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Modeling of interactions between physics and mathematics

Arash RastegarDepartment of Mathematical Sciences

Sharif University of Technology

Moving from mathematics to physics

• When mathematicians do physics.• Classical Mechanics• Relativity• Quantum mechanics• String theory• Supper symmetry

Moving from physics to mathematics

• When physicists do mathematics.• Differential equations• Infinite dimensional group representations• Operator theory• Algebraic topology• Algebras and operads• Deformation of metric• Category theory

Mathematics imitates physics

• When mathematics is developed similar to physical theories

• Energy integral• Mathematical expectation• Classical mechanics over fiber bundles• Deformation quantization• Geometric quantization

Physics imitates mathematics

• When physics is developed similar to mathematical theories

• Quantum theory imitates operator theory• Relativity imitates deformation of metric• Gauge theory imitates fiber bundles• Quantum field theory imitates cobordism

theory• Conformal field theory imitates algebras over

operads

Physics invades mathematics

• When parts of mathematics are considered as parts of physics

• Parts of the theory of differential equations• Deformation quantization• Quantum groups• Geometric quantization• Lorenz spaces and space-time in general• Super symmetry

Mathematics invades physics

• When parts of physics are considered as parts of mathematics

• Classical Mechanics • Quantum theory• Solution of Einstein equations• Solution of wave equations• Super mathematics

Mathematical paradigms in physics

• Differentiation• Integration• Operators• Algebras over operads• Spaces• Singularity

Physical paradigms in mathematics

• Length• Area• Volume• Center of gravity• Energy• Stability• Harmonicity

Making assumptions in physics

• What are important assumptions in physics?• What is the role of mathematics in them?• Assumptions on space• Assumptions on space-time• Assumptions on observers• Assumptions on observables• Assumptions on measurement

Making assumptions in mathematics

• What are important assumptions in mathematics?

• What is the role of physics in them?• Definition of spaces• Assumptions on spaces• Assumptions on Hilbert spaces• Structures on algebras• Assumptions on group representations

Theorization in physics

• What is a good theory in physics?• Compatibility with related paradigms• Compatibility with experiments• Compatibility with atlas of concepts• Computability• Disprovability• Relations with measurements• Simplicity

Theorization in mathematics

• What is a good theory in mathematics?• Computability• Illumination• Relations with other theories• Insightfulness• Generalizability• Existence of a toy theory• Simplicity

Problem solving in physics

• What are problem solving habits in physics?• Patience• Divergent thinking• Criticizing conjectures• Looking for equivalent formulations• Fluency in working with ideas and concepts• Looking for simpler models

Problem solving in mathematics

• What are problem solving habits in mathematics?• Tasting the problem• Gaining personal view towards the problem• Considering relations with similar theories• Considering generalizations• Checking special cases• Performing a few steps computationally • Thinking simple

Teaching habits of physicists• Drawing formulas• Geometric imagination• Recognizing simple from difficult• Decomposition and reduction to simpler problems• Jumps of the mind• Estimating how much progress has been made• Finding the trivial propositions quickly• Formulating good conjectures • Being creative and directed in constructions• Understanding an idea independent of the context • Imagination and intuition come before arguments & computations

Teaching habits of mathematicians• Deciding where to start• Listing different strategies to attack the problem• Mathematical modeling in different frameworks• Deciding about using symbols or avoiding symbols• Deciding about what not to think about• Organizing the process of coming to a solution• How to put down the proof• Clarifying the logical structure• Writing down side results• Putting down the full proof after finishing the arguments• Notifying important steps in form of lemmas• Considering the mind of reader

Learning habits of physicists

• Considering concept relations• Comparing similar assumptions for

theorization• Comparing the related paradigms• Criticizing conjectures• Looking for equivalent formulations• Fluency in working with ideas and concepts• Looking for simpler models

Learning habits of mathematicians

• What are logical implications• Considering relations with similar theories• Considering generalizations• Checking special cases• Performing a few steps computationally • Thinking simple• Solving problems

What do physicists care about?

• Atlas of concepts• Paradigms of physical theories• Computability• Disprovability• Measurements• Intuition

What do mathematicians care about?

• Understanding simple cases completely• Understanding the ways one finds

generalizations• Understanding the logical structure• Finding the exact assumptions needed• How to solve similar problems• Flexibility of techniques

Contributions of physicists to mathematics

• Introduction of new mathematical concepts• Motivating computations• Motivating theorizations• Motivating assumptions• Motivating conjectures in mathematics• Fields moving from physics to mathematics• Introducing important special cases of

theories

Contributions of mathematicians to physics

• Providing mathematical formulations• Mathematical rigor• Categorizing exceptions• Mathematical computations • Expansion of the realm of physics• Study of the generalizations• Criticism• Guidance

Contributions of mathematics to physicists

• Rigor• Postulation• Logical structure• Problem solving• Critical thinking• Abstraction• Categorization

Contributions of physics to mathematicians

• Applications• Philosophical thought• Intuition• Computation• Divergent thinking• Searching for the truth• Relations with nature

Physics and mathematics form a pair

• Seems that mathematics is mother and physics is father!!!!!! It should have been vice versa

• What are pairs inside them?• Quantum theory and Hilbert spaces• Relativity and space-time• Classical mechanics and manifolds• Dynamical systems and differential equations

Mathematics is the father

• What is the role of father?• Provides ideas and intuitions.• Management of relations with other theories.• Provides the global structure.• Determines how to generalize.• Furnishes the soul.

Physics is the mother

• What is the role of mother?• Provides appropriate formulation and

language.• Management of internal relations between

sub-theories.• Provides the local structures.• Determines how to solve problems.• Furnishes the body.

Mathematical physicsis the fruit of this marriage

• What are similarities with mathematics?• Based on geometric ideas and intuitions.• Mathematics provides the global structure and

determines relations with other theories.• What are similarities with physics?• Based on physical formulation and language.• Management of internal relations between sub-

theories according to physical intuition.• Physics determines methods of solving problems.

A word on personality of mathematical-physicists

• Mathematical-physicists have double standards:• Mathematical standards criticize geometric ideas and intuitions.• Management of relations with other theories is according to

mathematical standards of theorization.• Mathematical intuition provides the global structure and

determines how to generalize.• Physical standards provide appropriate formulation and

language and manages internal relations between sub-theories.• Physical standards provides the local structure and determines

how to solve problems.