Legal Notice - Contents - Noble Ape Philosophic

Getting Started

When you run the Noble Ape Simulation, you will be presented with four windows. These windows show the main aspects of the Simulation. The Simulation creates a random environment for the Noble Apes (the red dots) to wander over. The Simulation shows the terrain the Noble Ape is moving over, the cognitive (brain) model of the Noble Ape and other information like the time and weather conditions.


The menus associated with controlling the Noble Ape Simulation have been progressively refined over the years. The current interface is as much driven by user mouse clicks on windows as it is by menus. The File menu allows you to create new environments, open and save environments and open ApeScript files. The Control menu allows you to pause the simulation, to hide and show windows, to cycle between selected apes and update the graphics only 15 times per second (through the Timed menu item). You will see substantial speed improvements by setting the Timed menu command or hiding the Brain and/or Terrain windows.


The map shows the environment from a top-down view. It enables the user to select a specific ape to view and control. This view is linked to the Terrain and Brain views by the selected ape. If the selected ape can see another ape, it is highlighted in bright red.

arrow keys - Move the ape around

option (Mac) / ctrl (Win) - up/down arrow - Change selected ape
option (Mac) / ctrl (Win) - right/left arrow - Turn selected ape

Clicking the mouse on an ape selects that ape.

Holding the option key (Mac) or the ctrl key (Win) down, and clicking the mouse on the map, moves the selected ape to the clicked location.

The weather information is show both as clouds and also rain (in particularly dense clouds).


The terrain gives the user a third-person-perspective of the selected ape's view of the environment. In this view, the ape selected ape can be seen in the centre of the window. The user has a 360 degree radial view of the surroundings of the ape (including other apes).

up/down arrow - Move ape forward/backward
right/left arrow - Turn ape left/right
option (Mac) / ctrl (Win) - up/down arrow - Change selected ape

Clicking the mouse in the terrain window moves the selected ape around.

Brain The brain rotates to show the 3D changes that occur in the structure of the ape's brain. The dots represent the large changes occurring in the ape's brain. The darker dots are those closer to the viewer, whilst the lighter dots are further from the viewer. This window also displays the brain cycles per second (BCPS). The brain can be rotated by clicking above and below the brain image. You will note that the ape's brain patterns change when it is asleep or awake.

Clicking the mouse and hold down option (Mac) / ctrl (Win) on the screen rotates the brain along the z-axis.


The clock contains three pieces of information - the twelve hour time, the year clock (left small dial) and season clock (right small dial). Twenty-four hour time can be gauged through the weather information (which also shows day and night).

Ape's Information

The terrain window also shows the selected Noble Ape's Information. From right to left, it shows the direction facing (pointing in the direction of movement on the Map Window), the Noble Ape's current energy and the Noble Ape's current speed. The small side markers (a good indication for the energy meter) show the rough maximum energy, the middle point and the hunger point for energy. The Ape will die with no energy (possibly caused by drowning). It is possible for the Simulation to run with no living apes.

It is possible for Apes to be born too. They will inherit genetics (shown as genetic bars in the window below the Noble Ape's energy). It is possible to track Ape families through their genetics. The second block of information below the direction facing and the Noble Ape's energy shows the Noble Ape's sex. Female is shown with a cross below the triangle and male with the arrow pointing to the right.

The Apes' communications can be viewed through the Map and Terrain windows as moving communications blocks.


The weather is shown by an iconic representation in the top right corner. There are three basic weather conditions which can be applied to day or night - clear, cloudy or raining. The method of simulating the weather has changed in recent versions. The new method creates a weather system simulation also encoding the time of day in the output.


There is a console command line that enables a greater interface into the simulation. The commands that drive this interface change periodically. These commands are updated automatically into the table below.

Command Addition Help Information
help [(command)] Displays a list of all the commands
script [file] Load an ApeScript simulation file
save [file] Save a simulation file
quit Quits the console
stop Stop the simulation during step or run
speak [file] Create an AIFF file of Noble Ape speech
alpha [file] Create an AIFF file of Noble Ape alphabet
file [(component)] Information on the file format
run (time format)|forever Simulate for a given number of days or forever
step Run for a single logging interval
top List the top apes
epic List the most talked about apes
interval (days) Set the simulation logging interval in days
event on|social|off Episodic events (all) on, social on or all off
logging on|off Turn logging of images and data on or off
sim Show simulation parameters
watch (ape name)|all|off|* Watch (specific *) for the current ape
idea Track shared braincode between apes
ape Name of the currently watched ape
graph (ape name) * Show social graph for a named ape
braincode (ape name) * Show braincode for a named ape
speech (ape name) * Show speech for a named ape
episodic (ape name) * Show episodic memory for a named ape
probes (ape name) * Show brain probes for a named ape
stats (ape name) * Show parameters for a named ape
appearance (ape name) * Show appearance values for a named ape
genome (ape name) Show genome for a named ape
list List all ape names
next Next ape
previous Previous ape
debug Run debug check

In order to run the command line version of the Simulation open the Terminal application. It can be found in /Applications/Utilities

Open a Terminal window and type:


With a space after the cd and drag the Noble Ape application into the Terminal window. Press enter/return. Type:

   cd Contents/MacOS/

Press enter/return. Type:

   ./NobleApe695 c

Press enter/return. You are now running the Noble Ape Simulation through the command line. The commands in the table above provide all the commands available. The menu of the Simulation is also usable. There are YouTube videos periodically recorded on the command line version of the Simulation via Tom Barbalet's YouTube channel.

For more information about the console implementation of the Noble Ape Simulation please contact Tom Barbalet.

Legal Notice - Contents - Noble Ape Philosophic