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  Jonathan McCabe
   
 
Threefold Multiscale Turing Pattern
Films on the playlist
Threefold Multiscale Turing Pattern
Fivefold Multiscale Turing Pattern
Sixfold Multiscale Turing Pattern
Sevenfold Multiscale Turing Pattern
Ninefold Multiscale Turing Pattern
Pomacanthus Imperator Series

 
Jonathan McCabe is an Australian generative artist living in the Canberra suburb of Ainslie. He is interested in theories of biological pattern formation and evolution and their application to computer art, especially the work of Alan Turing. He has a Masters of Art from the Australian National University.

The Multi-scale Radially Symmetric Turing Patterns are inspired by the famous work of Alan Turing in the early 1950s on a theory of biological pattern formation, now often referred to as Turing patterns or reaction-diffusion patterns. An example is the formation of spots or stripes on an animal's coat. According to the theory, pigment cells randomly decide to be colored or not colored. The colored cells produce two diffusible substances which spread in the coat, an "activator" and an "inhibitor". The activator encourages cells to become colored, and the inhibitor discourages them. The activator is short range, because it diffuses slowly and/or is destroyed quickly, while the inhibitor is longer range because it diffuses more quickly or is more stable. A colored spot is stable as the colored cells encourage their neighbors to be colored whilst telling the surrounding area to stay colorless.

McCabe implemented such a system as a computer program and sure enough, it developed simple spots and stripes.

Pomacanthus Imperator 1-8 were again inspired by Alan Turing's theory of biological pattern formation. Each pixel senses the color of the pixels around it, and changes color according to rules provided by the theory. Spots and stripes develop spontaneously. The rules vary with time and different patterns emerge and disappear. I was reminded of the patterns on tropical fish of the coral reefs, and was interested to see some research on whether their patterns were indeed produced according to Turing's theory: www.bio.nagoya-u.ac.jp/english/seminar/z3E.html

www.jonathanmccabe.com

 
 
 
   
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