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In mathematics, a **pullback** is either of two different, but related processes: precomposition and fiber-product. Its dual is a pushforward.

Precomposition with a function probably provides the most elementary notion of pullback: in simple terms, a function *f* of a variable *y*, where *y* itself is a function of another variable *x*, may be written as a function of *x*. This is the pullback of *f* by the function *y*.

It is such a fundamental process that it is often passed over without mention.

However, it is not just functions that can be "pulled back" in this sense. Pullbacks can be applied to many other objects such as differential forms and their cohomology classes; see

The notion of pullback as a fiber-product ultimately leads to the very general idea of a categorical pullback, but it has important special cases: inverse image (and pullback) sheaves in algebraic geometry, and pullback bundles in algebraic topology and differential geometry.

The pullback bundle is perhaps the simplest example that bridges the notion of a pullback as precomposition, and the notion of a pullback as a Cartesian square. In that example, the base space of a fiber bundle is pulled back, in the sense of precomposition, above. The fibers then travel along with the points in the base space at which they are anchored: the resulting new pullback bundle looks locally like a Cartesian product of the new base space, and the (unchanged) fiber. The pullback bundle then has two projections: one to the base space, the other to the fiber; the product of the two becomes coherent when treated as a fiber product.

See:

When the pullback is studied as an operator acting on function spaces, it becomes a linear operator, and is known as the composition operator. Its adjoint is the push-forward, or, in the context of functional analysis, the transfer operator.

The relation between the two notions of pullback can perhaps best be illustrated by sections of fiber bundles: if *s* is a section of a fiber bundle *E* over *N*, and *f* is a map from *M* to *N*, then the pullback (precomposition) of *s* with *f* is a section of the pullback (fiber-product) bundle *f***E* over *M*.

In mathematics, specifically in homology theory and algebraic topology, **cohomology** is a general term for a sequence of abelian groups associated to a topological space, often defined from a cochain complex. Cohomology can be viewed as a method of assigning richer algebraic invariants to a space than homology. Some versions of cohomology arise by dualizing the construction of homology. In other words, cochains are functions on the group of chains in homology theory.

In the mathematical fields of differential geometry and tensor calculus, **differential forms** are an approach to multivariable calculus that is independent of coordinates. Differential forms provide a unified approach to define integrands over curves, surfaces, solids, and higher-dimensional manifolds. The modern notion of differential forms was pioneered by Élie Cartan. It has many applications, especially in geometry, topology and physics.

In mathematics, a **sheaf** is a tool for systematically tracking data attached to the open sets of a topological space and defined locally with regard to them. For example, for each open set, the data could be the ring of continuous functions defined on that open set. Such data is well behaved in that it can be restricted to smaller open sets, and also the data assigned to an open set is equivalent to all collections of compatible data assigned to collections of smaller open sets covering the original open set.

In mathematics, a **vector bundle** is a topological construction that makes precise the idea of a family of vector spaces parameterized by another space *X* : to every point *x* of the space *X* we associate a vector space *V*(*x*) in such a way that these vector spaces fit together to form another space of the same kind as *X*, which is then called a **vector bundle over X**.

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 mathematics, a **line bundle** expresses the concept of a line that varies from point to point of a space. For example, a curve in the plane having a tangent line at each point determines a varying line: the tangent bundle is a way of organising these. More formally, in algebraic topology and differential topology a line bundle is defined as a vector bundle of rank 1.

In mathematics, a **characteristic class** is a way of associating to each principal bundle of *X* a cohomology class of *X*. The cohomology class measures the extent the bundle is "twisted" and whether it possesses sections. Characteristic classes are global invariants that measure the deviation of a local product structure from a global product structure. They are one of the unifying geometric concepts in algebraic topology, differential geometry, and algebraic geometry.

In mathematics, a **scheme** is a mathematical structure that enlarges the notion of algebraic variety in several ways, such as taking account of multiplicities and allowing "varieties" defined over any commutative ring.

In the mathematical field of topology, a **section** of a fiber bundle is a continuous right inverse of the projection function . In other words, if is a fiber bundle over a base space, :

Suppose that *φ* : *M* → *N* is a smooth map between smooth manifolds *M* and *N*. Then there is an associated linear map from the space of 1-forms on *N* to the space of 1-forms on *M*. This linear map is known as the **pullback**, and is frequently denoted by *φ*^{∗}. More generally, any covariant tensor field – in particular any differential form – on *N* may be pulled back to *M* using *φ*.

This is a glossary of terms specific to differential geometry and differential topology. The following three glossaries are closely related:

In mathematics, **differential** refers to infinitesimal differences or to the derivatives of functions. The term is used in various branches of mathematics such as calculus, differential geometry, algebraic geometry and algebraic topology.

In mathematics, **sheaf cohomology** is the application of homological algebra to analyze the global sections of a sheaf on a topological space. Broadly speaking, sheaf cohomology describes the obstructions to solving a geometric problem globally when it can be solved locally. The central work for the study of sheaf cohomology is Grothendieck's 1957 Tôhoku paper.

In mathematics, a distinctive feature of algebraic geometry is that some line bundles on a projective variety can be considered "positive", while others are "negative". The most important notion of positivity is that of an ample line bundle, although there are several related classes of line bundles. Roughly speaking, positivity properties of a line bundle are related to having many global sections. Understanding the ample line bundles on a given variety *X* amounts to understanding the different ways of mapping *X* into projective space. In view of the correspondence between line bundles and divisors, there is an equivalent notion of an **ample divisor**.

In mathematics, a **pullback bundle** or **induced bundle** is the fiber bundle that is induced by a map of its base-space. Given a fiber bundle *π* : *E* → *B* and a continuous map *f* : *B*′ → *B* one can define a "pullback" of *E* by *f* as a bundle *f*^{*}*E* over *B*′. The fiber of *f*^{*}*E* over a point *b*′ in *B*′ is just the fiber of *E* over *f*(*b*′). Thus *f*^{*}*E* is the disjoint union of all these fibers equipped with a suitable topology.

**Fibred categories** are abstract entities in mathematics used to provide a general framework for descent theory. They formalise the various situations in geometry and algebra in which *inverse images* of objects such as vector bundles can be defined. As an example, for each topological space there is the category of vector bundles on the space, and for every continuous map from a topological space *X* to another topological space *Y* is associated the pullback functor taking bundles on *Y* to bundles on *X*. Fibred categories formalise the system consisting of these categories and inverse image functors. Similar setups appear in various guises in mathematics, in particular in algebraic geometry, which is the context in which fibred categories originally appeared. Fibered categories are used to define stacks, which are fibered categories with "descent". Fibrations also play an important role in categorical semantics of type theory, and in particular that of dependent type theories.

In mathematics, a **projection** is a mapping of a set into a subset, which is equal to its square for mapping composition. The restriction to a subspace of a projection is also called a *projection*, even if the idempotence property is lost. An everyday example of a projection is the casting of shadows onto a plane. The projection of a point is its shadow on the paper sheet. The shadow of a point on the paper sheet is this point itself (idempotency). The shadow of a three-dimensional sphere is a closed disk. Originally, the notion of projection was introduced in Euclidean geometry to denote the projection of the Euclidean space of three dimensions onto a plane in it, like the shadow example. The two main projections of this kind are:

In differential geometry, an **Ehresmann connection** is a version of the notion of a connection, which makes sense on any smooth fiber bundle. In particular, it does not rely on the possible vector bundle structure of the underlying fiber bundle, but nevertheless, linear connections may be viewed as a special case. Another important special case of Ehresmann connections are principal connections on principal bundles, which are required to be equivariant in the principal Lie group action.

In the field of mathematics known as algebraic topology, the **Gysin sequence** is a long exact sequence which relates the cohomology classes of the base space, the fiber and the total space of a sphere bundle. The Gysin sequence is a useful tool for calculating the cohomology rings given the Euler class of the sphere bundle and vice versa. It was introduced by Gysin (1942), and is generalized by the Serre spectral sequence.

This is a **glossary of algebraic geometry**.

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