21 Responses

  1. ar_gemlad
    ar_gemlad October 23, 2007 at 8:42 am |

    Do I get bonus points for noticing that they’ve spelt minuscule incorrectly as miniscule?

    Reply
    1. undying-admin
      undying-admin October 23, 2007 at 8:46 am |

      Only if you want to dash bowls of rice from the mouths of the world’s hungry. But you can have a special kudo from me if you like.

      (Hmm, my COD has that as acceptable, while my ODWE says not. Get your act together, Oxford!)

      Reply
      1. ar_gemlad
        ar_gemlad October 23, 2007 at 8:50 am |

        Oxford tracks usage, so it’s probable that a lot of people mis-spell it. I certainly did the other week and had the red squiggle of wrongness underneath it, which is how I knew that it should be minuscule!

        Reply
      2. ar_gemlad
        ar_gemlad October 23, 2007 at 9:00 am |

        Well, I’m not sure I deserve a bonus point. I donated 1000 grains, but level 45 was my peak.

        Reply
        1. undying-admin
          undying-admin October 23, 2007 at 9:21 am |

          Hmm, maybe I’d better dash that kudo from your mouth then.

          Reply
  2. bateleur
    bateleur October 23, 2007 at 9:16 am |

    Stay at 50? I couldn’t even reach it.

    Made 48 a few times, but that seems to be my limit. Even getting that far involved having no idea about most of the words but being able to eliminate the wrong answers because the word had the wrong ending (eg. had to be a person and the other three options were adjectives).

    Reply
    1. undying-admin
      undying-admin October 23, 2007 at 9:23 am |

      Yes, there are a few too many guessable like that. It’d be interesting to know the scheme by which it decides which wrong answers to offer — ideally that would also be “learning” in some way, although I can’t think how.

      Reply
      1. bateleur
        bateleur October 23, 2007 at 9:46 am |

        How about:

        * A wrong answer is considered “good” if it receives a high proportion of votes.
        * If the spread of quality amongst wrong answers to a question is wide enough, swap out the worst after some fixed number of uses.
        * If the spread is narrow, randomly swap in any other dictionary word for the worst option, again after some fixed number of uses.

        This will converge all questions to a situation where all but one of the false options are maximally confusing.

        The tricky part is that you’d have to have a hand-coded list of all words which could be considered correct answers so that you never present one of those intending it as a false option!

        Reply
        1. undying-admin
          undying-admin October 23, 2007 at 10:20 am |

          That sounds good. I guess ideally each word would have a bank of wrong answers classified by their quality from which it could select randomly according to a defined desired spread of quality (maybe something like 50%, 33%, 17% of people who get it wrong chose that one), with the quality values being adjusted over time according to “performance during most recent n exposures to players” sort of thing.

          It’d take a lot of trials to converge on good values, but I guess they have plenty of trials going on.

          (I suspect the hand-coding of synonyms is something that’ll be difficult to do without in any automated system. It wouldn’t surprise me if they had it already.)

          Reply
  3. cleanskies
    cleanskies October 23, 2007 at 9:23 am |

    curses!

    I managed some long runs on 49, but never hit 50. God’s teeth, though, I know some profoudly pointless words.

    Reply
    1. undying-admin
      undying-admin October 23, 2007 at 9:28 am |

      Re: curses!

      And a few more now, hopefully.

      Reply
  4. hatmandu
    hatmandu October 23, 2007 at 9:32 am |

    Love it! Just managed half a dozen at 50, but it took a while to get there.

    Reply
    1. undying-admin
      undying-admin October 23, 2007 at 10:24 am |

      Mm — I was quite glad that there wasn’t a message saying “You’ve now wasted X minutes on this game, think how much rice that time was worth!”

      Reply
  5. sesquipedality
    sesquipedality October 23, 2007 at 1:55 pm |

    In 1280 grains of rice, I haven’t got above 47 yet. I feel thick.

    Reply
  6. chilledchimp
    chilledchimp October 24, 2007 at 12:10 am |

    It’s way too late to keep playing, but it is fun. Managed 46, but didn’t play for long. I’ll try again at a more civilised hour.

    Reply
  7. jackfirecat
    jackfirecat October 24, 2007 at 6:18 pm |

    I haven’t got to 50, but I did laugh when anacoluthon came up.

    Reply
    1. undying-admin
      undying-admin October 24, 2007 at 8:16 pm |

      You were blithely earning rice, and then isn’t that a lovely word.

      Reply
  8. crowleycrow
    crowleycrow October 25, 2007 at 11:46 am |

    3 at 50, then back down.

    I wish they’d tell you how many grains makes a pound — we could figure out whether they’ve already earned a pound bag, a bushel, or a truckload.

    Reply
    1. undying-admin
      undying-admin October 25, 2007 at 2:44 pm |

      Apparently 1000 grains is about an ounce. So a ton would be somewhere around 30 million.

      Reply
      1. crowleycrow
        crowleycrow October 26, 2007 at 12:12 am |

        Okay so my dream of ending world hunger with my vocabulary skills has to be modified a bit.

        Well, actually I look and see we’ve piled up some 7 – 8 tons since Oct 7 — considerable, actually.

        Reply
        1. Anonymous
          Anonymous October 26, 2007 at 6:30 pm |

          So in three weeks it’s made enough to feed about 50,000 people for three weeks, going on 2 oz per person per day. Not bad at all, considering that it started from nothing and presumably will keep accelerating as word of mouth spreads.

          Reply

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