Benoit Mandelbrot, one of the most brilliant mathematicians this world has ever known, died on Thursday, October 14, 2010. He is the father of fractal geometry, a new branch of mathematics that illuminated many natural phenomena. This is what Krista Westervelt at Gather.com has to say about his work:
Mandelbrot’s willingness to think outside the box has led to great contributions beyond the field of mathematics. Mandelbrot’s work has had an impact on medicine, geology, and engineering, among other fields. His fractal geometry has been used for a number of applications including explaining the clustering of galaxies, price trends of wheat, and the folding of a mammal’s brain as it grows.
Benoit Mandelbrot helped make geometry a cutting edge, yet accessible. His study of fractals is a fascinating and beautiful art and science. His work will be remembered for generations.
Quite aptly, Matt Blum at Wired says that “[Mandelbrot] gave us order out of chaos.”
This unpretentious, humble man will be sorely missed.
Photos courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.