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Old 07-10-2018, 05:17 AM
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Default Testing new game board

Hi everyone -

I've put together a new solving board that I think should fix a number of issues people have had with the existing one; namely:

- slow/clunky response time for super-fast typists
- incorrect "Letters Remaining" being displayed
- no visual indication when a letter is used more than once
- an errant "enter" key will sometimes submit a half-finished puzzle
- poor usability on phones/tablets

It isn't live on the main site yet. I'd like to get some user feedback on it first before we make it so. If you'd like to try it out you can do so at the url below:

https://www.cryptograms.org/play2018.php

NOTE: I've tested it pretty thoroughly, but if you are concerned about stats, be sure to log out before you solve through this page. Puzzles solved on it will count towards competition, and if there is a bug your stats may be impacted.

I'd be interested to hear any feedback, especially if you encounter any bugs or problems. Please be sure to include your operating system and browser information with your comments.

Thank you!

Stephen
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Old 07-10-2018, 02:29 PM
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I solved for about two hours, not logged in, using the above link to the new solving board. My computer uses Windows 10 with Firefox. No phone or tablet. I don't compete, but was curious to see how the newer system works.

- There was a fast response to my rapid typing. In the past, it's been slow occasionally but I blame that on our rural DSL internet, which has slow spells. Fiber optic is not available here.

- Letters Remaining: I only look at this on long puzzles that use many letters, and it did seem to be accurate on this board.

- Visual indication of a re-used letter: On the first puzzle I tried today, I noticed that when I accidentally used a letter again, those highlighted boxes turned pink, with the repeated letters in red. Then when I tried to click to clear those pink boxes, it did not respond. I had to click on a different box to begin typing again, as if it did not want me to backtrack. It only did that on the first puzzle. After that, I deliberately used the same letter again, and in all the other puzzles, nothing happened (no pink boxes) except that some words now contained weird letter combinations. I don't know if having the second group of a letter highlighted would speed up solving, since the first time you used that letter might have been the mistake, not the second guess. I mostly scan the words as I solve to see if they make sense or not, and backtrack where necessary.

Thank you so much for creating this amazing website, especially the cryptograms.org section, and thanks for the improvements you are adding.

aerie
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Old 07-10-2018, 02:56 PM
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Thanks aerie! I haven't seen the issue with the pink boxes on my end but will look into it.
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Old 07-10-2018, 04:47 PM
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I stayed logged in and solved 50 or so puzzles on the new board. I use Windows 10 Home with Google Chrome for solving (but I use Firefox for nearly everything else). I didn't encounter any bugs or problems, and all seemed to work for me the same as on the main site. Thanks for letting us try it out.
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Old 07-10-2018, 05:13 PM
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Thanks nanrich!
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Old 07-11-2018, 05:15 AM
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Thanks again for everyone's feedback on the new playing board! I've pushed it live just now.
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Old 07-11-2018, 09:55 AM
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Default New Game Board

I love the changes. I particularly love that it puts you in the first letter space when it opens the puzzle. That saves a second or two while I click or tab to that. I had a letter used duplicately, because of a typo and it highlighted the duplicate letter use, which made it faster to find and fix. I don't look at missing letters often, and have not yet, but when I need to, I'm sure that will be a help as well.

Thanks so much, Stephen.
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Old 07-11-2018, 10:07 AM
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It sure came as a surprise. I haven't solved very many yet but notice that the cursor location no longer blinks.
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Old 07-11-2018, 10:23 AM
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I notice also that even though the puzzle is complete the last entry stays highlighted.
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Old 07-11-2018, 11:02 AM
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I'm finding the changes to be helpful, though the first few quotes I had a devil of a time. Old dog, new tricks. Thanks for keeping this fun and interesting.
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