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Conway's game of life
I remember learning about the game of life in high school after our unit on fractals.
“The Game of Life is not your typical computer game. It is a ‘cellular automaton’, and was invented by Cambridge mathematician John Conway.
This game became widely known when it was mentioned in an article published by Scientific American in 1970. It consists of a collection of cells which, based on a few mathematical rules, can live, die or multiply. Depending on the initial conditions, the cells form various patterns throughout the course of the game.
For a space that is ‘populated’: Each cell with one or no neighbors dies, as if by loneliness. Each cell with four or more neighbors dies, as if by overpopulation.Each cell with two or three neighbors survives.
For a space that is ‘empty’ or ‘unpopulated’: Each cell with three neighbors becomes populated.”
If you want to play the game for a bit, check out this link.
“Life is one of the simplest examples of what is sometimes called “emergent complexity” or “self-organizing systems.” This subject area has captured the attention of scientists and mathematicians in diverse fields. It is the study of how elaborate patterns and behaviors can emerge from very simple rules. ”
The game of life is an interesting puzzle for all scientists- economists, biologists, computer scientists, physicists… because complex systems exist everywhere.