Sunday, January 30, 2005

Everyday Miracle

Today I saw an everyday miracle. The Monarch caterpillars have grown to a stage where they are changing into chrysalis. Happily, had my camera on hand to document the process.

I really owe it all to my dad who called me last night to see a similar occurrence. Had my camera then too, only it was on the wrong setting so the original photos had that blurred "paparazzi" look to them.

The main part of the process takes about 20 minutes and is very cool to watch. The last few shots of the chrysalis were taken over an extended period. I cheated and photographed some of the older chysalis so that the darkening of the case with time could be seen.

Seen as I don't have to a movie camera, still photos will have to do. I tried doing this as a really cool animation but the animation was too big and took too long to download.

Below, for your viewing pleasure is a sequence of 31 photos showing the process. Clicking on the photos will enlarge them. Use your browser's "back" button to return to this page.

Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar
Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar
Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar
Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar
Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar
Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar
Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar
Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar Changing Caterpillar

Friday, January 28, 2005

Silver Rings

The links on the LHS were of unequal sizes. Some frantic experimenting got it fixed.

Am a third of the way through "War and Peace". It is heavy going but quite fascinating. Got the paper version from the library as reading it on line is just not the same. Lets just say turning the pages is way faster than waiting for the chapters to download.

The Silver Rings fractal below is there to assure my loyal fans that I still have too much time on my hands. This status will change next week when schools go back and life gets busy.

Silver Rings

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Experimental Magic

Below is a fractal movie. It contains 126 frames and took all afternoon to produce.

This is what happens when:

  • It is too hot to go for a walk outside
  • One has too much time on their hands
  • One cannot make up her mind about which colours she likes best

Monday, January 24, 2005

Simplicated

Simplicated is not yet a real word. It means simple and yet complicated at the same time. Have realised that "Simplicated" describes fractals, web design, my life and most situations.

"Simplicated" should be a legitimate word. If enough people use it enough, it may yet make it into the dictionery. Just remember, you saw it here first!

Below, a simplicated fractal

Pastel Tunnel

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Blue Green Fire

The great thing about playing with fractals is that you never know what you will get.

Blue Green Fire Fractal

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Madam Butterfly

Summer is finally here. The weather has turned glorious which means that the Monarch butterflies are doing their thing. As we have several swan plants in the garden, I decided to document the cycle by taking photographs of each stage.

I was aiming for the caterpillar in the top part of the photo below when the butterfly landed right behind it and laid an egg. Point and click! Thankfully the photo came out crisp and clear.

My camera is quite a basic model with an auto-focus feature. This means that often the subject of my photo ends up blurred with the background in perfect focus. This blurred problem only becomes apparent when looking at the photo in my graphics software. To compensate for possible blurring, I usually take several photos of a given subject with the camera held at various distances from the subject, in the hope that at least some of the shots will be nice and clear. The butterfly came and went so fast, that there was only time for one shot. How lucky is that!

Monarch Butterfly Laying Eggs

Sunday, January 09, 2005

Fractal Sunset

Another rainy afternoon. What else is new?

Should not complain too much as it was beautiful and sunny for most of the day. It has actually one of the nicest days we have had so far.

Tomorrow most people go back to work after their Christmas break. Happily the new term does not start until next month so I am still on vacation. Life is good.

Fractal Sunset

Friday, January 07, 2005

Rainbow Option

Could not decide which colour was best. Went for the Rainbow Option.

For the record, it is raining. Again.

Rainbow Option

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

z=z2+c

It's amazing what you can do with a Mandelbrot.

I "cheated" a bit by using my graphics software as well.

Life can be really fun sometimes.

It was a Mandelbrot Before I played with it

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Text Entry

Strange things tend to happen with the technical side of this blog. For some reason, my profile has not updated any of my entries since that poem way back in October. I think this has much to do with the fact that most of my entries contain pictures and the profile part of blogger seems to have difficulty handling that fact.

Hence my text only entry. The idea is to find out if my profile now updates.

Ok... that did not work. My profile did not update properly. It still thinks the last time I updated it was last year (deep sigh). Perhaps at some point it will fix itself.

In the meantime, below are some random quotes gleaned from conversation and the odd bumper sticker.

  • No good deed goes unpunished.
  • Unsure of what to say? Answer the question with a question*.
  • Live your life so that the preacher does not have to lie at your funeral.
  • The higher you are, the harder you fall.
  • The harder you fall, the higher you bounce.

*Sadly, this strategy will not work in exams, if you are taking a test, it is highly recommended that you answer all questions with the correct answers.

Finally, two things to consider when ice skating (or driving):

  • The faster you go, the bigger the mess.
  • Speed kills.