Come back tomorrow for a new word.
November 18, 2019 8:43 PM   Subscribe

Make guesses ... and I'll tell you if my word is alphabetically before or after your guess.
Hey! People! Guess My Word is back on the Internet!!
[via MeTa]
posted by not_on_display (53 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite
 
[there's also a "hard" mode available!]
posted by not_on_display at 8:46 PM on November 18, 2019 [1 favorite]


Oh, and don't tell anyone here the word you guessed. It's the same word for everyone each day
posted by scruss at 8:51 PM on November 18, 2019 [5 favorites]


21 guesses!
posted by tavella at 8:55 PM on November 18, 2019


Now I need to wait until tomorrow to play again.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 9:09 PM on November 18, 2019


17 guesses. Binary search serves me well once again.
posted by axiom at 9:35 PM on November 18, 2019 [1 favorite]


15, this is fun!
posted by lefty lucky cat at 9:54 PM on November 18, 2019


16 guesses!
I am pretty proud of that.
posted by Meatbomb at 10:00 PM on November 18, 2019 [1 favorite]


Thanks, I hate it.
posted by wats at 10:38 PM on November 18, 2019 [1 favorite]


[you are quite welcome]

[it consumes you]
posted by not_on_display at 10:50 PM on November 18, 2019 [1 favorite]


13! I used to be really good at this and missed it. But also felt bad about the degree to which this game measures cultural signifiers more than vocabulary. Or alphabetical skills - it’s so vexing to guess a word outside of the grid search because I am DUMB.
posted by janell at 10:59 PM on November 18, 2019


Ah! I *guessed* the hard one relatively quickly then was struck with spelling blindness leading me to somehow fail to get it, even after looking up the correct spelling! I shall be back tomorrow for revenge.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 11:00 PM on November 18, 2019


26 guess for normal. 13 for hard?!

This is fun.
posted by DyRE at 11:23 PM on November 18, 2019


i hate this game. hate it. it's terrible. why on earth must something exist whose sole purpose is to display to me what an idiot fool i am. sitting here staring vacantly at the accusingly blinking cursor waiting for me to type a word. a word! i know lots of those, this should be easy! but no. after 3 long agonizing minutes, i type, slowly and with a single finger:

w

o

r

d



it's not the right word
posted by poffin boffin at 11:32 PM on November 18, 2019 [6 favorites]


19 guesses in just over 5 minutes.
13 guesses in 2 minutes for the hard one.
Hmm.
posted by Mister Moofoo at 12:25 AM on November 19, 2019


10 guesses! This is going to ruin my day!
posted by Samarium at 12:59 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


13 guesses!
(but 21 for the hard version)
posted by M. at 1:33 AM on November 19, 2019


12 for easy, 16 for hard. Unfortunately I guessed the word immediately alphabetically before the "hard" word, so it took me a few guesses to get back to it.
posted by Joe in Australia at 1:51 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


I want...more words.
posted by rollick at 4:56 AM on November 19, 2019 [4 favorites]


11 guesses in 1m 11s

Spooky. (14 guesses in 57s for the hard)
posted by robself at 5:33 AM on November 19, 2019 [2 favorites]


That was ... surprisingly fun. I got it in 13 guesses but it got harder as I went. Three minutes. I will have to socialize this.
posted by Gilgamesh's Chauffeur at 6:34 AM on November 19, 2019


Lots of fun! Got it in 13. Made me think hard about letter combinations and words in general which is always gratifying. Thanks, I love it!
posted by kinnakeet at 6:45 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


Aarrrgh. I never got the hard one. Apparently unlike others, the hard one is actually hard .... for me. This is quite great.
posted by Gilgamesh's Chauffeur at 6:46 AM on November 19, 2019


I got it in 6 so appear to have used up my luck for the rest of the year
posted by Dmenet at 7:12 AM on November 19, 2019


This is really interesting and fun. Thanks!
posted by a fish out of water at 7:25 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


YAY. I have missed this game so much! My skills have not improved any, but I like the new format/coding/whatever it is, it's very sleek.
posted by mixedmetaphors at 7:39 AM on November 19, 2019


Oh no, there’s a timer. I was feeling ok about 19 guesses on my first try until I saw that I was in the 95th percentile of slowpokes.
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 7:48 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


This fills me with so much joy.
posted by beandip at 8:33 AM on November 19, 2019


YES! I loved this game! Thank you for sharing!
posted by dlugoczaj at 8:52 AM on November 19, 2019


This morning I was wracking my brains, stuck. Because I had forgotten an entire letter of the alphabet like a champion. I was stuck on the high side of the letter below, low side of the letter above.
posted by janell at 8:53 AM on November 19, 2019


12 guesses. I should have gotten the hard word but I didn't.
posted by dlugoczaj at 8:59 AM on November 19, 2019


I miss the little feature where you can hover over a name on the leader board and see the path they took to get there. I always found that to be an interesting glimpse into people's minds/processes.
posted by dlugoczaj at 9:04 AM on November 19, 2019 [3 favorites]


Never played before, 15 easy 17 hard. I feel like I got better, and will get better pretty quickly over the next few weeks. I like word games but am out of practice on alphabetizing... also unlike many word games, it seems like there's a fairly standard opening sequence, right?

Like Map -> Fat -> Jag, or Map -> Sap -> Vat.
Basically I can't see any reason why Map or Nap isn't the best first move, and then proceed by roughly bisecting, making your first choice with a new first letter have 'a' as the second.

Sure you can get lucky with other methods but it seems like the general strategy is pretty fixed, and skill comes from recalling words easily and quickly given a few initial letters.

Anyone got a different method?
posted by SaltySalticid at 9:18 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


Basically I can't see any reason why Map or Nap isn't the best first move, and then proceed by roughly bisecting, making your first choice with a new first letter have 'a' as the second.

You're basically describing a binary search (as noted above by axiom). I did a quick simulation using the SOWPODS dictionary, and 17 guesses is the average, given the number of words in the dictionary.
posted by uncleozzy at 9:27 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


13 guesses (on the easy mode). I am obsessed with this now. Dammit.
posted by holborne at 9:34 AM on November 19, 2019


simulation using the SOPODS dictionary, and 17 guesses is the average Nice! Got a variance or other interesting features of the distribution? If humans were picking the words, that could add a psychological element but it seems that coming in real low (say the 6 guess current leaders) must involve a fair bit of luck...
posted by SaltySalticid at 9:42 AM on November 19, 2019


22 guesses for both, guess I'm the 22 guess guy.
posted by e1c at 9:48 AM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


10 guesses in 2 mins easy, 13 guesses in 2 mins 12 secs hard. I’ll take it!
posted by outfielder at 10:42 AM on November 19, 2019


Nice! Got a variance or other interesting features of the distribution?

There are 267,751 words in the SOWPODS list I used, which is nearest to 2^18, so you'd expect a binary search to take 18 tries. The results do bear this out.

Over 500,000 trials, the "word" was found in between 2 and 19 trials, inclusive. The mean was 17.04, standard deviation 1.43, variance 2.05. 49% of trials were solved in exactly 18 guesses.
posted by uncleozzy at 11:07 AM on November 19, 2019 [3 favorites]


It's so fun. It's so fun!
posted by Don Pepino at 11:13 AM on November 19, 2019


11 guesses in 1m 9s on normal mode! I guessed a word that was very close to the secret word on my third guess and spent the rest of the time whittling down to it. Oh I LIKE this game!
posted by Gray Duck at 11:19 AM on November 19, 2019


today's word is also not "word". when will i win this game.
posted by poffin boffin at 12:02 PM on November 19, 2019 [2 favorites]


17 guesses in 2 1/2 minutes! I am more proud of this than I should be.
posted by tangosnail at 12:57 PM on November 19, 2019


I did a quick simulation using the SOWPODS dictionary, and 17 guesses is the average, given the number of words in the dictionary.

Interesting. I could've had 16 guesses if I weren't an idiot and screwed up one of them. My starting gambit was MUZZLE (toward the bottom of the M-range) but NAP is also a good starting point. MAP would likely be a little bit suboptimal because it's at the front of the M-range, but I wasn't factoring in the distribution of actual english words (at least, not consciously, but at the end of the day you have to guess a word so you can't just invent gibberish). So probably you could get a little better at each guess if you could eyeball the relative likelihoods (e.g., most vowels are in the top half of the alphabet so if you're in a spot where you need to find a word beginning with say T- the available choices will skew toward A which means that the middle is likely somwhere down in the TE/TI range).

I peeked at the source and it appears that the two difficulties are just hand-curated lists of candidates (both fairly small relative to the dictionary size), rather than being programatically generated. The SOWPODS dictionary has some ~268K words in it, so there's definitely an opportunity to generate a 'diabolical' difficulty mode that picks one of those at random.

posted by axiom at 1:18 PM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


9 easy. 14 hard.
posted by ian1977 at 1:23 PM on November 19, 2019


11 for me this time, too. It helps that I realized they are not likely to be exotic, so I went more for the Up goer 5 list.
posted by tavella at 1:49 PM on November 19, 2019


Easy: 16 guesses in 2m 8s
Hard: 18 guesses in 1m 41s

I am a hybrid.
posted by not_on_display at 3:25 PM on November 19, 2019 [1 favorite]


It's all about the vowels.
posted by Rock Steady at 4:26 PM on November 19, 2019 [2 favorites]


3 guesses. So thoroughly a case of beginner's luck, I don't know if I dare play again.
posted by dorey_oh at 8:26 PM on November 19, 2019 [4 favorites]


Broke 20 guesses today! Sigh, I used to be so much better at this game. Glad it's back.
posted by fuse theorem at 7:49 AM on November 20, 2019


10 guesses in 59 seconds on hard. Woo!

I had completely forgotten about this, thanks for posting it!
posted by Grither at 7:30 AM on November 21, 2019


In the last 3 days I've gone from 15, to 16, to 9 guesses on the "normal" word!

I honestly can't stop marveling that I am able to figure out the words in fewer than, like 300 guesses, never mind fewer than 20. Or 10!! I guess my ability to intuitively guess efficiently is better than my ability to figure out why it works.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:43 PM on November 21, 2019 [1 favorite]


I've addicted my family to this. Please tell me there's a site somewhere where we can play
more than twice a day?!
posted by biddeford at 10:35 PM on November 21, 2019 [3 favorites]


Wooooo! 11 guesses in 59s!

Don't ask me how I did on hard mode. It was hard.
posted by not_on_display at 10:23 PM on November 22, 2019 [1 favorite]


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