5800 power generated, all through windmills
About a dozen legendary mechanics
Over 9000 installed mechanisms
Gloveflier (yeah, a randomly generated name) was specifically and carefully chosen for this project. A 2X2 site (large enough to fit the originally planned 16X16 array) on perfectly flat forest. Multiple limestone layers because I originally wanted to make a lot of the parts out of steel. (I ended up making it mostly out of rock, wood, gold and silver to save time). No sand, which in retrospect was a mistake – if I was building this from scratch again I'd embark on a site with sand and make everything but the mechanisms out of green glass.
I was running my experimental Uplift Engine mod when I created it, so there are several dozen procedurally generated animalperson civilizations in the world. Not that this matters, since I walled off the entire map edge with drawbridges a year into the project to keep out distractions. I later turned off temperature, weather, and invasions, not that this seems to have made much of a difference in FPS.
The original plan was to build a 16X16 cellular automata. I later scaled this down to 16X8 when I realized how much work even the smaller array would be. The foundations and work spaces are all sized for the full 16X16, so it would still be possible to expand the design to the full size, but I don't think I'm going to bother. At the moment the fortress is running at 10FPS when the calcualtor is halted, and drops down to about 2FPS when it's running.
The array of calculating cells is built on the surface, a massive tiled grid of the 5X5X5 cubical device described above. A two-stage pumping system draws water from the river, first into a main supply channel and then into individual supply channels for each row of cells. Water supply is actually a major problem for this design – when all the cells activate their load stage at the same time it draws a lot of water out of the supply channels. If I was to build this design again from scratch I'd built it over an ocean, the brook I'm using here struggles to meet the demands of this monster.
A 4 tile wide ring was channeled out around the entire device down to the rock layer, and then the entire map border was smoothed and carved into fortifications as a water drain. My original idea was to simply dump excess water on the surface and let it drain into the brook. This was not a good idea, it took forever for it to all drain away or dry up.
Underground and not visible here is the display grid (a 16X8 array of single-tile bridges), the grids of manual cell set and clear levers, the control room for starting and stopping the sequencer, as well as all the workshops and storage rooms and living quarters. I will be putting up a map and save files soon once I'm done testing and have gotten the fortress to the point where the cellular automata runs reliably.
Testing has revealed some issues in which a sudden water draw from the array feed pumps causes water pressure to drop throughout the system, sometimes resulting in the sequencer locking up mid-sequence. It's actually reminiscent of how noisy logic gates in digital systems can cause noise on the power rails and lock up gates elsewhere in the system. I'm currently doing some minor redesign of the water supply system to address this. I have also learned the hard way that it is critical to lock off access to the array while it's in operation. Just because a dwarf has no reason to open that access door doesn't mean he won't anyway.