Quantum Gravity Seminar - Fall 2000
I began holding a
Quantum Gravity Seminar
in the fall of 2000, when several new graduate students showed
up who wanted to do their PhD's with me.
and I wrote notes for this seminar
in a heavily fictionalized form: a
kind of continuation of the infamous
Oz and the Wizard
stories, in which a
powerful but grumpy wizard teaches his hapless
apprentice the basics of general relativity.
Most of the characters in the story were based on participants of
the seminar, but Oz was also included, mainly for comic relief.
As far as physics goes, the course had two "tracks":
Here are the notes:
Track 1 is about diagrammatic methods in linear
algebra, leading up to the theory of SU(2) spin networks,
especially the 6j symbols and the identities they satisfy.
Track 2 is about the Lagrangian approach to
background-free gauge field theories in dimensions 2,
3 and 4, especially BF theory and general relativity.
Álvarez wrote up notes in the
form of a more traditional math/physics textbook. The current
draft is available here:
Alissa Crans wrote up solutions to the homework exercises
for Track 1, and you can get these as PDF files:
We dug deeper into these topics in the
session... so go there if you're hungry for more!
© 2000 John Baez and Toby Bartels