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The Fractal Geometry of Nature
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
"Why is geometry often described as "cold" and "dry"? One reason lies in its inability to describe the shape of a cloud, a mountain, a coastline, or a tree. Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, coastlines are not circles, and bark is not smooth, nor does lightning travel in a straight line."

- Benoit B. Mandlebrot, from the Introduction.

This book is the manifesto that kick-started a whole new paradigm or way of looking at the world. It freed us from the tyranny of straight lines and perfect spheres and the whole gamut of smoothness.

How long is the coastline of Britain? This question cannot be satisfactorily answered by ruler and compass methods of measurement. Mandlebrot came up with something much more profound and yet universal. A theory of scaling that was unsuspected - beautifully revealed with the onset of computer graphics.

Nature is messy and ragged and jagged. Things do not flow smoothly and uniformly. Laminar flow usually takes place in the minds of physicists and only infrequently in practice. Nature retains Her "lofty aloofness" (As Einstein put it) to these trivial approaches at wooing Her. So something more subtle was required. Mandlebrot found that something, or gateway, to understanding Nature, with fractals.

And then the door began to open. And it's still in the process of opening even today at this late hour.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 12 November 2002
Beauty and mathematics are often perceived as distant concepts by most people. The mathematically gifted would always refute such idea by stating that it is precisely elegance what guides many mathematical endeavors. Mandelbrot made it possible for fractal images to jump from obscure labs to the general knowledge. Many people since regard mathematics somehow with a different perspective.
Although the book requires some basic knowledge of math it is not difficult to follow. The extensive illustrations make it enjoyable even as a coffee-table decorative object.
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A set for which the Hausdorff Besicovitch dimension strictly exceeds the topological dimension.

The definition of a fractal pretty much sets the tone for the book. There are mostly definitions and monochrome diagrams to explain the more classical fractals. The book does shows some practical geometric uses for fractals but I would not let it get anywhere near my Koch Curve.

I am not being kind to this book as there is a color section in the center. That shows "The Great Wave" by Katsushika Hokusai (1760-12849.) And an extensive reference section.

The book its self could easily be used as a text book for school.

Fractals: Hunting the Hidden Dimension (Blu-ray) [Blu-ray]

An Eye For Fractals: A Graphic And Photographic Essay (Studies in Nonlinearity)
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 18 June 2012
Mandelbrot is the person who introduced the fractal theory to the world in its present form. Many fields of science including geophysics have gained from fractals. However, this is not the book one should read to gain knowledge on the subject.
It is not an easily readable book. 1. It is not well-organized 2. It does not cover necessary things in detail 3. Frustratingly long in some parts. Instead the books: Feder, Fractals; Turcotte, Fractals and Chaos in Geology and Geophysics can be recommended.

Fractal geometry may be interesting as a historical book, after one gains a sufficient knowledge on fractals.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
This book is really a collection of disparate, fascinating, and occasionally tendentious essays written over a long period by the man after whom the world's most famous fractal is named.

The book is beautifully illustrated throughout, and since it is now quite old, many of the illustrations are beginning to acquire a period charm. It is perhaps a book that will be most appreciated by the (very) intelligent general reader: it is not the best starting point if one actually wants to learn how to construct fractals or perform computations relating to them. However, readers who learn from this book what Mandelbrot is trying to teach, will begin to see many aspects of the world in a new way.
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on 2 May 2014
Excellent book, well written. Goes into detail and description and is easy to understand. It is very easy to reference.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 19 October 2013
As stated above, Benoit Mandelbrot is awesome and this is a great book. It explains Fractal Geometry both for tourists in the world of mathematics and for people who actually know what they're talking about. Benoit is not just a great mathematician but a man with a visionary mind who is fascinated with how we can go about describing and understanding the world we live in. The book does feel a little chaotic in it's construction in places but with a mind like his and a subject like this one is it kind of to be expected really. If you are an outsider to the world of serious mathematics there sections where you will have to bear with, skip over and come back to or just google the fancy words and mostly he warns you when he's wading into difficult technical side alleys. Some of the Kindle formatting is not brilliant with the images, but mostly it is fine. Over all it's a great read.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 5 October 2011
Great book, especially if you are interested in the work of Mandelbrot. Not as accessible as I originally hoped - it assumes that the reader is already familiar with the work of several other Mathematicians; So you may find yourself, like me doing a lot of research into other relevant publications before you can sit down and comprehend the context of this book ... I still haven't to be honest but I am really interested in the authors work so endeavour to complete the book and put it's principles to work.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 1 May 2013
Much food for thought here. It fires interest and is a book I shall pick up regularly to refresh my mind.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 22 February 2010
This will be seen as a key book in years to come and im delighted with it However - This particular copy was second hand and sold as in vg near fine condition but what wasnt noted was that it waws ex library stock.
However I think my copy was first edition and not just an early print run - so swings and roundabouts I suppose - Still ~ naughty ~ the embosed ex-libris... stamp should have been noted n the sales description.
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