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Word Swirl

Here’s Word Swirl, a dictionary-based game you can play in your web browser. You get points for every word you can find, and if you find a word that uses all the letters you will be able to go to the next round. You can use the space bar to rearrange your letters.

My sister says this doesn’t work in IE — sorry about that. I don’t have Windows here and so I don’t know a way to debug it. If you know what is wrong, let me know. I suppose real web developers must run Windows, or they must have 2-3 machines on their desktop at any given time.

It may take a little while to download, since it downloads its entire dictionary at once. Word Swirl is GPL.


  1. David Daney wrote:

    I don’t like it at all. Only occasionally can I get to the next level ;-)

    Sunday, June 10, 2007 at 1:59 am | Permalink
  2. rmathew wrote:

    Loved the game. Thanks.

    The keyboard short-cuts were a nice touch. You might want to display a little line on that page saying “ENTER=Guess, SPACE=Swirl, BACKSPACE=Delete, etc.” (Is there a short-cut for clearing the whole guess rather than having to do repeated BACKSPACEs?)

    For first-timers coming to the page directly (not from this blog post), you might also want to add a little text as help. (What do I do in this game? What are the rules? etc.)

    I found that repeated swirling was very helpful in forming words rather than staring at a jumbled set and guessing all possible words.

    I’m not a native speaker of English, but I would guess that even many native speakers would be stumped by some of the words thrown in from the word-list. Perhaps you should make each word a link that searches for the meaning of the word.

    Lastly, you might want to consider bloating the ultra-minimal home-page at by about 50% – by adding a line about Swirl. :-)

    Sunday, June 10, 2007 at 6:28 am | Permalink
  3. Bastien wrote:

    Runs in a browser?! You mean it doesn’t run in Emacs? :)

    Sunday, June 10, 2007 at 12:30 pm | Permalink
  4. Jim Blandy wrote:

    This is fun! 3810.

    Monday, June 11, 2007 at 9:39 pm | Permalink

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