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Another fun example of a computer generating mezmerizingly complex art from simple code is that as a kid, I wrote a Langton's Ant implementation in QBASIC on a DOS machine (don't remember the version). IIRC this was using Graphics Mode 1 (320 x 200 pixel framebuffer), and I used PSET and PRESET to draw white and black pixels. This so far sounds ordinary but:

The cool thing was that I forgot to write the bounds check to make sure the ant stayed inside the framebuffer! So the ant would happily trundle off-screen, encounter arbitrary bits that were in that memory, and would often eventually return back on the screen from a different location. Or sometimes (probably due to encountering zeros offscreen) it would run a lap around the edge of the screen and then veer back inward.

Langton's Ant: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langtons_ant

I had the same bug (no pun intended), but in JavaScript. It does produce some interesting effects after making a few laps.


I still am a "kid", and it amuses me that I'm making the same stuff on modern platforms that have already been done on DOS machines by kids like me.

Awesome!! Glad you were able to reproduce the effect! :D

Reminds me of this blog post about a Tron game that didn't check memory bounds either: http://blog.danielwellman.com/2008/10/real-life-tron-on-an-a...

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