Monday, December 8, 2008

The scientific benefits of origami

I picked up this interesting tidbit today from ScienceDaily: Studying origami, the ancient Japanese art of folding paper into shapes like birds and bugs, can improve your understanding of math. In ScienceDaily's The Science of Origami, Dr. Robert Lang is quoted as saying that the process used to create these intricate folded designs has made its way into scientific disciplines like medicine, aerospace design, and automotive engineering.

Dr. Lang has his own website with pages devoted to his art and the intersection of origami and math. His gallery of origami creations contains many fascinating specimens, including a 54 uniform-edge polypolyhedron. But to me, the most interesting are those folded from a single sheet of paper. Lang's page of crease patterns shows the detailed and complex folds necessary to create shapes like hermit crabs and garden spiders alongside the finished product.

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