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49
votes
8answers
6k 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
1k 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
458 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
609 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
654 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
186 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
149 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
427 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
264 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
443 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
609 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
128 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
703 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
629 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
620 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
465 views

Bound on the sum of arguments

Problem: Show that for all real $s,t,u$ and all complex $z$ with $|z|<1$ one has $$(*)\qquad \arg\frac{1-zf(s-u)}{1-zf(s+u)} +\arg\frac{1-zf(t+u)}{1-zf(t-u)}<\pi, $$ where $f$ is the ...
6
votes
1answer
201 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
361 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
217 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
130 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
61 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
233 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
224 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
225 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
198 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
207 views

Non-negativity of invariant polynomials

Certifying the non-negativity of a symmetric polynomial is much easier than certifying the non-negativity of an arbitrary polynomial function: for instance, in (1) is proved that the complexity of ...
5
votes
1answer
190 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 ...
5
votes
0answers
170 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
479 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
519 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
456 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
178 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
283 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
1answer
468 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
244 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
398 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
94 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 ...
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
493 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
420 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
119 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
227 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
2answers
241 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
133 views

Handelman's positivstellensatz for symmetric matrix-valued polynomials

For certain classes of sets $S \subseteq \mathbb{R}^n$, there exist algebraic characterizations of real valued polynomials $p: \mathbb{R}^n \rightarrow \mathbb{R}$ that are positive on $S$. Several ...
3
votes
1answer
104 views

Tropical polynomial Positivstellensatz

In real algebraic geometry, Stengle's Positivstellensatz can be used to characterize polynomials that are positive on a semialgebraic set. Say that a tropical semialgebraic set is a subset of ...