01stNov2010

Puzzling Infinity

In memory of this month deceased BenoƮt Mandelbrot - mathematician, godfather of fractals and the most well-known fractal the Mandelbrot set - I would like to pay respects to the Mandelbrot, in 3D! The phenomenon of fractals itself is already mind bending, a geometric shape with unlimited detail and recursion as in the Droste effect. But in 3D the whole gets another level of magnificence. Daniel White, creator of the 3D Mandelbrot, called Mandelbulb, introduces: "The original Mandelbrot is an amazing object that has captured the public's imagination for 30 years with its cascading patterns and hypnotically colorful detail. It's known as a 'fractal' - a type of shape that yields (sometimes elaborate) detail forever, no matter how far you 'zoom' into it (think of the trunk of a tree sprouting branches, which in turn split off into smaller branches, which themselves yield twigs etc.). It's found by following a relatively simple math formula. But in the end, it's still only 2D and flat - there's no depth, shadows, perspective, or light sourcing."

After many years since the original 2D Mandelbrot in 1979, the concept to convert the Mandelbrot to a 3D model was picked up. Earlier attempts failed due to computer hardware not being up for the task and errors were breaking up the formula. Daniel White picked up the 3D project in 2007 and among other mathematicians succeeded in creating the Mandelbulb.[....]

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