A dagger category is a category where for every morphism f:x --> y there is a chosen adjoint f*:y --> x, as for example in the category of Hilbert spaces. I will explain this definition in elementary terms and give a few example. The only prerequisites for this talk are the notion of category, functor, and Hilbert space.

Dagger categories are a great categorical framework for some concepts from functional analysis such as C*-algebras and they also allow us to state Atiyah's definition unitary topological field theories in categorical lanugage. There is however a problem with dagger categories: they are what category theorists like to call 'evil'. This is isn't really meant as a moral judgement, it just means that many ways of thinking about ordinary categories don't quite translate to dagger categories.

For example, not every fully faithful and essentially surjective dagger functor is also a dagger equivalence. I will present a notion of 'indefinite completion' that I came up with to describe dagger categories in less 'evil' terms. (Those of you who know Karoubi completion will see a lot of similarities.) I'll also explain how this can be used to compute categories of dagger functors, and more specifically groupoids of unitary TFTs.