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Golly references - broken links

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Golly references - broken links

Postby rowett » May 9th, 2017, 10:39 am

Golly's Help contains a page with references to "Good Web Sites", see here.

There are currently four of these links that appear to be broken:
  1. Stephen Silver's Life Lexicon
  2. Mark Niemiec's Life page
  3. Calcyman's Life page
  4. George Maydwell's Cellular Automata Page

If you're the owner of one of the sites and have an update then please let me know since it would be good to fix these before the next Golly release.
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Re: Golly references - broken links

Postby dvgrn » May 9th, 2017, 12:17 pm

rowett wrote:Golly's Help contains a page with references to "Good Web Sites", see here.

There are currently four of these links that appear to be broken...

Good catch. Two of those we have good solutions for; the other two are harder cases.

The original locations for both Mark Niemiec's database and Stephen Silver's Life Lexicon are permanently down. Nathaniel has agreed to make space on conwaylife.com for this kind of orphaned material:

Stephen Silver's Life Lexicon -> http://conwaylife.com/ref/lexicon
Mark Niemiec's Life page -> http://conwaylife.com/ref/mniemiec

(The first one just got fixed last night -- it didn't have an index.htm page, and lex_home.htm was misnamed.)

While you're at it, it's also a good idea to update

Dean Hickerson's Game of Life page -> http://conwaylife.com/ref/DRH
Paul Callahan's page of Life Miscellany -> http://conwaylife.com/ref/lifepage

All of these are now hosted in a common GitHub repository. They all may get updated over time, since it's easy to push new material to GitHub -- though I only know of definite plans for the first two links above. http://conwaylife.com/ref/ will continue to mirror the latest version of the repository (whenever someone bugs Nathaniel about it.)

Paul Callahan's pages share a serious problem with George Maydwell's site: modern browsers just plain don't even try to support Java applets any more, due to security issues. I suspect that's why the CGOLVE/ModernCA site now seems to be permanently down. A large and impressive (and colorful) collection of patterns was available there, with the Life collection based on Alan Hensel's pattern collection but with some differences. Unfortunately it would be quite a bit of work to get either of these two sites running properly again -- though we could do pretty well these days by substituting LifeViewer for the Java applets, with custom color settings.

I'd like to get a copy of Calcyman's pages back online, since people keep looking for some of the content. Unfortunately even the Internet Archive didn't manage to store some of the bigger macrocell files, though I think the stable-reflector article and some other pages could be retrieved with some effort.
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Re: Golly references - broken links

Postby rowett » May 11th, 2017, 6:23 am

dvgrn wrote:Good catch. Two of those we have good solutions for; the other two are harder cases.

Thanks Dave I've fixed the relevant links in Golly (and removed Calcyman's for now).

dvgrn wrote:Paul Callahan's pages share a serious problem with George Maydwell's site: modern browsers just plain don't even try to support Java applets any more, due to security issues. I suspect that's why the CGOLVE/ModernCA site now seems to be permanently down. A large and impressive (and colorful) collection of patterns was available there, with the Life collection based on Alan Hensel's pattern collection but with some differences. Unfortunately it would be quite a bit of work to get either of these two sites running properly again -- though we could do pretty well these days by substituting LifeViewer for the Java applets, with custom color settings.

I've updated Paul Callahan's patterns folder from the common GitHub repository (/lifecontent/lifepage/patterns/) to use LifeViewer. You can get the new version from here (1.6Mb zip file). If you want a specific color set let me know and I'll rerun the converter script to generate the appropriate LifeViewer script commands.
Once you're happy it works you can just replace the patterns folder on github and then publish to conwaylife.com/ref/lifepage.
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Re: Golly references - broken links

Postby dvgrn » May 11th, 2017, 9:14 am

rowett wrote:I've updated Paul Callahan's patterns folder from the common GitHub repository (/lifecontent/lifepage/patterns/) to use LifeViewer.

Very nice! I'll do a commit as soon as I've figured out whether to do anything at the same time about the outdated main page links, email address, etc.

The old CGOLVE pages are still remembered as a particularly impressive introduction to the range of CA possibilities -- four autostarted (and auto-restarting) random samples on the same page, sometimes, with different color schemes.

The range of custom color settings in LifeViewer hasn't really been exercised properly yet, at least in a showy CGOLVE-y kind of way where the whole Internet can see it. I wonder if good suggestions for colors and rules could still be extracted from the CGOLVE package? Some of the rule types can't be supported without a custom LifeViewer build, I guess, but a fair fraction of them might work.
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