String is a new computer language designed specifically for the implementation of ‘ribozymes’, the active entities within a new (highly simplified) model of protocellular life. The purpose of the model (which is presented here, only in outline) is the study of the abstract nature of simple cellular life and its relationship to computation. This model contains passive and active entities; passive entities are data and active ones are executable data (or programs). All programs in our model are written or evolved in String. In this paper, we describe String and provide examples of both hand-written and evolved String programs belonging to different functional categories needed for cellular operation (e.g., mass transporter, information transporter, transformer, replicator and translator). Results from the evolutionary runs are presented and discussed, where almost all ribozymes reached their optimum fitness.

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