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Topic: Game of Life 2
Replies: 3   Last Post: Jul 30, 2006 3:23 PM

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Kirby Urner

Posts: 4,713
Registered: 12/6/04
Game of Life 2
Posted: Jul 23, 2006 2:35 AM
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Of course there've been many 'games of life' (variations on the cellular automaton game, rules by Conway)[1], and this one may already be in the literature, but hey, the title is catchy.

What we're developing for our gnu math curriculum is a more sophisticated treatment of the hexapent, that tiling of the sphere consisting entirely of hexagons and twelve pentagons, these latter classically at the corners of a regular icosahedron.

Think of a soccer ball (the simplest hexapent). It's possible to boost the number of hexagons while holding the 12 pentagons fixed.[2]

Once this "soccer ball on steroids" is on screen, or in the mind's eye or whatever, we can run the Game of Life on the surface, but with rules modified to account for these 5 or 6 neighbors around every cell. We might also do turtle graphics (multiple turtles) or other types of "globe trotting".

Coloring the polygons with global data (e.g. Planet Earth), or a starfield (from some point looking out) are both applications of this Geoscope concept.[3]

Here in Portland, open source capital, we're making sure these basics get into the gnu math curriculum.[4] We're focusing on a simple Pythonic implementation (aka a "cave painting") starting with the easiest hexapent (the soccer ball or buckyball). I'll be adding more to my CP4E page soon.[5] Stay tuned.

Kirby

NOTES:

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conway's_Game_of_Life (plus see Damian Conway's many gnu math literate riffs around this game and this name collision) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Damian_Conway

[2] http://controlroom.blogspot.com/2006/07/hexapent.html
http://controlroom.blogspot.com/2006/07/global-matrix-poster.html

[3] Geoscope -- see 'Critical Path' by Buckminster Fuller. Plus this patent for one source of our Hexa-Pent nomenclature: http://www.bfi.org/node/81

[4] "we" being Glenn Stockton's global matrix group, more details in my blog.

[5] CP4E = Computer Programming For Everybody, initiated by CNRI with DARPA support, funding through October, 2000. http://www.python.org/doc/essays/cp4e.html



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