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Turmites Screen Saver

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Turmites is a screen saver about little machines moving around on your screen making interesting patterns. The above picture is an actual screenshot. The graphics are not high-tech, obviously, but they can be interesting.

Download Turmites Screen Saver (12k .tar.gz)

What the heck is a Turmite?

A Turmite is a variant on a Turing machine that runs in two dimensions. It's a machine that has a big table and keeps track of an internal state. Every time it takes a step, it takes the value (represented by different colors) of the screen where it's sitting and its internal state, and looks them up in the table. The table entry gives it a new state to jump to, a new value to write to the screen, and whether it should turn left, turn right, or go straight.

It's a very simple concept that produces very interesting results. And of course, the Turing machine is the basis for all modern computation. A Turing machine, given enough time and space, can do anything a modern computer can do.

Contact info

Turmites Screen Saver is written by Michael Ash.

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