Wolfram Computation Meets Knowledge

Wolfram Summer School


Gregg Whisler

Summer School

Class of 2008


Gregg Whisler says, “I always wanted to be somebody, and now after 47 years I realize I should have been more specific. I am just a high school math teacher. Born in Kalamazoo, Michigan on Easter Sunday, 1961; I live now, a Don Quixote of sorts, in Richmond, Virginia. I have many interests, most trivial. I have survived and at times enjoyed many varied educational experiences. A few included some sort of paperwork and very minor title when completed.”

Project: An Exploration of Basic Integer Functions

For the past twenty years Whisler has been researching patterns in what is called the Stern-Brocot tree. A representation of the tree appears on p. 613 of NKS. This also can be described as a picture of visible lattice points in a 2D integer grid. It can be formed by taking the greatest common denominator of the coordinates of each cell of the grid. Although this pattern follows very simple generation rules–it displays great complexity. This project involves the generation of the resulting patterns that arise when the generation rules are altered. One question is whether nested structures can be created using similarly based rules. The search here is for the simplest rules that cause complex behavior with elementary functions such as the system x mod n = y mod n = 0, potentially involving the Fibonacci numbers {1,1,2,3,5…} in the expression F[1]+F[2]-GCD[F[1],F[2]].

Favorite Radius 3/2 Rule

Rule 46753

The death of Sierpiński?