The "glider" is a pattern that moves 1 cell diagonally every 4 generations.
The Game of Life is a mind-bogglingly complex universe-simulator invented by the mathematician John Conway. Based around an infinite grid and a few simple rules, it gives a new meaning to emergent complexity. Each tile on the grid can exist in one of two states: the default "dead" state, or "live". Given a blank, dead grid, a player then seeds the canvas with little colonies of "live" squares. A live square that is neighbored by fewer than two, or more than three, other live squares dies. A dead square that is bordered by exactly three live squares becomes live. A website which allows you to tinker around with Life patterns can be found here.
Not to be confused with Milton Bradley's board game
References in fictional works: