UltraFractal 4.02 Animation Edition
Eleanor Allen · From fps #6 · February 2, 2006 | For this program, I broke one of my rules. The rule? In order to learn some software or a programming language, it had to be required by a course or a job—it had to be for marks or money. But when the offer came to test the latest version of UltraFractal 4 Animation Edition, I ignored my rule because it tapped into both an old compulsion—experimenting with art materials—and an old interest—fractals.

UltraFractal 4.02 Animation Edition
Frederik Slijkerman
Windows 98/Me/2000/XP SP2

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Frederik Slijkerman's UltraFractal 4.02 program is something that could only have been dreamt about back when Mandelbrot's book, The Fractal Geometry of Nature, first came out in 1977. Benoît Mandelbrot said he coined the term "fractal" from the latin fractus, which described an irregularly broken-up stone. Fractals are irregular shapes which are self-similar; self-similarity (when a part is similar to the whole) gives a shape that worlds-within-worlds effect that abounds in nature—from a mountain range to a fern leaf. Different types of fractals have been discovered and explored. Random fractals have been used to produce realistic-looking landscapes, some of which have made their way into science-fiction movies. Nonlinear fractals have been used to explore complex dynamic processes such as turbulence (be it in weather, liquids, or the financial markets) and to explore areas of pure mathematics.

Want to read the rest of this review?

You'll find it and many other articles in the January 2006 issue of fps, available for only 99 cents US.
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