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Definition: A frame $F$ is a suplattice such that for any $x_{i}, y\in F$ (for $i\in I$, $I$ a set), we have $$y\wedge\left(\bigvee_{i\in I}x_i\right)=\bigvee_{i\in I}(y\wedge x_i).$$

Why are frames called "frames"?

Is there some mental picture of them I'm missing that resembles a frame of some sort? I don't understand. I've looked in all the standard places (I know of) . . .

I ask because I'm hoping it'll give me a better idea of what they are.

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    $\begingroup$ @GitGud Good idea. Done :) $\endgroup$ – Shaun Jun 10 '14 at 12:58
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    $\begingroup$ They are an abstract axiomatisation of topologies (in the sense of lattices of open sets). A rose by any other name would smell as sweet... $\endgroup$ – Zhen Lin Jun 10 '14 at 13:52
  • $\begingroup$ @ZhenLin Thank you. I knew that was one way of looking at them, given that the category of frames is the opposite category of the category of locales; a frame is a locale is a frame. But you never know . . . there could be some useful reason for the terminology :) $\endgroup$ – Shaun Jun 10 '14 at 14:04

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