Yet Again Still More Quick Snippets

Published on Sunday, July 05, 2009 in , ,

LinksWhile many of my snippet columns have a theme, sometimes it's fun just to bring out a mixed bag of goodies.

• Over at UC Irvine, Professors Jim Arvo and Dennis Eichhorn teach a computer class in game theory, mainly using LISP. Fans of this site, as well as the TV show Numb3rs, will enjoy the resource page for this course. 4 Monopoly playing pieces are used as a key for the links, with the top hat indicating a playable online version of a game, the iron indicating a PDF paper on a game, the dog indicating a Wikipedia article, and the thimble to link to other information. Just clicking the top hats alone on this site will keep your brain busy for some time.

• One puzzle that has long eluded cryptographers is a coded message contained in a letter sent to President Thomas Jefferson in 1801 by Robert Patterson. Not only is there no evidence that Jefferson himself solved the mysterious cipher, but he considered it so inscrutable, he considered having the State Dept. use it for secret communications. However, after 208 years, the code has finally been cracked by a 36-year-old mathematician by the name of Dr. Lawren Smithline. The story about how it was cracked is interesting, and the final message is also somewhat amusing. The interactive look at the code-solving process gives you a good sense of the ingenuity it must've taken to originally develop this code.

• For those of you who have been patiently following the redesign of Grey Matters (as discussed here and here), the redesign is now complete! As promised, the Presentation section, the Online Store, and even the iPhone/iPod Touch Mental Gym have all been updated. I guess you could call this Grey Matters New Look! (Part IIb).

The online store now has its own search engine, which has also been integrated into the Grey Matters search engine. When you click the Store tab, it takes you over to the store's search engine to give you the results. Speaking of the search engine, you will now get results under the Mental Gym tab, as it now searches both the old mentalgym.freehostia.com site, as well as the updated version of the Mental Gym. Until Google starts indexing the new site, you'll mostly see results from the freehostia version of the site, which will redirect to the new site automatically.

The new iPhone/iPod Touch Mental Gym has been redesigned in Dashcode so that it appears properly on those devices. Originally, the selections needed to be zoomed in. Now, however, they are immediately readable. Also, some of the older, non-functioning links have been removed.

One last interesting note: This post marks the first time that the front page of the Grey Matters blog has been populated entirely with posts shortened with the Read More... feature. Since the narrower space has been put into play, this greatly helps in keeping the front page more organized and readable.

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