Excuse me,

but I'd like to do something Modern for a moment

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Ironically, the answer to the question, "What are fractals?" has a fractal quality itself.

Fractals are many things, and as such the answer to the question is really determined by how closely you want to look.

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For some people fractals are a source of imagery, just as natural scenery is a source of imagery for photographers.

The math from which fractal imagery is constructed is not terribly important to some people, just as the geographical processes which produce landscapes may not be of much concern to photographers.

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In fact, the mathematical principles behind fractals could even be irrelevant to answering our question because our interest in fractals may be just with the images they produce (their graphical rendering) and what looks good could have no correlation with any particular mathematical feature.

Which brings me to the images displayed here: There's really nothing fractal-ish about them, although they have been produced by a fractal formula.

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Imagine a machine used in ways it was never intended, like painting a picture using a hammer instead of a brush.

Lying in a tool box we would say a hammer is a tool for nailing pieces of wood together. But that same hammer, lying beside an artist's palette... hmmmn, what now is that "hammer?"

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In the same way, looking at these images here... hmmmn, what now is that "fractal?"

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