Go to a different applet:
The Julia set and the Mandelbrot set are two interesting but related
fractals in the mathematical world. For a more specialized applet
manipulating the Mandelbrot set, click
here. This applet, while it can manipulate the Mandelbrot
set, is especially made to display the Julia set and use the Mandelbrot
set as a reference. This is relevant because of the close relation
between the two- I like to think of the Julia set as sort of a cross
section of the Mandelbrot set. The basic concept and algorithm
For the both the Mandelbrot and Julia sets, we are drawing the
graph on the complex number plane (meaning that (0,0) is really just 0,
and (1,1) is really 1+i, and (1,0) is really just 1). In the Mandelbrot
set, calculate for every point 'C' by referring first to point A0
whose value is 0. For every An, An+1=An2+C.
Continue doing this and observe what happens- either it will hover around
zero, slowly approaching it, or it will escape and go toward infinity.
If the value of An ever has an absolute value (distance from
the origin) of 2 or more, it is obviously going to escape, and the number
of iterations it takes before this takes place is the value of the Mandelbrot
set at point C. That integer value determines its color on the graph.
The straight black parts of the graph either have an infinite value (will
never escape from the are close to the origin) or escape after more than
In the Julia set, a value is chosen for C for the entire graph.
Then, for every complex value 'Z' on the graph, the value of A0
is Z, and for every value of An, An+1=An2+C.
This time, though, you'll notice that the same value of C is used for every
point on the graph. Like the Mandelbrot set, the value of each point
is the number of iterations before the point 'escapes' from the origin.
The relation between these to complex fractals is interesting,
as well- since the algorithm is so similar, it can be seen that the value
at every point C in the mandelbrot set is the value at the origin in it's
corresponding Julia set. Also, while the Mandelbrot set is continuous-
it's all connected, there is a big chunk in the middle where the number
of iterations is infinite- the Julia set can either be connected or disconnected.
The Julia set will always be connected for values of C that are
infinite in the Mandelbrot set. That's why I included the Mandelbrot
set in an applet specifically made for the Julia set. This way, you
can go to the Mandelbrot set (the program will save the last place you
clicked on in the Mandelbrot set and designate it as 'C'), and then when
you return to the Julia set, it will calculate the graph to that value
of C. The Julia set is of course much more interesting when the value
of C is in a particularly interesting part of the mandelbrot set.
Experiment with it and enjoy.
The accuracy of fractals, (with the help of computers, luckily),
is infinitely fine. The picture you see generated before you isn't
a saved bitmap. If you click in two spots and then hit the "Set X/Y"
button, the values in the rectangle between the two points will be put
into the range and domain values in the text fields near the top (hit "reset
X/Y" to choose different range values without redrawing). Then hit
"redraw" and see the area inside there graphed again to the resolution
available. This can theoretically be done infinitely, and can practically
be done to your hearts desire, limited only by the precision of the numbers
in Java (i.e.- the amount of memory it's taking to store the numbers)
Remember, too, that the 'x' values are really the 'real' values, while
the 'y' values are really the 'imaginary' values. Hopefully
the rest of the buttons are self-explanitory or not important enough for
you to care. Feel free to look at the source code here
if your interested.
Report bugs and give suggestions here.
These applets were developed by Matthew Reeder. Please get my permission before using these applets on your own site.
(And trust me, it will be easier if I help you use them :-p)