This week's featured article

A Garden of Eden is a pattern that has no parents and thus can only occur in generation 0. The term was first used in connection with cellular automata by John W. Tukey, many years before Conway's Game of Life was conceived. It was known from the start that Gardens of Eden exist in Life because of a theorem by Edward Moore that guarantees their existence in a wide class of cellular automata. The first Garden of Eden was found by Roger Banks and the MIT group in 1971. It had a bounding box of size 33 × 9 and 226 cells. Jean HardouinDuparc found the second and third Gardens of Eden by computer search in 1973, which had bounding boxes of size 122 × 6 and 117 × 6. His goal was to find Gardens of Eden with minimal height. In April 2016, Steven Eker found a Garden of Eden fitting inside a 5 x 83 bounding box. It is known that no Gardens of Eden exist with height less than 4, but the question is still open for the h=4 case.

Pattern collection

The LifeWiki contains one of the most comprehensive catalogues of patterns available on the internet. Within it you will find:


Did you know...

 ... that Demonoids, caterloopillars, orthogonoids and halfbakery knightships are the only known types of spaceships with fixed slope but adjustable speed?
 ... that a pattern exists in which no cell in the unbounded Life plane ever becomes periodic?
 ... that several candidate universal constructors have been demonstrated in Conway’s Life, but as of June 2015 none have been formally proven to be universal?
 ... that there are dozens of known Cordership variants, including puffers, rakes and wickstretchers, with periods of any multiple of 96?
 ... that greyships have been constructed with speeds of c/2, c/3, c/4, c/5 and 2c/5?
 ... that most greyships travel parallel to the stripes in their included agars, but a few travel perpendicular to the stripes, or "against the grain"?
 ... that a pattern has been constructed that calculates and prints out the digits of pi in decimal, and a similar one prints out the decimal digits of the Golden Ratio?
 ... that several different patterns have been constructed to calculate and display the sequence of prime numbers, and some have been adapted to display only prime pairs or Fermat primes?
 ... that two completely different types of oblique spaceships, the waterbear and the halfbaked knightship, were constructed in 2014?
 ... that no Caterpillartype spaceships were completed for almost ten years after the original Caterpillar was constructed in 2004, but that two different designs, the waterbear and the centipede, were finished in 2014?

