Questions asking for advice on various mathematical matters. Be careful that your question is answerable, and also that it is not a polling question (e.g. "What is the best / your favorite way to...").

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3
votes
0answers
44 views

My attempt to gather mathematical spaces in a drawing

There are many spaces (Sobolev, inner product spaces, etc.) that I am not using on a daily basis, but have to recall their definition from time to time. So I decided to draw a synthetic scheme of the ...
2
votes
0answers
210 views

How to Read Michael Artin's Algebra

I am currently reading Algebra by Michael Artin (for self study). I'm finding the book pretty interesting, but I'm still not sure how I should study the book. For example, should I try to prove every ...
2
votes
1answer
95 views

How to conceptualize unintuitive topology?

I found Project Origami: Activities for Exploring Mathematics in my university's library the other day and quickly FUBAR'd (folded-up beyond all recognition) the couple sheets of paper I had with me ...
6
votes
1answer
196 views

How important is the “prestige” of your university for undergraduate mathematics?

I go to a university in Canada. It's not really considered a top university (it is one of the best universities in the province but is ranked really low nationally). I study mathematics here and ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

I'm feeling demotivated in my undergraduate course

I was a very good math student in high school. I was in the national level Olympiad team. Now I'm studying at the best college in my country with really good mathematicians. I've all almost all of my ...
9
votes
3answers
305 views

How do you go about formalizing a concept?

I am reading Godel Escher Bach. I love it. In the first few chapters, the author shows what a formal system is and gives examples that eventually lead to a typographical formal system of strings that ...
2
votes
0answers
179 views

A Compact Real Analysis book for a graduate student, who is short of time.

I am a Phd student in Computer Science and I want to focus on Machine Learning, especially on statistical methods. My problem is, I always keep hitting the wall when it comes to studying underlying ...
2
votes
2answers
57 views

Combinations: People want a beer, there are certain kinds of beer, but limited numbers of each kind

Four people go to a pub and each wants to drink a pint of either the lager, ale, or porter. However, there are only 2 pints of lager, 1 ale, and 1 porter available to drink. How many combinations of ...
4
votes
2answers
231 views

How much set theory is necessary for serious logic?

I'm currently studying logic at my university and I have been trying to squeeze in as much set theory on the side as possible. Considering that I am spending quite a lot of time studying set theory ...
6
votes
8answers
3k views

How should I self-study calculus? [duplicate]

So I already took Pre-Calc, and ended up with a B both semesters. I am an incoming senior in high school. My special-ed case manager won't let me take it because she doesn't want to see me panic ...
2
votes
2answers
140 views

Going Back to Grad School After Being Away from Math

I graduated with a degree in Math-Computer Science(dual degree) from a college in the US in 2012, and have been working in the Software industry ever since. From 2012 to mid 2014 I was a software ...
13
votes
5answers
710 views

I need help finding a rigorous Pre-calculus textbook

I dislike modern textbooks; their cookie-cutter approach and appearance, over reliance on breaking things down into little boxes, the general spoon-feeding they engender and most of all the poor ...
0
votes
1answer
119 views

Dealing with questions with unknown answers

The vast majority of textbook exercises are worded essentially in the format: This assertion is (true/false). Prove this or find a counterexample. This, of course, is not how mathematics is ...
41
votes
6answers
4k views

What should an amateur do with a proof of an open problem?

Assuming that somebody is not an employee of a university, just a math amateur, and makes a proper proof of some well known open math problem, what should he do with it? Publish on the internet for ...
1
vote
3answers
171 views

Is tutor essential for success in mathematics? [closed]

Everyone in my Pre-Calc - Calc I class is failing, except the kids who go tutor. They get top percentile ranks in the class. Should I drop maths all together so I don't have to invest in a tutor? I ...
5
votes
4answers
334 views

What sequence should I study these topics in?

I will shortly list a series of topics that amount to what is essentially the first two years of an undergraduate degree. I'd like to know what is considered best order in which to study these ...
0
votes
3answers
53 views

What are the concepts that I need to understand before studying Fourier Analysis?

Background ( Long Story Short ) : For some reasons, I am taking a class in my university that focus on Fourier Analysis Laplace Transform, and Partial Diffiential Equations Problem : I have done ...
6
votes
1answer
279 views

How much mathematics should a student of mathematical logic know?

I would like to know what areas of mathematic are directly related to mathematical logic, besides the usual courses on model theory, proof theory and computability. If you suggest only one book on ...
2
votes
3answers
147 views

What is so special about $a*b^{ -1}$ equivalence?

This equivalent is used often in group theory. For example, using this equivalnce you prove Lagranges theroem and also this equivalence gives you the cosets and other things. This equivalence also ...
1
vote
1answer
30 views

Is $g$ increasing?

Suppose $f:[a,b]\rightarrow\mathbb{R}$ and define $g:[a,b]\rightarrow\mathbb{R}$ as follows $$ g(x)=\sup\{f(t):a\leq t\leq x\}, $$ with $x\in[a,b]$. Someone told me that $g$ is an increasing ...
11
votes
3answers
494 views

A question from an engineering undergraduate

My question primarily concerns the necessary transition from an undergraduate program in electrical engineering to graduate program in applied mathematics or pure mathematics. I'm an electrical ...
3
votes
1answer
220 views

Actuarial Science or Financial Mathematics? [closed]

I’m a second year undergraduate student of Actuarial Science that equally loves finance and pure mathematics. I only knew of Actuarial Science as a career that suited best these two requirements ...
3
votes
2answers
57 views

Favorite Textbooks for introducing a subject?

I'm interested in learning more about number theory, about fractal geometry, and about probability. Anyone have any good recommendations? I've taken calculus and statistics at university if that helps ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

Re professional mathematicians working on several problems at once. Source needed.

Recently I read a quote from a working mathematician where he pointed out that professionals have to get used to carrying around several unsolved problems at once. Can anyone help me with the source ...
40
votes
5answers
7k views

What are the work habits of the best mathematicians? [closed]

Of course I would never compare myself to, and don't expect to be, one of the great mathematicians. However, I am curious as to how my work habits, dedication and passion differs from theirs. How ...
10
votes
4answers
465 views

The best balance in studying Mathematics? [on hold]

I'm a student studying Mathematics at a university level. I've completed Single Variable Calculus, Differential Equations, Multivariable Caculus, Real/Complex Analysis, and Linear Algebra and I've ...
2
votes
4answers
473 views

Should I read about Manifolds or Algebraic Topology?

I really enjoy doing maths and it fills quite a lot of my spare time. I'm starting my first year in the university on october and I probably won't have that much time for independent reading once ...
5
votes
1answer
163 views

Problem solving strategy?

This question has always bothered me, and I've never had a maths coach to guide me along the way and show me what to do next. Nevertheless, I did make top 50 nationally in my national mathematics ...
0
votes
5answers
179 views

Some examples of applications of Game Theory

I'm approaching my junior year of HS now, and I'm looking for a good science fair project to do. I love mathematics, so I decided to a category of mathematics that can help base logical conclusions to ...
16
votes
5answers
804 views

Understanding mathematical texts

Please could you comment on following: I always wanted to know what mathematicians mean by "understanding a piece of mathematics". For example, I have just finished the second chapter from Rudin's ...
20
votes
11answers
3k views

Gap year to study math

This is a plan in its earliest and thus least concise stage, so either bear with me or don't read the following babble (I bolded some of the important stuff): I am a high school graduate who is about ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Masters' thesis in group theory [closed]

I would like some ideas on topics in group theory which would be suitable for a masters' thesis. What sort of problems would be suitable for this level? Because it is at masters' level, no original ...
3
votes
1answer
166 views

Changing streams in PhD

I've a masters degree from a reputed Indian university in pure mathematics, with a specialization in Algebraic Number Theory. However, I'd like to apply for a PhD in computational math/theoretical ...
3
votes
2answers
425 views

What's after undergrad? Advice needed.

I'm currently a rising senior at a small, yet well ranked liberal arts college studying Pure Mathematics. I've taken multiple high level mathematics courses and plan on doing a few more independent ...
6
votes
2answers
231 views

Advice for self-studying Inequalities and Calculus

I'm interested in self-studying the following books over the next year or so: Spivak's Calculus (I'm already in Ch. 5 and it is very slow going) The Cauchy-Schwarz Master Class by J. Michael Steele ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it bad to keep aside Lang's Algebra in graduate school?

Question is as it is stated in title. I will be joining for PhD program in this July 2014. I am interested in working in Algebra/Algebraic Geometry/Algebraic Number Theory. I tried to learn algebra ...
2
votes
3answers
540 views

What languages to learn for maths? [closed]

For people with "hands-on" experience in mathematical research, what languages are the most beneficial to learn? I know that many graduate programs require some degree of non-native lingual ...
1
vote
1answer
216 views

Path to Differential Geometry

What do I need to learn to start on the rigorous study of differential geometry? I'm about to start my 3rd undergrad year at school, and have taken Cal 1-3, Linear Algebra, Elementary Number Theory, ...
5
votes
0answers
250 views

Analysis or (abstract) algebra first?

Which one would you recommend? I only know calculus and linear algebra when it comes to university-level mathematics. Is one required to understand the other?
8
votes
1answer
144 views

Follow up to Pinter's abstract algebra

I wanted to learn abstract algebra this summer so I bought Pinter's A book of Abstract Algebra. I was planning on reading it over the course of the summer, but just finished the last problem of its ...
1
vote
2answers
133 views

Book: Functional Calculus

Is there a good book that investigates in detail the various kinds of functional calculus? I'm having now some knowledge about unbounded operators and integration but I would like to understand ...
-1
votes
1answer
23 views

About the convergence or divergence? [closed]

Whether the following integral converge or diverge by comparison test. \begin{align*} ...
4
votes
1answer
220 views

Too “young” for advanced mathematics?

Is it harmful to try to learn an advanced topic that is way beyond your mathematical maturity, even if you're really interested in it? Should I focus only on standard material for undergraduates and ...
2
votes
1answer
103 views

Is it worth it? [closed]

I am studying pure mathematics at university, as well as minoring in physics. I am soon to finish to BSc degree, and I am considering continuing on with studying pure mathematics. However, I do have a ...
3
votes
3answers
167 views

Can a mathematician be a multi-discipline expert?

My professor says: If you be a mathematician then you can easily learn any discipline like physics, chemistry, engineering and even medical! Is he right? I am an enthusiast of all scientific ...
3
votes
3answers
63 views

Confusing -Probabilities.!!

Ok so far what i understand is this lets say...Having to draw a card from 52card-deck its probability is of course 1/52.Now the probability to say that i will keep drawing this same card 10 times of ...
3
votes
0answers
266 views

Which is the best transitional mathematics book for self-teaching among the ones listed?

What is Mathematics, An Elementary Approach to Ideas and Methods - Courant Robbins Stewart How to Solve It, A New Aspect of Mathematical Solving - Polya Introductory Mathematics, Algebra and Analysis ...
3
votes
1answer
228 views

How do high-achieving students in math study for their exams?

I'm taking a real analysis course that is a bit more advanced than usual in that it introduces you to the Lebesgue theory and has some deeper concepts in metric spaces. This is an honors and advanced ...
40
votes
9answers
4k views

When to give up on a hard math problem?

I practice olympiad problems from books like Putnam and Beyond. Often I come across a problem that I simply can't solve. After $\sim30$ minutes of deep thinking it feels like I'm ramming my head into ...
20
votes
4answers
2k views

Pure mathematics curriculum for self study with interests in foundational issues

I wonder if I want to make my own pure mathematics curriculum to study along the next 4 or 5 years. What topics should I include? I want it to be like one which an undergraduate student of pure ...