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 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 knightships, 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?
 ... that the first spiralgrowth pattern in Conway's Life was constructed in 2014?
 ... that among known glider recipes for irreducible objects, the Gemini spaceship has the largest known minimal recipe, currently 175,167 gliders  the runnerup being the Parallel HBK with a 38,380glider synthesis?
 ... 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?

