Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Benoît Mandelbrot (1924-2010)

An enlarged portion of the Mandelbrot Set - (source Wikipedia)

Never during three years of studying for a Applied Mathematics degree did fractals appear. But as a teenager I spent a lot of time improving my speed typing skills and entering programmes from Acorn User magazine.

Over a year or so, ever faster fractal generation assembler programmes appeared balancing the BBC Micro’s limited screen resolution with its even more limited 6502/65C102 processor.

Photo of Benoit Mandelbrot - source Wikipedia

The “father of fractals” was Benoît Mandelbrot, a Franco-American mathematician born in Poland who discovered the mathematical shapes known as fractals. He died of cancer on 14 October last week, aged 85.

The MathsBank blog have a good post about him, along with links to explore the Mandelbrot Set and other fancy fractals.


whynotsmile said...

Heh. I remember doing fractals as part of my course... although I think it involved programming them, so maybe it was an applied maths module which had more recently been introduced. Or maybe it was in the masters year. Hard to say.

I remember printing them off, though, and the coolest part was that there was a colour printer. An actual real life colour printer. said...

Thanks for the link!