# Questions tagged [finite-groups]

Questions on group theory which concern finite groups.

Questions on group theory which concern finite groups.

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I teach elementary number theory and discrete mathematics to students who come with no abstract algebra. I have found proving the key theorem that finite multiplicative subgroups of fields are cyclic ...

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I probably don't have the appropriate background to even ask this question. I know next to nothing about formal or computer-aided proof, and very little even about group theory. And this question is ...

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The automorphism group of the symmetric group $S_n$ is $S_n$ when $n$ is not $2$ or $6$, in which cases it is respectively $1$ and the semidirect product of $S_6$ with the (cyclic) group of order $2$. ...

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I was trying to explain finite groups to a non-mathematician, and was falling back on the "they're like symmetries of polyhedra" line. Which made me realize that I didn't know if this was actually ...

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Are there some fun applications of the theory of representations of finite groups? I would like to have some examples that could be explained to a student who knows what is a finite group but does not ...

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Last year I attended a first course in the representation theory of finite groups, where everything was over C. I was struck, and somewhat puzzled, by the inexplicable perfection of characters as a ...

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Several months ago, Dominik asked the question Is there a 0-1 law for the theory of groups? on mathstackexchange, but although his question received attention there is still no answer. By asking the ...

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This question asks for intuition, not a proof.
An earlier question,
Measures of non-abelian-ness
was thoroughly answered by Arturo Magidin.
A paper by Gustafson1
proves that, for a nonabelian group,
...

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Question: Let $G$ be a finite group. Is it true that there is a subgroup $U$ inside some symmetric group $S_n$, such that $N(U)/U$ is isomorphic to $G$? Here $N(U)$ is the normalizer of $U$ in $S_n$.
...

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Obviously there exists a list of the finite simple groups, but why should it be a nice list, one that you can write down?
Solomon's AMS article goes some way toward a historical / technical ...

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Given a positive integer $n$, let $N(n)$ denote the number of groups of order $n$, up to isomorphism.
Question: Does $N(n)=n$ hold for some $n>1$?
I checked the OEIS-sequence https://oeis.org/...

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Recently I gave a lecture to master's students about some nice properties of the group with two elements $\mathbb{Z}/2\mathbb{Z}$. Typically, I wanted to present simple, natural situations where the ...

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Let $G$ be a finite group. Let $r_2\colon G \to \mathbb{N}$ be the square-root counting function, assigning to each $g\in G$ the number of $x\in G$ with $x^2=g$. Perhaps surprisingly, $r_2$ does not ...

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In a recent talk Finite groups, yesterday and today Serre made some comments about proofs that rely on the classification of finite simple groups (CFSG) and on the ATLAS of Finite Groups. Namely, he ...

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For a finite group G, let |G| denote the order of G and write $D(G) = \sum_{N \triangleleft G} |N|$, the sum of the orders of the normal subgroups. I would like to call G "perfect" if D(G) = 2|G|, ...

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According the the Wikipedia page, the second generation proof is up to at least nine volumes: six by Gorenstein, Lyons and Solomon dated 1994-2005, two covering the quasithin business by Aschbacher ...

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I'm merely a grad student right now, but I don't think an exploration of the sporadic groups is standard fare for graduate algebra, so I'd like to ask the experts on MO. I did a little reading on them ...

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Here is a quote from an article by Daniel Gorenstein on the history of the classification of finite simple groups (available here).
During that year in Harvard, Thompson began his monumental ...

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Let $w=w(x_1,\dots,x_n)$ be a word in a free group of rank $n$. Let $G$ be a finite group. Then we may define a class function $f=f_w$ of $G$ by
$$ f_w(g) = |\{ (x_1,\dots, x_n)\in G^n\mid w(x_1,\dots,...

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A semigroup $S$ is defined to be squared if there exists a subset $A\subseteq S$ such that the function $A\times A\to S$, $(x,y)\mapsto xy$, is bijective.
Problem: Is each squared finite group ...

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From the point of view of formal math, what would constitute an appropriate statement of the classification of finite simple groups? As I understand it, the classification enumerates 18 infinite ...

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Let G be a finite group of order n. Must every automorphism of G have order less than n?
(David Speyer: I got this question from you long ago, but I don't know whether you knew the answer. I stil ...

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The subject line pretty much says it all. To expand just a little bit:
1) What is the smallest simple group that is not yet known to occur as a Galois group over $\mathbb{Q}$? (Variants: not known ...

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Here is a very natural question:
Q: Is it always possible to generate a finite simple group with only $2$ elements?
In all the examples that I can think of the answer is yes.
If the answer is ...

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Let $A$, $B$ be finite groups. Is it true that all short exact sequences $1 \rightarrow A \rightarrow A \times B \rightarrow B \rightarrow 1$ split on the right?
In other words, do there exist ...

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Let $G$ be a finite group. In an an earlier question, Fedor asked whether the square root counting function $r_2:G\rightarrow \mathbb{N}$, which assigns to $g\in G$ the number of elements of $G$ that ...

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For reference, the Feit-Thompson Theorem states that every finite group of odd order is necessarily solvable. Equivalently, the theorem states that there exist no non-abelian finite simple groups of ...

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This question is inspired by the recent question "The finite subgroups of SL(2,C)". While reading the answers there I remembered reading once that identifying the finite subgroups of SU(3) is still an ...

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The gnu (or Group NUmber) function describes how many groups there are of a given order. The number of groups of each order are known up to 2047, see https://www.math.auckland.ac.nz/~obrien/research/...

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Books can be written about the finite subgroups of $\mathrm{SL}(2,\mathbb C)$ (and their immediate family, like the polyhedral groups...) I am about to start writing notes for a short course about ...

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The list of finite simple groups of Lie type has been understood for half a century, modulo some differences in notation (and identifications between some of the very small groups coming from ...

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Question: If you have a finite group, how do you name it?
If, for whatever reason, you have to list all subgroups of $GL_2({\mathbb F}_5)$ up to isomorphism in a paper, you are likely to write ...

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As the "second-generation" proof of the Classification of Finite Simple Groups is being written up in the volumes by Gorenstein, Lyons, Aschbacher, Smith, Solomon, and others (see e.g. this ...

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Let $p$ be a prime, $n\gg p$ not divisible by $p$ (say, $n>2^{2^p}$). Are there two permutations $a, b$ of the set $\{1,...,n\}$ which together act transitively on $\{1,2,...,n\}$ and such that all ...

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Let $G$ be a finite non-abelian group of $n$ elements.
I would like a measure that intuitively captures the
extent to which $G$ is non-commutative.
One easy measure is a count of the non-commutative ...

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The classification of finite simple groups, whether it be viewed as finished, or as a work in progress, is (or will be) without doubt an enormous achievement. It clearly sheds a great deal of light on ...

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Suppose that $G$ is a finite group, acting via homeomorphisms on $B^n$, the closed $n$-dimensional ball. Does $G$ have a fixed point?
A fixed point for $G$ is a point $p \in B^n$ where for all $g \...

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Given $F = F(x_0,\ldots,x_n)$ the free group on $n+1$ generators. Define a function $M: F\rightarrow \mathbb{N}$ such that $F(w) = l$, if the smallest group in which $w$ is not an identity is of size ...

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The complex irreps of a finite group come in three types: self-dual by a
symmetric form, self-dual by a symplectic form, and not self-dual at all.
In the first two cases, the character is real-valued, ...

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Given a finite simple group $G$, we can consider the quasisimple extensions $\tilde G$ of $G$, that is to say central extensions which remain perfect. Some basic group cohomology (based on the ...

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Here is a group theoretic phrasing of a special case of the union closed conjecture:
Question: Given a finite group $G$, is there an element of prime power order which is contained in at most half ...

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Can you tell me an algebraic integer, with all archimedean absolute values less than 2, which is not an eigenvalue of $\pi_1 + \pi_2$ for any two permutation matrices $\pi_1,\pi_2$?
Is it ...

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The classification of finite simple groups states roughly that every non-abelian finite simple group is either alternating, a group of Lie type, or a sporadic group.
For each of the groups of Lie ...

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Let $f(n)$ denote the number of (isomorphism classes of) groups of order $n$. A couple easy facts:
If $n$ is not squarefree, then there are multiple abelian groups of order $n$.
If $n \geq 4$ is even,...

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A theorem of Frobenius states that if $n$ divides the order of a finite group $G$, then the number of solutions to $x^n = 1$ in $G$ is a multiple of $n$. Frobenius conjectured that if the number of ...

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In finite group theory, there's a general intuition that the further away a group is from abelian, the fewer conjugacy classes it will have. So it is to be expected that non-abelian finite simple ...

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In his answer to this previous MO question, Gjergji Zaimi referred to the statement that for every finite group $G$ of order $n$, there is a bijection $\sigma \colon G \to \mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z}$ ...

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Is there some natural bijection between irreducible representations and conjugacy classes of finite groups (as in case of $S_n$)?

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The question is in the title, but here is some background/reminders:
A subgroup $H\neq\{1\}$ of a finite group $G$ is called a Frobenius complement if $H\cap H^g = \{1\}$ for all $g\in G\backslash H$....

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I'm supervising an undergraduate research project. Among other things, I've got the student to look at this paper of Gene Kopp and John Wiltshire-Gordon. This question arose from a missing complex ...