R.I.P. Benoit Mandelbrot

The man whose mathematical method revolutionised our understanding of everything from economics to cauliflowers and coastlines has died of cancer at the age of 85.

French mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot died in a hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

His work with fractals, a term he coined himself, applied mathematics to the natural world, and formulated a method to help to understand its complexity.

His seminal works, Fractals: Form, Chance and Dimension and The Fractal Geometry of Nature, were published in 1977.

In these, he argued that seemingly random mathematical shapes in fact followed a pattern if broken down into a single repeating shape.

“If you cut one of the florets of a cauliflower, you see the whole cauliflower but smaller,” he explained at the influential Technology Entertainment and Design conference earlier this year.

Via: http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/

 

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