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2007 December 16

Wicks & Fuses
Frozen LWSS fuse / rake

Sideways LWSS rake based on a glider+constellation->LWSS reaction.
This puffer produces a row of still-life constellations, each
of which can output an LWSS and two gliders when hit by a glider.
The result is a repeating sideways LWSS generating reaction
at the back, progressively thawing the "frozen LWSS" string.
David Bell, 4 November 2007.
David Bell has constructed a two-stage sideways LWSS rake, where the first stage builds "frozen LWSSs" -- a chain of repeated still-life constellations -- and the second "thawing" stage consists of a glider that follows the chain (at a much slower speed) and liberates the stored LWSSs.

Continue reading "Frozen LWSS fuse / rake" More

2007 February 25

Wicks & Fuses
New Period 2 and 4 Wicks

New P2 Wick Element New P2 Oscillators by A.Dergachev Another Period 2 Wick found by Artem Dergachev.

New P4 Wick Variations by A.Dergachev He also found a couple more Period 4 Wicks.

New P4 Wick Variations by A.Dergachev Nicolay Beluchenko found ways to attach other Period 4 oscillators to the wick element previously presented, as well as a way to bind two parallel wicks to each other.

New P4 Wick Variations by A.Dergachev Finally, a miscellaneous collection of extensible Period 4 oscillators and wicks from Beluchenko.

2006 May 13

Wicks & Fuses
Zigzag Wickstretcher

zigzag c/2 orthogonal wickstretcher
Jason Summers, 14 Feb 2006
Back in February, Jason Summers constructed a complex assembly of c/2 orthogonal rakes that builds a zigzag wick. The pattern uses glider constructions similar to those found in David Bell's c/12 diagonal wickstretchers from last year.

2006 May 12

Wicks & Fuses
More Puffer Orbits

Here's another batch of puffer orbits found by Jason Summers.

In the following tables, the percentages are approximate, intended to illustrate how common or rare a particular puffer might be. The bit patterns are not the actual puffer, but a simpler pattern which will eventually evolve into the puffer.

c/3 puffers The first puffer presented here is a based on a large Period 3 which moves at a speed of c/3. It also has a slightly smaller Period 12 variation.


P28 puffers The next set of puffers are based on a Period 28 Spaceship.


P2 puffers Another pair of puffers are based on a Period 2 Spaceship previously used to create a Period 8 Glider rake, both of which are shown also.


Tub puffers The final set includes a previously known B Heptomino based Tub puffer.


2006 April 03

Wicks & Fuses
Wave Stabilization Update

new ends for Hartmut Holzwart's orthogonal c/4 wave from March 10.
Nicolay Beluchenko, 1 April 2006
Nicolay Beluchenko has found a solution for an unsolved stabilization problem described by Hartmut Holzwart back in February. Since the wick in question moves orthogonally at c/4 -- so it might better be called a "wave" rather than a "wick" -- a standard stationary oscillator can't be used as a fencepost to stabilize its ends. Instead, special-purpose terminal spaceships must be constructed that travel along with the wave with the appropriate speed and direction to provide the stabilizing sparks.

2006 March 04

Wicks & Fuses
Wick and Wave Stabilization

fencepost for a known p6 wick: Jason Summers, 23 January 2006

fencepost for a known p6 wick: Jason Summers, 23 January 2006

easy-to-tame barber pole: Jason Summers, 23 January 2006
Jason Summers has done some work on creating 'fencepost' stabilizations for the ends of previously known but untamed fenceposts and barber poles.

c/4 diagonal eater spaceship for untamed oblique barber pole
Nicolay Beluchenko, 5 February 2006
Hartmut Holzwart and Nicolay Beluchenko have been working on the moving equivalent of a fencepost, for an oblique p4 wave pattern that can be stabilized at the trailing end by a c/4 'eater' spaceship, along the lines of recent 'anteater' patterns. A matching 'stretcher' end for the same wave is currently an open problem.

smaller eater for untamed diagonal c/4 barber pole
Hartmut Holzwart, 10 February 2006

eater #3 for untamed diagonal c/4 wave
Hartmut Holzwart, 13 February 2006

eater #4 for untamed diagonal c/4 wave
Hartmut Holzwart, 13 February 2006
Here are some further results from Hartmut Holzwart related to this wave pattern.

eater #5 for untamed diagonal c/4 wave
Hartmut Holzwart, 13 February 2006

untamed diagonal c/4 wave connected to another wave
Hartmut Holzwart, 13 February 2006

2005 August 05

New c/4 Diagonal Tubstretcher

27P4H1V1A2.1 Nicolay Beluchenko has noticed that a previously known spaceship can be converted into a small Tubstretcher. As shown at left, the four blue bits convert the ship into the smallest known puffer of any variety.

74P4H1V1A2.1 This puffer can be combined with a Tub burning fuse, found by Harmut Holzwart, to create spaceships of any length. The smallest, at 74 bits, is shown here. (The Tub fuse is hilighted in blue.)

2005 June 04

Extensible Wickstretcher-like Spaceship

description Hartmut Holzwart has found a Lightweight Spaceship convoy which consists of a Period 4 wickstretcher head, a Period 19 wick and a Period 4 fuse. Shown is the simplest version with only one copy of the wick and one with two copies of it. (Note that there are no known Period 19 oscillators, so finding stable ends for this wick may take a while, but it could be the foundation for such an oscillator.)

2005 May 26

Wicks & Fuses
New 3c/6 fuses

3c/6 fuse #1  Hartmut Holzwart  18 May 2005

Hartmut Holzwart has discovered two new 3c/6 fuses. He comments that there appear to be many more of these awaiting discovery.

3c/6 fuse #2  Hartmut Holzwart  19 May 2005

2005 May 09

Wicks & Fuses
Extensible Wickstretchers and HALFMAX

Wickstretcher 1  Hartmut Holzwart  22 April 2005 Hartmut Holzwart and Jason Summers have successfully tamed a extended family of wickstretchers, beginning with the one at right -- a p4 wickstretcher with two central lines and a p8 tail, constructed by Holzwart on 22 April 2005.

Wickstretcher 2  Hartmut Holzwart  22 April 2005 Wickstretcher 3  Hartmut Holzwart and Karel Suhajda  22 April 2005 This was followed by several related results. To the right is an alternate form of the wickstretcher, created by Holzwart, with the right side replaced by a pure p4 tail section. On the far right is another phase of the above wickstretcher, with the tail replaced by a p6 fencepost constructed by Karel Suhajda on the same day.

smaller c/2 p80 puffer  Jason Summers  24 April 2005 Starting from a related p80 puffer ship, Jason Summers produced a new smaller p80 puffer -- 8 cells wider than the known p4 ships in Paul Tooke's collection, but about 20 cells shorter. As with the old ships, there's also an alternate, much less prolific p80 orbit -- as well as a p20 "bread-and-honey" orbit (loaves are created, then converted to beehives a few generations later.)

Wickstretcher 4  Hartmut Holzwart  3 May 2005 Wickstretcher 5  Hartmut Holzwart  25 April 2005 Holzwart also produced a four-central-line wickstretcher, and later a smaller version of the original minimal wickstretcher as well (with no central lines in the wick) -- both completed by a p4 c/2 tail rather than a fencepost.

Wickstretcher 6  Hartmut Holzwart  3 May 2005 Wickstretcher 7  Hartmut Holzwart  4 May 2005 Based on a "double fencepost" pattern of Holzwart's (not shown) Summers found a way to provide an independent fencepost for each of the two active edges of a wick -- allowing any number of stable lines to be added in the middle (the example at right shows a wick with a 14-line "sandwich".) Other possible modifications include changing the phase of the two edges relative to each other, as in the asymmetrical wickstretcher and fencepost at the far right -- or simply shifting one section of the wick by two cells relative to an adjacent section, as shown by the "spacers" (four-line-thick oblongs) toward the center of the pattern below.

Half-plane-filler (HALFMAX)  Jason Summers  4 May 2005
Finally, Summers succeeded in using the new wick and fencepost technology to produce this semi-spacefilling pattern, which expands in three directions at half the speed of light -- producing a triangular region that grows to fill half the plane. [Previous spacefillers have all been diamond-shaped, expanding at c/2 in all four cardinal directions to fill the entire plane.]

Update: 9 May 2005 07:22

HALFMAX2  6 May 2005 minimal wickstretcher  6 May 2005 On May 6, Hartmut Holzwart produced smaller versions of both the original basic wickstretcher and of Jason Summers' HALFMAX pattern (far right).

Update: 26 May 2005 06:45

3-line wickstretcher  Jason Summers  21 May 2005 smaller 4-line wickstretcher  Jason Summers  21 May 2005 On May 21, Jason Summers produced sample patterns that allow the construction of wickstretchers with any number of central lines, by adding the appropriate number of four-line "spacers" to one of the four extensible base patterns. He observed: "For each number of lines, there are eight possible wicks, made by changing the relative position and phase of the two sides of the wick (except for zero lines, where there are only two)."

HALFMAX3  Jason Summers  15 May 2005 5-line wickstretcher  Jason Summers  21 May 2005 Wickstretchers with 3, 4, and 5 central lines are shown here. On the far right is Summers' latest HALFMAX optimization, backed up by one generation to reduce the population to 903 cells.

2005 April 26

Wicks & Fuses
New Wick and Fuse

Hartmut Holzwart has discovered a new p4 wick that is also a p48 fuse:

Hartmut Holzwart's April 26 p4 wick