Sean Lynch will be completing the final semester of a physics degree in the fall of 2006. He is attending Rowan University in New Jersey, where he has previously graduated with a bachelor's degree in business--management information systems.
His primary interest in studying simple programs is to study how information can be transferred around a system and its effect on the behavior of a system.
He believes that studying the processes by which information travels around a system will lead to deep new insights within NKS.
Persistent Structures and the Particle Physics of Code 20
Sean studied the cellular automaton known as Code 20 for his Summer School project. Code 20 has behavior that is classified as class 4 in that it supports repetitive, persistent structures that can interact with each other in complex ways. The structures that are present in Code 20 can be thought of as being the catalysts for transferring information from one place to another in the system.
With a background in physics, Sean was interested in studying the collisions between the structures and drawing parallels between these collisions and those observed in actual particle physics. The following are some of the interesting collisions between structures. Of particular interest are the intermediate structures that exist during the collision but are not produced as part of the outcome of the collision. They are analogous to virtual particles that exist in Feynman diagrams.
Future research will consist of investigating the computational capabilities of Code 20. Sean will first use Code 20 to construct logic circuits and then try to prove its universality.
Rule chosen: 394392