The Threads collection
Updated: Oct 1, 2021
Threads is a generative art project experimenting with a concept of contest and survival of threads on a very limited 2D grid navigational space. Each image generated by Threads represents a unique scene. The picture above, scene ccdbd232be3da949fa0289da87ac0dd2, was generated by Threads.
A curated collection of Threads' has started at OpenSea.
When a scene generation starts, threads popup sequentially on the grid. Each thread starts as a point, that occupies a random vacant grid node. The threads survive by extending themselves and turning vertically or horizontally, left or right. The one over-arching navigational rule allows a thread to cross the path of, but never merge with, or cross end-points with any thread - including itself. The generation process continuous until the last thread gets blocked, or cannot further extend itself due to maximum length limitation.
The threads extend and turn using a certain strategy that is set once and for all the scene. Sometimes the threads will prefer shorter legs, sometimes longer legs and sometimes they just don't have a choice, having only one way to proceed. Sometimes, the threads gravitate towards - or away from – a certain location on the grid, which usually makes the scene more dramatic.
Other factors that impact the scene include grid dimensions (which directly impacts the image detail level), grid population limit (how many nodes can be occupied), the maximum number of threads, thread-length limits and more.
The competition on grid space and traversal opportunities becomes fiercer as more threads pop into the scene, and threads struggle to push their way on. This is manifested by hectic turns.
Colors help to track the path and struggle of individual threads. Different color palettes overlay different atmospheres and styles, sometimes actually enriching the scene story, above and beyond just pleasing the eye.
A scene evolves through the generation process. The image of a scene freezes the final state, when no further threads can be added, and no thread can further extend itself.
The scene configuration is uniquely associated with a SHA256 code that becomes the scene name, embodying the origins of the underlying story, and keeping any human interpretation of it to the viewer.