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History of a Stochastic Growth Model

M. Eden, P. Thévenaz

Proceedings of the Sixth SPIE International Workshop on Digital Image Processing and Computer Graphics (DIP'97), Applications in Humanities and Natural Sciences, Wien, Republic of Austria, October 20-22, 1997, vol. 3346, pp. 43-54.



One of the earliest models of stochastic growth was originally developed for simulating the appearance of various biological patterns; in particular, bacterial colonies. Although it received little attention from biologists, some twenty years later it was adopted by crystallographers, solid state researchers, other physicists and chemists. Because of the model's flexibility it is being used by them after modifications appropriate to the application, in order to simulate their physical study objects under a variety of conditions. Only within the last few years has there been any interest in using this and similar digital models to represent the possible products of biological processes. It is also worth noting that aside from its relevance to probabilistically influenced pattern formation, the model has possible use in image processing for image compression and as an information-lossless way to code, regions, contours, or line segments.


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