Loading... ## The Fractal Geometry of Nature (1983)## by Benoit B. Mandelbrot
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Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book. No current Talk conversations about this book. Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, and lightning does not travel in a straight line. The complexity of nature's shapes differs in kind, not merely degree, from that of the shapes of ordinary geometry. To describe such shapes, this author conceived and developed a new geometry, the geometry of fractal shapes. This book is based on his highly acclaimed earlier work, but has much broader and deeper coverage and more extensive illustrations, I read this in high school, and finally picked up a copy many years later when I wandered across it in a used bookstore. To be honest, though, this is one of the books that sits on my shelf because a mathematician has to have a copy of it, not because it is of any interest to me. There's too much fluff and belaboring here, and not enough clear explanation. For example, there is a color plate of a computer-generated planet, but no explanation of how it was created. "We can do this", but not much "here's how this is done." It left me frustrated in high school, and looking through it since then has done nothing to improve my opinion. Well, it's a classic -- and Mandelbrot's idea of "fractals" is certainly a powerful one. I just wish he had decided to work with a co-author on this one. James Gleick and Ivars Peterson do a much better job of describing the science of fractals, IMHO. Kudos to Dr. Mandelbrot for discovering this new world, though! no reviews | add a review
References to this work on external resources. ## Wikipedia in English (17)
Imagine an equilateral triangle. Now, imagine smaller equilateral triangles perched in the center of each side of the original triangle--you have a Star of David. Now, place still smaller equilateral triangles in the center of each of the star's 12 sides. Repeat this process infinitely and you have a Koch snowflake, a mind-bending geometric figure with an infinitely large perimeter, yet with a finite area. This is an example of the kind of mathematical puzzles that this book addresses. |
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