BION Grandpré Worksheet

Thanks for providing the Grandpré worksheet at http://bionsgadgets.appspot.com/ , BION. It’s much handier to use than the interactive one I made many years ago – I’ve never put in my time to learn to program user interfaces, and in something like this it really shows! I used yours to do the JF19 AC-1217 and you made it fun rather than tedious.

I wonder whether crib placement could use more of the available frequency information. I think it currently just looks at overlaps in the crib, but perhaps it could also usefully check frequencies. I know in a homophonic like this you can’t count on high-frequency letters much, but if you have a low-frequency like ‘F’ it’s unlikely to be one of the higher-frequency dinomes. One could also give votes up and down if other digraphs or longer are formed.

I’ve also been musing about better automated Grandpré attacks, hillclimbing on both the keys and (if any) cribs, perhaps fiddling the keys to make sure it always has a full alphabet of words off my “cromulent words” lists, again paying attention to frequencies. I haven’t tried anything automatic yet – has anyone else?

3 thoughts on “BION Grandpré Worksheet”

  1. I’ve tried hillclimbing using word lists for both the rows and the columnar key. I’ve never gotten it to work successfully. I’ve only succeeded by using an interactive solver with a GUI. Mine’s Windows based with crib placement. It has similar functionality to BION’s. The crib placer doesn’t use frequency data, but it does score each placement for repeats that match crib repeats. This helps a great deal in identifying the correct crib placement. It also has a feature to automatically search my 8-letter word list for words that match letters already entered in any row I select.

  2. I’m glad the Grandpre solver was useful to you. I don’t use it myself these days — instead I use the Numbered Key interactive solver on the same web site. The numbered key solver has all the features of the Grandpre solver plus it has ‘undo’ and ‘redo’ buttons. I should add undo and redo to the Grandpre solver but haven’t got around to it yet.

    To solve AC-1207 I used the “sloppy” grandpre option on my numbered key PH hill-climber. The sloppy Grandpre solver does hill climbing on 8-letter word lists but does not check to see if the vertical key is a word. Using the crib the solver got close enough to the solution so that I could finish it off with the numbered key interactive solver.

  3. Correction: The grandpre interactive solver does have a feature that’s missing from the numbered key interactive solver — it can show possible key words. I’ve put ‘undo’ and ‘redo’ on my list of things to add to the Grandpre interactive solver.

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