This week's featured article

Primer is a pattern that was constructed by Dean Hickerson on November 1, 1991 that produces a stream of lightweight spaceships representing the prime numbers. N is prime if and only if a lightweight spaceship is above the honeycomb at the bottomleft corner of the pattern at generation 120N. It was the first pattern created that computes prime numbers, though others have since been constructed using the same ideas.
It works by using gliders to emulate a prime number sieve. Lightweight spaceships that move westward are deleted by gliders that represent positive integers if the lightweight spaceship represents a multiple of that number.

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 it was shown in 2014 that any salvo of gliders, no matter how tightly packed, can be constructed by crashing together gliders whose initial positions are farther apart than any chosen finite distance?
 ... that no spaceships with velocities other than c/4 diagonal (glider), c/2 orthogonal (*WSS variants), and c/12 diagonal (Corderships) had known glider syntheses until 2003, when a 2c/5 spaceship gun was constructed?
 ... that after ten years with no new small spaceship syntheses, a glider construction was found for the c/7 loafer in 2013?
 ... that glider constructions for three previously inconstructible spaceships (the dart, the crab, and the Parallel HBK) were discovered in 2014?
 ... that glider constructions for the B29, X66, halfX66 with HWSS, Pushalong 1, 25P3H1V0.2, 30P5H2V0, 30P4H2V0.4, a pufferfish spaceship, and the weekender were discovered in 2015  after fifteen years of intermittent efforts in the case of the weekender?
 ... that since 2014, more new spaceship syntheses have been completed than were found in all the years between 1970 and 2013?
 ... that as of November 2016 there are 161 different still lifes known to be constructible by colliding four gliders, but it is not known if the list is complete?
 ... that in 2014 a new natural infinite growth pattern was discovered, starting from a symmetric random starting configuration?
 ... that the first selfconstructing Conway's Life pattern was built in 2010?
 ... that the first glider synthesis for a c/3 spaceship was completed in 2014?

