this is fractally sad

Benoît B. Mandelbrot, a maverick mathematician who developed the field of fractal geometry and applied it to physics, biology, finance and many other fields, died on Thursday in Cambridge, Mass.

He was 85.



Dr, Benoit Mandelbrot


When asked to look back on his career, Dr. Mandelbrot compared his own trajectory to the rough outlines of clouds and coastlines that drew him into the study of fractals in the 1950s.

“If you take the beginning and the end, I have had a conventional career,” he said, referring to his prestigious appointments in Paris and at Yale. “But it was not a straight line between the beginning and the end. It was a very crooked line.”



Mandelbrot set



fractals are everywhere.


via Benoît Mandelbrot, Novel Mathematician, Dies at 85 – Obituary (Obit) –


9 thoughts on “this is fractally sad

  1. I had a Mandelbrot screensaver for my Mac years ago—back when screensavers did cool things. (I don’t mean he wrote it, just that it was named after him.) It generated cool images like the one above.

  2. The world has lost a rare visionary. Mandelbrot enticed me back to mathematics and geometry as expressions of great mystery in the world! So sad for us.

  3. Bummer–watched a documentary on PBS about him when I was at uni.

    In unrelated b’ness: I was feeling bad cos a few of my friends are PISSED that I’m not using FB for anything but family (who I don’t want to talk to anyway). I was almost ready to cave when I read this WP blog. The COMMENTS about FB made me feel better about my choice. I blog about a lot of personal things and that’s bad enough but FB screwing with my SETTINGS in order to open wide my stuff? That was not cool.

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