Germs & Sheaves

Hyperbolic triangle, via Wikipedia
Hyperbolic triangle, via Wikipedia

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I spent most of the day reading up on differentiable manifolds, Riemann surfaces, germs, and sheaves. Some of the concepts are extremely interesting since they tie into category theory. This led me to differential geometry. I supposed that differential geometry had more to do with Euclidean geometry, an undergrad class that I didn’t enjoy all that much³, but it’s got a lot more to do with the geometry and structure of differentiable manifolds, which interest me¹.

Since the late nineteenth century, differential geometry has grown into a field concerned more generally with geometric structures on differentiable manifolds.

The study of calculus on differentiable manifolds is known as differential geometry.

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Differentiable Manifolds

Morin surface as a sphere, via wikipedia
Morin surface as a sphere, via Wikipedia

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Things got abstract very quickly in complex analysis. We are constructing differentiable manifolds in the complex plane, to see the topology of  holomorphic domains. It blends together quite a few algebraic notions, as well as some beautiful topology, and it’s extremely interesting. The prof told us that this would fit neatly into a Riemann manifold or Riemann surfaces class.

Why is this so interesting? It explains exactly why derivatives and integrals actually work in the complex plane. Well, that’s not really true. It’s more than that. Applying calculus to complex functions is certainly richer than for real functions. We delve into the differential k-forms and their construction⁷. It’s quite elegant, I have to say. Some of my classmates were a bit dismayed by the abstract nature of this week’s lectures, but it had my full attention⁴.

I also noticed that we started using Berenstein & Gay’s book, Complex Variables¹. We’re about 5 weeks into the semester and we are on page 10 or so⁵. The level of difficulty in this class just went up a notch. Also, the level of complexity went up. That’s why they call it complex analysis!

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