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 A minimal CPU implemented in Wireworld (cellular automaton) 
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Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:54 pm
Posts: 1789
We've mentioned Conway's Life here, just the once, and it's known that Life is Turing-complete, so structures in Life can compute things. Here's a Turing machine running on a 6502 life (needs banked RAM):

Well, Life's computers are huge, so back in the day Brian Silverman reasoned his way to Wireworld, a four-state grid universe which has 'electrons' travelling down 'wires' and which allows much more compact computers. (Mini in-browser simulator here.) And here's one such, with 64 registers and a transport-triggered architecture, which is currently programmed to compute prime numbers:

There's a link on that page to a simple C implementation of Wireworld, so I was able overnight to find a larger prime number:

More detail on how that CPU works here.

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Last edited by BigEd on Fri May 15, 2020 8:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

fixup dead link

Sat Jun 03, 2017 7:26 am
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