Cellular Automata

"By claiming for cellular automata a less rule-bound dynamic than they in fact possess, Deleuze and Guattari imply that any configuration whatever is possible, an idea they push to the extreme in their notions of 'deterritorialization' and 'reterritorialization.'

Cellular automata fit Deleuze and Guattari’s purpose because they are completely mechanistic, computational, and nonconscious but nevertheless display complex patterns that appear to evolve, grow, invade new territories, or decay and die out. Particularly relevant is the pattern called “Glider,” in which a glider-like shape appears at one edge of the screen and moves toward the other edge, as if enacting what Deleuze and Guattari call a 'line of flight.'

Cellular automata appear as well in their description of schizoanalysis, which “treats the unconscious as an acentered system, in other words, as a machinic network of finite automata (a rhizome), and thus arrives at an entirely different state of the unconscious”. The implication is that the unconscious, like cellular automata, is mechanistic and rhizomatic."

—Katherine Hayles, My Mother Was a Computer: Digital Subjects and Literary Texts