Complex Adaptive Systems

Bridging Explanations in Conway’s Game of Life


1.  Create a set of rules for the game of life that does the following: If a cell has an even number (including 0) of “turned on” neighbors, then it turns off; if a cell has an odd number of turned on neighbors, then it turns on.  This rule set has an amazing property.  What is this property?

2.  WHY does the property found in Question 5 emerge from the rule set?  Your explanation should make a BRIDGE between two levels: the lower-order level of rules, and the higher-order level of the visually apparent property.