Math To Build Another Solar System

Illustration for article titled Math To Build Another Solar System

Over the past four centuries, hundreds of particles have been orbiting each other in this pocket universe, leaving faint lines in their wakes.

Illustration for article titled Math To Build Another Solar System

These webbed orbits are from a series of computer-generated art pieces by Jared Tarbell. He explains them like this:

The Orbitals is a collection of particles operating on one simple rule: choose another particle in the system and orbit it with a fixed radius at a constant velocity . . . In this variation, a single root particle is instantiated in the center of the stage. All other particles introduced to the system fall into orbit at some level.

If you visit Tarbell's online gallery of these images, you can make your own by playing with the little applet he built to generate them.

A year after he designed this series of artworks, Tarbell co-founded online crafts market Etsy, where you can buy wonderful things straight from the crafters and artists who make them. Seems as if Tarbell likes to help computers create and distribute art.

Check out Tarbell's Orbitals gallery.


Discodave: R.O.A.C.H. M.O.T.E.L.

These end up looking like something a fan of Russian Constructionism would doodle.

Only much, much cooler.