Author Archives: Brent

About Brent

Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Hendrix College. Functional programmer, mathematician, teacher, pianist, follower of Jesus.

More fun with Dirichlet convolution

I’m back after a bit of a hiatus for the holidays! Last time we saw how the principle of Möbius inversion arises from considering the function from the point of view of Dirichlet convolution. Put simply, the Möbius function is … Continue reading

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Paper torus with Villarceau circles

I made another thing! This is a torus, made from 24 crescent-shaped pieces of paper with slots cut into them so they interlock with each other. I followed these instructions on There is also a template with some ideas … Continue reading

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Möbius inversion

In my last post we saw that , that is, the Möbius function is the inverse of with respect to Dirichlet convolution. This directly leads to an interesting principle called Möbius inversion. Möbius inversion. Suppose is defined for as the … Continue reading

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Dirichlet convolution and the Möbius function

Recall from last time that the Dirichlet convolution of two functions and is written and defined by: where the sum is taken over all possible factorizations of into a product of positive integers. Last time we saw that is commutative … Continue reading

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Dirichlet convolution

Let and be two functions defined on the positive integers. Then the Dirichlet convolution of and , written , is another function on the positive integers, defined as follows: The sum is taken over all possible factorizations of into a … Continue reading

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The Möbius function proof, part 2 (the subset parity lemma)

Continuing from my previous post, we are in the middle of proving that satisfies the same equation as , that is, and that therefore for all , that is, is the sum of all the th primitive roots of unity. … Continue reading

Posted in arithmetic, combinatorics, complex numbers, primes, proof | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Möbius function proof, part 1

In my last post, I introduced the Möbius function , which is defined in terms of the prime factorization of : if has any repeated prime factors, that is, if is divisible by a perfect square. Otherwise, if has distinct … Continue reading

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