In 1970, the British mathematician John Horton Conway elaborated the first unpredictable cell automaton known as “Life” or “The Game of Life”.
Life was the first computerized simulation of real living things, because of Life’s analogies with the rise, fall and alterations of a Society of Living Organisms.
The evolution of the process is determined by its initial state, requiring no further input. One interacts with the Game of Life by creating an initial configuration and observing how it evolves, or by creating patterns with particular properties.
Since its publication, Conway’s Game of Life has attracted much interest, because of the surprising ways in which the patterns can evolve.
Life provides an example of emergence and self-organization; many scholars have raised the question of whether the universe itself is a cellular automaton.
Another application is the one from cognitive scientist Daniel Dennett who used the analogy of Conway’s Life"universe" to illustrate the possible evolution of complex philosophical constructs, such as consciousness and free will, from the relatively simple set of deterministic physical laws, which might govern our universe.
• LIFE, DEATH, ISOLATION & REPLICATION:
The rules are fairly simple:
1. Any live cell with fewer than two live neighbors dies, as if by under population.
2. Any live cell with two or three live neighbors lives on to the next generation.
3. Any live cell with more than three live neighbors dies, as if by overpopulation.
4. Any dead cell with exactly three live neighbors becomes a live cell, as if by reproduction.
Conways’s views on the Game:
The Game of Life, online:
The visitor acts as an interactive life catalyst.
By entering the Cartesian site space (Basement), and approaching the dispersed captors, his movements are converted to data and transmitted to the Life app., located in the middle of the space.
The process starts and iterations can emerge, the system builds itself autonomously, it evolves, lives, and eventually dies.
The interactive patterns are then sent in real time to the gravity tracer (drawing device) located on the ground floor, a UV laser device follows the given coordinates, and imprints the evolutions and iterations on a photosensitive (Blue GlowSurface) creating a living image.
The drawing surface rotates and simulates the notion time, the Cartesian data drawing, leaves a circular imprint on the surface, an organic drawing emerges.
The imprint of a perfectly autonomous system slowly disappears, as voids from the surface are not in contact with UV light anymore, the organic system is replaced with another iteration, delicately overlapping the last ones.
• SPACE & BOUNDARIES:
The basement of the site is converted into a Cartesian space; 8 sensors continuously gather information given by the visitors (movements).
Light, UV radiation is amongst the most crucial elements to create life. UV radiation is used in the proposal to give birth to the drawings in real time. Some remarkable patterns will be saved, to create fixed Cyanotype images following the same principles.
The Drawing surface rotates and simulates the constant relation to time. Life, Evolution, Death.
• MACRO > MICRO > MACRO:
The input comes from the outer world “the Meatspace”, travels Online (Life app.) and generates patterns, the information is then sent back to Meatspace to be imprinted on the drawing surface.
Remarkable patterns will be saved; the data will be imprint with light on a Cyanotype surface, glass, fabric, paper… to be determined and experimented.