This release should run on the latest version of any browser on any device that supports a browser.
On mobile devices, rotate the device to get full-screen mode.
We have now doubled the number of Perpetual Puzzles. There are now 730 easier ones and 730 harder ones. Enjoy!
Garbled messages are still a problem. I verified that I send the correct message but have not been able
to figure out why the browser sometimes shows a scrambled message. If you refresh the browser, the problem goes
away for a while. Maybe it's a browser bug. Please let me know if you can figure out what triggers the problem.
If letters won't swap, try updating your browser or using a different browser.
If you find a problem, send feedback to mica @ crick.com. Please describe (a) what you did, (b) what you expected
to happen, and (c) what actually happened - and include both the device and the browser the puzzle is running on.
This entertaining puzzle has become a classic.
The original versions were inspired by "The Enigma Machine" which the Germans
used to encode and decode messages in World War II.
In this simplified version, a one-stage letter substitution is used to scramble
a well-known or humorous quotation. Your task is to unravel the quotation
by swapping letter pairs until the original message is restored.
Swap letter pairs by selecting the two letters you want to swap
using the mouse, the keyboard or by tapping the screen (on an iPhone e.g.).
Lock any letter you know is correct by tapping it twice.
There is a handy Undo key (<) on the right-hand side. Stuck?
Click the spy-glass.
The histogram shows letter frequencies. Since E and T are the most common
letters, a good way to start is to make the most frequent letters in the
histogram E and T. Then look for words like THE, AND, I and A. Keep
swapping letter pairs until words you recognize start to emerge.
There are two new puzzles every day. If you can"t solve
one today, come back tomorrow and see the solution.
This puzzle was first programmed in Java by my daughter, Camberley, as a
freshman class programming exercise at Harvard in 1996 based some ideas
suggested by me that were in turn based on a book called "Codes and Cyphers"
that I read when I was 10 years old. It was converted to HTML5 in 2014.