Upcoming Courses

July 28, 2011

Starting in Oktober I will give Mathematics for Engineers II which is basically Ordinary Differential Equations and Real Analysis (of functions with several variables). The course will be in german. Since the material is standard I won’t bother translating it and bringing it here.

The other new course will be Metamathematics. I have not yet decided on the exact content.

I like to work

October 1, 2010

Teaching eight mathematics courses (quasi-)simultaneously is just a matter of organization. At least that is what I currently try to prove. Meanwhile I learn a lot about analytic number theory and Erdös’s discrepancy conjecture.

The Plan II

July 26, 2010

Its Polymath time. My resources, especially time and most importantly skill, are limited and therefore I have to restrict myself a little. Let me just sketch where I set the boundaries, what I want to try and what a possible (successful) outcome might look like. Some acquaintance with Tim Gowers’s proof of Roth’s theorem and its (hoped for) connection to EDP is necessary.

What is the idea?

Let me first collect some observations:

  • ‘Translation’ acts as a group on APs and is periodic on APs with common difference.
  • ROI starts with some representation of the translation group in terms of rank one projections using exponentials.
  • An elementary formula from Fourier Analysis describing the interaction of translation and exponentials is used to express the exponentials in terms of Fourier coefficients of some characteristic function and its translates.
  • The result is an ‘efficient’ representation, i.e. it allows to deduce unbounded discrepancy.

Translation as described above lives on the domain of the Fourier coefficients. We do not lose information if we consider it for the corresponding Fourier series. On all reasonable spaces translations form a strongly continuous (semi-) group of linear operators.  For periodic strongly continuous groups we have representations of the group. If we work with rotation groups on L^p(\Gamma) with p>1 we even have a tensorial representation in terms of exponentials. By the way, if we choose our space carefully, exponentials are at least approximative eigenvectors of translations (rotations).

The idea now is to get information on discrepancy on  \mathbb{Z} (the domain of the Fourier coefficients) by studying ROI on various spaces of Fourier series, like L^p(\Gamma) or L^1(\mathbb{R})\cap L^1(\mathbb{R}) .

If I am not able to translate the ROI idea to the infinite section directly I will also try to use the so called ‘Complex Inversion Formula’, expressing the integral over the group in terms of some inverse Laplace transform. This can be seen as an infinite dimensional version of Perron’s formula. However that would be a ‘last try’ since it is not connected to Polymath anymore.

What is the goal?

The result I am aiming for looks roughly as follows:

Let X be a Banach (or better a Hilbert) space and let T be a strongly continuous (maybe only semi-)group of linear operators (translations, rotations, periodic?) with generator  (A,D(A)). If the resolvent (\lambda- A)^{-1} satisfies some conditions (including norm estimates) then ‘something’ has unbounded ‘discrepancy’.

That sounds incredibly naive, since Tim Gowers’s proof needed some clever estimates and preyed upon cancellations for different common differences  d. My hope is to hide these technicalities in an estimate on the resolvent. Such estimates  like e.g. in the Hille-Yosida theorem are usually harder to obtain than to state. That is good news.

So far, that would be the first part. In a way this is just translating the main idea of the proof into some other language. The hard part would then be to apply the general theorem to other situations (maybe even EDP). Here the resolvent has to be estimated and technicalities enter. However, I do not want to think that far ahead.

The Plan

July 23, 2010

So far that was a hot summer. With all written and oral exams finished and with bearable temperatures returning I plan to spend some free time to think about the Erdös Discrepancy Conjecture. Is it wise to post this plan? I think so. It puts some pressure on me and this is good.

The idea is that we have probably not made maximal use of Tim Gowers’s proof of Roth’s theorem.  Behind all the numbers and estimates there could be some abstract/infinitary content. If this is the case, then it might be easier to generalize or at least to spot the limits of the method.

Intuition or wishful thinking? Maybe the later, but I want to know for sure.

Snow and Polymath5

February 13, 2010

Two weeks of constant snowing is highly unusual for Germany. It makes driving a real adventure especially since my home town ran out of salt a week ago.

While being snow-covered in endless traffic jams I was not lazy and added up +1’s and -1’s to get an idea of what is going on here: Polymath5 project. The Erdös discrepancy problem is easy to formulate and really hard to solve. Give it a try!


January 5, 2010

Currently I cannot keep my biweekly rhythm. Year end means too much work for me. However, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and plan to continue soon.

A New Look

December 4, 2009

This blog got overhauled.

If the content is not clear, then at least the presentation should be.

Enough stuff …

September 15, 2009

… to write about, but school keeps me busy at the moment.


August 29, 2009

The LaTex to WordPress converter is installed and tested. I seem to be able to handle it. Meanwhile my guest took up speed and produces material at an enormous rate. Things you can expect within the next few days in no particular order are:

  • He explains the nature of scientific laws. (This is cute, pretty standard and understandable. Finally something!)
  • He goes into details on defining and describing notions. Apparently there is a third way to introduce notions. He calls these notions ’emergent’. (I am not sure, whether I got that.)
  • He comments on an approach (by scientists) to estimate the probability of unconditional existence of things. (What? That is hopefully not publicly funded!)
  • He laments on our understanding of ‘truth’. (I guess he criticizes that we still use a notion of truth in mathematics which in essence is several thousands of years old. Modern truth theories provided by philosophers are just ignored. I fail to see his point. What else should we do? Maybe I point him towards Tarski.)
  • He presents his view on the ontological status of mathematical objects. (I guess I understand what he is saying here and this sends shivers down my spine.)

Hi world!

August 25, 2009

Yesterday I met a very strange person. There is no way for me to keep this private, let me just catch up on the technical details, since I might end up using a LaTex to WordPress converter.

We shall either start in the spirit of ‘edge’ with his idea dangerous for science or with his trip to the library to get Mathematics Volume I Part I.