Bounding minimum distances of cyclic codes using algebraic geometry, by Nigel Boston

There are many results on the minimum distance of a cyclic code of the form that if a certain set T is a subset of the defining set of the code, then the minimum distance of the code is greater than some integer t. This includes the BCH, Hartmann-Tzeng, Roos, and shift bounds and generalizations of these. In this paper we define certain projective varieties V(T,t) whose properties determine whether, if T is in the defining set, the code has minimum distance exceeding t. Thus our attention shifts to the study of these varieties. By investigating them using class field theory and arithmetical geometry, we will prove various new bounds. It is interesting, however, to note that there are cases that existing methods handle, that our methods do not, and vice versa. We end with a number of conjectures.

Nigel Boston <boston@math.uiuc.edu>