The Category of Matroids

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Abstract

The structure of the category of matroids and strong maps is investigated: it has coproducts and equalizers, but not products or coequalizers; there are functors from the categories of graphs and vector spaces, the latter being faithful and having a nearly full Kan extension; there is a functor to the category of geometric lattices, that is nearly full; there are various adjunctions and free constructions on subcategories, inducing a simplification monad; there are two orthogonal factorization systems; some, but not many, combinatorial constructions from matroid theory are functorial. Finally, a characterization of matroids in terms of optimality of the greedy algorithm can be rephrased in terms of limits.

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© The Author(s) 2017

Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of EdinburghEdinburghUK
  2. 2.University of OxfordOxfordUK

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