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12:33 AM
Q: How do you get out of Rickey's trap?

GhostshipLast night you had some friends over to play a board game. You ended up winning, but your friend Rickey, who always loses, left in a very bad mood. The next day you wake up in a square room with doors in the middle of each the 4 walls. There is a note on the floor that says: I'll show you fo...

looks like notation for some game, but I don't recognize it
  T   N
1D 4L E
1U 2R S
1D    W
1D 3R N
   5L E
2U 9L S
1L 1D W
11 hours later…
12:02 PM
OK, going through stuff I've offered/awarded bounties on (since the grace period for my bounty on the Karen emails is about to run out), I ran across this one - am I the only person who thinks that one of the very few clues in the puzzle is, uh, questionable at best? puzzling.stackexchange.com/questions/28240/loving-meryl-streep
1:02 PM
Considering that it uses a made-up word that doesn't exist in any dictionary you would only know if you've ever used it, in certain parts of the world? (I doubt it's even been used by more people than the person who entered it into urban dictionary).
@Khale_Kitha lmao that is literally what I'm getting at, exactly
I've never heard anyone use 'ophy' in that way, but that's not that important, because I'm only one person
what is notable is that I don't see that definition anywhere else
and there's only four clues total. so 25% of that puzzle is nonsense.
also, I'm starting to regret upvoting that question rebus
but also also, there are people still trying to use the "tetraloop" definition of gnra
1:13 PM
These puzzles that sit, forever, with people getting nowhere, that get no hints....heh
yeah so... about that...
in all seriousness, though, the grace period of my bounty expires in ~1 hour
Yeah, and I've given hints, and answered comments - and no one's bothered to look at it. There's absolutely nothing else that I can do. People just need to bother trying to solve it.
I'm genuinely surprised that no one in all of Puzzling has answered it
yeah it's not you at all
I was being jokey up above
It's nowhere near as hard as Alconja's that I modeled it from.
But I certainly haven't had any inspiration to work on my other puzzle that I started a week ago.
but like... it's, like, exactly the kind of puzzle that people here love to solve, and are (from what I've seen) generally really good at solving, and quickly.
1:16 PM
I'm jealous of people who have the resources/patience to work on these more ambitious puzzles
The past few days I've been focusing on my Udemy class, for Unity, that I bought, several months ago.
oh yeah? how's that going?
And trying to get to a point where i'm not hitting "forward 15 seconds" almost constantly.
1:18 PM
I think I hit that point at the end of last night - we'll see after this current part that I'm on, when I get home, later.
Getting near the end of the 3rd game in the series, though - just need to add sound, I think
Which is easy enough, so I imaigne I'll be on the next one
Let's see what the next lecture is...
I made a paint-by-numbers tutorial game in unity
Looks like about 10 more lectures on this one, then the next section is an arcade game, and then a plants v zombies clone, and then I think it moves to the 3d ones
Current project is an arkanoid clone (of which I've made several in other environments, but still learning Unity is important to me)
no doubt!
The other Udemy that I need to watch is one learning Unreal Engine
Got them both when the $10 discounts were up
$10 prices, rather
oh nice
yeah I haven't spent any money on any kind of online learning
but anything programmy that's free (and seems decent) that I can get my hands on, I try
1:23 PM
Yeah, I normally haven't, but these were ones that I really wanted to get myself to learn and they had great reviews
Over 22k people using this unity one
and $10 is pretty cheap, all things considered
It was $200 normally until Udemy changed their pricing scheme, recently, to where everything is $10 - $45
(This one is still $45, under the new scheme, though)
They got TONS of sales when they put a large number of them up for $10
the one problem I have with a lot of programming (and programming-adjacent) topics wrt online learning is that there's often no way to be like "listen: I know how to make a variable."
1:26 PM
Yeah, I chose to tolerate my way through that on this particular Udemy video
But it's been boring, for a bit, because of it
Interesting enough to where I'd rather be working on it, right now, though
It's funny when I get to a part where they're like:
Challenge: Do this, this, and this, while doing this, and this.
"Okay, pause the video and do it, then come back."
"....But I'm done already...."
That part I got to last night was the first one where I couldn't think of how to accomplish it immediately
So hopefully getting into new area
I honestly didn't think I'd learned enough of Unity from playing with it previously
But I guess the most recent thing I attempted taught me some =D
that's cool
Either way, this feels like "formal" training, in a way, because of it's structure
So I appreciate it
For reference:
It's that one
We need @Alconja to look at the email puzzle, I think, to get people started =D
Q: Neurotic frogs ought to relax in mud baths

DLoscWhat is the hidden message in this advertisement? Neurotic Frogs Ought To Relax In Mud Baths! Perpendicular lounging calms. A frog, a mud cap... bliss! Wallowing generates happiness. Amphibian spa isn't expensive--seventy dollars--cheap! That's not a large expense from any discerning fro...

I still love @ChrisCudmore's comments on this
lol those are great
I've been poking around on the udemy site since you posted that link
I'm actually thinking about shelling out for the $20 persian course
1:39 PM
I desperately need new speakers
what about headphones?
I'm supposedly going to be getting headphones for my birthday
but that's a few months off
but I was also looking at those music production courses
that's the kind of thing I think I could get the same information by going to youtube/talking to people I know
since they're $50 each, that's a little steep for internet learning for me
1:40 PM
The main reason I like this unity one is because they're constantly updating and adding to it
The most recent addition...
an RTS game - was added like in march I think
He has a separate one on more advanced physics usage in the engine, that I might get at a later time
I agree with him that it's easy to get into Unity and attempt to avoid using the scripting system at first (even if you're a programmer), so he jumps right in to doing only scripting and works from there, to get you past it.l
oh that's cool
Just hoping I can get Blender to run on my machine at home...
When I installed it, during the first lesson, I tried to run it, but it's just popping up with a 0.25 second cmd window with an error. Figured I'd look into it, later.
But bah
(I've run it before, but not since my most recent reinstall a couple years ago)
Everytime I read the puzzle entitled: "A race of liars" I have to remind myself that it's about a footrace...
you know, I read it with the other definition, but I don't really think anything of it, because I'm used to the (occasionally problematic) sci-fi trope of referring to other types of beings as "races"
Yeah, that's my problem, too. I'm used to that and so it comes to mind, first.
Especially because of...
"You find yourself in a strange land "
hahaha yeah
1:53 PM
Also, I hated those puzzles back when I was in GT in middle school.
So I haven't given the puzzle much thought
I didn't even look at that puzzle yet because those are the kind I immediately glaze over
"oh, it's one where I have to make a chart. no thanks"
Q: Any equivalent to this Persian proverb "The yellow dog is the jackal's brother"?

SoudabehSuppose you have a new boss and your former boss was a vicious and dictator one. Now you are visiting the new boss for the first time. He seems to be a nice person to you, but one of your colleagues who has worked with him before, after hearing your opinion about the new boss, would reply mocking...

For your interest
oh that's cool! I've seen that person's posts before, they're interesting (similar stuff - looking for english versions of persian idioms)
2:00 PM
I don't pay attention to the poster on the other SE sites, so not sure if I've seen them before, but I have seen ones asking similar
Q: Find me in a code (and be faster than Bob)

mestackoverflowOn a day when Bob chose to meet his friend, Alice, at her house, Alice decided to go a trip! Picking up his phone, Bob tried calling Alice, but no one answered. As Bob turned to leave the front door, he saw a note on the second step down. Here's what the note said: Bob ran home, deciphered th...

Deusovi describes the issue well, I think
Not necessarily in his initial comments, but the last two
I was honestly looking at that, as a substitution, at first, but the massive number of repetitive letters, at the end, hurts that idea
yeah I almost wrote more comments supporting him
but I realized he covered it pretty well already
Yeah, same
I tried messing with that puzzle this morning, btw, but got nowhere
I imagine the delimiters OP talks about are the 2s
that does leave us with a word that's like eight Fs long
2:16 PM
I find it funny that dcode.fr obfuscates his javascript
....but has a javascript deobfuscator in his toolset.
I really wish there was something we could tell that dude to fix the puzzle that isn't just going to sound like "please tell us how to solve it"
Man, this week is just shot for me... heh
but... that's, effectively, the information we need, heh
2:18 PM
I just saw it in the close-for-too-broad queue, a moment ago, but skipped it
Will give it some time, because of the comments
And yeah, I agree
It's clear that there appears to be two phrases here
But I have several issues with the puzzle.
The least of which is....
If this bugger's in a hurry, why did the other person leave an ENCRYPTED note for him to figure out where to go?
It's just a random trip, lol.
But....I don't like it when people poke at my storylines, so....I'll leave it alone
Q: Game of Life: Kill the Sun

BaSzAtBelow is an initial state for Conway's Game of Life with a single pulsar. Living cells are white. The area marked with red is your base. You are free to modify any of the red cells, but only those, and only in the initial generation. You are not allowed to do anything once the simulation start...

I bet you could make that REALLY interesting by introducing a third state into the block such that it cause a delay in their expansion. On, Off, and Waiting, with Waiting being only a 1-turn state.
2:38 PM
I like the cellular automata thing, but... it's also very...programmatic?
re: the encryption puzzle - I hate the closures on those puzzles because it's clearly just a case of the OP needing to add a small amount of information.
Well, to be fair..
I think that's why this site uses the On hold system, rather than closing immediately.
To indicate to the OP that they need to make changes before it gets closed
At least - I thought I read that somewhere
that just seems like unnecessary bureaucracy to me
I'm getting too used to being able to edit my typos out. I miss being able to do that, when I'm in IM. Haha
what exactly is being hurt by giving the person the chance to make the change before you punish them?
I think that's the point.
The puzzle being on-hold is a warning to fix it.
2:43 PM
but it's a punishment, first and foremost
There's still several days of time before it's closed, if they elect not to fix it.
it absolutely is loaded with punitive semiosis
I'm not sure I see it that way. Having a question put on hold isn't a punishment - it doesn't affect your account, in any way that I've seen, either.
why can't these people, instead, put their big boy pants on and stop throwing tantrums for the one second it would take for the OP to make the edit
instead of throwing a fucking fit
I only see one vote on it, anyhow, at least. So it's just one person's opinion
2:45 PM
I might be more inclined to agree with you if what the user sees was anything other than "your puzzle is on hold (because it sucks)"
"before you are allowed to continue, you must navigate the cesspool that is our meta site, in the hope of finding whatever it is that we didn't really tell you was our issue with your puzzle. good luck, since there's almost no consensus on any topic on the meta site"
Perhaps - though that isn't what actually happens.
in my experience it has been
A puzzle on hold tells exactly the reason it was put on hold and gives advice as to how to get it re-opened.
hahah no, not really.
For some puzzles, I agree, it may not be obvious what to change
Though that's a different issue
Yes, it does.
Word for word, it does.
Show me ONE puzzle that states: "Your puzzle is on hold because it sucks" or even "Your puzzle is on hold" without a reason
2:49 PM
it gives a very, very broad statement under which that particular puzzle was classified, very often incorrectly or at least incongruously
"too broad" doesn't even remotely cover most of the puzzles that are considered "too broad", as just one example
And, as mentioned, that an issue with the people closing them, but the description given for an on-hold puzzle when it's properly put on-hold is accurate and helpful.
The problem is puzzles being closed with inappropriate reasons.
"four people posted answers that don't actually make any sense, but because people were able to type in a box and hit the submit button, we're considering this puzzle too broad."
putting things into overly-broad (ha ha) categories and expecting people to suss out why exactly they were put there (into, again, a situation that is semiotically loaded so as to signal failure or punishment) is not a good practice in any paradigm
If you say so - the categories don't seem broad, in the slightest, to me.
if more puzzles were closed with good and well-articulated reasons, I might feel differently.
But puzzles, like that one above, are not too broad.
If closed, it should be "unclear"
2:55 PM
and yet...
And yet one person voted it that way. You can't have it both ways. Either the population of the site is allowed to give their opinion on the content or they are not. There's a reason it takes several votes to close or re-open and that the same person cannot reclose or re-open.
lol the same people reclose things all the time!
If they do, then the site is not working - because it explicitly says that it's not possible.
hell, I've voted to reopen the same thing more than once
Then it needs to be put up somewhere as the site not working.
As mentioned: "Each user may only vote to close and reopen a given question once. (For example, if you vote to close a question that is closed and then later reopened, you cannot vote to close it again.)" from our own help center.
2:58 PM
yeah it must not be working then
I've seen deusovi's name on the same puzzle for closing after it's been reopened, for example
(this is confusing to talk about)
That rule is in place to prevent a subset of users from controlling the content. So if it's not working, then it's dire that it get fixed.
what I was getting at with my "and yet..." up there was:
there is like a 99% chance that question gets closed for being too broad
it happens all the time here - stuff gets closed for a really broad reason, or without any kind of accompanying text explaining what was wrong with that specific puzzle
(bloody guinea pig sending more messages)
so we can say "oh this is how it's meant to work" all we like
if it keeps working in a different way, then that's useless, you know?
I think most people are giving it the benefit of the doubt BECAUSE there's comments.
Generally a too-broad closure happens quick around here, as you've mentioned.
Yet there's only 1 vote, so far. And if it does get closed, before the OP edits it, someone can always vote to re-open it, if they don't feel that it's too broad.
Personally, I feel that you should have to add a comment to any vote for closure, anyhow, though.
But the site's setup doesn't support it.
3:02 PM
I would be so happy to have comments that accompany 1) votes for closure, 2) votes for reopening, 3) votes in the review queue
I've talked about this before: I've been banned from reviewing for a week TWICE because my votes didn't line up with the tiny number of people voting to close nearly every question on the site
Honestly, that's the reason I flag things, instead of marking closed, at times.
Because declines require a comment.
Though, honestly, I rarely do either, except in extreme cases
IE, I would have flagged this:
Q: What is the name of the biggest SHIP in the world?

john scottThis is a really short one. What is the name of the biggest SHIP in the world?

....though I'm not certain if I would have picked too broad or unclear.
I think Puzzling is fundamentally broken
Also, close votes disappear over time if people don't agree.
because, OK, that's a dumb question. BUT... it's pretty clear that the asker had one answer in mind.
Sure they had one answer in mind. Nearly all puzzle askers do.
But there's not enough information, there, to find the answer without guessing all day until you get lucky.
3:06 PM
to me, there's nothing useful about self-congratulatorily forcing yourself to come up with other answers just so you can click the VTC button while patting yourself on the back and smirking
Personally, though, I'll usually just close the browser tab for wasting my time.
that is much easier and doesn't involve indirectly calling the person an idiot
just because that person didn't know that there are people on this website who take a great deal of enjoyment in not letting people enjoy doing puzzles.
Meh. I think anyone who thinks that having their (obviously over-broad) puzzle put on-hold for being too broad is an attack on them, personally, has defensiveness issues they need to deal with.
but whatever, I don't have any control over this place. it'll just keep getting more and more toxic
no, dude, listen
this is not just an idea out of my head
this is something that's been studied for decades before either of us were born
it's not really a matter of opinion at this point
3:11 PM
I don't know what that's supposed to mean here
but being like "nope, no such thing as semiosis, you made that word up" is... a little naive, to say the least.
I just find it amusing when someone claims "studies" and declares a finding as fact. My wife tries that all the time. I can always find a number of "studies" declaring the opposite.
I'm not even talking about "studies" (although yes, there are most certainly studies)
Whether they feel like they're being attacked or not, it's still an issue with dealing with other people, on the internet, and something that people need to get over.
I'm talking about the fact that, again, this is a field of knowledge that's not really in doubt by anybody who has even heard of it
well no
if A shoots B, B isn't "having an issue" by not being happy about it
Quite frankly, anytime you talk about anything like this, you get all inflammatory, accusing everyone who thinks, or votes, differently than you to be arrogant and harmful.
And there's no shooting, or attacking, going on anywhere, except in your head.
3:14 PM
ok man
Closing a broad puzzle as being too broad is not an attack on a person. Most people I doubt even LOOK at who is posting the puzzle before voting.
Anyone who thinks otherwise is paranoid.
now when did I say it was an attack on a person?
Pretty constantly
name one time
all the evidence should be in this chat, if it exists
9 mins ago, by question_asker
to me, there's nothing useful about self-congratulatorily forcing yourself to come up with other answers just so you can click the VTC button while patting yourself on the back and smirking
As a recent example.
But there's plenty more
3:16 PM
that doesn't say what you just said at all
and, I dunno, if you can't recognize hyperbole as a rhetorical construct... I just dunno
Yes - you're claiming that people (by the way, only ONE of those people answered, so it was false anyways) are coming up with answers JUST so they can click the VTC button and be mean
but no, that doesn't say anything about attacking anyone
And I recognize hyperbole - you use it constantly
When you're talking about this
You obviously disagree with the design of the site - I get it. But you go over-the-top with your exaggerations when you don't like something.
I mean, I was having a laugh about the way certain users operate on puzzles.
and the fact that that behavior tends to rub off on the general populace
and I've literally watched people go from being new users with interesting ideas to literally inventing new reasons to close puzzles
this ain't that deep
And that's the problem. Putting the puzzles on-hold is DESIGNED to rub off on the general populace, because they want people to assist in keeping the site on-topic.
The entire reason the site has rules, at all, defined by the users, is because rules are intended to rub off on new users.
3:19 PM
but—and this has been my point—that only works if the close reason makes any sense in the context
Yes, we talked about this, quite a while ago.
well, we're arguably not doing anything "by the users" here
Except you've gone far beyond that point.
I don't know what you're talking about
you keep making claims that you can't back up
Sure I do.
3:20 PM
so... bigtime shrug emoticon, I guess
well, where's the evidence of me claiming people were attacked?
what's this that I've "gone far beyond"?
"gone far beyond" is evident in the entire conversation.
you make it sound like I'm arguing for something other than actual, explicit policy, that we actually stick to
And about being attacked? You went on, for 10 minutes, about people being "punished" because their puzzle was being put on-hold for a valid reason.
ah, so no need to explain what you mean. you just get to say it, and it's accepted to be true.
I did not make that claim, no.
I'm sorry if you interpreted what I said incorrectly.
You literally said it. Rofl
Go read it, yourself.
3:23 PM
no, I very much did not
I ... I think you don't understand what I did say.
which is fine.
41 mins ago, by question_asker
what exactly is being hurt by giving the person the chance to make the change before you punish them?
I shouldn't say "I think" there, because, if you're claiming that I said that people were being punished, and you genuinely believe that I said that, then you objectively did not understand what I said.
Read it, yourself, as you claim that people are voting to close puzzles in order to punish people.
yeah, you didn't.
And since you need to, apparently, re-read your own text, here is the example of you exaggerating about facts in order to try and win a point.
42 mins ago, by question_asker
I might be more inclined to agree with you if what the user sees was anything other than "your puzzle is on hold (because it sucks)"
Though there's plenty of examples of that.
3:27 PM
I'm not trying to win a point
exaggeration has rhetorical value
rhetoric is just that.
but again, yeah, you're not understanding what I said, so we just can't move forward from here
What you've said is clear as day.
All you can do is laugh about how you're so misunderstood.
it's true. what I've said is clear. you're just wrong about what it means.
Sure I am.
Though you can't provide anything more than "You're wrong. You just don't understand"
3:30 PM
there's not much more I can do when faced with someone who won't even make an attempt to find out what I mean
like, where do you want me to go from there?
LoL, you claim that you're so misunderstood, but make no attempt to correct the "error". What else am I supposed to do?
You simply laugh.
I don't understand where your error is. I can't correct something if you won't explain what you're reading into what I've said.
Yeah, I laugh, because you keep just characterizing me, instead of actually trying to engage.
What exactly is there to read into with "giving the person the change [before you VTC] before you punish them"
How is that ANYTHING but a claim that people are voting to close puzzles to punish people.
It's almost literally stated.
yes, because I introduced the semiosis of punishment earlier in the conversation
I used the word "punish" again as a shorthand for that
Yet, still claim that you never claimed an attack or punishment.
3:33 PM
because I don't want to have to type out of 50+ year old text explaining how those things are connected every time we talk about it
I didn't ever claim attack or punishment
I sort of see where you're getting that, but it's going to take a long time to explain what the difference is
I tire of looking at a wall and have you claiming it's not a wall.
here we go
Going back to more productive things.
3:35 PM
it's more like you're looking at a door that looks like a wall and getting mad at me for not calling it a wall
I understand your confusion
I don't know the best way to explain the difference to you
is putting a puzzle on hold a punishment? in the grammar of this website, no. but the only way you would know that is to know the grammar of the website first, which almost no user knows upon arriving at the site. some users came from other SE sites, and have a small amount of knowledge of how the rules they might be familiar with may apply to this site, but most users just see it as a regular website with regular rules, where having something closed or put on hold means "you fucked up"
(bounty just expired on the karen puzzle btw)
also: like it or not, there is ideology everywhere, including the rulesets of community-driven* websites
* however misleading that term may be for SE
4:25 PM
It's a wording problem, I guess, but the issue is that if you used something like "other users think your puzzle needs more information" instead of putting it on hold, I figure many people would dismiss it as a suggestion
4:38 PM
That's a fair argument, yeah
I mean, in my experience—and I don't have hard data on this but I'd be willing to bet a large sum of money on it—most of the puzzles that get closed/put on hold around here are the user's first, or second, or third puzzle
and most people do not read every post and every answer and every comment on every post and answer in the meta section before they start using the site—not that they would gain much useful knowledge from doing so
all I've really been saying from the start here is that we could be a) friendlier and b) clearer, and that in my own experience in administrative positions on community-driven websites, you can go a long way toward (a) just by doing (b) as thoroughly as possible.
I've seen people have the following conversation here or on other SE sites MANY times:
Person A: Why was my question closed? The reason (says something really vague|says something distinct but inaccurate).
Person B: Oh, it was closed because (more specific reason than stated|completely different reason than stated).
Person A: Then why didn't it say that?
Person B: Sounds like you, brand new person, need to go to the effort of writing up a proposal on the meta site, which will be met with either an unclear response or a clear response but no action will be taken.
(yes, I know, that last line isn't something that people usually say, just the eventuality that often comes to be)
do we want to have a thriving, vibrant community with varied content (with the possibility of occasional bad content), or do we want to have a perfunctory, stagnant community where we lock out new people in order to prevent potential bad content (and keep only the content that panders to existing users' sensibilities)?
I'd argue that the former is more preferable and less boring (though obviously some people would prefer the latter), but the difference is the former requires actual effort. The way we do things now involves no effort, no attempt to curate. It's just lazily pushing a couple of buttons when we see something we don't like.
5:08 PM
anyway, Prince AND Chyna died, that's sad
5:58 PM
@humn good lord, the formatting on that post
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