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THE GOLDEN MEAN

According to my small amount of research, the Golden Mean has its roots in Ancient Greece and is still used in today's design as an aesthetically pleasing method of dividing space. It's said that these proportions can be seen everywhere in nature.

As I understand the Golden Mean, the rectangle of specific proportions is broken up into three basic sections, then the smaller of these sections broken into three sections, and so on.  A section created this way is sometimes called a Golden Section or Devine Section.

To arrive at the rectangle's shortest measurement, the longest measurement is multiplied by 0.618

The longest measurement of the rectangle is then multiplied by 0.618 and a division made at that point. This creates two unequal sections. The longest measurement of the smaller section is then multiplied by 0.618 and a division made. This adds a third section and completes the basic Golden Mean proportions. 

In the illustration above, these steps were repeated until the sections were too small to divide further. Once the sections were established, I drew a curved line beginning at the lower left corner, and intersecting with the upper right corner of the largest section, then with the lower right corner of the next smaller section, and so on, following this curve until the line ended at the smallest section.

For anyone who's interested, this is a mathematicians dream, or so it would seem from reading some of the websites devoted to studying the Golden Mean. A search for "Golden Mean" at:

http://www.dogpile.com 

will offer up several sites to pursue. One, for example, is located at:

http://www.mathsoft.com/asolve/constant/gold/gold.html

(.... that is if you want your mind boggled). 

Jinny Brown January 15, 2000
last modified October 9, 2000

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