Geometry undoubtedly plays a central role in modern mathematics. And it is t only a physiological fact that 80 % of the information obtained by a human is absorbed through the eyes. It is easier to grasp mathematical con- cepts and ideas visually than merely to read written symbols and formulae. Without a clear geometric perception of an analytical mathematical problem our intuitive understanding is restricted, while a geometric interpretation points us towards ways of investigation. Minkowski's convexity theory (including support functions, mixed volu- mes, finite-dimensional rmed spaces etc.) was considered by several mathe- maticians to be an excellent and elegant, but useless mathematical device. Nearly a century later, geometric convexity became one of the major tools of modern applied mathematics. Researchers in functional analysis, mathe- matical ecomics, optimization, game theory and many other branches of our field try to gain a clear geometric idea, before they start to work with formulae, integrals, inequalities and so on. For examples in this direction, we refer to [MalJ and [B-M 2J. Combinatorial geometry emerged this century. Its major lines of investi- gation, results and methods were developed in the last decades, based on seminal contributions by O. Helly, K. Borsuk, P. Erdos, H. Hadwiger, L. Fe- jes T6th, V. Klee, B. Griinbaum and many other excellent mathematicians.
Horst Martini, P.S. Soltan, V.G. Boltyanski
Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. KG
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Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. K