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14b2o$14bobo$16bo4b2o$12b4ob2o2bo2bo$12bo2bobobobob2o$15bobobobo$16b2o bobo$20bo2$6b2o$7bo7b2o$7bobo5b2o$8b2o7$18b2o$18bo$19b3o$21bo7$3o$2bo$ bo! #C [[ THUMBSIZE 2 THEME 6 GRID GRIDMAJOR 0 SUPPRESS THUMBLAUNCH ]] #C [[ AUTOSTART ]] #C [[ WIDTH 600 HEIGHT 600 X 4 Y -4 THUMBSIZE 3 ZOOM 21 GPS 30 LOOP 128 ]]
Pattern type Stable reflector
Number of cells 52
Bounding box 23 × 17
Angle 90°
Repeat time 43
Discovered by Mike Playle
Year of discovery 2013

The Snark is a 90° stable glider reflector discovered by Mike Playle on April 25, 2013.[1] It is made up of two eater 1s, a block and a 31.4, the "heart" of the Snark. It is currently the fastest and the smallest 90° stable glider reflector, both in terms of the population and the bounding box. Another commonly-used stabilization of the catalyst is 34 bits, and many other variants are available. For a color-changing one, see the reflector in the stable reflector article, or a periodic bouncer.

#C four Snark catalyst variants #C Top: original variant by Mike Playle #C Left: Shannon Omick (better clearance on a diagonal) #C Right: Heinrich Koenig (better clearance on a different diagonal) #C Bottom: Simon Ekström (better clearance on two diagonals) x = 51, y = 52, rule = B3/S23 20b2o$20bobo$22bo4b2o$18b4ob2o2bo2bo$18bo2bobobobob2o$21bobobobo$22b2o bobo$26bo2$12b2o$13bo7b2o$13bobo5b2o$14b2o25bo$39b3o$38bo$38b2o3$46b2o $24b2o21bo$24bo22bob2o$14b3o8b3o11b2o4b3o2bo$4bo11bo10bo11b2o3bo3b2o$ 2b5o8bo5b2o21b4o$bo5bo13bo8b2o15bo$bo2b3o12bobo7bobo12b3o$2obo15b2o8bo 13bo$o2b4o21b2o14b5o$b2o3bo3b2o11bo22bo2bo$3b3o4b2o11b3o22b2o$3bo22bo$ 2obo21b2o$2ob2o3$11b2o$12bo$9b3o$9bo25b2o$28b2o5bobo$28b2o7bo$37b2o2$ 24bo$23bobob2o4b2o$23bobobobo2bo2bo$22b2obobobo3b2o$23bo2b2ob4o$23bo4b o3bo$24b3obo2bo$26bobobo$29bo! #C [[ THUMBSIZE 2 THEME 6 GRID GRIDMAJOR 0 SUPPRESS THUMBLAUNCH ]] #C [[ THUMBLAUNCH THUMBSIZE 2 ZOOM 8 HEIGHT 480 THEME Book GRID GRIDMAJOR 0 STARTFROM 232 ]]
Four Snark catalyst variants: top: Mike Playle (original variant); left: Shannon Omick (better clearance on a diagonal); right: Heinrich Koenig (better clearance on a different diagonal); bottom: Simon Ekström (better clearance on two diagonals)
(click above to open LifeViewer)
RLE: here Plaintext: here

The base reaction was discovered by Dietrich Leithner about 1998, but it consumed another block.[2] A catalyst that could restore the block was found with Bellman, a program for searching catalytic reactions developed by Mike Playle. Prior to that, some attempts like p4 reflector were made with periodic sparkers.

Given its small repeat time, the Snark enabled adjustable glider loop oscillators of previously unknown periods of 43 and 53 to be constructed.[3] It also made most large symmetrical Herschel loop guns obsolete, since it is now possible to make use of the Herschel gliders with a shorter path of the Herschel track itself.[4]

The Snark was voted Pattern of the Year for 2013 in a belated vote held on the forums.[5]

While the repeat time is 43, a continuous period-38 stream triples the period to 114, while a continuous period-41 stream quadruples the period to 164. A period-42 stream creates an extraneous honey farm, which can be deleted with a block, doubling the period to 84; this was used in a previous version of the smallest period-84 glider gun.

See also


  1. Mike Playle (April 25, 2013). Just the place for a Snark! (discussion thread) at the forums
  2. Adam P. Goucher (February 17, 2010). Re: Incomplete search patterns - try to complete (discussion thread) at the forums
  3. Matthias Merzenich (April 25, 2013). Re: Just the place for a Snark! (discussion thread) at the forums
  4. Dave Greene (May 4, 2013). Re: Just the place for a Snark! (discussion thread) at the forums
  5. 77topaz (March 29, 2018). Re: Belated Pattern of the Year 2013 competition: Voting (discussion thread) at the forums

External links