2×2/Snippet

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2×2 is a Life-like cellular automaton in which cells survive from one generation to the next if they have 1, 2 or 5 neighbours, and are born if they have 3 or 6 neighbours. That is, it is governed by the rulestring "B36/S125". Patterns under the rule have a chaotic evolution similar to those under the standard Life rules, but the chaos tends to die out much more quickly.

The 2×2 rule gets its name from the fact that it can emulate a simpler cellular automaton that acts on each 2×2 block. The emulated automaton is a block cellular automaton that makes use of the Margolus neighbourhood. As a result, patterns that are originally made up of 2×2 blocks will forever be made up of 2×2 blocks, but the block partition will be offset by one cell in the odd generations from the even generations. There are 212 = 4096 such Life-like automata, of which 2×2 is the most well-known.