In a different era, I would have called myself a natural philosopher. All my life, I have enjoyed the reputation of being someone who disrupted prevailing ideas. Now that I'm in my 80th year, I can play on my age and provoke people even more.
When the weather changes and hurricanes hit, nobody believes that the laws of physics have changed. Similarly, I don't believe that when the stock market goes into terrible gyrations its rules have changed. It's the same stock market with the same mechanisms and the same people.
People want to see patterns in the world. It is how we evolved. We descended from those primates who were best at spotting the telltale pattern of a predator in the forest, or of food in the savannah. So important is this skill that we apply it everywhere, warranted or not.
For much of my life there was no place where the things I wanted to investigate were of interest to anyone.
For most of my life, one of the persons most baffled by my own work was myself.
My life seemed to be a series of events and accidents. Yet when I look back I see a pattern.
I don't seek power and do not run around.
When the weather changes, nobody believes the laws of physics have changed. Similarly, I don't believe that when the stock market goes into terrible gyrations its rules have changed.
Now that I near 80, I realize with wistful pleasure that on many occasions I was 10, 20, 40, even 50 years ahead of my time.
There is a saying that every nice piece of work needs the right person in the right place at the right time.
Fractal geometry is not just a chapter of mathematics, but one that helps Everyman to see the same world differently.
Order doesn't come by itself.
Engineering is too important to wait for science.
Most were beginning to feel they had learned enough to last for the rest of their lives. They remained mathematicians, but largely went their own way.
Being a language, mathematics may be used not only to inform but also, among other things, to seduce.