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Simplex (abstract)

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A topological space whose points are non-negative functions on a finite set satisfying . The topology on is induced from , the space of all functions from into . The real numbers are called the barycentric coordinates of the point , and the dimension of is defined as . In case is a linearly independent subset of a Euclidean space, is homeomorphic to the convex hull of the set (the homeomorphism being given by the correspondence ). The convex hull of a linearly independent subset of a Euclidean space is called a Euclidean simplex.

For any mapping of finite sets, the formula , , defines a continuous mapping , which, for Euclidean simplices, is an affine (non-homogeneous linear) mapping extending . This defines a functor from the category of finite sets into the category of topological spaces. If and is the corresponding inclusion mapping, then is a homeomorphism onto a closed subset of , called a face, which is usually identified with . Zero-dimensional faces are called vertices (as a rule, they are identified with the elements of ).

A topological ordered simplex is a topological space together with a given homeomorphism , where is a standard simplex. The images of the faces of under are called the faces of the topological ordered simplex . A mapping of two topological ordered simplices and is said to be linear if it has the form , where and are the given homeomorphisms and is a mapping of the form .

A topological simplex (of dimension ) is a topological space equipped with homeomorphisms (that is, with structures of a topological ordered simplex) that differ by homeomorphisms of the form , where is an arbitrary permutation of the vertices. Similarly, a mapping of topological simplices is called linear if it is a linear mapping of the corresponding topological ordered simplices.

Elements of simplicial sets (cf. Simplicial set) and distinguished subsets of simplicial schemes (cf. Simplicial scheme) are also referred to as simplices.


Comments

A simplex is also a constituent of a simplicial complex, and a simplicial complex such that all subsets of its underlying subset are simplices is also called a simplex.

How to Cite This Entry:
Simplex (abstract). A.V. Khokhlov (originator), Encyclopedia of Mathematics. URL: http://www.encyclopediaofmath.org/index.php?title=Simplex_(abstract)&oldid=17512
This text originally appeared in Encyclopedia of Mathematics - ISBN 1402006098