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2017-03-26
AVL - A Virtual Life

Screenshot of AVL
(Screenshot of AVL)

AVL stands for "A Virtual Life" and simulates microbes which are able to learn. The program shows two windows on your WB, one control-window and one display-window (resizable).

There are several colors within the playfield, each represents food or poison, and brings positive or negative energy if it was eaten by an microbe.

At the beginning, the playfield is randomly filled with colors and no microbe is there.
Now, you can position one or more microbes at any position on the playfield.

The microbes are at the beginning dumb, they don't know anything. That means, they have to learn first, what it is good or bad for them. This is done by trial&error, they must have eaten first a color to know if it was bad or good.
The microbes use the learned knowledge for controlling their move direction on the playfield. They avoid bad colors and search for good colors.
If a microbe as enough energy, it is able to get "children". Like a real microbe, this is done by cell-division, this means, one microbe splits up in two microbes, each of the them has half of the energy of the formerly microbe.
If a microbe looses too much energy, it also can die. The reason for this could be, that the microbe had longer time no food (every step needs energy) or that it ate too much "poison colors".
You also should know, that a microbe can see, but only one pixel around it. If it sees within this one-pixel border a pixel which brings energy, it will move to it and eat it.

During runtime, you have control over the microbes; you can draw around in the playfield with every color (good/bad) and can even place new life(s).
There is also a slider for controlling the "energy-less per step" (Slider: EPS), and you can even conrol the global "IQ-level" of the microbes (Slider: IQ).
The lower the IQ-Setting, the "dumber" is a microbe... it more often forgets, if a color was good or bad...

A very interesting thing of AVL is, that you can even save/load landscapes (playfields) to/from your HD.
This allows to define nice environments for testing the microbes. I have included some example environments; load them and place a new life on the marked place... and see what happens... ;)

You can download AVL here.



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