Complex Systems

Error-Prone Cellular Automata as Metaphors of Immunity as Computation Download PDF

Kátia K. Cassiano
Valmir C. Barbosa*

Programa de Engenharia de Sistemas e Computação, COPPE
Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
Caixa Postal 68511, 21941-972 Rio de Janeiro - RJ, Brazil


We investigate the use of cellular automata (CAs) as the core abstraction supporting the perspective of immunity as computation, that is, of immunity as the process of computing the state of the body so that protection can be effected, as well as boosted through learning. We associate each basin of cellular automaton (CA) evolution with a consistent set of body states and introduce perturbations to the CA rule allowing transitions between basins. Even for elementary CAs, there are rules for which these perturbed variations display remarkable resiliency in terms of basin occupation. For these rules, the long-run probability that the CA is found in a given basin is practically the same as in the deterministic case when the initial CA state is chosen uniformly at random.