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Mar 11, 2015

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DOCUMENT

On a Little Phrase of Riemanns1

Gilles Chtelet

To exclude all mundane problematics, Kant defines space

and time as forms of sensible intuition. Space is the intuition of outer sense, time that of inner sense. Spatiality and

One can never forge a representation of the absence of

space, though one can quite well think that no things are

Foundation of Geometry.2

without saying, since space is one of the conditions of the

together, juxtaposed but given all at once. The same goes for

the Other.

1979, 67-75. Republished in the collection LEnchantement du virtuel: Mathmatique, physique, philosophie (Paris: ditions rue dUlm, 2010)].

de/classics/Riemann/.]

5. [Ibid, A26/B42].

6. [Ibid, A31/B47].

with its own clock and universal rule. The conditions that

the sense that Hegel understands it in the theory of Magnitudes. Space is thus undifferentiated.8

7. Consciousness is indeed defined much later in the Encyclopedia.

8. The tension of the couplet interior/exterior is no longer that of the couplet

objective/subjective we no longer suppose as given what we called an global

orientation (the descendent of the I); ontology is deployed by the play of

a local tension or more exactly an tension internal to the couplet. Of course,

space will appear later for consciousness as abstract objectivity, and time as

abstract subjectivity. It is only at this moment that time harbors the guarantee of the pact of the identity of the Self (which, in Kant, would permit

the deduction of the connectivity of the representation of time). Time is an

time. Time is the very flux of birth and destruction

9. He constructs a sequence: point line surface space, and the reciprocal: space surface line point, which evokes certain aspects of modern

algebraic topology in which it senses, masterfully, the notion of duality.

10. The attraction of the Logic of Being negates the juxtaposition and will

define continuity. Heavy matter posits outside of it a centre that denies juxtaposition and continuity. Weight translates the lazy dependence of matter

which seeks in this external centre the principle of its differentiation.

11. See in particular the virtuoso paragraph where he claims to prove Keplers three laws with the sole recourse to dialectical method!

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a panoply of axiomatics.

lar case where ds2 takes the classical form that we know.

stated as follows:

12

by chance we find that Lagranges equations can be inTake p and p', two parametric representations of the sur-

surface.

abstracts out something which is propagated from one

surface.

in space (immersion of in usual space) when we have a family of the type:

x = f (u,v)

geodesics that it can spread out around it. But one presupposes neither a global orientation given by a transcendental subject, nor a global, homogeneous framework, which

brings about a type of lived experience reduced to noth-

y = g (u,v)

z = h (u,v)

The distance dx + dy + dz between two infinitely near elements of the space

thus induces upon a distance ds2 = A (u,v) du2 + B (u,v) dv2, where A (u,v)

and B (u,v) are calculated from the differentials df, dg, dh. This is Gausss

ds2. Gauss then defines the curvature as follows: consider a point x of and

an element dS of the surface around x. Take Ny, the normal at point y of dS.

2

the world no longer faces me; and alterity is no longer lived

as a confrontation. Differentiation propagates itself step by

step in this community of monads which entertain tactile re-

Transport this normal parallel to itself in the origin (the so-called Gauss

application) and observe the little disc swept by the extremity of the normal

as it describes dS. This little disc is seen under a solid angle d and the measurement of the curvature is the limit (if it exists) given by:

dX

lim

= Rx

dS

in space (transport in O of the normal parallel to itself); with the Theorem

Egregium it can be shown that Rx depends only on the functions A and B

of ds2.

Riemann presented his celebrated dissertation in 1854,

Theorem Egregium. The dissertation includes a polemical

part, an explicit warning against Space and the Celestial

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with the trajectories of the fields X1, X215 is the distance be-

limited!16

13. A rather hasty dismissal on Poincars part! In fact, the life of these animalcules is probably more exciting than that of the Newtonian observer

who knows only planarity!

14. With each point x of a manifold V is thus associated a reference frame.

Tx V. V is said to be endowed with a connection if one knows how to associate with each vector field x an application dx and operating on the vector

fields. Thus, if Y is a vector field, Yx its value in x, then dx (Y)x is a vector

of Tx V. If a Riemannian distance is given, there is a unique connection

(under certain conditions [missing text in original] Riemannian distance

is distance.

If V is endowed with a connection d, one can then show that if two points

X and X are joined by an arc of a curve, there exists an application tg that

sends isomorphically the reference frame Tx V to Tx V. This is the parallel

transport along g, which can therefore be interpreted by the formula:

dV (Z) V' =

lim 1

s " 0 s

-1

of geodesics assures the liaison with the neighboring egos,

and founds the reality of representations obtained from

within my reference frame. Where does it come from, then,

this proximity that founds all communication (and coexistence)? When space is Euclidean, distance is that which

remains invariant under the Galilean group that exchanges

the inertial reference frames. Although one may affect a

different reference frame for each concrete ego, a unique

model (clock and universal rule) can represent the class of

15.

x 1

Fx

Ys'

1

c(s)

Z {(s, x')

x'

V''= {( s , x')

x1

x2

x2

x1

everywhere > a2 is necessarily limited.

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such a privilege!).18

coexistence!) of worlds.

Husserls phenomenology, contemporary with Relativ-

group on a group.

In physics, Maxwell writes his famous equations and

the latter are not invariants under the Maxwell group. The

mentally that the speed of light does not follow the law of

car studies the Lorentz group and misses relativity (all the

tend more and more to utilize the language of bundles.

Relativity, discussed a million times already. Let us just re-

21. Two events (x 0, x 1, x 2, x 3), (x' 0, x' 1, x' 2, x' 3) are distant by

of synchronisation by signals at infinite speed, and that

General Relativity (contemporary with work on differential geometry) responds to Riemanns questioning. The

distribution of masses founds the geometry of space by

determining the metric via Einsteins equation which links

together curvature and the tensor of energy-impulsion

(which expresses the distribution of matter and energy).

This equation is to be understood in the most strict logical sense: equation: a couple of statements separated by

an equals sign. A proposition, an operation of geometry

17. In modern language, the bundle of references of affine space is trivial.

A standard laboratory describes, it alone, the bundle of possible references.

Demo

The sign affecting the coordinate x0 (time) marks successivity in each reference frame. The monad must be able to distinguish between what it is and

what it projects. If the metric counts two signs, a transformation that is

linear and issues from physical operations exchanging the spatial cone and

the temporal cone and the 'successive' will be unknown.

Hermann Weyl (Philosophy of Mathematics and Natural Science) remarks

that only odd-dimensioned spaces present the following peculiarity: the

equations of wave propagation imply that the extinction of a movement

is followed by the complete obscurity within a radius that grows as fast as

light.

22. [See Chtelet's text "Autour du vrai-faux rapport d'ric Alliez. 'De

l'impossibilit de la phnomnologie", at http://multitudes.samizdat.net/

Autour-du-vrai-faux-rapport-d-Eric.]

23. Without, however, any axiomatic temptation.

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al orientation of multiplicity.

the egos that live on a surface. They are not in their world,

24

tical intentions (empty intentions) which have a null image in V. These latter detect alterity in Husserl.

To conclude, recall that The Order of Things proposes,

as determinant figure of classical knowledge, an invisible

central point, ordering the whole ballet of representation

but necessarily situated outside the framework of the latter.

It seems that another model operates implicitly, from the

nineteenth century and beyond, in an important domain

of Mathematics, Physics and Philosophy. The central point

(linked to the fifteenth-century theory of perspective)

breaks up into a multitude of referents adhering to the

world. Indeed, Elie Cartans term moving frame [repre

mobile] suggests a scattering. This model is formalised according to a triplet (groups, total space, multiplicity), today called a principle bundle, and describes the obtaining

of a total space by way of group operations that reattach

between them, step by step, local points of view.

The question of the sign is, for example, directly linked

to that of local orientation, which itself is the choice that

one can effectuate temporarily in a set of two elements.

Saussures diagram should be taken concretely: to decide

a moment to separate from this leaf of paper the signifier

and the signified. A global orientation is a completely other

affair.26 Hegel understood this well, and for him History

is possible through the profound inadequation between

signified and signifier seen as global determinations. Only

24. The expression is Husserl's own.

25. E must be different from V. Husserl elaborates that it is above all not a

beyond whose transcendence would mask badly the similitude of spatiality

with the beings immersed in V.

26. Local convention. A signifier can abruptly slide and take itself for a signified (cf. the theory of connotation).

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