An intrinsic description of shape

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We give in this paper a description of the shape category of compacta in terms of multivalued maps. We introduce the notion of a multi-net and prove that the shape category of compacta is isomorphic to the category HN whose objects are metric compacta and whose morphisms are homotopy classes of multi-nets. This description is intrinsic in the sense that it does not make use of external elements such as ANR-expansions or embeddings in appropriate AR-spaces. We present many applications of this new formulation of shape.
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