Fun & Games - AutoCrossword

Description: Tiger has is its own English-English dictionary.
This widget read the built-in dictionary and generates crosswords automatically.

You can input alphabets with keyboard and erase them with delete key.
Hint or description for each word, which is obtained from OS X dictionary, is shown below the crossword.
Shift + cursor key changes which hint for horizontal or vertical word is shown. Direction change is also done by a button on right side.

If you completed or gave up the puzzle, push "New" button at top right.

Hint or help for a word or a letter is given with help buttons, and mistakes are shown by blinking for 5 seconds by "Show mistakes" button.

You can change the size of crossword (12x12, 16x16, 20x20) and difficulty of puzzles (Beginner, Medium, Technology Geek) with preference panel on the back.
Slower (such as G3 Macs) or busy machines may fail to generate larger or more difficult crossword because of timeout, so decrease the level of game or the size of puzzles and re-generate crossword when no crossword is shown.

When you acquire a favorite crossword, you can share your crossword with your friends.
Drag the crossword and drop it to your desktop or web browser, HTML-converted crossword is shown.
The file is written in stand-alone HTML containing Javascript. You can send the file to your friends or solve again after a while. (Sorry, the HTML cannot be printed as it is because of CSS)

I confirmed that Safari and FireFox/Camino can display dropped HTMLs properly, however, Internet Explorer might fill all the cells in black for its CSS glitch.
Author: usako
Version: 0.3b
New in v0.3b: -UTF-8 encoding
-Timer
-D&D
Uploaded on: July 8th 2005 at 7:19 AM
Rating: (4.69 stars)   [Show Detailed Ratings]
Downloads: 14028 (all versions), 12978 (this version)
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Comments

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One word, WOW!

Posted by: Boramor on Jun 30, 05 (6:41 PM) for version 0.1 (previous version)   View Detailed Rating

Impressive!
Why hasn't anyone thought of this earlier?
Nice work mate!

Posted by: snowdog on Jun 30, 05 (7:07 PM) for version 0.1 (previous version)   View Detailed Rating

Absolutely stunning! Great job! If this is 0.1, wonder what 1.0 will turn out to be smiley

Posted by: weisheng on Jun 30, 05 (7:59 PM) for version 0.1 (previous version)   View Detailed Rating

Brilliant! It's perfectly suited for a Dashboard widget.

I do have some suggestions, though:

* There should be a back side to the widget, linking to http://www3.atwiki.jp/usako/pages/21.html and explaining the shift-arrow keyboard shortcut.

* The backspace key works. It would be nice if the delete key worked as well.

* Automatically toggle the orientation as appropriate when the cursor is not at an intersection.

* Filter out clues that contain the word itself, e.g. owe = "owe something, esp. money, to (someone)"; bottle = "a bottle fitted with a nipple..."

* Filter out definitions that contain the words "such a", e.g. wobble = "cause to move in such a way"

* Certain words tend to recur in successive puzzles. Maybe the random number generator needs better seeding.

Posted by: dpoon on Jun 30, 05 (11:34 PM) for version 0.1 (previous version)   View Detailed Rating

Could do with a custom icon for the Dashboard bar as well, hopefully that's in the works for a future release!

Posted by: weisheng on Jul 01, 05 (12:00 AM) for version 0.1 (previous version)  

i really like the idea of the widget and the way it has been carried out, but really, does "scar" mean "a mark left at the point of separation of a leaf, frond, or other part from a plant?" and it would be nice if, when you put the mouse over the buttons, if they showed what they were for, since it took me a while to figure out. and is "scrap" an affectionate name for a little person or animal? i think there ought to be a better source for the meanings of the words.

Posted by: modcaveman on Jul 01, 05 (1:41 AM) for version 0.1 (previous version)   View Detailed Rating

By far the most inovative widget I have seen yet. I am highly impressed, and look forward to future releases with some improvements.

Posted by: trmptblwr on Jul 01, 05 (2:38 AM) for version 0.1 (previous version)   View Detailed Rating

modcaveman: Crosswords are not always about the primary definition of a word. Many times the key to solving crosswords is knowing ALL the defintions of a word, not just the primary one.

Great widget. Inovation that S.Jobs would be proud of.

Posted by: xlax999999 on Jul 01, 05 (7:33 AM) for version 0.2 (previous version)  

I would ask for a smaller widget, but I don't think you can make this one much more efficient ; ). I love it! I guess a few small requests:

-Make it harder to accidentally start a new game. One crosssword might sit up there for a long time, and I hit the new crossword button several times by accident when I first got the widget.

You could save a tiny bit of space by
-Having the hint zoom up when the widget is not selected. Although many would probably prefer to always have it there--so maybe only have it go away when no word is selected and the widget is not selected.
-Maybe doing something with the buttons on the right
-When choosing smaller crossword sizes, resizing the widget instead of making the boxes bigger

It would also be nice if you could find a way to filter out recursive and self-referencing definitions better, but I know parsing English can be very difficult. And I also noticed certain words recurring many times.

Those are just nit-picks though. Great job! Even though it's big for my 12", this thing is staying on my Dashboard! Finally, a game that doesn't demand your attention!

Posted by: Deicidus on Jul 03, 05 (7:23 AM) for version 0.2 (previous version)   View Detailed Rating

For dictionary definitions, the data should be interpreted as UTF-8 strings, not MacRoman. I've seen a few clues come up garbled, e.g. the ae in "diphthong" and the betas in "beta".

Posted by: dpoon on Jul 05, 05 (1:57 PM) for version 0.3a (previous version)  

"When you acquire a favorite crossword, you can share your crossword with your friends.
Drag the crossword and drop it to your desktop or web browser, HTML-converted crossword is shown."

Are you kidding me?!!!
This is WONDERFUL.
I didn't think that you could improve this already superb widget.
But you mate, have done the unthinkable.

Posted by: snowdog on Jul 08, 05 (4:34 PM) for version 0.3b (current version)  

Super.

Posted by: dukemeiser on Jul 09, 05 (12:28 AM) for version 0.3b (current version)   View Detailed Rating

Great idea! Even larger sizes could be fun too.

Posted by: Nagromme on May 31, 06 (6:21 PM) for version 0.3b (current version)   View Detailed Rating

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