Linked Questions

43 votes
9 answers
5k views

In "splendid isolation"

While browsing the Net for some articles related to the history of the Whittaker-Shannon sampling theorem, so important to our digital world today, I came across this passage by H. D. Luke in The ...
57 votes
7 answers
8k views

Why is the Gaussian so pervasive in mathematics?

This is a heuristic question that I think was once asked by Serge Lang. The gaussian: $e^{-x^2}$ appears as the fixed point to the Fourier transform, in the punchline to the central limit theorem, as ...
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34 votes
8 answers
11k views

How does one motivate the analytic continuation of the Riemann zeta function?

I saw the functional equation and its proof for the Riemann zeta function many times, but usually the books start with, e.g. tricky change of variable of Gamma function or other seemingly unmotivated ...
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  • 3,608
43 votes
5 answers
3k views

An "analytic continuation" of power series coefficients

Cauchy residue theorem tells us that for a function $$f(z) = \sum_{k \in \mathbb{Z}} a(k) z^k,$$ the coefficient $a(k)$ can be extracted by an integral formula $$a(k) = \frac{1}{2\pi i}\oint f(z) z^{-...
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  • 1,244
45 votes
6 answers
11k views

What does Mellin inversion "really mean"?

Given a function $f: \mathbb{R}^+ \rightarrow \mathbb{C}$ satisfying suitable conditions (exponential decay at infinity, continuous, and bounded variation) is good enough, its Mellin transform is ...
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  • 6,961
43 votes
5 answers
8k views

What is the actual meaning of a fractional derivative?

We're all use to seeing differential operators of the form $\frac{d}{dx}^n$ where $n\in\mathbb{Z}$. But it has come to my attention that this generalises to all complex numbers, forming a field called ...
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46 votes
2 answers
6k views

Geometric interpretation of the half-derivative?

For $f(x)=x$, the half-derivative of $f$ is $$\frac{d^{\frac{1}{2}}}{dx^{\frac{1}{2}}} x = 2 \sqrt{\frac{x}{\pi}} \;.$$ Is there some geometric interpretation of (Q1) this specific derivative, and, (...
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6 votes
3 answers
1k views

A question on fractional derivatives

I know practically nothing about fractional calculus so I apologize in advance if the following is a silly question. I already tried on math.stackexchange. I just wanted to ask if there is a notion of ...
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14 votes
2 answers
2k views

Explaining Mukai-Fourier transforms physically

A core concept in mathematics, engineering, and physics is the Fourier Transform (FT) and its many variants (Generalized Fourier Series, Green's Function, Pontryagin duality). The basic algorithm is ...
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  • 8,308
10 votes
2 answers
1k views

Newton series and Fourier transform - is there an analogy?

Fourier expansion for a function: $$f(x)=\frac{1}{2\pi}\int_{-\infty}^{+\infty} e^{- i \omega x}\int_{-\infty}^{+\infty}e^{i\omega t}f(t)dt \, d\omega$$ Newton series expansion of a function: $$f(x)...
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  • 8,552
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

Pochhammer symbol of a differential, and hypergeometric polynomials

I have a minor result which I'm sure has come up somewhere before but I can't seem to find it. Consider a confluent hypergeometric function of the form $$\newcommand{\ff}{{}_1F_1} \ff(b+k;b;z)\...
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11 votes
1 answer
2k views

Cycling through the Zeta Garden: Zeta functions for graphs, cycle index polynomials, and determinants

Zeta functions abound in mathematics. Audrey Terras describes in Zeta Functions and Chaos three zeta functions--the zeta fct. of a projective non-singular algebraic variety; the Artin-Mazur zeta ...
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  • 8,308
6 votes
1 answer
505 views

Combinatorics for the action of Virasoro / Kac–Schwarz operators: partition polynomials of free probability theory

In the background sections below, I establish the relations among characterizations of the action of Virasoro / Kac–Schwarz operators of 2D gravity models presented in terms of Laurent series by ...
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  • 8,308