## Whoops!

November 8, 2009 by Qiaochu Yuan

I seem to have broken my MaBloWriMo streak. I hope you’ll believe me when I say it was impossible for me to get a post up yesterday. Unfortunately, the rest of this week looks just as hairy (for completely different reasons), so I’m going to have to take a break. Here’s where we’re headed once I have time again:

I’m going to skip a lot of background at some point and just introduce several equivalent definitions of the Schur functions. My hope is that stating some of the important results of the theory, even without proof, will be enough to get other people interested in symmetric function theory. I also get a lot of material to go back to and flesh out in subsequent posts, since I haven’t gone through most of the proofs of the basic results very thoroughly.

After that, I want to meander slowly through parts of basic algebraic number theory and algebraic geometry. My goal here is to thoroughly understand the classical analogy between rings of integers in number fields and nonsingular affine algebraic curves. Since several bloggers have covered much of this material in some form already, I’ll try to link to other posts I’m aware of, but I’ll have to repeat some things because I want to motivate every definition I need.

Since I don’t have anything else to say at the moment, let’s make this post an **open thread** and we’ll see if the Scott Aaronson style of blogging works for me. General comments, questions, suggestions, requests, etc. welcome!

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on November 11, 2009 at 1:32 am |ryanso, you should tell your readers what is keeping you so busy that prevents you from blogging. Also, wat classes are u taking now ?

on November 11, 2009 at 9:23 am |Qiaochu YuanActually, your second question answers your first! Most of my classes are manageable, but Artin is teaching an undergraduate algebraic geometry class this semester and the problem sets assume a little more familiarity with commutative algebra than any of us actually have.

on November 11, 2009 at 1:36 pm |Akhil MathewWhat kinds of material is Artin covering in his course?

I heard an interesting story about an introductory course at Harvard that introuduced schemes via functors of points.

on November 11, 2009 at 2:26 pm |Qiaochu YuanClassical stuff, if that’s the right word for it. He’s doing everything over and is determined not to talk about schemes. Fulton is maybe the closest approximation.

on November 12, 2009 at 4:31 am |sarahwhich of course doesn’t answer the question? What classes are you taking this term, enumerate them please.

You know, Artin is about to retire, that’s so sad.

on November 12, 2009 at 6:43 am |Qiaochu Yuan18.315, 18.782, 18.721, 18.112, 18.901, and 21M.301. Yes, it’s quite unfortunate.

on November 10, 2009 at 6:24 pm |Akhil MathewDo you play chess? I used to play competitively in middle school, when I divided my time equally between that an mathematics, but mathematics ended up taking over.

on November 10, 2009 at 6:37 pm |Qiaochu YuanNo, I never had the patience for it. What mathematics ended up distracting me from was physics.