We eat it, we wear it; it keeps us all moving.
We’re talking about fractals, the amalgamation of natural beauty and technology. Put simply: fractals are never-ending patterns that self-replicate on a relative scale.
Put even more simply: fractals are the stuff of nature, any simple code that repeats and builds upon itself to create complex systems.
The results are beautiful as well as useful and surprisingly versatile, and represent the apex of form and function. Because of this, fractals have been used for decades as solutions to countless everyday issues, from technology to fashion. How can just one eye see an entire spectrum of colors? Why are cities arranged in certain patterns easier to navigate, and magazine spreads with specific layouts easier to read? Are you getting the hint? We are literally made of – sensitive to, and wired to operate by – the beauty and efficiency of this natural form of organization.
Mind blown yet? Let’s delve deeper.
There is evidently an inherent value, if not need, for as much style as there is function in our productive lives, and as technology continues to permeate deeper into all aspects of daily life, integration of technology and style is becoming increasingly important. Wearable technology like Fitbit fitness bracelets or Google Glass eyewear, for example, is a rapidly growing trend that’s blurring the lines between technology and fashion in both industries.
Few companies have married technology and fashion as successfully as tech giant Apple and British fashion powerhouse Burberry. These juggernauts have championed their respective industries for decades by focusing heavily on design and function in their products. From the 1998 iMac G3 computer, which sported an unprecedented futuristic design and a variety of available colors, to the luxury edition Apple Watch, which surpasses fashion and approaches indulgence with an 18-carat gold body and Sapphire glass screen, Apple has continued to define and disrupt tech industry standards.
Burberry’s flagship store in London, on the other hand, is packed wall-to-wall with intuitive technological features, including an immersive digital shopping experience that rivals Disney’s Imagineers. Select Burberry products even have built-in RFID sensors that trigger special content around the store. Try on a certain scarf and the mirror suddenly dazzles you with runway footage and exclusive videos.
For the release of its iPhone 5s, Apple and Burberry have even teamed up to produce a 15-minute fashion show for Burberry’s Spring/Summer 2014 collection, which was shot and shared exclusively using the iPhone to showcase the style and functionality of both brands.
Natural, effortless, beautiful: three qualities Burberry top creative Christopher Baily believes the iPhone has in common with his own designs, and why he believes Apple excels alongside Burberry. Suspiciously, these qualities are also inherent in those nifty little keystones called fractals, the natural patterns that construct the universe and make life possible.
“Technology isn’t there because it is a tick box,” says Baily, “but something that is very authentic in what we do. The way that we design, the way we are organized, and the way that we communicate internally.” Nature rules over and over that the key to survival is the harmony of design and function, and humans achieve excellence in technology and fashion in the very same ways. Hashtag sur-thrival.