Sunday, March 23, 2008


gLife is another non-game. It's an artificial life simulator. You can alter a few characteristics via the preference menu, but the gist of it is very simple: you click 'start' and these dots start to move around. There are male dots, female dots, and terrain dots. Watch. Be engaged.

Honestly, it's not that engaging, but it was sort of sad. Around 220 turns in, all the dots stopped reproducing, leaving unoccupied yellow terrain dots behind as they died of old age. Finally there was only one little guy left (I was amused that it was a guy; considering that women have longer lifespans in virtually every society, you would think the last person alive would be female) and he bounced from square to square, a hopeless dot in a wasteland of yellow.

What does it all mean? Beats me. This is an interesting-for-thirty-seconds novelty unless you're going to dig into the source-code and alter bits n' pieces of the rulesets to run experiments on artificial life systems or what-have-you. It hasn't been updated since 2000, but the elephant's graveyard that is SourceForge still has the page up for it. The messageboard there is almost as sad as the last blue dot on earth, scurrying about the desert.

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