Questions involving complex numbers: numbers of the form $a+bi$ where $i^2=-1$.

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6answers
414 views

Has anyone talked themselves into understanding Euler's identity a bit?

What does the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter have to do with the base of the natural logarithm and $\sqrt{-1}$?
8
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4answers
1k views

Do the real numbers and the complex numbers have the same cardinality?

So it's easy to show that the rationals and the integers have the same size, using everyone's favorite spiral-around-the-grid. Can the approach be extended to say that the set of complex numbers has ...
8
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3answers
223 views

Putting ${n \choose 0} + {n \choose 5} + {n \choose 10} + \cdots + {n \choose 5k} + \cdots$ in a closed form

As the title says, I'm trying to transform $\displaystyle{n \choose 0} + {n \choose 5} + {n \choose 10} + \cdots + {n \choose 5k} + \cdots$ into a closed form. My work: $\displaystyle\left(1 + ...
8
votes
5answers
261 views

When are we (not) allowed to replace $x$ by $ix$?

It seems to be quite a common manipulation to replace $x$ by $ix$. Every time I see it's being done in a textbook, I blindly trust the author without really understanding when are we allowed to do so ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Understanding imaginary exponents

Greetings! I am trying to understand what it means to have an imaginary number in an exponent. What does $x^{i}$ where $x$ is real mean? I've read a few pages on this issue, and they all seem to ...
8
votes
2answers
467 views

Summation of complex numbers

This is a series problem where the terms are complex numbers. I am looking for a better approach to solving this problem. If $\displaystyle z = \frac{1+i}{\sqrt2}$, Evaluate $1 + z + z^2 + ... + ...
8
votes
2answers
297 views

Are there any elegant methods to classify of the Gaussian primes?

Out of curiosity, are there any relatively quick classifications of all the Gaussian primes, the primes in $\mathbb{Z}[i]$? I found a classification here, but the process comes off as rather tedious. ...
8
votes
3answers
140 views

What is the right treatment for $0^i$?

I need to calculate a limit of a complex expression (had it in a physics research) that contains a term $(r-b)^p$ for $r\rightarrow b+$ where $r,b$ are reals, and $p$ is complex, let's suppose for ...
8
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2answers
293 views

If $0$, $z_1$, $z_2$ and $z_3$ are concyclic, then $\frac{1}{z_1}$,$\frac{1}{z_2}$,$\frac{1}{z_3}$ are collinear

If the complex numbers $0$, $z_1$, $z_2$ and $z_3$ are concyclic, prove that $\frac{1}{z_1}$,$\frac{1}{z_2}$,$\frac{1}{z_3}$ are collinear. I really can't seem to get anywhere on this problem, ...
8
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3answers
166 views

Proving that the limit of a sequence is $> 0$

Let $u$ be the complex sequence defined as follows : $u_0=i$ and $ \forall n \in \mathbb N, u_{n+1}=u_n + \frac {n+1-u_n}{|n+1-u_n|} $ . Consider $w_n$ defined by $\forall n \in \mathbb ...
8
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1answer
1k views

intuition for complex eigenvalues

The eigenvalues of a rotation matrix are complex numbers. I understand that they cannot be real numbers because when you rotate something no direction stays the same. My question What is the ...
7
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8answers
2k views

What's the thing with $\sqrt{-1} = i$

What's the thing with $\sqrt{-1} = i$? Do they really teach this in the US? It makes very little sense, because $-i$ is also a square root of $-1$, and the choice of which root to label as $i$ is ...
7
votes
4answers
684 views

Adding powers of $i$

I've been struggling with figuring out how to add powers of $i$. For example, the result of $i^3 + i^4 + i^5$ is $1$. But how do I get the result of $i^3 + i^4 + ... + i^{50}$? Writing it all down ...
7
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7answers
881 views

How to solve $e^{ix} = i$

I am taking an on-line course and the following homework problem was posed: $$e^{ix} = i$$ I have no idea how to solve this problem. I have never dealt with solving equations that have imaginary ...
7
votes
3answers
205 views

$ \exists a, b \in \mathbb{Z} $ such that $ a^2 + b^2 = 5^k $

I saw this problem recently and found an elegant solution to it, and was curious to see if anybody would think of something else. Nice solutions to nice problems are fun to see! Problem: Prove ...
7
votes
8answers
660 views

what is$ \sqrt{8i}$

Very simple question with an answer that I cannot understand: I have $\sqrt{8i}$, which, I suppose, is the same as $\sqrt{\sqrt{-64}}$. How come that $2+2i$ is the same as $\sqrt{8i}$? My ...
7
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2answers
2k views

What does $\mathrm{Re}(x)$ mean?

I see this all the time in Mathematica output as well as in text, such as near the top of the Wikipedia Beta function page.
7
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3answers
351 views

Why are complex numbers considered to be numbers?

I've had Dave's Short Course on Complex Numbers on the web since 1999, and I'd like to add a page on why complex numbers are (or should be) considered to be numbers. I'm frequently asked that ...
7
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2answers
892 views

Limit of complex function

Im trying to find the limit of: $$ \frac{\operatorname{Re}(z) \operatorname{Im}(z)}{z^2}$$ as z tends to zero.
7
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2answers
272 views

How does one find $z\in \mathbb{C}$ such that $\sin z=100?$

I am self-studying Complex Analysis and I am suppose to find $z\in \mathbb{C}$ such that $\sin z=100.$ I know that $$\sin z=\sin x \cosh y+i\cos x\sinh y$$ So I must have $\sin x \cosh y=100.$ I ...
7
votes
2answers
257 views

Why is $\left(e^{2\pi i}\right)^i \neq e^{-2 \pi}$?

Here's my (obviously flawed) proof that $1=e^{-2 \pi}$: $$ 1^i=1\\ e^{2 \pi i} = 1\\ \left(e^{2\pi i}\right)^i = 1^i\\ e^{-2 \pi} = 1 $$ What's the issue? I understand that exponentiation is not ...
7
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2answers
156 views

Invariant under transformation $i\mapsto -i$ implies real?

When one has an expression in terms of $i$, one can send $i$ to $-i$ and, if the expression remains unchanged, one can conclude that the expression is, in fact, real. Analogous statements hold for ...
7
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3answers
479 views

How do I completely solve the equation $z^4 - 2z^3 + 9z^2 - 14z + 14 = 0$ where there is a root with the real part of $1$.

I would please like some help with solving the following equation: $$z^4 - 2z^3 + 9z^2 - 14z + 14 = 0$$ All I know about the equation is that there is a root with the real part of $1$. My approach ...
7
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2answers
199 views

How to show that $\overline{zw}=\overline{z}\,\overline{w}$?

I thought about first multiplying two complex which aren't in the conjugate form: $$zw=a c+i a d+i b c-b d$$ Then multiply two complex conjugates: $$\overline{z}\,\overline{w}=a c\color{red}{-}i a ...
7
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1answer
260 views

Is every complex number the root of a polynomial? (Converse to fundamental theorem of algebra.)

For every polynomial with complex coefficients, the fundamental theorem of algebra guarantees the existence of complex numbers which happen to be roots of it. But is this everything? i.e. is the ...
7
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3answers
264 views

Help understanding $e^{it}=\cos t+i\sin t$ by way of matrices and vector fields

I was brushing up on my complex arithmetic in preparation for a class in ODE's this semester and I found myself looking at Exercise 2.7.5 in Introduction to Complex Analysis for Engineers by Michael ...
7
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2answers
273 views

Is it ever $i$ time?

I am asking this question as a response to reading two different questions: Is it ever Pi time? and Are complex number real? So I ask, is it ever $i$ time? Could we arbitrarily define time as ...
7
votes
3answers
643 views

How does this equality on vertices in the complex plane imply they are vertices of an equilateral triangle?

I've read that if the complex numbers $a_1$, $a_2$ and $a_3$ are the vertices of a triangle in the complex plane such that $$ a_1^2+a_2^2+a_3^2=a_1a_2+a_2a_3+a_1a_3 $$ then the vertices are actually ...
7
votes
1answer
109 views

To calculate residue of the function $f(z) = \frac{z^2 + \sin z}{\cos z - 1}$.

I was trying to find the residue of the function $$f(z) = \frac{z^2 + \sin z}{\cos z - 1}.$$ Here is the my attempt: The given function has a pole of order two at $z = 2n\pi$. So, we use the ...
7
votes
2answers
490 views

Why isn't $\log(-1)=i\pi$?

Reading http://people.math.gatech.edu/~cain/winter99/ch3.pdf, $\log(z)$ is defined as $=\ln|z|+i\arg(z)$. Looking on the Wessel plane, isn't $\arg(-1)=\pi$ (more generally $\pi \pm 2 \pi n$)? And ...
7
votes
3answers
124 views

Connectedness of $\lbrace z\in\mathbb{C} : |z^2+az+b|<r\rbrace$

What are the values of $r$ for which the set $$\lbrace z\in\mathbb{C} : |z^2+az+b|<r\rbrace$$ is connected ? Here $a,b\in\mathbb{C}$ and $r\in\mathbb{R}$.
7
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3answers
2k views

Drawing $z^4 +16 = 0$

I need to draw $z^4 +16 = 0$ on the complex numbers plane. By solving $z^4 +16 = 0$ I get: $z = 2 (-1)^{3/4}$ or $z = -2 (-1)^{3/4}$ or $z = -2 (-1)^{1/4}$ or $z = 2 (-1)^{1/4}$ However, the ...
7
votes
2answers
101 views

Product of $ |z^k - 1| $

Problem: Prove the following identity about the product involving the nth roots of unity: $$ \prod_{k=1}^{N-1}|z^k-1| = N $$ where $ z^k $ is the primitive nth root of unity. Attempt: $$ ...
7
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2answers
380 views

How to teach a High school student that complex numbers cannot be totally ordered?

I once again need your precious knowledge! I am not sure which is the best pedagogic way to teach a High school student about why complex numbers cannot be totally ordered. When I was in High school ...
7
votes
1answer
297 views

Is there a “good” way to visualize complex vectors?

We often represent complex numbers as vectors in $\mathbb{R}^2$ with $x$ being the real axis and $y$ being the imaginary axis. We often represent 2-dimensional vectors over $\mathbb{R}$ in a similar ...
7
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1answer
92 views

Why does $\sum_{k=2}^\infty k \left( \sum_{j=2^k}^{2^{k+1}-1} \frac{(-1)^j}{j} \right )+{1\over2}-{1\over3} = \gamma$?

How could one prove that $$x = \sum_{k=2}^\infty k \left( \sum_{j=2^k}^{2^{k+1}-1} \frac{(-1)^j}{j} \right )$$ is such that $x+{1\over2}-{1\over3} = \gamma$ ? I am having problems just calculating ...
7
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5answers
244 views

I don't understand $\sqrt{-9i}$.

I try to visualise it on a graph, where x is real numbers and y is the imaginary numbers. $\sqrt{9} = (3,0)$ and $(-3,0)$. $\sqrt{-9} = \sqrt{-1} \times \sqrt{9} = (0,3) $ and $(0,-3)$. ...
7
votes
2answers
264 views

How to show a complex number inequality

A classmate consulted me this problem, after a few moment's thought I found it was difficult, so I wish to try my luck here. Let $z_1,z_2,z_3,z_4\in \mathbb{C}$ such that ...
7
votes
1answer
70 views

Visualization of complex functions

How can I find the image of a rectangle $$a<\Re(z)<b \\c<\Im(z)<d$$ under the function $z^3$ , I tried breaking up $z$ into $x+iy$ and cubing it. I got the real and imaginary parts ...
7
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1answer
144 views

Is there a complex variant of Möbius' function?

When you're dealing with arithmetic functions, you might have come across the classical Möbius' function $$ \mu(n)=\begin{cases} (-1)^{\omega(n)}=(-1)^{\Omega(n)} &\mbox{if }\; \omega(n) = ...
7
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1answer
433 views

Simplest examples of real world situations that can be elegantly represented with complex numbers

Mathematics could be defined as the study of formally defined abstractions. These abstractions may or may not be useful for describing real world phenomenon. Indeed, Physics could be defined as the ...
7
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0answers
27 views

Cauchy representation and branch point order

This question is about the nature of branch points which arise in certain Cauchy-integral representations of functions of a single complex argument, $z$. The main application is for dispersion ...
7
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0answers
2k views

What's more common? Re / Im or Fraktur-R / Fraktur-I for real / imaginary part?

Title says it all. What's more common? Is there one to prefere (maybe due to some norm)? This: $\operatorname{\mathfrak{R}} z, \operatorname{\mathfrak{I}} z$ or that: $\operatorname{Re}z, ...
6
votes
6answers
947 views

Solve $z^4+1=0$ algebraically

I know the result and how to solve it using trigonometry and De Moivre. However, given that the complex number $z$ can be rewritten as $a+bi$, how can I solve it algebraically?
6
votes
6answers
211 views

Prove if $|z|=|w|=1$, and $1+zw \neq 0$, then $ {{z+w} \over {1+zw}} $ is a real number

If $|z|=|w|=1$, and $1+zw \neq 0$, then $ {{z+w} \over {1+zw}} \in \Bbb R $ i found one link that had a similar problem. Prove if $|z| < 1$ and $ |w| < 1$, then $|1-zw^*| \neq 0$ and $| {{z-w} ...
6
votes
5answers
241 views

Does there exist a field $K$ such that $\mathbb R \subsetneq K \subsetneq \mathbb C$?

I'm thinking of unions of $\mathbb R$ with some subset of $\mathbb C$ but am not sure how to approach this without ending up with all of $\mathbb C$. Doe anyone have any suggestions?
6
votes
5answers
449 views

Proving complex numbers

Let $z_1,z_2$ be two complex numbers such that $z_1 + z_2$ and $z_1\dot\ z_2$ are each negative real numbers. Prove that $z_1$ and $z_2$ must be real numbers. My attempt at a solution ...
6
votes
2answers
709 views

Show how to calculate the Riemann zeta function for the first non-trivial zero

I have very little understanding on how complex functions work but was wondering if someone could show what the summation of the zeta function simplifies to when $s$ is the first non-trivial zero of ...
6
votes
5answers
144 views

Strong characterization of $\mathbb C$ with respect to $\mathbb R$

$\mathbb R^2$ is not a field, but $2$-tuple arithmetic rules like $(a,b)(c,d)=(ac-bd,ad+bc)$ coupled with $\mathbb R^2$ make it a field, but are there other rules than $(a,b)(c,d)=(ac-db,ad+bc)$ ...
6
votes
3answers
201 views

4 dimensional numbers

I've tought using split complex and complex numbers toghether for building a 3 dimensional space (related to my previous question). I then found out using both together, we can have trouble on the ...