Sunday, September 16, 2012

Decagon Girih Solutions

In an earlier post, I wrote about two solutions for the pattern on the ten-sided Girih tile.

In the middle is the standard one, also in paper in Science. The one on the right, with straight lines, I saw in a post on Robodino about laser cutting Girih tiles. The one on the left I might have seen somewhere, or made up myself... Anyway, these are three different solutions with tenfold rotational symmetry.

Wikipedia says: "Most tiles have a unique pattern of girih inside the tile which are continuous and follow the symmetry of the tile. However, the decagon has two possible girih patterns one of which has only fivefold rather than tenfold rotational symmetry." - but it doesn't say which ones they mean.

After some playing around, I realized that there are all kinds of ways to connect the patterns while still (I think) following the rules. The ones above have only a twofold rotational symmetry. These are probably not the only ones, but with their low symmetry, they are not the most interesting...

Instead, I'm really happy about these! They all have fivefold rotational symmetry. The upper left one is the one we cut in acrylic, and the rest are new. The lower left one might not quite conform, since it has another type of crossing in the middle, but who cares? It's pretty!

All in all, these are eleven possible girih patterns for the decagon. Could Wikipedia be wrong on this?

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