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I've wondered why does an otherwise unremarkable movie have the most realistic depiction of an algebraic . Seriously, it's so realistic that I've referred to it a couple of times to remind myself how this proof goes. Why does this dinky little movie have the most realistic fictional mathematician ever?

Look at her, that actress, perfectly explaining that diagram chase. Draws the right arrows too. Points at all the right parts of the diagrams. Pronounces everything correctly. Correctly dismisses the snotty student's objections. And the other actor even calls it a diagram chase.

Was the screenwriter a grad school dropout or something?

Huh, the Salamander lemma:

arxiv.org/abs/1108.0958

"If you don’t like diagram chases, it’s likely that you still won’t like them once you know the Salamander lemma. The salamanders chase the diagrams for you, but you still have to chase the salamanders. I think the salamander proofs are easier to explain (once you know the Salamander lemma), and it’s easier to see where you use the hypotheses. "

sbseminar.wordpress.com/2007/1

Jordi @JordiGH

The titular salamander of the lemma, front and centre. They even drew little feet on it.

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