"...More importantly, it seems to me that what you were generating is something much more impressive than Fractal Patterns. What you're really showing is views of our galaxy, in the far future when we've had time to do a little landscape gardening. ..." Arthur C. Clarke (Nov 1994)
Xeno - from the Greek word "Xenos", meaning stranger. In biology, it is often used to designate species difference.
Fractal - is generally "a rough or fragmented geometric shape that can be split into parts, each of which is (at least approximately) a reduced-size copy of the whole," a property called self-similarity. The term was coined by Benoît Mandelbrot in 1975 and was derived from the Latin fractus meaning "broken" or "fractured." A fractal is based on an mathematical equation that undergoes iteration, a form of feedback based on recursion.
Xenofractals are iterative and recursive mathematical algorithms (Strange Non-Chaotic Attractors) and can be driven from data sampled from the real world (such as financial and heart rate variability data). This sampling algorithm is called an agonic or skew process.
During the research into these strange evolving shapes the agonic product was discovered to detect chaotic signatures in complex data. Keith coined the phrase Xenofractals in the late 1990's, because the functions change state during generation (originally they were called Orchid Fractals - because the first few looked like the Bee Orchid).
Prof. Still has catalogued many thousands of original patterns and continues to explore these fascinating growing fractal images and posted several movies files on YouTube. Click on the link below to view. Click on the logo to take you to the Facebook page.