LIFE(6) Games Manual LIFE(6)
life - John Conway's game of life
This game is available with the Games software installation option.
Refer to for information on how to install optional software.
life is a program that plays John Conway's game of life. It only runs
When invoked, life will display a window with a small control panel at
the top, and a large drawing area at the bottom. You can create pieces
in the drawing area with the left button, and erase them with the mid-
dle button. When you select Run in the control panel, the pieces will
begin to evolve, and the drawing region will update itself at a speed
controlled by the slider labeled with Fast and Slow. life keeps track
of all the pieces even if they are not visible. The scroll bars sur-
rounding the drawing region can be used to see pieces that have moved
out of view. There are some standard patterns that can be drawn by
popping up a menu in the drawing subwindow.
The meaning of the items in the first row of the control panel (from
left to right) are as follows. If you click on the picture which looks
like a tic-tac-toe board, a grid will appear in the drawing region. If
you click on Step, the mode will change from run mode (where the pieces
update continuously) to step mode (where an update is only done when
you click on Step). Following Gen is a number indicating the number of
generations that have occurred. The button marked Find will scroll so
that at least one piece is in view. This is useful when all the pieces
disappear from view. The button marked Clear will clear the drawing
region, but leave the other controls unchanged. Reset will reset all
the panel controls, but will not erase any of the pieces, and Quit
Exits the tool. The second row contains two sliders. The first con-
trols the update speed when in run mode, the second controls the size
of the pieces.
21 December 1987 LIFE(6)