Number systems: In a place-notational number system, the number of symbols used. For example, in base two the two symbols 0 and 1 are used, and in base seven the seven symbols 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 are used.
Exponential expressions: The number or expression which is “being raised to” the power of the exponent.
Topology: Given a topological space X, a base is a class B of sets such that, for every x in X and every neighborhood U of x, there is a set b in B such that x is contained in b and b is contained in U.
A bijective function, i.e., a function that is both an injection and a surjection.
A function is bijective if it is both injective and surjective, i.e., both “one-to-one” and “onto.”
A binary operation on a set X is a function whose domain is the set of ordered pairs of elements from X and whose range is X.
Examples: addition on the set of integers, function composition.
A topological space X is said to have the Bolzano-Weierstrass property if every infinite sequence in X has a convergent subsequence. It is a theorem that every compact space has the Bolzano-Weierstrass property.
If X is a topological space, then the s-algebra of sets generated by the open sets of X is called the Borel s-algebra, and its members are called Borel sets. The Borel subsets of the real line are generated by the open intervals (equivalently, by the closed intervals, half-open intervals, and rays).
A lower bound of any subset of a linear order (linearly ordered set) is an element which is less than or equal to every element of the subset. The greatest lower bound is the largest of its lower bounds. An upper bound of any subset of a linear order is an element which is greater than or equal to every element of the subset. The least upper bound is the smallest of the upper bounds.
Cf. infimum, supremum.
A set or sequence of values is called bounded if there is a value M such that the values are never bigger than M and never smaller than –M. A function is bounded if its values are bounded. A sequence of functions is pointwise bounded if at every domain element x the sequence of values of the functions at x is bounded. A subset E of a locally compact topological space is bounded if there exists a compact set C such that E is contained in C. Such a subset is called s-bounded if there exists a sequence of compact sets Ci such that E is contained in their union. See also: totally bounded.
A subset of the unit interval (on the real number line) which is a perfect set, nowhere dense, uncountable, and homeomorphic to the entire unit interval. See the article for a complete exposition.
The Cartesian product R2, represented graphically by two real number lines at right angles to one another, with the point (0,0) at the intersection.
Used for graphing functions from the set of real numbers to itself. The quadrants, numbered I - IV as shown, indicate the regions of the plane where the x and y axes are positive and negative. Compare: Argand plane.
A sequence (x1, x2, x3, ... ) of elements of a metric space X with metric d(x, y) is Cauchy if for any e greater than zero there is some natural number N such that
In other words, in a Cauchy sequence, the elements eventually become “arbitrarily close together.” If the metric space X is closed, this condition is equivalent to the sequence being convergent.
In a plane, the locus of all points equidistant from a given point, called the center. The general equation for a circle in the Cartesian plane is given by (x - h) 2 + (y - k) 2 = r 2, where r is the radius of the circle (distance from the center to the locus of points), and (h, k) are the coordinates of the center.
The interior of a circle is referred to as an open disk.
A circle is also a conic section; a special case of an ellipse in which the foci coincide.
Geometry: The distance around a circle in the plane, or around a great circle of a sphere.
Graph Theory: The circumference of a graph G is defined as the length of the longest cycle of G. The circumference is ususally denoted by c(G), and is undefined if G has no cycles.
General: A set is closed under an operation if applying the operation to its elements returns only elements in the set. For example, the set of integers is closed under addition, since adding two integers always gives another integer, but it is not closed under division, since dividing two integers may result in a non-integer.
Geometry: A plane figure is closed if it consists of lines and/or curves that entirely enclose an area. Similarly, a figure in 3-dimensional space is called closed if it entirely encloses a volume.
See the following listings for other uses of the word “closed” in mathematics.
Topology: A set is topologically closed if it is not open.
An interval of the real number line (or any other totally ordered set) which includes its endpoints. An interval containing only one of its endpoints is called half-open.
Cf. open interval.
Topology: A subset E of a topological space X is closed if X - E (set difference) is open. In a metric space, E is closed if every convergent sequence in E converges in E; equivalently, if every accumulation point of E is in E.
Set Theory: If a is a limit ordinal, then a set C contained in a is called closed if and only if for every limit ordinal b less than a, if C b is unbounded in b, then b C. C is called c.u.b. (“cub set” or “club set”) if and only if C is closed and unbounded in a.
Cf. stationary set.
closed set system
If X is a set (or proper class) and F is a family of subsets of X, then F is called a closed set system provided
- X is a member of F, and
- F is closed under arbitrary intersections.
Topology: The closure of a subset E of a topological space is the smallest closed set containing E. It may also be expressed as the union of E with its accumulation points. If E is closed, then it is equal to its closure.
Algebra: An algebraic closure of a field F is a field G containing F such that every polynomial with coefficients from F has a root in G.
If X is a set, then a function C from P(X) into P(X) (i.e., a function on the power set of X) is called a closure operator provided
Closure operators induce closed set systems.
- Y is contained in C(Y) for every subset Y of X,
- C(C(Y)) = C(Y) for every subset Y of X, and
- If Y and Z are both subsets of X, with Y a subset of Z, then C(Y) is a subset of C(Z).
A subselection of a set of r elements from a set of n elements. The number of such combinations, i.e., the number of ways in which r elements may be chosen from a set of n elements, is given by the formula
This operation is also sometimes denoted by nC r, and is read “n choose r.”
Cf. permutation, factorial.