Definite bilinear form
is definite, that is, has a real value with the same sign (positive or negative) for all non-zero x. According to that sign, B is called positive definite or negative definite. If Q takes both positive and negative values, the bilinear form B is called indefinite.
If B(x, x) ≥ 0 for all x, B is said to be positive semidefinite. Negative semidefinite bilinear forms are defined similarly.
As an example, let V=R2, and consider the bilinear form
where x = (x1,x2), y = (y1,y2), and c1 and c2 are constants. If c1 > 0 and c2 > 0, the bilinear form B is positive definite. If one of the constants is positive and the other is zero, then B is positive semidefinite. If c1 > 0 and c2 < 0, then B is indefinite.
When the scalar field of V is the complex numbers, the function Q defined by Q(x) = B(x,x) is real-valued only if B is Hermitian, that is, if B(x, y) is always the complex conjugate of B(y, x).
- (x, Ax) > 0 for every nonzero vector x.
- Positive definite function
- Positive definite matrix
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