29 April 2012

The fractal vortex and relationship to ubran traffic congestion

This fractal was generated using a program at the website of Fractal Poster (see http://www.fractalposter.com/users_gallery/fractals_1.html .)  As in all fractals, there are rules, self-similarity, development and chaos. The theme of self-similar vortexes is apparent. It is notable that  in  above generated image, the main vortex  appears to begin from a ribbon of smaller vortexes and proceeds to form a large one embedded with smaller vortexes. The larger vortex unravels to form a ribbon.  These patterns would be repeated again at a larger scale, if we zoomed out  There are other patterns that are related to the formation of the vortex. This process of vortex formation can be seen manifested not in the actual physical form of urban areas, but in urban phenomenon.  For example, traffic congestion can be seen as small disturbances from smooth traffic to small disturbances (slowing of traffic), becoming more intense (stop and go) to complete breakdown. Then, in the same manner, reversing itself and leading to smooth traffic and then repeating the same pattern over again.  While the fractal vortex is self-repeating of the same patterns; the rules may be set up to start fractals and then disturbed so that vortexes fail to form.  In the case of traffic and complete breakdown, small changes may prevent the complete breakdown of traffic flow.

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