From what I understand (see, e.g., this question), the Monster Moonshine Module is a kind if "third generation" (or "second quantization"?) after the Golay code (with automorphism group $M_{24}$) and the Leech lattice (with automorphism group $\mathit{Co}_0$).

Now the Golay code has applications besides constructing the Mathieu groups: it has practical applications as an error-correcting code (e.g., for sending the Voyager probes' photos of the giant planets of the solar system). The Leech lattice also has applications besides constructing the Conway groups: it provides an efficient analog-to-digital quantizer. There are interesting engineering/algorithmic questions on how to efficiently perform maximal likelihood decoding of the Golay code or Leech lattice (for a readable account of the latter, see, e.g., chapter 4 in Alex van Poppelen's masters thesis, "Cryptographic decoding of the Leech lattice").

This suggests the rather wild idea:

Is there any known, or simply conceivable, sort of engineering or practical application of the Moonshine module?

(Of course, one could ask this question for VOA's in general and not just for this particular one. But without a clear idea as to what applications might be possible, it seems sensible to concentrate on this exceptional object whose aforementioned "progenitors" seem to have very good properties along those lines so maybe it is reasonable to hope that it too could have some. Also note that I'm not asking about applications in theoretical physics unless it is at the intersection with information theory in some sense.)

Now maybe this is a bit too wildly speculative, so I'll asked a somewhat toned down question:

Has the Moonshine module been studied from the algorithmic perspective?

An even more toned down question would be whether somewhere in the literature there exists a description of it that is targeted toward computer implementation, or an actual computer implementation (that can, among other things, efficiently compute a specified number of coefficients of the product of two elements). These kinds of descriptions (as well as implementations) exist for the Golay code and the Leech lattice.

(I gather from its absence in Wilson's paper New Computations in the Monster that the Moonshine module is not algorithmically useful toward a computer implementation of elements of the Monster group. In a sense, this is disappointing. But this does not mean that it is not good for anything.)

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ As a former graduate student who spent time thinking about applications of what he studied, I think listing interesting properties and features of the module are most likely to get responses on how the module could be applied. As a former practitioner/problem solver in the field of engineering, computer networking, and software and course design, having a list of the problems needing to be solved with priorities helped focus on creating solutions. If you tell me more about the properties, I might tell you about potential applications. Gerhard "Can You Make Two Lists?" Paseman, 2018.09.05 $\endgroup$ – Gerhard Paseman Sep 5 '18 at 19:27

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.