# Tagged Questions

Smooth manifolds and smooth functions between them. For manifolds with additional structure, see more specific tags, such as [riemannian-geometry]. For more topological aspects, see [differential-topology].

18k views

### How do I make the conceptual transition from multivariable calculus to differential forms?

One way to define the algebra of differential forms $\Omega(M)$ on a smooth manifold $M$ (as explained by John Baez's week287) is as the exterior algebra of the dual of the module of derivations on ...
3k views

### Parallelizability of the Milnor's exotic spheres in dimension 7

Are the Milnor's seven dimensional exotic spheres parallelizable?
4k views

### What are the open subsets of $\mathbb{R}^n$ that are diffeomorphic to $\mathbb{R}^n$

Hello, I would like to know if there is a known necessary and sufficient property on an open subset of $\mathbb{R}^n$ such that it is diffeomorphic to $\mathbb{R}^n$ : For example : 1) Are all ...
4k views

### Classification problem for non-compact manifolds

Background It is well-known that the compact two-dimensional manifolds are completely classified (by their orientability and their Euler characteristic). I'm also under the impression that there is ...
2k views

### Can cotangent bundles see exotic smooth structures?

I have two questions that are inspired by a couple of questions here on MO (referenced below), as well as by a conversation with some other grad students at a summer school. Caveat: I'm not a ...
11k views

### What is the Implicit Function Theorem good for?

What are some applications of the Implicit Function Theorem in calculus? The only applications I can think of are: the result that the solution space of a non-degenerate system of equations ...
4k views

2k views

### Are submersions of differentiable manifolds flat morphisms?

Let $\pi \colon M\to N$ be a smooth map between real smooth manifolds. Then $C^\infty(M)$ forms a module over $C^\infty(N)$ (via pullback). Is this module flat when $\pi$ is a submersion? Recall that ...
3k views

### How can you tell if a space is homotopy equivalent to a manifold?

Is there some criterion for whether a space has the homotopy type of a closed manifold (smooth or topological)? Poincare duality is an obvious necessary condition, but it's almost certainly not ...
2k views

### Unifying Geometry for Characteristic Classes

When working with characteristic classes (more concretely Chern classes), one finds at least four essentially distinct approaches: Axiomatic Approach. See, for instance, Vector Bundles and K-Theory, ...
2k views

### Strong Whitney embedding theorem for non-compact manifolds

$\newcommand{\RR}{\mathbb{R}}$The present question arises from some confusion on my part regarding the precise statement of the strong Whitney embedding theorem for non-compact manifolds. The strong ...
3k views

### Two kinds of orientability/orientation for a differentiable manifold

Let $M$ be a differentiable manifold of dimension $n$. First I give two definitions of Orientability. The first definition should coincide with what is given in most differential topology text books, ...
2k views

### Is it possible to improve the Whitney embedding theorem?

Edited to fix the example, as per Zack's suggestion. Edit 2: So it turns out that when I think 'manifold' I tend to assume the nicest possible object. As I believe is standard, I would like to ...
1k views

### Embeddings of $S^2$ in $\mathbb{CP}^2$

Suppose we are given an embedding of $S^2$ in $\mathbb{CP}^2$ with self-intersection 1. Is there a diffeomorphism of $\mathbb{CP}^2$ which takes the given sphere to a complex line? Note: I suspect ...
2k views

2k views

### How to get convinced that there are a lot of 3-manifolds?

My question is rather philosophical : without using advanced tools as Perlman-Thurston's geometrisation, how can we get convinced that the class of closed oriented $3$-manifolds is large and that ...
3k views

### Exotic differentiable structures on R^4?

This was going to be a comment to Differentiable structures on R^3, but I thought it would be better asked as a separate question. So, it's mentioned in the previous question that $\mathbb{R}^4$ has ...
813 views

### Ellipses on spheres (and other surfaces)

Define an ellipse $E$ on a sphere as the locus of points whose sum of shortest geodesic distances to two foci $p_1$ and $p_2$ is a constant $d$. There are conditions on $\{ p_1, p_2, d \}$ for this ...
1k views

### Cobordism of orbifolds?

Is it possible to setup classical cobordism theory in the context of orbifolds? For example, let's consider the free abelian group generated by oriented smooth orbifolds and quotient by those which ...
2k views

### Can all n-manifolds be obtained by gluing finitely many blocks?

Fix a dimension $n\geqslant 2$. Let $S= \{M_1,\ldots, M_k\}$ be a finite set of smooth compact $n$-manifold with boundary. Let us say that a smooth closed $n$-manifold is generated by $S$ if it may ...
298 views

### Finite limits in the category of smooth manifolds?

The category of smooth manifolds does not have all finite limits. However, it does have some limits: it has finite products, it has splittings of idempotents, and it has certain other limits if we ...
2k views

### Universal property of the tangent bundle

If $X$ is a scheme (over some base scheme, but which I will ignore) its tangent bundle $T(X)$ is defined as the relative spectrum of the symmetric algebra of its sheaf of differentials. Combining the ...