Dear Prof. Kim,

with regard to the Non-Commutative Constructions in Arithmetic and Geometry workshop, please confirm the date and time since the e-mail says:

time: 7-8 June.

Also how formal is it.

secondly, please recommend me some books for MATH 2201, something that is more elementary or explicitly explains whats in the course. i have consulted the books you had recommended for the course but did not find the very helpful for me. i want something that gives me the roots of the topics studied.

Reply:

Yes, 7-8 June for the workshop is correct. You can see a precise schedule on the webpage. The level of formality is hard to describe precisely. There is a sense in which mathematics meetings are all rather informal, so it’s certainly no cause for concern. However, I should warn you that the lectures will be at a very high level. For serious students, I still think it’s good to come into contact with presentations by world-class researchers (this description obviously doesn’t include me) as early as possible. That’s why I issued the general invitations to students.

As far as linear algebra is concerned, there are two recommendations I can make:

1. Finite-dimensional vector spaces by Paul Halmos

This is a classic text that deals primarily with the *concepts* of linear algebra abstractly, and at a rather deep level.

2. Linear algebra in action by Harry Dym

This book is heavily computational and provides a very solid understanding of the important techniques in matrix algebra. It also look toward quite advanced work in analysis.

It could be better to move on to other things at this point to see really how linear algebra functions in higher level mathematics. That can often help consolidate your understanding of the basic material. The textbook `Algebra’ by Michael Artin is not about linear algebra, but contains a quick summary of the basics at the beginning. This is because he emphasizes throughout the text the examples from linear algebra, even when discussing groups, rings, fields, etc.