Artificial Life VI

Emergent Structures in Sparse Fields of Conway's ``Game of Life"

Nicholas Mark Gotts
University of Wales Aberystwyth

Paul B. Callahan
University of Wales Aberystwyth


A new approach to the study of is described, and applied to Conway's "Game of Life". We show that in infinite and very large finite fields of the Game of Life, emergent structures will eventually dominate the dynamics of initially random configurations, provided the initial density of "live" cells is sufficiently low. Many quite simple structures will self-replicate under these conditions, although none are known to do so efficiently enough to increase their numbers indefinitely. The application of the approach to other cellular automata is discussed.

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