Synopses & Reviews
Now approaching its tenth year, this hugely successful book presents an unusual attempt to publicise the field of Complex Dynamics. The text was originally conceived as a supplemented catalogue to the exhibition "Frontiers of Chaos", seen in Europe and the United States, and describes the context and meaning of these fascinating images. A total of 184 illustrations - including 88 full-colour pictures of Julia sets - are suggestive of a coffee-table book. However, the invited contributions which round off the book lend the text the required formality. Benoit Mandelbrot gives a very personal account, in his idiosyncratic self-centred style, of his discovery of the fractals named after him and Adrien Douady explains the solved and unsolved problems relating to this amusingly complex set.
"..a rare and extraordinary book...anyone who has ever explored the intricate folds of the Mandelbrot set will want this book and will be delighted by it...above all, a celebration of fractal forms and as such it works superbly...buy this book and enjoy it" Personal Computer World "A literally wonder-ful book!" Physikalische Blätter
In 1953 I realized that the straight line leads to the downfall of mankind. But the straight line has become an absolute tyranny. The straight line is something cowardly drawn with a rule, without thought or feeling; it is the line which does not exist in nature. And that line is the rotten foundation of our doomed civilization. Even if there are places where it is recognized that this line is rapidly leading to perdition, its course continues to be plot ted . . . Any design undertaken with the straight line will be stillborn. Today we are witnessing the triumph of rationalist knowhow and yet, at the same time, we find ourselves confronted with emptiness. An esthetic void, des ert of uniformity, criminal sterility, loss of creative power. Even creativity is prefabricated. We have become impotent. We are no longer able to create. That is our real illiteracy. Friedensreich Hundertwasser Fractals are all around us, in the shape of a mountain range or in the windings of a coast line. Like cloud formations and flickering fires some fractals under go never-ending changes while others, like trees or our own vascular systems, retain the structure they acquired in their development. To non-scientists it may seem odd that such familiar things have recently become the focus of in tense research. But familiarity is not enough to ensure that scientists have the tools for an adequate understanding."