In the mathematical field of topology, a homeomorphism, topological isomorphism, or bicontinuous function is a continuous function between topological spaces that has a continuous inverse function. Homeomorphisms are the isomorphisms in the category of topological spaces —that is, they are the mappings that preserve all the topological properties of a given space. Two spaces with a homeomorphism between them are called homeomorphic, and from a topological viewpoint they are the same. The word homeomorphism comes from the Greek words ὅμοιος (homoios) = similar or same and μορφή (morphē) = shape, form, introduced to mathematics by Henri Poincaré in 1895.
Very roughly speaking, a topological space is a geometric object, and the homeomorphism is a continuous stretching and bending of the object into a new shape. Thus, a square and a circle are homeomorphic to each other, but a sphere and a torus are not. However, this description can be misleading. Some continuous deformations are not homeomorphisms, such as the deformation of a line into a point. Some homeomorphisms are not continuous deformations, such as the homeomorphism between a trefoil knot and a circle.
An often-repeated mathematical joke is that topologists can't tell the difference between a coffee cup and a donut,since a sufficiently pliable donut could be reshaped to the form of a coffee cup by creating a dimple and progressively enlarging it, while preserving the donut hole in the cup's handle.
A function between two topological spaces is a homeomorphism if it has the following properties:
A homeomorphism is sometimes called a bicontinuous function. If such a function exists, and are homeomorphic. A self-homeomorphism is a homeomorphism from a topological space onto itself. "Being homeomorphic" is an equivalence relation on topological spaces. Its equivalence classes are called homeomorphism classes.
The third requirement, that be continuous, is essential. Consider for instance the function (the unit circle in ) defined by. This function is bijective and continuous, but not a homeomorphism ( is compact but is not). The function is not continuous at the point , because although maps to , any neighbourhood of this point also includes points that the function maps close to but the points it maps to numbers in between lie outside the neighbourhood.
Homeomorphisms are the isomorphisms in the category of topological spaces. As such, the composition of two homeomorphisms is again a homeomorphism, and the set of all self-homeomorphisms forms a group, called the homeomorphism group of X, often denoted . This group can be given a topology, such as the compact-open topology, which under certain assumptions makes it a topological group.
For some purposes, the homeomorphism group happens to be too big, but by means of the isotopy relation, one can reduce this group to the mapping class group.
Similarly, as usual in category theory, given two spaces that are homeomorphic, the space of homeomorphisms between them, is a torsor for the homeomorphism groups and , and, given a specific homeomorphism between and , all three sets are identified.
The intuitive criterion of stretching, bending, cutting and gluing back together takes a certain amount of practice to apply correctly—it may not be obvious from the description above that deforming a line segment to a point is impermissible, for instance. It is thus important to realize that it is the formal definition given above that counts. In this case, for example, the line segment possesses infinitely many points, and therefore cannot be put into a bijection with a set containing only a finite number of points, including a single point.
This characterization of a homeomorphism often leads to a confusion with the concept of homotopy, which is actually defined as a continuous deformation, but from one function to another, rather than one space to another. In the case of a homeomorphism, envisioning a continuous deformation is a mental tool for keeping track of which points on space X correspond to which points on Y—one just follows them as X deforms. In the case of homotopy, the continuous deformation from one map to the other is of the essence, and it is also less restrictive, since none of the maps involved need to be one-to-one or onto. Homotopy does lead to a relation on spaces: homotopy equivalence.
There is a name for the kind of deformation involved in visualizing a homeomorphism. It is (except when cutting and regluing are required) an isotopy between the identity map on X and the homeomorphism from X to Y.
In mathematics, a diffeomorphism is an isomorphism of smooth manifolds. It is an invertible function that maps one differentiable manifold to another such that both the function and its inverse are smooth.
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In topology, a branch of mathematics, two continuous functions from one topological space to another are called homotopic if one can be "continuously deformed" into the other, such a deformation being called a homotopy between the two functions. A notable use of homotopy is the definition of homotopy groups and cohomotopy groups, important invariants in algebraic topology.
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In topology, a branch of mathematics, a fibration is a generalization of the notion of a fiber bundle. A fiber bundle makes precise the idea of one topological space being "parameterized" by another topological space. A fibration is like a fiber bundle, except that the fibers need not be the same space, nor even homeomorphic; rather, they are just homotopy equivalent. Weak fibrations discard even this equivalence for a more technical property.
In mathematical analysis, a space-filling curve is a curve whose range contains the entire 2-dimensional unit square. Because Giuseppe Peano (1858–1932) was the first to discover one, space-filling curves in the 2-dimensional plane are sometimes called Peano curves, but that phrase also refers to the Peano curve, the specific example of a space-filling curve found by Peano.
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In topology, especially algebraic topology, the coneof a topological space is the quotient space:
In mathematics, in the subfield of geometric topology, the mapping class group is an important algebraic invariant of a topological space. Briefly, the mapping class group is a certain discrete group corresponding to symmetries of the space.
In mathematics, particularly topology, the homeomorphism group of a topological space is the group consisting of all homeomorphisms from the space to itself with function composition as the group operation. Homeomorphism groups are very important in the theory of topological spaces and in general are examples of automorphism groups. Homeomorphism groups are topological invariants in the sense that the homeomorphism groups of homeomorphic topological spaces are isomorphic as groups.
In mathematics, specifically algebraic topology, the mapping cylinder of a continuous function between topological spaces and is the quotient
In mathematics, in particular homotopy theory, a continuous mapping
In mathematics, the Teichmüller space of a (real) topological surface , is a space that parametrizes complex structures on up to the action of homeomorphisms that are isotopic to the identity homeomorphism. Each point in may be regarded as an isomorphism class of "marked" Riemann surfaces, where a "marking" is an isotopy class of homeomorphisms from to itself.
In mathematics, the homotopy category is a category built from the category of topological spaces which in a sense identifies two spaces that have the same shape. The phrase is in fact used for two different categories, as discussed below.
In mathematics, a manifold is a topological space that locally resembles Euclidean space near each point. More precisely, an n-dimensional manifold, or n-manifold for short, is a topological space with the property that each point has a neighborhood that is homeomorphic to the Euclidean space of dimension n.
In topology, a branch of mathematics, a retraction is a continuous mapping from a topological space into a subspace that preserves the position of all points in that subspace. The subspace is then called a retract of the original space. A deformation retraction is a mapping that captures the idea of continuously shrinking a space into a subspace.
In algebraic topology, an area of mathematics, a homeotopy group of a topological space is a homotopy group of the group of self-homeomorphisms of that space.
In mathematics, especially in the area of topology known as algebraic topology, an induced homomorphism is a homomorphism derived in a canonical way from another map. For example, a continuous map from a topological space X to a space Y induces a group homomorphism from the fundamental group of X to the fundamental group of Y.
In mathematics, and more precisely in topology, the mapping class group of a surface, sometimes called the modular group or Teichmüller modular group, is the group of homeomorphisms of the surface viewed up to continuous deformation. It is of fundamental importance for the study of 3-manifolds via their embedded surfaces and is also studied in algebraic geometry in relation to moduli problems for curves.