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Old 07-26-2009   #1
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The secret life of mirrored spheres

I've mentioned more than once to you all my fascination with fractal geometry. Do a search in the archives to see what I've said on the subject. What I wasn't aware of till just a while ago was the effect that clustered mirrored balls (such as Christmas ornaments) can generate. The effect is called (for reasons which I can't seem to uncover) a "wada" basin reflection. While I was doing some research on prime numbers, I ran across a reference and a link to a page stuffed with both "real" wada images and also simulated images done by ray-tracing programs such as POVray. Amazing - especially the very last 4 images way down at the bottom of the page.

Here's one example ...ahem..."borrowed" from the website:


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Seeing all this stuff is almost enough to induce me to download that *^%$ program again and see if I can actually make some sense out of it.

Almost.

I fucked with that stupid software for THREE MONTHS almost every day getting less than nowhere with it before yelling "UNCLE" and uninstalling it. I have enough migranes trying to get broadband in the house. I don't need an impossible-to-work software program to add to them.
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Old 07-26-2009   #2
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

Do you think, able, with a bit more research into these peculiar, visual entities, they could somehow explain or make sense of time travel?
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Old 07-26-2009   #3
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

As they are with carbon supermolecules ("Buckyballs" or "Fullerene"), scientists are only now - after nearly 3 decades of study - beginning to realize what fractal mathematics will allow future technology to achieve. The US Military already has image processing software utilizing fractal mathematics which allows one to zoom in on a digital image endlessly (limited only by the computational power of the computer running it) without pixellating! I have a strong hunch that fractal math will one day be able to direct biological growth in specific patterns: like fractally manufacturing a kidney or lung (or even a brain). Nearly every fractal pattern I've ever seen appears vaguely organic and it's no difficulty at all to enter the correct set of parameters into a fractal drawing program and come up with patterns that appear, for all intents and purposes, to be mountain ranges complete with craggy peaks, ferns, jellyfish and other biological entities. Understanding fractal math and learning to apply it to high energy physics might just open some interesting doors, so yes, maybe fractal math is the answer to time travel and/or faster-than-light-travel. As I said up top here, even after 20+ years, mathematicians are only just barely beginning to comprehend what fractal patterns are telling them.
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Old 07-26-2009   #4
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

Hmmm. That's crazy. I was being a bit cheeky, obviously, but you make very good 'n' interesting points, of course.

So, you believe it is possible to travel faster than light, then? I was having a debate with a co-worker about time travel and the like and he cited an example of an asteroid (or something) having been recorded striking earth's surface before light did (...or...something). He might have been making that up to win the debate--as I, most likely ignorantly, disagree that time travel is possible--but, as you pointed out, technological advances (and experimentation) might one day make such feats more than science fiction.

That is interesting, though, how these patterns have been/could be used. Fractals are somewhat random, unpredictable, and complex, aren't they? I find it interesting that you mention how such patterns could prove useful in organ simulation, believing what I do about organic...things. But, just in general, interesting to ponder.
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Old 07-26-2009   #5
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

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Originally Said by ablethevoice View Post
As they are with carbon supermolecules ("Buckyballs" or "Fullerene") scientists are only now - after nearly 3 decades of study - beginning to realize what fractal mathematics will allow future technology to achieve. The US Military already has image processing software utilizing fractal mathematics which allows one to zoom in on a digital image endlessly (limited only by the computational power of the computer running it) without pixellating! I have a strong hunch that fractal math will one day be able to direct biological growth in specific patterns: like fractally manufacturing a kidney or lung (or even a brain). Nearly every fractal pattern I've ever seen appears vaguely organic and it's no difficulty at all to enter the correct set of parameters into a fractal drawing program and come up with patterns that appear, for all intents and purposes, to be mountain ranges complete with craggy peaks, ferns, jellyfish and other biological entities. Understanding fractal math and learning to apply it to high energy physics might just open some interesting doors, so yes, maybe fractal math is the answer to time travel and/or faster-than-light-travel. As I said up top here, even after 20+ years, mathematicians are only just barely beginning to comprehend what fractal patterns are telling them.
Honestly, I did not know the potential applications that exist for fractals. I think I will have to research this further myself. I've become very interested.

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So, you believe it is possible to travel faster than light, then? I was having a debate with a co-worker about time travel and the like and he cited an example of an asteroid (or something) having been recorded striking earth's surface before light did (...or...something). He might have been making that up to win the debate--as I, most likely ignorantly, disagree that time travel is possible--but, as you pointed out, technological advances (and experimentation) might one day make such feats more than science fiction.
I highly doubt to the point of saying that there is absolutely no evidence or even the possibility of an asteroid striking Earth before light would unless you are talking about the light of a star light years away arriving long after any nearby space rock would. But then you must consider that the space rock would have had a hell of a head start.

Anyway, I don't think it is ignorant to say that time travel is impossible and here's my reasoning:

You are made of energy. Your time machine or whatever is made of energy. Everything is made of energy. If the Law of Conservation of Energy holds true then energy can be neither created nor destroyed but must remain a constant. If you exist in Time A and your destination is Time B then there is X amount of energy in your present location Time A and, because of the law, there should be the same amount of energy present in Time B. Therefore, you could argue that time travel is impossible except in the case where the EXACT same amount of energy is transferred from Time A to Time B and vice versa, for their can never be more energy present in Time A as there is in Time B. Of course, this would depend heavily on time being linear which, for all we have observed, seems to be the most likely situation.
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Old 07-27-2009   #6
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Fractal FURNITURE??

Hey did any of you check out the other links on that page in my original post? Did you see THIS?


There's a lot of interesting stuff I didn't know about fractals: like magnetic fields have fractal boundaries! That leads me right back to what I said about applying fractal mathematics to high-energy physics - maybe if we could precision-shape a magnetic field, we might observe some interesting phenomena not ever seen before.
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Old 07-27-2009   #7
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Re: Fractal FURNITURE??

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maybe if we could precision-shape a magnetic field, we might observe some interesting phenomena not ever seen before.
Say hello to cars and space ships with ray shields :)
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Old 07-27-2009   #8
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Re: Fractal FURNITURE??

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Say hello to cars and space ships with ray shields :)
Or vehicles which use highly focussed fractal magnetic fields for levitation/propulsion

Fast and silent.

{EDIT} Oh, and Jason: you might be interested in locating and acquiring a short film (~60min) called The Colours Of Infinity. It is a fascinating study on fractals hosted and narrated by none other than Arthur C. Clarke and scored by David Gilmore(!).
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Old 07-28-2009   #9
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Re: Fractal FURNITURE??

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Or vehicles which use highly focussed fractal magnetic fields for levitation/propulsion

Fast and silent.
and emission-free!
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Old 07-28-2009   #10
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

Emission-free.. i suppose that's a plus too lol. I'll trade the environment for hover cars anyday. And twice on a thursday.
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Old 07-28-2009   #11
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

hater.
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Old 07-28-2009   #12
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Re: Fractal FURNITURE??

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and emission-free!
Depends entirely on where the electric power needed to generate the magnetic fields comes from.
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Old 07-28-2009   #13
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

I just assume we'll have run out of oil by the time the infrastructure needed to support said cars would be put in place.. or heck, even by the time the cars are invented, tested, and marketable. But hey, there's always coal!
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Old 08-18-2009   #14
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

I would have told you about this had I known before it was on, but I just ran across it moments before it started. Anyway, tonight's NOVA was on fractals. Amongst the incredible stuff presented in the show, I learned that fractal math is applied in a device which I'd bet each and every one of you own: cellphones! Yes, the fractal mathematics is applied to the ANTENNA of cellphones! Check out PBS.org for more on what I'm talking about. DAMN I wish I could have told you about this show so we'd all be here gushing about how amazing it all was.
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Old 08-19-2009   #15
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres

One of the ladies at work asked me what we watched on TV last night, when I told her (Nova: fractals) of course she had no idea what I was talking about. I did try to explain how they are using them in computer programs to generator.... like in the 3rd Star Wars - the lava swirling around, used fractals to get a more realistic look to it. We were surprised to see that clothes back in the 80's had fractal prints, some of them were very cool, kind of a tie-dye effect, which is right up our Hippy avenue.

I'd like to think some of what Tom explains to me actually gets absorbed in my already cluttered brain.
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Old 03-31-2010   #16
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Re: The secret life of mirrored spheres



No, that is not a computer generated fractal image; it is a real photograph of Romanesco broccoli clearly demonstrating the fractal/biological connection.
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