Questions tagged [applications]

The [application] tag is meant for questions about applications of mathematical concepts and theorems to a more practical use (e.g. real world usage, less-abstract mathematics, etc.)

Mathematics often tries to abstract concepts and ideas, as it makes proofs somewhat easier. Questions in this tag are questions about the reverse process of taking abstract notions and theorems and applying them to specific cases.

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How do I sell out with abstract algebra?

My plan as an undergraduate was unequivocally to be a pure mathematician, working as an algebraist as a bigshot professor at a bigshot university. I'm graduating this month, and I didn't get into where I expected to get into. My letters were great…
33 answers

Can you provide me historical examples of pure mathematics becoming "useful"?

I am trying to think/know about something, but I don't know if my base premise is plausible. Here we go. Sometimes when I'm talking with people about pure mathematics, they usually dismiss it because it has no practical utility, but I guess that…
Red Banana
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Real life applications of Topology

The other day I and my friend were having an argument. He was saying that there is no real life application of Topology at all whatsoever. I want to disprove him, so posting the question here. What are the various real life applications of topology?
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Are there real world applications of finite group theory?

I would like to know whether there are examples where finite group theory can be directly applied to solve real world problems outside of mathematics. (Sufficiently applied mathematics such as cryptography, coding theory, or statistics still…
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Why do we still do symbolic math?

I just read that most practical problems (algebraic equations, differential equations) do not have a symbolic solution, but only a numerical one. Numerical computations, to my understanding, never deal with irrational numbers, but only rational…
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What are some examples of mathematics that had unintended useful applications much later?

I would like to know some examples of interesting (to the layman or young student), easy-to-describe examples of mathematics that has had profound unanticipated useful applications in the real world. For my own purposes, the longer the gap between…
Eric Tressler
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Factorial of a matrix: what could be the use of it?

Recently on this site, the question was raised how we might define the factorial operation $\mathsf{A}!$ on a square matrix $\mathsf{A}$. The answer, perhaps unsurprisingly, involves the Gamma function. What use might it be to take the factorial of…
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What are the applications of functional analysis?

I recently had a course on functional analysis. I was thinking of studying the mathematical applications of functional analysis. I came to know it had some applications on calculus of variations. I am not specifically interested in applications of…
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Algebraic Intuition for Homological Algebra and Applications to More Elementary Algebra

I am taking a course next term in homological algebra (using Weibel's classic text) and am having a hard time seeing some of the big picture of the idea behind homological algebra. Now, this sort of question has been asked many times on forums such…
Alex Youcis
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What are some applications of elementary linear algebra outside of math?

I'm TAing linear algebra next quarter, and it strikes me that I only know one example of an application I can present to my students. I'm looking for applications of elementary linear algebra outside of mathematics that I might talk about in…
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What is a real world application of polynomial factoring?

The wife and I are sitting here on a Saturday night doing some algebra homework. We're factoring polynomials and had the same thought at the same time: when will we use this? I feel a bit silly because it always bugged me when people asked that in…
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How do people apply the Lebesgue integration theory?

This question has puzzled me for a long time. It may be too vague to ask here. I hope I can narrow down the question well so that one can offer some ideas. In a lot of calculus textbooks, there is usually a chapter about "applications" after the…
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Is the Law of Large Numbers empirically proven?

Does this reflect the real world and what is the empirical evidence behind this? Layman here so please avoid abstract math in your response. The Law of Large Numbers states that the average of the results from multiple trials will tend to converge…
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Interesting "real life" applications of serious theorems

As student in mathematics, one sometimes encounters exercises which ask you to solve a rather funny "real life problem", e.g. I recall an exercise on the Krein-Milman theorem which was something like: "You have a great circular pizza with $n$…
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Applications of complex numbers to solve non-complex problems

Recently I asked a question regarding the diophantine equation $x^2+y^2=z^n$ for $x, y, z, n \in \mathbb{N}$, which to my surprise was answered with the help complex numbers. I find it fascinating that for a question which only concerns integers,…
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