Gosper glider gun

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Gosper glider gun
Gosper glider gun image
Pattern type Gun
Number of cells 36
Bounding box 36×9
Period 30
Barrels 1
Discovered by Bill Gosper
Year of discovery 1970

The Gosper glider gun is the first known gun, and indeed the first known finite pattern with unbounded growth, found by Bill Gosper in November 1970. It consists of two queen bee shuttles stabilized by two blocks. Its 36 cells remain the smallest size of any known gun, although the Simkin glider gun discovered in 2015 shares this record.

As the Gosper glider gun can be constructed with only 8 gliders, it has the smallest known glider synthesis of any gun. It can be destroyed completely by 2 gliders, as shown below.

Inline inverter

An inline inverter is a reaction with the Gosper glider gun in which it eats an incoming glider and thus can be used to invert the presence or absence of gliders in a period 30 stream, as in a NOT gate, with the output glider stream being in the same direction as the input glider stream.[1]


  • There are two other ways in which queen bees can interact to form gliders,[2] and a third queen bee can be used to reflect a glider and make a "pseudo-Gosper gun".[3]

Image gallery

Glider destruction of the Gosper glider gun
RLE: here
An inline inverter inverting a glider stream
RLE: here
Twogun, the smallest known period-60 gun, is composed of two Gosper glider guns.
RLE: here

See also


  1. "Inline inverter". The Life Lexicon. Stephen Silver. Retrieved on May 22, 2009.
  2. http://conwaylife.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1179#p8989
  3. http://conwaylife.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1179#p9150

External links