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cellular automata and OOP

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg21716] cellular automata and OOP
  • From: "Atul Sharma" <atulksharma at>
  • Date: Sun, 23 Jan 2000 17:58:00 -0500 (EST)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

I would like to set up a cellular automata, but one that differs somewhat
from the standard described (for example) in the useful books by Gaylord et
al. The main difference is that multiple entities can coexist on the same
lattice sites, with interactions permitted only between entities on the same
sites. Ultimately, this may involve hundreds of entities on a given lattice
site, with 5-6 different entities permitted, each interacting with only a
subset of the remainder and each free to diffuse at each time step. In
addition, some of the entities will have internal dynamics requiring updates
at each time step.

My question is this:

What is the most efficient approach to implementing such a project in Mathematica.
My initial though was to set up OOP code as described by Maeder in the
Mathematica Programmer, with a constructor that assigns properties
(including lattice position) to each entity. Interactions would be handled
as events, with updates signalled by the 'time step' event.

I have little experience in this area, and this may well be the most
inefficient design imaginable:) Any suggestions or examples would be


A. Sharma

Atul Sharma MD, FRCP(C)
Pediatric Nephrologist,
McGill University/Montreal Children's Hospital

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