More recently, I discovered that the entire contents of the floppy disk containing this game (plus a bunch of other demo programs) can be downloaded from rml380z.org. Since I don’t have a 380Z to run this software, I decided to resurrect the code by porting it to C.
You can now try it out yourself via telnet. Just follow this link. If that doesn’t work, open a command line terminal and type in the following:
telnet justmyl.uk 20312
(If you’re using Windows and you need help getting telnet working, try asking Google.)
* Or “tic tac toe”, if you must.
Footnote: In 1980, a computer scientist called Oren Patashnik used 1500 hours of computer time to prove that there is a perfect winning strategy for the first player in 4×4×4 noughts and crosses. But don’t worry; the 380Z game isn’t quite that sophisticated.
Flickr user Moe_Ali has been using photos taken by the Curiosity Rover to create 3D images that work with red-blue 3D goggles. They’re really quite good, but don’t bother trying to view the example shown below; click through to the original high resolution images on Flickr and get your ass to Mars.
Stack Exchange user mikuszefski has come up with a parametric formula for plotting rather nice arses in three dimensions. Take a look at this:
Apparently it doesn’t look so good from the other side, but I don’t have Mathematica so am unable to verify. Here’s the formula:
(Images licensed under cc by-sa 3.0.)
Last month I mentioned a codebreaking puzzle tied in with the release of the new film about Alan Turing. The competition has just closed, but you might still be able to find it online if you feel like having a go.
If you want to know how to solve the puzzle, read on…
A company called Double Robotics makes “telepresence robots”, which are basically mobile iPads that remote workers can use to give themselves a “virtual presence” in an office many miles away.
Their website includes a “test drive” feature where you can control one of these things through your own web browser. The test drive robot is normally confined to a single room, but someone figured out how to open the door with it and escape.
This whole story may just be a marketing ploy by Double Robotics, but it’s very entertaining.
This was the runner-up in the DepicT! short film competition back in 1999. I think it deserves another airing :-)
It was made by Tom Baxandall and Alan Gardener. Tom went into advertising, and appears to have made several ads with a similar theme, like this one for cranberry juice.
I have no idea what became of Alan.
The maths department at Manchester University recently launched a new competition tied in with the release of The Imitation Game, the film about Alan Turing that you have no doubt heard of.
The competition involves decrypting three codes. I thought it was quite fun, if not particularly difficult. Here’s the link.
A new trailer for the film came out a couple of weeks ago. I’m quite looking forward to this. Hope it doesn’t disappoint.
According to the blurb, this film by Jeff Frost took 300,000 photos, riots, wildfires, paintings in abandoned houses, two years and zero graphics to make.
It was definitely worth it.
Here’s an interesting puzzle set by user MattClarke at the Stack Exchange puzzling website. The stained glass window you see here is called Chaos and Order. You simply have to figure out why.
I found the answer to this yesterday, but don’t go peeking before you’ve had a crack at it yourself!
If you’re really stuck, try looking for a link to the answer at the end of this sentence. It’s there somewhere.