Re: A book list for today's renaissance human

From: Lee Daniel Crocker (
Date: Thu Dec 27 2001 - 19:54:00 MST

> But, really, why must a renaissance human study:
> > The World According to Wavelets by Barbara Hubbard
> and perhaps
> > Fractal Geometry of Nature by Benoit Mandelbrot

Mandelbrot is certainly on my list as well, though perhaps
something a bit more accessible to the less mathematically
inclined (like Gleik's Chaos) would suffice for most.
Certainly some of the basic concepts of self-similarity,
fractional dimension, the butterfly effect, strage
attractors, and such ought to be part of one's mental
repertoire. Just like one should know about basic game
theory, the prisoner's dilemma, Axelrod's experiments and
evolutionarily stable strategies.

Wavelets are a tougher case. I think one should know
about some basic time-domain vs. frequency-domain math
like the Fourier transform, and one should know about the
existence of wavelets, and from my purely political point
of view one should know that there exist marvellous
technologies for image and sound compression that are
more efficient and higher quality than commonly available
techniques, but that are often not available to the
public because they are encumbered by software patents :-)

Lee Daniel Crocker <> <>
"All inventions or works of authorship original to me, herein and past,
are placed irrevocably in the public domain, and may be used or modified
for any purpose, without permission, attribution, or notification."--LDC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Sat May 11 2002 - 17:44:32 MDT