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Crafty Geometry

Mathematicians are knitting and crocheting to visualize complex surfaces

During the 2002 winter holidays, mathematician Hinke Osinga was relaxing with some lace crochet work when her partner and mathematical collaborator Bernd Krauskopf asked, "Why don't you crochet something useful?" Some crocheters might bridle at the suggestion that lace is useless, but for Osinga, Krauskopf's question sparked an exciting idea. "I looked at him, and we thought the same thing at the same moment," Osinga recalls. "We realized that you could crochet the Lorenz manifold."

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