D}\delta_{x_j,i}
\end{equation}
with $c_i\in D$ given and $x_i\in D$ ...

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votes

**3**answers

859 views

### Simplifying finite sum over 1/(ax+b)

Can I simplify:
\begin{equation}
\sum_{x=x_0}^{x_1} \frac{1}{ax+b}
\end{equation}

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votes

**2**answers

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### Are there any organized websites for seminar/conference videos?

These days, there are many conference centers and universities recording seminars and conference talks and make them available on the web. Some examples:
http://www.fields.utoronto.ca/video-archive
...

**3**

votes

**1**answer

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### Extension of an involutive automorphism

Suppose that $g$ is a complex semi-simple Lie algebra and $g'$ its reductive subalgebra.
If $\tau$ is an involutive automorphism of $g'$, can $\tau$ be extended to an involutive automorphism of $g$ ...

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votes

**6**answers

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### Does a referee have to check carefully the proof ?

I have always checked very carefully the papers I was refereeing when I wanted to suggest "accept". Actually I spend almost as much time checking the maths of a paper I referee than checking the maths ...

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votes

**5**answers

599 views

### Mathematics of privacy?

I wonder to which extent the current public debate on privacy issues (not only by state sniffing, but e.g. by microtargetting ads too an issue) offers interesting questions in mathematics?
Can we ...

**1**

vote

**1**answer

222 views

### Concept of synchronizability

This thread is about the concept of synchronizability. It's a concept I tried to formalize in its most general sense but without success. The goal of this thread is therefore to try to formalize it in ...

**2**

votes

**2**answers

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### Websites for Math Shopping [closed]

I was wondering if anyone knows about good websites or stores to buy math related products. On etsy there are normal distribution plushes and famous mathematicians in coasters. However when I search ...

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vote

**2**answers

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### iterative solution better than analytic solution? [closed]

My supervisor and I were discussing a specific optimisation problem this afternoon.
To be simple: solve for $R$ in the equation $Rx=y$, where $x$, $y$ are made of samples in two difference ...

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votes

**17**answers

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### Is rigour just a ritual that most mathematicians wish to get rid of if they could?

"No". That was my answer till this afternoon! "Mathematics without proofs isn't really mathematics at all" probably was my longer answer. Yet, I am a mathematics educator who was one of the panelists ...

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votes

**1**answer

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### Sources of Theorem drafts by the original author

When I look at first time to a theorem and I try to understand it or when I try to memorise a useful theorem I always have difficulties (I am not the only one. For example: I read a question: I always ...

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votes

**1**answer

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### How to solve $e^{f(x)} + a f(x) + bx = 0$ [closed]

How should determine solutions to equations of this form?
$$e^{-f(x)} + b f(x) = ax$$
Here $f(x)>0$ is real valued. Also $a>0$, $b>0$.

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votes

**2**answers

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### The impact of large cardinals in mathematics [closed]

What are the main applications of large cardinals in ordinary mathematics, and what is the philosophy behind using them. In particular:
Question 1. What is the philosophy behind accepting large ...

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votes

**5**answers

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### Proof or citation?

I'm writing an article. I suppose that I'll submit it to a more or less decent journal (in English). I have doubts about the following: I have a lemma (with quite a trivial proof). I don't want to ...

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votes

**1**answer

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### Constructing a function from preimages

This question was inspired by Can we build a continuous function from "fibers"/preimages defined over a topological base?
Let $X,Y$ be sets and $L\subseteq \mathcal{P}(Y)$. Suppose $L$ has ...

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### Objects which can't be defined without making choices but which end up independent of the choice

It happens a lot of times that when one defines a new object (ring, module, space, group, algebra, morphism, whatever) out of given data one first chooses some additional structure. And sometimes ...