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CA3D 20.7.14
3D cellular automaton
(HTML5/JS, 2D canvas)
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This is an experimental 3-dimensional cellular automaton akin to J.H.Conway's "Game of Life".

You are positioned inside a 3D grid, the vertices of which are the cells of the automaton. You can explore the grid by means of buttons shown below it. If you have a keyboard you can use arrow keys, etc, as indicated on the buttons.

The program will indicate if there has been no change during a time step, in which case there will be no further development. As in the original "game" there are stable patterns and oscillating ones. It is a large grid so even if you see no change there may still be some somewhere: roam around.

The initial setting of cells is random. The faces of the cubical grid wrap around: edge positions are influenced by cells on the far side.

One thing I have noticed, which I find interesting, is that although the first time step may kill most cells (because the initial 50% random filling is too crowded) once the system embarks on an expanding phase there seems to be no end to it: it occupies the grid in a completely sustainable way.

Programmers will be able to change the parameters and experiment. By viewing the source of this page you will be able to download the necessary JavaScript files. The one to edit is ca3d1.js and within that the timeStep() method of type Grid is the important one. You will see that, unlike Conway, the influence of neighbouring cells diminishes with distance. You could experiment by changing or even removing that dependence (you can see I tried distance squared). Also the thresholds for cell survival/birth/death can easily be altered. I found that the upper level for birth, currently 4.66666, is really critical for determining whether the whole thing dies out or eventually fills the whole grid. July 2020