Group theory and the 196,883-dimensional monster

Group theory and the 196,883-dimensional monster

An introduction to group theory, and the monster group.
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Minor error corrections below↓↓↓

This video is part of the #MegaFavNumbers project:

To join the gang, upload your own video on your own favorite number over 1,000,000 with the hashtag #MegaFavNumbers, and the word MegaFavNumbers in the title by September 2nd, 2020, and it’ll be added to the playlist above.

*Typo on the "hard problem" at 14:11, it should be a/(b+c) + b/(a+c) + c/(a+b) = 4
*Typo-turned-speako: The classification of quasithin groups is 1221 pages long, not 12,000. The full collection of papers proving the CFSG theorem do make up tens of thousands of pages, but no one paper was quite _that_ crazy.

Thanks to Richard Borcherds for helpful comments while putting this video together. He has a wonderful hidden gem of a channel:

You may also enjoy this brief article giving an overview of this monster:

If you want to learn more about group theory, check out the expository papers here:

Videos with John Conway talking about the Monster:

More on Noether’s Theorem:

The symmetry ambigram was designed by Punya Mishra:

Symmetry: new ambigram

The Monster image comes from the Noun Project, via Nicky Knicky


These animations are largely made using manim, a scrappy open-source python library:

If you want to check it out, I feel compelled to warn you that it’s not the most well-documented tool, and it has many other quirks you might expect in a library someone wrote with only their own use in mind.

Music by Vincent Rubinetti.
Download the music on Bandcamp:

Stream the music on Spotify:

If you want to contribute translated subtitles or to help review those that have already been made by others and need approval, you can click the gear icon in the video and go to subtitles/cc, then "add subtitles/cc". I really appreciate those who do this, as it helps make the lessons accessible to more people.


3blue1brown is a channel about animating math, in all senses of the word animate. And you know the drill with YouTube, if you want to stay posted on new videos, subscribe:

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