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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Abstract Algebra E-222 video 24 Rings 1


Just watched a video where Benedict Gross introduces Ring Theory. I don't think you can learn Ring Theory ( or any mathematics for that matter ) by just watching a video.

In the business of commercial education, in programming for example, teachers are often confronted with students ( sent by their employers ) who expect to leave as a qualified programmer just by hanging in their chairs during the course. Needless to say they leave as empty headed as they came in.

But if you watch prepared you can pick up a lot from this professor. In this first lecture he explains why there is such a field as Ring Theory in the first place. Where did it come from? And most of all: what are the important topics we have to watch in this field? ( I.e. Ideals and Unit Groups ). You may wonder why I gave this post the M336 ( Groups and Geometry ) hash-tag, it is because Rings and abelian Groups ( and Number Theory ) are intimately connected and one of the objectives of M336 is the classification of all abelian groups. - By the way, the word is abelian group and not Abelian group despite the fact that the word abelian comes from Niels Abel. Writing a name lowercase is the highest possible honor in mathematics. ( So I have been told... ).

$(\mathbf{Z/nZ})^{\times}$ has $\phi(n)$ elements

At the end of this lecture he mentions that Group Theory is a really hard subject and all that. The thing with Group Theory is that it has to sink in quite a while before it clicks and opens up to you.

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