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Notes on Linear Algebra-Peter J Cameron

# Notes on Linear Algebra-Peter J Cameron

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Published by: Ajay Kumar on Sep 23, 2010
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12/26/2012

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Notes on Linear Algebra
Peter J. Cameron

ii

Preface
Linear algebra has two aspects. Abstractly, it is the study of vector spaces overﬁelds, and their linear maps and bilinear forms. Concretely, it is matrix theory:matricesoccurinallpartsofmathematicsanditsapplications, andeveryonework-ing in the mathematical sciences and related areas needs to be able to diagonalisea real symmetric matrix. So in a course of this kind, it is necessary to touch onboth the abstract and the concrete aspects, though applications are not treated indetail.On the theoretical side, we deal with vector spaces, linear maps, and bilin-ear forms. Vector spaces over a ﬁeld
K
are particularly attractive algebraic ob- jects, since each vector space is completely determined by a single number, itsdimension (unlike groups, for example, whose structure is much more compli-cated). Linear maps are the structure-preserving maps or homomorphisms of vec-tor spaces.Onthepracticalside, thesubjectisreallyaboutonething: matrices. Ifweneedto do some calculation with a linear map or a bilinear form, we must represent itby a matrix. As this suggests, matrices represent several different kinds of things.In each case, the representation is notunique, sincewe havethefreedomto changebases in our vector spaces; so many different matrices represent the same object.This gives rise to several equivalence relations on the set of matrices, summarisedin the following table:Equivalence Similarity Congruence OrthogonalsimilaritySame linear map Same linear map Same bilinear Same self-adjoint
α
:
α
:
form
b
on
α
:
w.r.t.orthonormal basis
A
=
Q
1
AP A
=
P
1
AP A
=
P
AP A
=
P
1
APP
,
Q
invertible
P
invertible
P
invertible
P
orthogonalThe power of linear algebra in practice stems from the fact that we can choosebases so as to simplify the form of the matrix representing the object in question.We will see several such “canonical form theorems” in the notes.iii

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