And you thought you were just knitting?


The designs shown are not in your pattern books! Stunning, complex patterns by scientists!


Real knitters are never "just knitting"  cheese 

mtierney said:
The designs shown are not in your pattern books! Stunning, complex patterns by scientists!

 I can’t thank you enough for posting this. This is a terrific article! The only thing not mentioned that came to mind was information encoding as cryptography, as with Madame Defarge from “A Tale of Two Cities.” Farther afield in that direction would be the encoded quilt patterns of the Civil War used by the Underground Railroad. 

The discussion of topography and metamaterials is wonderful. Not to mention, a programmable digital device from 1804. And the physicist’s shoulder tattoo of a hyperbolic helicoid. (There’s a link to see it.)

What a wonderful piece of writing!

j r

It must depend on your pattern books! Creating a three dimensional object with knitting can be very satisfying. I've made a Klein bottle hat and an infinity scarf along with a blanket with cables depicting DNA. Excellent article.

My favorite designer recently published The Purl Code, a sweater pattern knitted in one piece from the top that allows the knitter to add a custom message using the Morse code alphabet. 


Also, knitting as data representation:

Mayor's knitting shows men still dominate debate


Sue Montgomery, a city councilor and borough mayor in Montreal, has opted to sit back and knit during monthly executive committee meetings.

Concerned about the disparity of female and male voices during the meetings, her latest creation details how often men speak in red and women in green. And the results reveal a worrying finding: that men still dominate public discourse.

..."It's not that we women don't talk, it's that men talk too much and repeat everything several times, thus waste everyone's time" 

j r

A friend is knitting a coded scarf with stripes that represent train delays. 


Knitting is indeed coding. I know at least one computer scientist who considers knitting notation to be a programming language.


I imagine crochet can be coded. I know when my husband was in hospice care at home, I decided to make him a soft and cozy lap rug. I used two colors, grey and white, to crochet stripes. 

It started out as a simple rectangle (no pattern) in double crochet. As time went by, I noted it was too narrow and began to add stripes to add width; and then, more stripes to make it longer. It is a lopsided, crazy quilt, but, I believe, expresses the time frame. He loved it, and I loved him, and the blanket comforts me.


Women have had needlework circles for companionship forever —

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