**54**

votes

**54**answers

9k views

### Books you would like to see translated into English.

I have recently been told of a proposal to produce an English translation
of Landau's Handbuch der Lehre von der Verteilung der Primzahlen, and
this prompts me to ask a more general question:
...

**73**

votes

**62**answers

23k views

### Which mathematicians have influenced you the most? [closed]

There are mathematicians whose creativity, insight and taste have the power of driving anyone into a world of beautiful ideas, which can inspire the desire, even the need for doing mathematics, or can ...

**24**

votes

**2**answers

4k views

### The error in Petrovski and Landis' proof of the 16th Hilbert problem

What was the main error in the proof of the second part of the 16th Hilbert problem by Petrovski and Landis?
Please see this related post and also the following post.
Added : According to their ...

**10**

votes

**0**answers

220 views

### Bunnity of multilinear maps

Is there a way to compute the following nullity of multilinear maps? As it is different from any nullity I know of, I call it bunnity after myself:-)) If it already has a name, it be nice to know it. ...

**4**

votes

**0**answers

283 views

### How is $ \sum_{x \in X(\mathbb{F}_q)} \dots $ a generalization of cardinality?

This quarter Maxim Kontsevich is offering a course on exponential integral. There is not much in the way of notes, but is one page with mysterious comments.
Let $X$ be an algebraic variety over ...

**2**

votes

**1**answer

193 views

### Rank changes with matrix edits

Assume we have rank $r$ real matrix $M\in\{0,1\}^{n\times n}$ (not constrained to symmetric).
Assume $W\in\{0,1\}^{n\times n}$ is rank $1$ real matrix.
Case $1$: $M+W\in\{0,1\}^{n\times n}$.
Could ...

**4**

votes

**1**answer

119 views

### Asymptotics of Fresnel integrals

It is known that
\begin{equation*}
I(p) = \sqrt { \frac {4 \mathrm{i} p} {\pi}}\int \limits _{-\infty} ^{\infty} \mathrm{e}^{- \mathrm{i} p x^2} \varphi (x) \mathrm{d}x
\end{equation*}
is a bounded ...

**79**

votes

**10**answers

11k views

### Work of plenary speakers at ICM 2014

The next International Congress of Mathematicians (ICM) will take place in 2014 in Seoul, Korea. The present question is meant to gather brief overviews of the work of the plenary speakers for the ICM ...

**48**

votes

**14**answers

5k views

### How to write popular mathematics well?

Recently, some classmates and I were lamenting the fact that our classmates in other disciplines had almost no conception of what we did, despite the large mathematics population at Waterloo. Instead ...

**47**

votes

**28**answers

4k views

### Examples where it's useful to know that a mathematical object belongs to some family of objects

For an expository piece I'm writing, it would be useful to have good examples of the following phenomenon:
(1) ${\cal X}$ is a parameterized family of somethings. (Varieties, schemes, manifolds, ...

**80**

votes

**17**answers

17k views

### Why is differentiating mechanics and integration art?

It is often said that "Differentiation is mechanics, integration is art." We have more or less simple rules in one direction but not in the other (e.g. product rule/simple <-> integration by ...

**7**

votes

**0**answers

400 views

### Evidence that Graph Isomorphism problem is not $NP$-complete

Graph isomorphism problem is one of the longest standing problems that resisted classification into $P$ or $NP$-complete problems. We have evidences that it can not be $NP$-complete. Firstly, Graph ...

**52**

votes

**8**answers

5k views

### Have you solved problems in your sleep? [closed]

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 ...

**32**

votes

**6**answers

2k views

### Negative impact of wrong or non-rigorous proofs

The recent talks of Voevodsky (for example, http://www.math.ias.edu/~vladimir/Site3/Univalent_Foundations_files/2014_IAS.pdf), which describe subtle errors in proofs by him as well as others, as well ...

**34**

votes

**2**answers

4k views

### How did “normal” come to mean “perpendicular”?

How and when did the word "normal" acquire this meaning? When I first thought of this, I couldn't really come up with any explanation that wasn't complete speculation -- pretty much all I was able to ...

**5**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### Why are we interested in the Fundamental Groupoid of a Space?

The classical version of the van Kampen theorem is concerned about the fundamental group of a based space. In fact, it says that the functor $\pi_1$ preserves certain types of pushouts in $Top_*$.
...

**19**

votes

**63**answers

12k views

### What's your favorite equation, formula, identity or inequality? [closed]

Certain formulas I really enjoy looking at like the Euler-Maclaurin formula or the Leibniz integral rule. What's your favorite equation, formula, identity or inequality?

**38**

votes

**30**answers

45k views

### What programming languages do mathematicians use? [closed]

I understand this might be a slightly subjective question, but I am honestly curious what programming languages are used by the mathematics community.
I would imagine that there is a group of ...

**24**

votes

**4**answers

1k views

### Does every set of reals contain a measure-zero set of the same cardinality? Does it contain a meager set of the same cardinality?

This question arises from an issue in my post on Ashutosh's excellent question on Restrictions of the null/meager ideal.
Question 1. Does every set of reals contain a measure-zero subset
of the same ...

**0**

votes

**1**answer

292 views

### Number of Dyck paths with k returns and b peaks

The number of Dyck paths from the origin to $(2n,0)$ which touch the $x$-axis $k+2$ times ($k$ internal touches) is given by
$$\frac{k}{2n-k}{2n-k \choose n}.$$
The number of Dyck paths from the ...

**0**

votes

**1**answer

199 views

### The weighting function for the infinite product of necklaces

Let us consider the limit $\lim_{n\to \infty}\prod_{p=1}^n N(p,a)$ where $N(n,a)$ is the number of fixed necklaces of length $n$ composed of $a$ types of beads.
Let's rewrite the product in a way ...

**87**

votes

**16**answers

11k views

### What is torsion in differential geometry intuitively?

Hi,
given a connection on the tangent space of a manifold, one can define its torsion:
$$T(X,Y):=\triangledown_X Y - \triangledown_Y X - [X,Y]$$
What is the geometric picture behind this ...

**81**

votes

**10**answers

9k views

### Are there any very hard unknots?

Some years ago I took a long piece of string, tied it into a loop, and tried to twist it up into a tangle that I would find hard to untangle. No matter what I did, I could never cause the later me any ...

**10**

votes

**1**answer

748 views

### Examples of Einstein four-manifolds of negative sectional curvature

Are there any nontrivial compact Einstein four-manifolds of negative or nonpositive sectional curvature? by nontrivial we mean not quotients of $\mathbb{H}^4$, $\mathbb{C}H^2$, ...

**57**

votes

**22**answers

15k views

### What's the “best” proof of quadratic reciprocity?

For my purposes, you may want to interpret "best" as "clearest and easiest to understand for undergrads in a first number theory course," but don't feel too constrained.

**81**

votes

**19**answers

12k views

### Do you read the masters?

I often hear the advice, "Read the masters" (i.e., read old, classic texts by great mathematicians). But frankly, I have hardly ever followed it. What I am wondering is, is this a principle that ...

**6**

votes

**2**answers

381 views

### Relationship between Hochschild cohomology and Drinfeld centers

Let $HH_*(A,N)$ (or $HH^*(A,N)$) be the Hochschild homology (or cohomology) of an associative algebra $A$ with coefficients in an $A$-bimodule $N$.
I was reading nlab's entry on Hochschild cohomology ...

**43**

votes

**0**answers

3k views

### What is an étale theta function?

Let me start out by urging you to take seriously that whatever I write about the papers surrounding IUTT really are questions. If you would like to use it as a guide to the mathematics in any way, ...

**12**

votes

**2**answers

370 views

### How to compute $\pi_{3}$ of $L(p,q)\# L(p',q')$?

Let $L(p,q)$ be a 3-dimensional lens space, and let $L(p',q')$ be another. Is there any known result concerning the 3rd homotopy group of the connected sum $L(p,q)\# L(p',q')$? If not, I am interested ...

**120**

votes

**6**answers

41k views

### Where to buy premium white chalk in the U.S., like they have at RIMS?

While not a research-level math question, I'm sure this is a question of interest to many research-level mathematicians, whose expertise I seek.
At RIMS (in Kyoto) in 2005, they had the best white ...

**1**

vote

**1**answer

178 views

### Rank of a sequence of covariance matrices

Let $X_i$ ($i=1, \dots$) be an orthonormal basis for $L^2(\Omega, \mathbb P)$. In particular, it holds that
$$\mathbb E[X_iX_j] = \delta_{ij}.$$
Now take $Z\in L^2(\Omega, \mathbb P)$ and define ...

**5**

votes

**1**answer

233 views

### New series for $1/\pi$ based on Ramanujan's ideas

In his classic paper "Modular Equations and Approximations to $\pi$ (1914)", Ramanujan gives a standard technique to obtain a general family of series for $1/\pi$ based on series for $(2K/\pi)^{2}$ in ...

**4**

votes

**2**answers

345 views

### Topological retraction vs categorical retraction

Let $(X,\tau)$ be a topological space. We say that $A\subseteq X$ is a
topological retract if there is a continuous map $r:X\to A$ onto a subspace $A \subseteq X$ such that for all $a\in A$ we have ...

**59**

votes

**7**answers

9k views

### Is the boundary $\partial S$ analogous to a derivative?

Without prethought, I mentioned in class once that the reason the symbol $\partial$
is used to represent the boundary operator in topology is
that its behavior is akin to a derivative.
But after ...

**2**

votes

**0**answers

145 views

+50

### Non invertibility of certain integral arising from group action

Let a compact topological group $G$ with invariant measure $\mu,$ acts on a simply connected compact topological space $X$ and $\rho$ is a $n$-dimensional unitary representation of $G$. ...

**6**

votes

**4**answers

317 views

### Breaking up the free Lie algebra into Gl irreps

The free Lie algebra $L(V)$ generated by an $r$-dimensional vector space $V$ is, in the
language of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_Lie_algebra ,
the free Lie algebra generated by any choice of ...

**8**

votes

**2**answers

583 views

### Hilbert Class Field Galois over Q?

So if we have a Galois extension $K/\mathbb{Q}$, then the Hilbert Class Field $H$ of $K$ is certainly Galois over $\mathbb{Q}$. But is the converse true? I know many examples of nongalois ...

**77**

votes

**9**answers

6k views

### Why are flat morphisms “flat?”

Of course "flatness" is a word that evokes a very particular geometric picture, and it seems to me like there should be a reason why this word is used, but nothing I can find gives me a reason!
Is ...

**66**

votes

**14**answers

19k views

### Top specialized journals

In geometry/topology, there are (at least) three specialized journals that end up publishing a large fraction of the best papers in the subject -- Geometry and Topology, JDG, and GAFA.
What journals ...

**17**

votes

**1**answer

1k views

### Quantitative lower bounds related to Zhang's theorem on bounded gaps

Let $\mathcal{H}=\left\{ h_{i}\right\} _{i=1}^{k}$ be an admissible set, and define $$\pi_{\mathcal{H}}(x)=\left|\left\{ n\leq x\ :\ \exists\ i,j\leq k,\ i\neq j\ \text{such that both }n+h_{i},\ ...

**25**

votes

**1**answer

705 views

### Making $\mathbb{Q}$-cohomology integral

Let $X$ be an algebraic variety (say, smooth and projective) over $\mathbb{C}$, and fix $$\alpha\in H^i(X^{\text{an}}, \mathbb{Q})$$
with $i>0$.
Does there always exist a variety $Y$ and a ...

**68**

votes

**8**answers

8k views

### What do heat kernels have to do with the Riemann-Roch theorem and the Gauss-Bonnet theorem?

I know the following facts. (Don't assume I know much more than the following facts.)
The Atiyah-Singer index theorem generalizes both the Riemann-Roch theorem and the Gauss-Bonnet theorem.
The ...

**48**

votes

**11**answers

5k views

### What is Quantization ?

I would like to know what quantization is, I mean I would like to have some elementary examples, some soft nontechnical definition, some explanation about what do mathematicians quantize?, can we ...

**10**

votes

**3**answers

953 views

### When did coordinate plane “as we know it” come into play?

This is a historical question that needs some background to make sense. Let me start with the longer version of the question:
When did negative numbers, algebra and coordinate plane come together?
...

**9**

votes

**2**answers

404 views

### An algebraic Hamiltonian vector field with a finite number of periodic orbits(1)

Edit: The previous version of this question contained 2 part. In this new version, I deleted the first part and move it to a new question.
Is There a polynomial Hamiltonian ...

**6**

votes

**1**answer

238 views

### Intersections in almost complex manifolds

Question: Suppose $(M,J)$ is an almost complex manifold, and $X$ and $Y$ are two almost complex submanifolds (i.e. $J(T(X)) \subset T(X)$ and $J(T(Y)) \subset T(Y)$). Then must $X \cap Y$ also be an ...

**3**

votes

**0**answers

162 views

### Characterization of certain analytic vector fields on $S^{2}$

Let $X$ be a real analytic vector field on $S^{2}$ which satisfies:
$X$ has a finite number of singularities on $S^{2}$
The equator is invariant under flow of $X$
3.$g_{*}X=\pm X$ where $g$ ...

**0**

votes

**0**answers

103 views

### Nontrivial norm values in rings of integers

Let $L=Q(\sqrt{d})$ for some SQF integer $d\equiv_4 3$ (the same can be asked for $d\equiv_4 1$). In this case the ring of integers of $L$ is $O_L=\{x+\sqrt{d}y \mid x,y\in Z\}$ so the norms of $O_L$ ...

**18**

votes

**2**answers

2k views

### Where are Georg Cantor's Original Manuscripts?

Georg Cantor is famous for introducing transfinite numbers and set theory.
A main part of his mathematical point of view about this new type of "numbers" and this new "realm of mathematics" cannot be ...

**15**

votes

**1**answer

459 views

### Lower-Hölder embeddings of the sphere

My question is very simple:
Given $d\ge 3$, does there exist $s\in (0,1)$ and an embedding $f:S^{d-1}\to \mathbb{R}^d$ such that
$$
|f(x)-f(y)| \ge |x-y|^s \quad\textrm{if } |x-y|<r,
$$
for ...