The Game of Life is one of the simplest video games ever to exist, and yet is one of the most addictive! It’s known as a zero player game as you simply choose your initial layout of black and white squares and then leave the game to evolve over time following a set of four simple rules. The patterns created have provided inspiration for many things and can be seen in the design of the facade at Cambridge North train station in the UK. Listen below as St John’s Maths Tutor Dr Tom Crawford explains the Game of Life live on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire…
Examples (image credits: Wikipedia)
Stable ‘still-life’ patterns that remain fixed for every turn.
Block Beehive Boat Loaf Tub
‘Oscillators’ that cycle through a number of designs repeating every few turns.
Beacon (period 2) Blinker (period 2) Toad (period 2)
Pulsar (period 3) Pentadecathlon (period 15)
Spaceships that travel across the board forever.
Glider Lightweight Spaceship
You can play the game of life for yourself online here.