Fracture is a screensaver for OS X (now compatible with 10.6 and 10.7!) that creates a wide variety of fractal images. It can render the Mandelbrot Set, Julia Sets, Self-Squared Dragons, and Attraction Basin fractals generated using Newton's Method, Halley's Method, and two other root-finding algorithms. It can make images using advanced fractal imaging techniques like orbit traps, periodicity analysis, and binary decomposition, and it can use several different parameterizations for even greater image variety. Here's one sample image (visit Stick Software's gallery to see more):
It will use multiple processors if you have them, to make its calculations faster, and it will display fractals on multiple monitors if you have them (we have a photo that user Aneel Nazareth sent us of Fracture running on five screens at once, in fact). It can generate a wide variety of color schemes under user control. And it can even antialias its images, for the maximum in image quality! It can be controlled by the user while it is running, so you can find a color scheme you like, skip images you don't like, hold images you do like, and save images you particularly like to disk.
As you can rely on with Stick Software products, it has a suitably overengineered configuration panel that lets you control many details of its operation. Here's a snapshot of one tab of that panel (click for the full-size snapshot):
If this seems complicated, there is an online manual to help you out (for a 396K PDF version of this manual that can be used offline, click here). But Fracture is really very simple to use, and you won't hurt anything by experimenting. Discovery and experimentation is part of the fun of Fracture.
Fracture is shareware (which means we rely on you to pay for it if you use it). It costs $10. Feel free to try it out for a little while before paying, but please don't forget that it is ultimately your responsibility to pay for it if you use it. For details on how we handle registrations, see our main registration page. Thanks!
A desktop application version of Fracture will probably get written at some point, to give even more control to the user over the set, parameterization, color scheme, and so on. If you would like to encourage us to write this app, or if you have ideas or feature requests for us, feel free to email us.
Speaking of contacting us, user Richard Buckle sent us this poem about Fracture:
Fractallop idlyform recursilode anywhen sleepytime. Optilode plentyform palettewise. Cyclikeys. MP symmetrimax. Dumpitiff. Deep joy. Thankimlode maniplex. Deffibuy!This is in Unwinese, which Richard explains as "a beautiful gibberish form of English created by 'Professor' Stanley Unwin. It has no rules, you just have to grok it." Deep joy!
Michael Clark has set up a Fractal of the Day website populated with images generated by Fracture. New fractals will appear every day from now through sometime in the future. Cool stuff!