Monday Morning “Impediment to Productivity” – 20050919

Well you are all obviously still reeling (it’s an audio joke) from last weeks onslaught. I think this week will be a little easier.

I found this mouse-click game. You shoot a tranquillizing dart if a sheep makes a dash from the flock, and they rate your reaction time. They suggest a cup of coffee if you aren’t fast enough. Fortunately, they claim “no sheep were harmed in the making of this game”… just mice. http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/humanbody/sleep/sheep/reaction_version5.swf

Hmm, so that was a bit to vigorous and taxing for the old Monday morning reflexes? Thumbs all tapped out from changing channels on the TV looking for something worth watching? A few weeks ago a complaint was raised about all the games being so loud and weren’t there any nice quiet games out there.

Well yes folks this week we present “Hamlet the text adventure”. http://www.robinjohnson.f9.co.uk/adventure/hamlet.html# So How about a nice relaxing game of Hamlet (woo hoo… everybody dies. No wait that was Macbeth no wait Romeo and Juliet. No… and they talk about Bruce Willis characters being a a tad atrocity prone. Shakespeare leaves him for dead.. but as usual I digress).

Like all classic text adventures, you navigate using text commands, collect various items and confront friends and foe as you try to solve a mystery. And like the classic text, you get to learn about the melancholy Dane and his difficult relationship with his mother, sister, stepfather and the ghost of dear old dad. No iambic pentameter, though; the lingo’s been updated (though you can enter notable lines from the play and get pithy responses). The Hints section is pretty funny as well. And it’s quiet (unless you put it through one of those Steven Hawkings voice thingies).

Lets keep going with the word games ( the nice quiet word games )

———- ANAGRAMS ———-

An anagram is a word or phrase formed by rearranging the letters of another word or phrase. For example, “Time Heals All Wounds” can be rearranged to form “Most Will Use A Handle”. The Internet Anagram Server (aka “I, Rearrangement Servant”) gives results in your browser, and has an Advanced interface which allows you to include or exclude certain words, specify minimum or maximum numbers of letters per word and a few other tweaks.

http://www.wordsmith.org/anagram

Anu Garg, creator of The Internet Anagram Server, also offers A.Word.A.Day, a newsletter for people who want to explore the world of words and share it with other wordlovers. For details on AWAD, see

http://www.wordsmith.org/awad

Also notable, illustrious and famed in the anagram arena is Anagram Genius, which you can find at

http://www.anagramgenius.com

Anagram Genius seems to be better at processing long input strings and generating phrase-like results. For example: “not over until the fat lady sings” =3D “Stringently deathful ovations”

—————– SCRABBLE HELPER —————–

If you’re a fan of the Scrabble board game, you’ll love this one. Enter the seven letters on your Scrabble rack, and this nifty tool will reveal, disclose and divulge all the words that can be composed from them. You can even specify specific beginning and ending letters, or ask for words of a certain length.

http://www.wordplays.com/fcgi-bin/scrabble.pl

——————- CROSSWORD HELPERS ——————-

If you’re having trouble getting a word in a crossword puzzle, then perhaps OneAcross can help. In addition to pattern dictionary searches, it can analyze the clue as well. OneAcross lets you enter either the length of the answer or an answer pattern, in which you use a question mark for unknown letters in the word. OneAcross also has a tool to help you solve cryptograms.

http://www.oneacross.com

———— WORD TOOLS ————

At Dictionary.com, you can look up a word in either a dictionary or Roget’s Thesaurus (to find synonyms and antonyms). The site also offers Ask Doctor Dictionary (for questions about words or grammar), the Word of the Day, daily crosswords & word search puzzles, and a huge list of links to other online dictionaries, including hundreds of non-English ones.

http://www.dictionary.com

WordWeb Pro is a downloadable program that I use all the time. It can be used to look up words from almost any Windows-based program, showing definitions, synonyms and related words. The feature I like best is searching for words matching a pattern, such as “ab*ly” which will return abashedly, abjectly, abnormally, absolutely, absurdly, and a superfluity of others.

http://wordweb.info

The WriteExpress Online Rhyming Dictionary is a helpful resource for poets and songwriters. You can find Ending rhymes (blue/shoe), Last syllable rhymes (timber/harbor), Double rhymes (conviction/ prediction), Beginning rhymes (physics/fizzle), or First syllable rhymes (carrot/caring).

http://www.rhymer.com

Need a synonym, antonym, or related word? Try this online tool:

http://www.rhymezone.com

———— WORD GAMES ————

Etymologic presents you with 10 randomly selected etymology (word origin) or word definition puzzles to solve. Some of the answers are improbable, incredible and hard to believe!

http://www.etymologic.com

WordZap is a fast-paced addictive word game you can play over the Net or against the computer.

http://wordzap.com

StoryFun is a variant of the Mad Libs word game, created by students at MIT who obviously don’t have enough homework to do.

http://stuff.mit.edu/storyfun

Play Hangman with several different twists: Celebrity Hangman, Hang Your Ex-Whatever, Hillbilly Hangman, and others.

http://search.yahoo.com/search/dir?p=3Dhangman

There are other silly/educational/whatever items in the Thatchspace blog. http://thatchspace.com/blog like Create an Address in Gmail http://thatchspace.com/wordpress/?p=3D103 and a Pocket Watch for Druids http://thatchspace.com/wordpress/?p=3D80 and some of the older “Impediments” emails http://thatchspace.com/wordpress/index.php?cat=3D7

and to Finish off (sorry) An in-depth article on the various ways of destroying the Earth. Far-fetched and ridiculous? Yes. Crazy? Yes, so crazy it might just work… http://ned.ucam.org/~sdh31/misc/destroy.html#methods

thatch

{currently listening to Arlo Guthrie and Tangerine Dream }

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