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The homology of Richard Thompson's group F


Speaker: Ken Brown, Cornell
Location: 2112 MSB
Start time: Wed, Oct 11 2006, 4:10PM

In the mid 1960s Richard Thompson discovered a fascinating infinite group F in connection with his work in logic. The same group was rediscovered 10 years later by topologists working on a problem in homotopy theory. Starting in the 1980s, Thompson's group has been a test case for a variety of questions in group theory.

In this talk I will give several equivalent definitions of Thompson's group and then explain how to compute its homology and cohomology. A surprising feature of the calculation is that there is a ring structure on the homology, which can be used as an aid in computing the ring structure on the cohomology.