# Quandles are associated with knot theory

by stanford1463
Tags: knot, quandles, theory
 P: 44 So I know that quandles are associated with knot theory, etc. but what are "shadow colorings" ? on a broader context, can someone plz give me a simple definition of a "knot invariant" and a "quandle" ? and what does this have to do with "racks" ? sorry, all this esoteric language is really confusing. it would be awesome if someone could give me a dumbed down version of knot theory, as an introduction to it. im kinda interested in this subject, just i need to understand the basic meanings/definitions first..thanks! i tried reading a bunch of research papers..though I failed epicly. too much vocab. and concepts that I did not understand. for example, "isotopy" and "cocycle" and "quandle coloring"
 P: 44 bump pl0x ?
 P: 234 i don't know if you can learn how to read research papers in a field by just learning all the definitions. For instance, for cocycles to have very much meaning for you, you will want to learn at least a little algebraic topology. I don't know what a knot really is, but i know that at least some are boundaries of open sets in euclidean space. For instance, the un-knot is the boundary of something which lies entirely in the real plane. But, all the other knots are not this way. Thats at least a starting point. For isotropy, I imagine this comes from group theory and group actions.
 P: 44 Quandles are associated with knot theory So I was looking at wikipedia. It seems that the unknot is simply a circle in R2? idk. what are some good websites/sources for learning a bit about algebraic topology? thanks!
 P: 44 bump .