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39
votes
7answers
5k views

How do you not forget old math?

I am trying to not forget my old math. I finished my PhD in real algebraic geometry a few years ago and then switched to the industry for financial reasons. Now I get the feeling that I want to do a ...
24
votes
6answers
2k views

Are all polynomial inequalities deducible from the trivial inequality?

I remember learning some years ago of a theorem to the effect that if a polynomial $p(x_1, ... x_n)$ with real coefficients is non-negative on $\mathbb{R}^n$, then it is a sum of squares of ...
19
votes
3answers
2k views

Real algebraic geometry vs. algebraic geometry

This question is predicated on my understanding that real algebraic geometry (henceforth RAG) is the version of algebraic geometry (AG) one gets when replacing (esp. algebraically closed) fields with ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

The Sylvester Gallai Theorem and Sections of Varieties with “Simple Topology”.

The Sylvester-Gallai theorem asserts that for every collection of points in the plane, not all on a line, there is a line containing exactly two of the points. One high dimensional extension ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

Cohomology of Structure Sheaves: Algebraic, Constructible and more

I am not an algebraic geometer, but I am a topologist who uses sheaves. I have studied some algebraic geometry and am interested in what happens as I reduce the amount of rigidity in the structure ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Polynomial positive on an interval

If $p$ is a polynomial with real coefficients and p(x)>0 on [0,1], then $p(x)=\sum c_{i,j} x^i(1-x)^j$ with $c_{i,j}$ positive. I know this is true but but I need a proof/reference. Thanks!
10
votes
3answers
450 views

Effective algorithm to test positivity

Let $f(x_1,\ldots, x_n)$ be a real polynomial in several variables. Is there an effective algorithm to test whether $f$ is positive (or nonnegative) on the whole of ${\mathbb{R}}^n$?
10
votes
3answers
1k views

Counting roots: multidimensional Sturm's theorem

Sturm's theorem gives a way to compute the number of roots of a one-variable polynomial in an interval [a,b]. Is there a generalization to boxes in higher dimensions? Namely, let $P_1,\dotsc,P_n\in ...
10
votes
1answer
598 views

Is the pairing between contours and functions perfect (modulo the kernel given by Stokes' theorem)?

Let $s: \mathbb C^n \to \mathbb C$ be a homogeneous degree-$d$ polynomial which is nonsingular (in the sense that the hypersurface it defines in $\mathbb{CP}^{n-1}$ is smooth; equivalently the ...
10
votes
1answer
643 views

What is the longest algebraic curve?

Consider a convex body $\Omega\subset \mathbb{R}^2$. Let $L(d)$ be the maximum over all curves $C$ of degree $d$ of the length of $C\cap\Omega$. Is $L(d)\leq d P(E)/2$, where $P(E)$ is the ...
10
votes
0answers
177 views

real algebraic geometry software?

Does anyone have suggestions/experience for any software packages to study real algebraic varieties (for example, counting connected components of hypersurfaces, figuring out the topological type of ...
8
votes
2answers
123 views

Convexity of a certain sublevel set

Consider the polynomial of degree $4$ in the variable $r$ : $$ r^4 + (x^2 + y^2)\ r^2 - 2 x y\ r + x^2 y^2 $$ The discriminant of this polynomial in $r$ is the following expression (obtained using ...
8
votes
2answers
418 views

The topology of open semi-algebraic sets (appl.: totally positive matrices)

Let $P_1,\ldots,P_r$ be polynomials over ${\mathbb R}^N$. I am interested in the homotopy type of the semi-algebraic set defined by $$ P_j(x_1,\ldots,x_N)>0,\qquad j=1,\ldots,r . $$ Is there a ...
7
votes
3answers
233 views

nonnegativity conditions for a polynomial in two variables

Let $$P(X,Y)= c_{22}X^2Y^2 +c_{21}X^2Y +c_{12}XY^2 +c_{20}X^2 +c_{11}XY+c_{02}Y^2+c_{10}X+c_{01}Y+c_{00}$$ be a polynomial of two variables $X$ and $Y$ with real coefficients $c_{ij}$. What are the ...
7
votes
3answers
436 views

Real varieties with enough algebraic loops

Let $(X,\sigma)$ be a complex variety with complex conjugation (equivalently, an algebraic variety over $\mathbb R$). We use the notations $X(\mathbb R):=X^\sigma$ for the set of fixed points of $X$ ...
7
votes
1answer
566 views

(Real) algebraic geometry for (real) trigonometric polynomials?

Has somebody developed a comprehensive theory of the algebraic structure of trigonometric polynomials in several variables? If yes, where? Background: By a (real) trigonometric polynomial in ...
7
votes
0answers
106 views

Nearest Point to a real algebraic set

Suppose I have a compact bounded real algebraic (eventually: or analytic or semialgebraic or semianalytic set) $V$ in $\mathbb R^3$ and a point $x\in\mathbb R^3$ not in $V$. How much do we know about ...
6
votes
2answers
672 views

Embeddings and triangulations of real analytic varieties

This is a follow up question to my answer here How do you define the Euler Characteristic of a scheme? A real analytic space is a ringed space locally isomorphic to $(X,O/I)$ where $X$ is the zero ...
6
votes
2answers
600 views

Conditions on coefficients of a homogeneous polynomial of the third degree in three variables over R which allow it to be positive on a positive octant

I am a student of Saint Petersburg State Polytechnical University, chair of Theoretical Mechanics. While looking into stability of ideal crystal lattices (2D and 3D) by means of molecular dynamics I ...
6
votes
2answers
581 views

Maximal number of connected components of complement to an affine plane real algebraic curve

Let $X$ be a (singular, reducible) affine plane real algebraic curve of degree $d$. How we can estimate maximal number of connected components of it's complement in $R^2$ in terms of degree?
6
votes
1answer
197 views

cell decomposition of real homogeneous hypersurfaces

Let $f(x_1,\ldots,x_n)\in\mathbf{R}[x_1,\ldots,x_n]$ be a homogeneous polynomial and consider the real hypersurface $H=\{(x_1,\ldots,x_n)\in\mathbf{R}^n:f(x_1,\ldots,x_n)=1\}$. Assume to simplify ...
6
votes
2answers
355 views

orderings of the field R((x, y))

I don't know much about the theory of ordered fields. But I know that, for the real fields $\mathbb{R}(y)$, $\mathbb{R}((x))(y)$, and $\mathbb{R}((x))((y))$, we can explicitly determine all the ...
6
votes
0answers
191 views

Does every commutative $*$-algebra of operators on a prehilbert space have a character?

My question can be equivalently stated as follows: Let $A$ be a complex commutative algebra with involution, and assume there exists a non-zero homomorphism $\pi:A\to L(V)$ to the algebra of ...
6
votes
0answers
126 views

Zariski closure of orbits of real groups on complex flag manifolds

Let $G$ be a complex reductive algebraic group defined over $\mathbb R$, and $G_0$ its real points. Then the orbits of $G_0$ on $G/B$ need not be real algebraic subvarieties. Take $G=SL_2(\mathbb C)$, ...
6
votes
0answers
59 views

Bounding volume of cell in complement of zero set

I am given an integer polynomial $f \in \mathbb{Z}[X_1, \ldots, X_n]$ of bounded degree and bounded coefficient size. The polynomial's zero set partitions $\mathbb{R}^n$ into cells. What I am looking ...
6
votes
0answers
214 views

Real schubert calculus

Studying real enumerative questions I noticed, that the even-even Schubert varieties of the real Grassmannian $Gr:=Gr_{2k}(2n,\mathbb R)$ behave analogously to the complex case. I call a partition ...
5
votes
1answer
205 views

Connected components of the complement of a degree-d affine hypersurface

Let $n$ and $d$ be positive integers, and $f\in\mathbb{R}[x_1,\dots,x_n]$ be a polynomial of degree $d$. Let's consider the zero-set $M = \{x \in \mathbb{R}^n: f(x) = 0\}$ of $f$. Can we estimate ...
5
votes
1answer
208 views

Locally Closed Orbits in Real Algebraic Geometry

Let $G$ be a real algebraic group, and let $X$ be a real affine $G$-variety. I am looking for conditions on $G$ and $X$ for which the $G$-orbits are known to be locally closed in the Zariski topology ...
5
votes
1answer
195 views

Are there general position results in singular algebraic sets?

Let $X$ be a real algebraic set, and let $Y \subset X$ be its singular set. In this question I'll focus on the analytic topology, so we can just imagine that $X$ is the zero set, in $\mathbb{R}^n$, ...
5
votes
1answer
181 views

Simple criterion to verify that the real zeros are an irreducible algebraic set

Given an irreducible polynomial $p$, its set of real zeros might be a reducible algebraic set. For example: $p=(x^2-1)^2 +(y^2-1)^2$. Is there a simple sufficient condition on $p$ so that its real ...
4
votes
2answers
476 views

Real vs complex surfaces

Hi! My background is in (complex) algebraic geometry. For the first time I'm considering varieties defined over $\mathbb{R}$ and I have some very basic questions about these. In particular I'm trying ...
4
votes
2answers
499 views

intersections of real algebraic sets (a bezout-type question)

This question arose when I was trying to understand the Guth-Katz paper on Erdos distance problem, namely, related to Proof of Lemma 2.9 in http://arxiv.org/abs/1011.4105. The proof of that lemma is ...
4
votes
1answer
412 views

Exact arithmetic for real algebraic numbers

There was a reply to a question (that I can't find) which mentioned SARAG (Some Algorithms in Real Algebraic Geometry) see http://perso.univ-rennes1.fr/marie-francoise.roy/bpr-ed2-posted2.html. This ...
4
votes
1answer
128 views

The Universality Theorem by Mnev for uniform oriented matroids of rank 4 and higher

According to the Universality Theorem by Mnev (see below theorem 8.6.6 from [1]), for any open semialgebraic variety V there is a uniform oriented matroid of rank 3 whose realization space is stably ...
4
votes
1answer
276 views

Deciding the convexity of semialgebraic sets

Given a basic closed semialgebraic set, $S \subset \mathbb{R}^n$, defined by $S = \{ x \in \mathbb{R}^n \mid g_1 (x) \geq 0 \land \dots \land g_m (x) \geq 0\}$ where $m \in \mathbb{N}$ and $g_1, ...
4
votes
2answers
229 views

Approximation of curves

When constructing minimax (sup-norm) polynomial approximations of real-valued functions, well-known results say (roughly speaking) that optimal solutions are characterized by the fact that they have ...
4
votes
1answer
456 views

Morley's Theorem and real algebraic geometry

Consider the following attempt at a ``thought-free'' proof of Morley's Theorem. Let $(x_1,y_1)$, $(x_2,y_2)$ and $(x_3,y_3)$ denote three vertices of a generic triangle. Let $(a_1,b_1)$, $(a_2,b_2)$ ...
4
votes
1answer
386 views

Hausdorff distance on algebraic curves

Introduction Let $K$ be a nice closed domain in $\mathbb{R}^2$, for example the closed unit ball. Recall that the Hausdorff distance on the family $C(K)$ of nonempty compact subsets of $K$ is defined ...
4
votes
0answers
92 views

moduli in real/semi algebraic geometry

Is there a moduli space in semialgebraic geometry analogous to the Hilbert scheme in algebraic geometry? The sort of thing I am imagining is an object in a category of semischemes: Ordinary schemes ...
4
votes
0answers
156 views

Differential operators that preserve real-rootedness

Is there some description of polynomial differential operators, $\mathcal{D}=\sum f_i(x) D_x^i$ such that, if $h$ is a polynomial all of whose roots are in $[0,1]$, then so are all the roots of ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

Measure on real Grassmannians

OK, so I'm reading about this nice measure you can define on a (real) Grassmannian on Wikipedia. Basically, and to save you the trip through the link, consider the Haar measure $\theta$ on $O(n)$, fix ...
3
votes
4answers
490 views

Computation of the Euler characteristic of a specific real variety

I think computation of the Euler characteristic of a real variety is not a problem in theory. There are some nice papers like J.W. Bruce, Euler characteristics of real varieties. But suppose we ...
3
votes
1answer
418 views

Function Fields of Real Varieties

Let $V$ be a geometrically irreducible and reduced scheme defined over the real numbers, and let $K = K(V)$ be its function field. If $V$ does not have any real points, is it true that $K$ is not ...
3
votes
1answer
105 views

Is $\mathbb R[x,y]_+$ countably generated as a quadratic module?

Let $\mathbb R[x,y]_+$ denote the set of positive polynomials in two variables. My problem can be stated as follows: Does there exist a countable set $M\subseteq \mathbb R[x,y]_+$ such that ...
3
votes
1answer
207 views

The existential theory of the reals

Some definitions of the existential theory of the reals (ETR) allow a real closed field and some definitions allow only rational numbers as coefficients of polynomials. Which one is correct? Will the ...
3
votes
1answer
240 views

Hypersurfaces without real points

Let $n, d$ be positive integers. I am interested in the open subset $\mathcal U_{n,d} \subset \mathbb P H^0 ( \mathbb P^n_{\mathbb R}, \mathcal O_{\mathbb P^n_{\mathbb R}}(d))$ corresponding to ...
3
votes
1answer
125 views

Sum of Squares Length of a Product

Let $n \geq 2$. Let $g_1, \ldots , g_{n-1} \in \mathbb{R}[x_1,\ldots,x_n]$ such that $q=g_1^2+\ldots +g_{n-1}^2$ is not divisible by $p=x_1^2+\ldots +x_n^2$. Let $m \geq 1$ be the smallest integer ...
3
votes
1answer
461 views

Quick algorithm for finding real solutions for a system polynomial equations

Would you please recommend a computer program that could give quick answer Yes/No for the question: does there exist a real solution of a given system of polynomial equations with integer ...
2
votes
3answers
719 views

Isolated zero set of real polynomial in two variables

The polynomial $x^2+y^2$ has an isolated zero at the origin. And so do powers $(x^2+y^2)^n$ of this polynomial. I'm wondering if this is a special property of these real polynomials. Here's the ...
2
votes
3answers
193 views

Characterizing orthants with polynomials

Let $x=(x_1,\ldots,x_n)\in\mathbb{R}^n$. Can one find a polynomial $p$ (of arbitrary degree) in the coordinates of $x$ such that $p(x)\geq 0$ if and only if $x$ is an element of the positive orthant ...