The Jaccia and Jacciata Cellular Automata
Jaccia and Jacciata are cellular automata inspired by the Announcement of Scientific Proof that Slime Molds are Intelligent Maze Solvers.
Basically, the slime mold solves the maze by:
- initially being everywhere in the maze
- there being food at the entrance and exit of the maze
- minimizing its surface area by retreating from anywhere it can't get food.
Jaccia operates the same way. In the Jaccia automaton, slime cells survive if they have immediate neighbours in at least two cardinal directions that provide sustenance, i.e. are either food or other slime cells. The result is the same: paths of slime cells that lead down dead ends have one end which provides no sustenance and dies off. Eventually, only paths of slime cells that reach from food to food (or uninterrupted circular paths of slime cells) remain. Jacciata is a more involved automaton which finds only the shortest path.
Jaccia has the property that, when started from this condition (entire maze filled with slime cells), the automaton will eventually reach a fixed point (steady state) which contains all possible orthogonal paths from food to food. (Orthogonal paths means, a diagonal isn't considered a path.)
Jacciata is similar, but has the property that when it reaches a fixed point, it will contain the shortest path from food to food, if such a path exists and is unique. If no such path exists, or is not unique, the result is undefined. It is otherwise similar to Jaccia.
Both Jaccia and Jacciata are defined in ALPACA v1.0. Jaccia is defined
in the file
jaccia.alp and Jacciata in
jacciata.alp. The ALPACA
definition is authoritative; what is given here is merely advisory.
Both automata use basically the same set of symbols. An initial Jaccia playfield generally serves as an initial Jacciata playfield with the same kind of solution.
- empty space
#- wall (purely decorative)
%- slime mold
S- "start" food (needed in Jacciata, optional in Jaccia)
-- exploratory head (Jacciata only)
?- exploratory body (Jacciata only)
@- solved (Jacciata only)
Jacciata's definition is not very elegant, especially when compared to
Jaccia. In order for it to work, the two sources of food need to be
labelled differently (
F), there needs to be a "head" of an
exploratory shoot that looks for solutions, and so on. It could probably
be made more elegant with some work.
[New in 1.1] The definition of these automata in ALPACA 0.94 suggested some possible improvements to ALPACA, particularly the definition of neighbourhoods different from the assumed von Neumann neighbourhood, and their use in the count operator. The Jaccia and Jacciata descriptions were rewritten in ALPACA 1.0, and do now take advantage of these features in order to be written more succinctly.
Happy intelligence! Such as it is.
April 11, 2009
git clone https://git.catseye.tc/Jaccia/
- CRLF line terminators -> LF line terminators. catseye 8 years ago
- Update README for version 1.1. catseye 8 years ago
- Use neighbourhood feature of ALPACA 1.0 to shorten descriptions. catseye 8 years ago
- Or maybe there's an edge case, too. Cat's Eye Technologies 9 years ago
- Oh, maybe it's not such an edge case, just a typo on my part. Cat's Eye Technologies 9 years ago
- Try to work around interesting edge case in Markdown links... Cat's Eye Technologies 9 years ago
- Convert documentation to Markdown. Cat's Eye Technologies 9 years ago
- Added tag rel_1_0_2012_0623 for changeset 707a320df6a2 Cat's Eye Technologies 9 years ago
- Import of HTML fixes from website. Cat's Eye Technologies 9 years ago
- Added tag rel_1_0_2010_0205 for changeset 0d10ea65e716 Cat's Eye Technologies 9 years ago