[Haskell-cafe] Category Theory woes

Daniel Fischer daniel.is.fischer at web.de
Fri Feb 19 06:12:11 EST 2010

Am Freitag 19 Februar 2010 10:42:59 schrieb Hans Aberg:
> On 19 Feb 2010, at 00:55, Daniel Fischer wrote:
> >> I'd always assumed "ring" was generalised from Z[n].
> >
> > As in "cyclic group", arrange the numbers in a ring like on a
> > clockface?
> > Maybe. As far as I know, the term "ring" (in the mathematical sense)
> > first
> > appears in chapter 9 - Die Zahlringe des Körpers - of Hilbert's "Die
> > Theorie der algebraischen Zahlkörper". Unfortunately, Hilbert gives
> > no hint
> > why he chose that name (Dedekind, who coined the term "Körper", called
> > these structures "Ordnung" [order]).
> The Wikipedia article "Ring" says he used it for a specific one where
> the elements somehow cycled back.
>    Hans

Yes. And I deem a) the english wikipedia a more reliable source of 
information [concerning things mathematical] than the german, b) Harvey 
Cohn more trustworthy than either wikipedia. But a quick look at Hilbert's 
paper didn't reveal the property Cohn mentioned (according to wp) and no 
explanation of Hilbert why he chose the term. So I remain in doubt.


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