21-450: Topics in Geometry (Differential Geometry)


Differential Geometry stands at a crossroads in mathematics. It is the point where topology, geometry and analysis combine. It is the language for many fields of modern mathematics, and finds applications in physics, robotics and other fields.

In this course, we will introduce the basic concepts, and work to develop an intuitive understanding of them. We begin with the basics. Chapters 1-3 review some of the background material and develop the definition of a differentiable manifold. Chapters 3 and 4 introduce the idea of a tangent vectors on a manifold, and go on to discuss the tangent bundle and other types of tensor. Chapters 6 and 7 discuss calculus on manifolds, the ideas of multivariable calculus and analysis in this new setting. Chapter 8 discusses curvature, hilighting some classical results along the way.

While it will not be possible to cover the entire textbook, it is hoped that a sufficient amount of each topic can be covered to give a good feeling for the flavor of the subject.


The text for this course is An Introduction to Differentiable Manifolds and Riemannian Geometry by William M. Boothby.

Out main text is a good "elementary" introduction that touches on all the major points of the subject: differentiable manifolds, vector fields and tensor fields, the tangent space and vector bundles, differentiation and integration on manifolds, and various topics relating to curvature. However, there a few other books to which I would like to call your attention.


Dr. David Handron
Office: WEH 6121
e-mail: handron@andrew.cmu.edu
Telephone: 268-5913
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