Julie Zhou, was selected to be a semifinalist at this years Intel Science Talent Search. Her research report, entitled “Chaos Theory, Fractal Dimensions and the Human Cerebrum,” is essentially a look at the brain, neural perceptions and cognitive development.
Fractal Antenna, a United States firm is claiming to have developed some foundations for a new field of applied optics that, when perfected, could lead to invisibility curtains, cloaks and ‘super’ lenses.
This looks to be an application of metamaterials that have unusual properties. Not enough details in the story to see how the fractal structure might contribute to the optical behavior. But if it ends up working, this is one product we won’t be seeing on the shelves (or anywhere else)…
From the Environmental Graffiti blog, comes a surprising discovery of a brain-like structure in a forest in southern Spain. It’s a great example of how nature reuses its patterns - because they’re simple to make, and effective. See more pictures and read the whole story here.
Spirals are everywhere! Here’s some impressive video of Hurricane Katrina spiraling onto the Gulf Coast in 2005. Huge and powerful.
Like all good fractals, spirals occur over a huge range of scales, from tiny seashells to gigantic galaxies.
(We’re looking for really hi-resolution hurricane video to include in the planetarium shows, but it’s hard to find. Anyone able to dig some up anywhere?)
Xilinx inc. has awarded a grant to the Fractal Foundation to bring fractal education to the students, teachers and parents at Apache Elementary School in Albuquerque NM.
We are extremely excited about the opportunity to reach ALL the students in the school, from K-5, as well as the teachers and parents. When everyone shares a common language and conceptual framework - i.e. they all recognize the fractal patterns and connections among systems - real progress can be made.
The Xilinx “Educational Ecosystem” program brings a comprehensive approach to transforming education. In addition to funding the Fractal Foundation, Xilinx is also supporting 3 other community nonprofits to serve Apache: Art in the School, Junior Achievement, and Kids Cook.
Thank You Xilinx!!!
One of the great benefits of my job is that I get to travel through some really beautiful landscapes. New Mexico is so full of natural fractals! I thought I’d share a Google Earth snapshot of the landscape west of Roswell/Artesia. Cool!
Here’s a fun activity you can do to make a fractal cutout with nothing more than a piece of paper…
See the full description in the Fractivities section.
Congratulations to all the students who entered fractals in the 2008-2009 Fractal Challenge. As of the deadline at midnight Dec 31, 2008, we received over 68 entries , and will be posting them here on the website soon. We’ll also be announcing when the official judging will take place, as soon as we can schedule it with the judges.
The Fractal Foundation has produced an online fractal math course for use by students and teachers. This project has been made possible by a grant from the State of New Mexico Public Education Department.