7
votes
1answer
343 views

Do all combinatorially distinct fundamental polygons correspond to surfaces?

The topology of a closed surface can be constructed by identifying edges of a fundamental polygon of an even number $2n$ of edges. Labeling the edges and using $\pm 1$ exponents to indicate direction, ...
12
votes
0answers
126 views

Approximating homeomorphisms of 2-disk by diffeomorphisms

Any homeomorphism of a compact surface can be approximated by diffeomorphisms. Is there a parametrized version of this result, where the parameter space is an $n$-disk? In other words, if $S$ is a ...
1
vote
1answer
80 views

Sutured Manifolds and minimal genus

Is there a result relating sutured manifolds and surfaces of minimal genus? perhaps someone has a very clever point of view of these two notions that can share. In other matters, do we know how to ...
11
votes
3answers
537 views

Space of embeddings of circle in a surface

Let $S$ be a compact oriented surface of genus at least $2$ (possibly with boundary). Let $X$ be a connected component of the space of embeddings of $S^1$ into $S$. Question : what is the ...
3
votes
2answers
238 views

Realizing homology classes on surfaces with boundary by simple closed curves

Let $\Sigma$ be a compact oriented surface with boundary. Assume that the genus of $\Sigma$ is positive. We say that an element $h \in H_1(\Sigma)$ can be realized by a simple closed curve if there ...
1
vote
1answer
323 views

Description of regular covering maps between surfaces.

This is an improved and hopefully a more precise version of the question Covering spaces of surfaces. Question: Given a regular covering map $\pi:\Sigma_g\to\Sigma_h$, where $\Sigma_n$ denotes a ...
5
votes
2answers
288 views

What is the homotopy type of the space of simple closed curves isotopic to a given one?

For surfaces there are many statements along the lines of: if two simple closed curves are homotopic, they are isotopic. I'm interested in such questions for families of curves. More precisely, let ...
3
votes
3answers
961 views

Covering spaces of surfaces

Let $\Sigma_g$ be a surface of genus $g\ge 2$, and let $\Sigma_k$ be an $m$-sheeted covering space of $\Sigma_g$. It is known that $k=m(g-1)+1$. An example of such a covering space is a regular ...
6
votes
2answers
369 views

Do the following set of Dehn twists generate the mapping class group?

If $S$ is the surface illustrated below, do the Dehn twists about the red curves generate the mapping class group $\operatorname{MCG}(S,\partial S)$?
15
votes
4answers
987 views

Morse theory in TOP and PL categories?

Apparently there are topological and piecewise linear versions of Morse theory. I would like to know of references that treat these topics. How is a Morse function defined for compact manifolds (with ...
9
votes
1answer
865 views

Classification of surfaces and the TOP, DIFF and PL categories for manifolds

A surface is simply a 2-manifold. The classification theorem for compact connected surfaces (with boundary) is commonly regarded in the categories TOP, DIFF and PL. Well known proofs (e.g. via ...
15
votes
2answers
938 views

Simple curves on non-orientable surfaces.

Given an element in the (first) homology group of a surface, I would like to know if it can be represented as a simple closed curve. For orientable surfaces, this is well-known, but I wasn't able to ...