Math Mondays

# Math Mondays – Fractals

One of my favorite undergrad classes at North Central College was Chaos Theory.   I loved (still do) the idea that we can describe chaos.   One of the assignments of the class was to design our own fractal and then determine its fractional dimension.

Inspired by the Koch Snowflake, I set out to create something similar with a hexagon.   This was in the early 90’s so I had a computer, but none of the apps we have today.   So I st out to construct my “snowflake” by hand.  I used my protractor, a ruler and a very large sheet of paper and set out to create the next big (i.e., most important) fractal in the world!  FAIL.  Turns out it had a dimension of one.   Now if you are wondering why I didn’t know this before I spent a weekend drawing and redrawing the dang then…well…you just don’t know me!   I take my time and do things the hard way or the long way or the illogical way!   But I eventually get there!

Not sure why I shared this story other than this problem from my license review test had me reliving my glory days.  (Hey there are athletic glory days…why not math geek glory days?)

Here’s the problem:

Here’s my work:

So many things have changed since my college days.   However, I am still fascinated by fractals and I still prefer to do my work in pen!   What can I say?  I live on the edge…of chaos!

Sigh Yup.   I just wrote that.

Oh and in case you are wondering…I selected D.