# Tagged Questions

Use this tag for questions about specific tensors (curvature tensor, stress tensor), or questions regarding tensor computations as they appear in multivariable calculus and differential/Riemannian geometry (specifically, when it is amenable to be treated as objects with multiple indices that ...

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### An Introduction to Tensors

As a physics student, I've come across mathematical objects called tensors in several different contexts. Perhaps confusingly, I've also been given both the mathematician's and physicist's definition, ...
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### Does a “cubic” matrix exist?

Well, I've heard that a "cubic" matrix would exist and I thought: would it be like a magic cube? And more: does it even have a determinant - and other properties? I'm a young student, so... please don'...
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### Metric on an open subset of $\mathbb{R}^d$ and Christoffel symbol of the second kind

I need to prove the following identity. $\Omega \subset \mathbb{R}^d$ is open and $g$ is a metric field on $\Omega$. Further $\Gamma_{\,kl}^j$ denotes the Christoffel symbol of second kind. $g^{ij}$ ...
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### What is a covector and what is it used for?

From what I understand, a covector is an object that takes a vector and returns a number. So given a vector $v \in V$ and a covector $\phi \in V^*$, you can act on $v$ with $\phi$ to get a real number ...
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### What is the practical difference between abstract index notation and “ordinary” index notation

I understand that in "normal" index notation the indexes can be thought of as coordinates of scalar values inside a tabular data structure, while in the abstract index notation they can not. However, ...
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### Differences between a matrix and a tensor

What is the difference between a matrix and a tensor? Or, what makes a tensor, a tensor? I know that a matrix is a table of values, right? But, a tensor?
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### Tensors, what should I learn before?

Here I will be just posting a simple questions. I know about vectors but now I want to know about tensors. In a physics class I was told that scalars are tensors of rank o and vectors are tensors of ...
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### Is it misleading to think of rank-2 tensors as matrices?

Having picked up a rudimentary understanding of tensors from reading mechanics papers and Wikipedia, I tend to think of rank-2 tensors simply as square matrices (along with appropriate transformation ...
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### I feel that (physics) notation for tensor calculus is awful. Are there any alternative notations worth looking into?

I am reading through Fung and Tong's "Classical and Computational Solid Mechanics", and feel that the Einstein summation convention saves a few symbols, at the expense of a lot of clarity. Along with ...
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### Calculating the tensor product $\mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z} \otimes_{\mathbb Z} \mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z}$ [closed]

Consider the $\mathbb{Z}$ module $\mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z}$. What is $\mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z} \otimes_{\mathbb Z} \mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z}$?
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### Tensors as matrices vs. Tensors as multi-linear maps

So I read the answers in this question, and don't feel that much closer to an answer about how tensors as multi-linear maps and tensors as "multi-dimensional" matrices are truly related. For instance,...
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### Tensors as mutlilinear maps

I am aware that many books on differential geometry define tensors as multilinear maps. Namely $$V\otimes W := L_2(V^*\times W^*,\Bbb F)$$ I am also aware that this space is isomorphic to the tensor ...
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### Why is the Riemann curvature tensor the technical expression of curvature?

According to my textbook on general relativity (Sean Carrol's book) and differential geometry, the Reimann curvature tensor is the technical expression of curvature. What makes the tensor so special? ...
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### Are vectors and covectors the same thing?

In Euclidean space, we usually don't distinguish between vectors and covectors (or dual vectors or 1-forms or whatever you want to call them) -- because the spaces overlap. However, a physicist ...
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### Do I understand metric tensor correctly?

So I've been studying vectors and tensors, and I'm trying to understand metric tensors. As I understand them, besides a vast array of explanations, they provide an invariant distance between vectors ...
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### Are there any differences between tensors and multidimensional arrays?

I see lots of references saying things like A tensor is a multidimensional or N-way array But others that say things like it should be remarked that other mathematical entities occur in ...