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Mapping radii of metric spaces

George M. Bergman (U.C.Berkeley)
Arxiv ID: 0704.0275Last updated: 10/15/2021
It is known that every closed curve of length \leq 4 in R^n (n>0) can be surrounded by a sphere of radius 1, and that this is the best bound. Letting S denote the circle of circumference 4, with the arc-length metric, we here express this fact by saying that the "mapping radius" of S in R^n is 1. Tools are developed for estimating the mapping radius of a metric space X in a metric space Y. In particular, it is shown that for X a bounded metric space, the supremum of the mapping radii of X in all convex subsets of normed metric spaces is equal to the infimum of the sup norms of all convex linear combinations of the functions d(x,-): X --> R (x\in X). Several explicit mapping radii are calculated, and open questions noted.

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