News FocusGEOMETRY AND THE IMAGINATION

Bizarre Pool Shots Spiral to Infinity

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Science  06 Jul 2007:
Vol. 317, Issue 5834, pp. 39
DOI: 10.1126/science.317.5834.39a

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Summary

PRINCETON, NEW JERSEY--At a meeting held here on 7-11 June in honor of the mathematician William Thurston, geometer Richard Schwartz showed that a game of "outer billiards"--in which point-sized balls graze the corners of a geometric target--can result in orbits that spiral outward forever.