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Hyper-parasite have been discovered, (e.g., 0080gai, which differs by 19 instructions from the ancestor, Fig. 1). Their ability to subvert the energy metabolism of parasites is based on two changes. The copy procedure does not return, but jumps back directly to the proper address of the reproduction loop. In this way it effectively seizes the instruction pointer from the parasite. However it is another change which delivers the coup de grâce: after each reproduction, the hyper-parasite re-examines itself, resetting the bx register with its location and the cx register with its size. After the instruction pointer of the parasite passes through this code, the CPU of the parasite contains the location and size of the hyper-parasite and the parasite thereafter replicates the hyper-parasite genome.

Thomas S.Ray
Thu Aug 3 15:47:29 JST 1995