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To: <mwcybercourse@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: Game of Life
From: "Gary McCallister" <mccallis@xxxx>
Date: Tue, 02 Apr 2002 08:27:21 -0700

The attached is the game of life I sent in from my student Wendy L. In most
versions of the game of life one sees, there is a grid that represents a
space/ time universe. Each square can be lack or white (which can be
considered on or off etc.) The player chooses the initial conditions, how many
are black, white, location of each etc. From that point on, whether asquare is
black or white depends on a small set of rules. The rules can vary between
different versions of the game, but they are often something like, "if three
or more neighboring squares to a black square are black also black, the black
square turns white". From this set of rules and the initial conditions the
game "evolves" sometimes running into extinction, at other times creating
interesting and repeating patterns, and sometimes creatingnever-ending chaotic
In this version the student chose to use a grid and to call each row atime
step. Then using some initial settings such as one black square in row 1 =
time 1, see what developed in row 2 - time 2. This allowed us to compare
visually each time step. The reason for setting up in this slightly different
manner was to utilize this as a model for epidemic spread of disease. We could
see which squares became "infected" as compared to the previous time period
and we could count, when we were done with one run, the number of squares
"infected" and make a separate graph of the results to seewhat effect initial
conditions might have on epidemic spread, total number of cases, and how
quickly they develop. We have not completed this second part (analysis) of the
project. The rules are spelled out in the notes on the procedures page. Wendy
has been interested in public health, hence this project, although she is now
looking to go into cognitive science.

Attachment: Game of Life.mw2
Description: Binary data

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