|View static image|
|Number of cells||1049395|
|Discovered by|| Adam P. Goucher|
|Year of discovery||2014|
Half-baked knightship is a class of knightship based on the well-known half-bakery reaction with a glider. It is a self-supporting macro-spaceship, as contrasted with the elementary Sir Robin. Half-baked knightships were the smallest known oblique spaceships in Conway's Game of Life both in terms of the bounding box and minimum population until December 2014 when the waterbear was discovered with a smaller bounding box. The Gemini and its derivatives, the only formerly known oblique spaceships, step farther in each period in spite of their larger size and population, so they travel much faster than half-bakery knightships.
In May 2014 Ivan Fomichev found the key reactions, which allow long chains of half-bakeries to regenerate themselves at (6, 3), and also to regenerate seed constellations at one end of the ship. When triggered, the seeds produce the small glider salvos that mediate the (6, 3) offset reaction. Components and slow salvo syntheses for the ship were found by the combined efforts of Chris Cain, Ivan Fomichev and Dave Greene.
Adam P. Goucher proposed the base design for the ship, and in July 2014 wrote a Golly script that assembled the components into an unoptimised but working half-baked knightship of any sufficiently large period. An example was posted for period 2621440.
Several days later, Chris Cain wrote an alternative assembly script that built a parallel HBK an order of magnitude smaller, using a more sophisticated design with the most efficient known components.
Half-baked knightships are the first family of patterns to demonstrate universal construction capability using monochromatic slow salvos -- all gliders the same color. They are also the first known spaceship family with adjustable velocity but fixed slope.