It is a graph-theoretic analog to a sphere centered at a point.
Let X be a simplicial complex. The link of a vertex v is the graph Lk(v, X) constructed as follows. The vertices of Lk(v, X) are precisely the edges of X incident to v. Two such edges are adjacent in Lk(v, X) iff they are incident to a common 2-cell at v.
Similarly, for an abstract simplicial complex and a face F of X, there is also a notion of the link of a face F, denoted Lk(F, X). Lk(F, X) is the set of faces G such that
Because X is simplicial, there is a set isomorphism between Lk(F, X) and
The link of a vertex of a tetrahedron is a triangle – the three vertices of the link corresponds to the three edges incident to the vertex, and the three edges of the link correspond to the faces incident to the vertex. In this example, the link can be visualized by cutting off the vertex with a plane; formally, intersecting the tetrahedron with a plane near the vertex – the resulting cross-section is the link.
- Bridson, Martin; Haefliger, André (1999), Metric spaces of non-positive curvature, Springer, ISBN 3-540-64324-9