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Parity means even or odd, particularly as applied to the phases of an oscillator or a spaceship.

The even/odd parity is important to slow salvo constructions, where the intermediate targets are frequently period 2 due to blinkers, traffic lights or toads. A glider striking a period-2 constellation will generally produce different results depending on its parity. Period-4 intermediate targets are rare (or not used), so it doesn't matter if an incoming glider is in phase 1 or phase 3.

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