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Core War

Core War (or Core Wars) is a game consisting of battles between two or more assembly language programs occupying the same memory space in which the winner is the last one running. Although "core war" can refer to any such event, it is usually taken to mean the game based on the Redcode language that developed a following in part because of A. K. Dewdney's articles in Scientific American on it.

"Core" refers to magnetic core memory, an obsolete technology. Core War programs (called "warriors") are assembled and executed by a program called a Memory Array Redcode Simulator (abbreviated to MARS).

According to the Jargon File, Core War was the idea of Victor Vyssotsky, Robert Morris Sr., and Dennis Ritchie, who wrote a program called "Darwin" in the 1960s. In 1984, Core War Guidelines by A. K. Dewdney and D. G. Jones defined the language Redcode. The International Core War Society (ICWS) updated the language in 1984 and 1988, and proposed a new update in 1994 that was never formally set as the new standard.

Redcode, because it is designed for battle rather than assembly on a real machine, has some differences from "normal" assembly:

"Warriors", as the programs are called, are divided into categories, although programmers frequently implement programs with the behavior of two or more of these.

As their names imply papers usually overwhelm stones, stones are effective against scissors, and scissors have an advantage over papers.

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