PSA: Search existing resources before posting and including them in the post

For discussion directly related to ConwayLife.com, such as requesting changes to how the forums or wiki function.
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GUYTU6J
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PSA: Search existing resources before posting and including them in the post

Post by GUYTU6J » April 9th, 2022, 12:44 am

The study of cellular automata dates back to the 20th century when computers were still in their infancy, let alone a network integrating a majority of them. As we review the history of Conway's Game of Life, the most representative cellular automata that has not only been researched extensively itself but also inspired numerous families of imaginative extensions - all the way from the ancient Lifeline era to the conwaylife.com forums/wiki complex (plus catagolue and discord)* era - it is apparent that the fundamental development of personal computers and cyber communication plays a vital role in facilitating pattern sharing and idea exchanging. LifeWiki:About expresses its duty:
In the past, Life patterns have been scattered around the internet on the home pages of various mathematicians, but surprisingly no single resource has been provided to consolidate all of this information – LifeWiki hopes [to] fill this gap.
Despite the abundance of knowledge on the web, however, I have found that they tend to be ignored intentionally or unintentionally by some forums users. Here are five recent examples, with downsides to different extents including unnecessary low-value posts/threads, necroposting and information scattering (I hate it). The second one was formerly a new thread, which made me reflect my own attitude and consequently led to this post.

Actually this is not a new issue on the management side, though. The official Forum Rules #4 writes,
This is an academic forum, not a chat or microblogging platform. Please spend some time doing some research to familiarize yourself with what is and isn't already known about the Game of Life before posting your discoveries. ...
Regarding current situation, it needs these expansions:
  • Asking questions is fine, but for future improvements there should be indications that the asker has searched for relevant sources but cannot acquire or understand the answer.
  • Sometimes people feel like writing a summary/review for collecting data, such as this early thread for non-totalistic rules. In this case appropriate references/citations/acknowledgements as in every other academic field is undoubtedly a must.
    ·Think twice as to whether a new post/thread is intended to record a single point or include a number of related findings.
  • All the same principles apply to exercise in other cellular automata.
It has to be addressed that many may find the search hard due to omitted parts, obscure keywords, etc. Using google or other external engines, changing input keywords or simply going to the right place by browsing can help that. Nevertheless, this should not be the main reason to stop/deter/refrain from searching.

In essence, this is one of my wishful thinkings to ensure a productive, high-quality/standard/value environment. Even if the writing styles look similar to you, I am not M&C :)

hotdogPi
Posts: 942
Joined: August 12th, 2020, 8:22 pm

Re: PSA: Search existing resources before posting and including them in the post

Post by hotdogPi » April 9th, 2022, 6:38 am

You can't expect new users to know what's known and what isn't. Sometimes, not even established users (e.g. the fumarole phase changing reaction was known but completely forgotten until 62P66 came along).
User:HotdogPi/My discoveries

Periods discovered: 5-16,⑱,⑳G,㉑G,㉒㉔㉕,㉗-㉛,㉜SG,㉟,㊱,㊳S,㊵㊷㊹㊺㊽㊿,54G,55G,56,57G,60,62-66,70,72,74S,75,76S,80,84,90,96,100,102S,108,110,114G,116,117G,120,126G,128S,138,147,154,156,196S,217,486,576

S: SKOP
G: gun

confocaloid
Posts: 170
Joined: February 8th, 2022, 3:15 pm

Re: PSA: Search existing resources before posting and including them in the post

Post by confocaloid » June 5th, 2022, 10:26 pm

To be frank, I think blaming other CA enthusiasts for not being quite perfect is not exactly productive. There are different people here with different backgrounds.

I think the issue is not "being academic". The issue is more like "being a nice small hobbyist community with high signal-to-noise ratio". I hope you can feel the difference between the two.

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