I was sad to hear John Conway had recently died of COVID-19. Conway was a mathematician who contributed much to his field, but for me as a computer scientist, I knew of him for his Game of Life (aka just Life).
Life was one of the first programs I wrote at university. I remember the excitement of watching the cells flicker on and off creating more and more complex behaviour from really simple rules. I’ve been fascinated with it ever since.
I was never very happy with the performance of my code, though, running as it was on a 90’s CPU. Since I’m learning Metal at the moment, it seemed like a good time to pay my respects to John Conway and implement Life on a GPU.