xnera: The Ninth Doctor says, "Fantastic!" (fantastic!)
It's my birthday! Yay! To celebrate, I spent the past few days finishing my Wavedeck shawl as a birthday present to myself. I'm pretty pleased with it, but there's some errors in it. So I'm probably going to make another one, and whichever one is better I'll keep for myself. The other will go to the shawl ministry.

I'm also working on a crocheted shawl for the ministry, the Silver Bells shawl. I'm not really a fan of pink, but I do like this soft pink. I probably should have made it wider, but I was concerned about running out of yarn. The pattern says it took 1000 yards, and I've only got the one skein of Red Heart Giant.

There's also the two scarves I'm making for the Red Heart group on Ravelry. I'm making a drop stitch scarf in a sunshine print. The color changes are very short, so it's coming out kind of busy. I do like it, though. The other scarf is a crocheted mesh stitch scarf in Real Teal. Love the color.

My parents went on vacation the beginning of this month. I spent most of the time in front of the computer, reading various threads on Ravelry. Also, eating. It appears that when left to my own devices, I default to overeating *sighs*. I did go to the library while they were gone and rented Skyrim, but was meh about playing it. I finally fired it up the day they came back, and played about two hours. It's brown. Why do games feel they need to be brown? I do not like brown. I also didn't like the combat. I felt like I wasn't hitting anything. I did successfully hit a chicken -- which put a bounty on my head and got me attacked by a townsperson. So, I wasn't too impressed with Skyrim. I might give it another chance and rent it again in the future, but so far it is not on my to-buy list.

Also while my parents were gone, the U.S. Puzzle Championship took place. I find I have less of an attention span for it the older I get. I lasted about an hour and fifteen minutes before I gave up. I only submitted answers for two puzzles: the battleships, which was easy, and four of the ten differences in the picture puzzle. I did try the Sudoku but didn't make much headway, and was intrigued by a crossword-type puzzle but had no clue how to start it.

I had been playing Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift before my parents left on vacation, but wasn't in the mood for it when they returned. I was enjoying the gameplay, but the story was sparse, and I was wanting something with more meat to it. So I started a new game of Final Fantasy XIII. It's been about a year since I played it, because I had bought a new xbox controller with my birthday money last year and played it then. I'm enjoying it.

I'm going to the library today to see if I can find a copy of The Scorch Trials (the second book in the Maze Runner series). The movie is coming out soon, so it will probably be hard to find the book, but one was due back recently, so maybe I'll get lucky.
xnera: Photo of my cat sniffing a vase of roses  (Default)
Wish I had the money to get a paid account here. I miss all my icons. Wanted to use my bored icon, but that's not one of the ones I have as a free account. Grr.

So, the U.S. Sudoku championship was fun. Though I, uh, kind of cheated a bit and used an app I had downloaded the other day. I solved one puzzle legitimately, and another three with help of the app. There's 20 problems so even with cheating I came nowhere near close to winning, so I don't feel too bad about it. Well, okay, I do feel bad because it means I am weak weak weak, but... the goal today was to have fun, and I did. So there.

The U.S. Puzzle Championship is next month, and I'm looking forward to that one. I usually do Battleships, the find-the-differences puzzle, and word search, if they have one. Maybe I will practice with an older test. I'd have to download them since last year's test was done on my no-longer-functioning Mac mini.

I did some knitting today and finished a project. It's a small shawlette, and was done as part of a mystery KAL. Like everyone else in the group, mine came out smaller than expected. I'm currently blocking it, and will probably try to stretch it even more. As is, I'm not sure it's big enough for me.

Right now I am bored. I tried relieving the boredom in Runescape, but the game crashed on me right as I dinged level 56 in Fishing. Don't feel like fighting with Runescape crashes tonight. I'll probably end up playing FFV again, though I'm not terribly in the mood.

Thought last night: Sherlock mood theme. I must investigate and see if anyone has made one.
xnera: Icon captioned "Geek". (geek)
[livejournal.com profile] asqmh demanded updates, so here is an update!

I am amusing myself tonight by browsing the Firebox catalog. The folks behind Firebox are also the people who founded Mind Candy, the company that publishes the Perplex City puzzle cards here on Earth. I've been visiting Firebox a lot lately, to see if they have Wave 4 available for pre-order yet (they don't). And since I'm there, I might as well look around, right?

OMG. I NEED THIS. I already have an ice cream maker, but still--I need this!

Dude. I HAD this game as a kid! I remember playing it on vacations to Hayward.

o_O. Pretty ring, and gods know I would love to have it so I can flaunt it in the faces of my aunt and uncle when they come to visit on Thanksgiving and ask the inevitable "when are you getting MARRIED?!?!" question. On the other hand, feels like a marketing gimmick and yet another dating site. So I think I'll pass.

Redecorating idea? *snerks*

I object to this being listed under "boys' toys". Grrr.

An Orgasmatron! I've experienced this. Quite a sensation.

Another thing I NEED.

I love this game. Alas, I never get to play it. *sighs*

This looks interesting. Also brings back fond memories of a cubic jigsaw my dad had. His was a lot easier to solve, though. I may have to get this.

Sighs. Someday I will own this game. Just can't justify it at the moment, since I never get to play board games with anyone and it's kind of steep in price.

Totally forgot about this one! I played it at Mensa a few times. Good game, but not as good as the previous.

This really turns me off. I'm getting sick of Sudoku as it is--it's getting TOO popular--but this? Yeah, just someone trying to cash in on the craze. No thank you!

Conclusion: Firebox is kind of like the ThinkGeek of the UK. Cool stuff, but I still like ThinkGeek better. Sorry, Firebox.
xnera: Icon of my cat, Raina, stretching in the sun. Caption reads "life is good." (content)
Didn't get ANYTHING done, really, yesterday, but that's because there was an electrical storm happening in my brain.

It was NOT fun. I had a slight sore throat, an upset stomach, and got dizzy everytime the storm flared up. Which was nearly nonstop, in the late afternoon and evening. I could actually HEAR the buzzing in my brain. O_O Weeeeeeeird.

Wasn't feeling much better this morning, so I obviously was not in top shape for the USPC. It was hard to stay focussed on a problem for long lengths of time; I kept flitting back and forth from one to another. Still, I'm pleased with how it went. My goal was to beat last year's dismal showing of 40 points, and I'm pretty certain I've done that.

Puzzles I solved:

8. Bulgarian Provinces - 20 points Answer entered at 12:16. I'm good at word searches, and really enjoy them, so this is usually the first puzzle I do every year.

11. Closing the Loop - 10 points; 5 bonus points Answer entered at 12:20. Like all mazes, I worked this one backwards. Seemed pretty easy--too easy, now that I think about it. Just glanced at the directions, and I think I missed something. Oops. :(

14. Welcome to Bulgaria - 15 points Answer entered at 1:13. This was when I was flitting back and forth between a bunch of puzzles, which is why there's a large gap between the last answer entered and this one. It took me a bit longer than normal to solve this kind of problem. Meh.

7. Mice - 1 point each; 5 point bonus for finding all ten Answer entered at 1:45. I claim 9 points for this one. Could NOT find the tenth, and didn't want to waste a lot of time on it.

12. Hex - 5 points Answer entered at 1:47. I had tried this on and off, and had a sudden insight. I can usually do these types, but I'm used to them being square or rectangular, not hex, so that might have slowed me down.

2. Sudoku - 10 points Answer entered at 2:13. I should've solved this one faster. Meh.

So, 74 if I didn't mess up Closing the Loop; 54 if I did. So yeah, looks like I beat last year. :)

Others I tried but didn't complete:

16. Traffic Signs - 15 points
5. Septoku - 10 points
18. Sudoku - 25 points - I made good progress on this, but then noticed an error. Didn't have time to retry it.
3. Pentomino Puddles - 10 points

with brief looks at 9. Round Trip and 6. Benign Crisscross.

Some of the other ones I didn't get to look really fun (Piecework and Tetris Crisscross, especially), so I'm looking forward to trying those out.
xnera: Icon captioned "Geek". (geek)
Good luck to everyone participating in the USPC today!
xnera: Icon from the Perplex City alternate reality game. (perplex city)
I recently bought a four-pack of Perplex City game cards from ThinkGeek. Have spent the last few hours solving cards. I started the night at rank ~12000, having solved one of the free online cards worth 14 points. I am now at rank 6008 with 166 points. Woo!

(Six cards in a pack * 4 packs) + one freebie card - 2 duplicates = 23 cards

I have solved 10 cards. Two reds, four orange, two yellow, one green, and one blue. In the 13 cards I have left, there are two reds, one orange, two yellow, three green, two blue, two purple, and one black.

Most of the puzzles I've solved so far have relied on general knowledge or triva. For many of them, I used Google to help me complete the answer. I often knew a portion of the answer, but not all. A few of the cards were more logic-based. The higher level cards (those later in the rainbow) appear to use more logic and less trivia.

The cards themselves are more than twice the size of standard CCG cards. They're rather pretty (as most CCGs are), and some are VERY interesting. A couple of them made me go "OOO!" and wonder if they contained ARG clues.

This is my first ARG, so I'm easing into it by sticking to what's most familiar: puzzles! I haven't investigated the ARG itself much yet; just having fun solving cards. I know only the barest minimum of the story--cube lost on earth, big reward to person who finds it, yadda yadda yadda. But I'm starting to get intrigued by the story because of some of the things on the cards. Who are these people? What are their relationships like? And what's this thing for? :D

In other puzzle-y news, the sample test for the 2006 Google U.S. Puzzle Championship has been posted. I immediately printed it out, as well as past year's test. Looks pretty standard, but there's at least one puzzle type on it that I haven't managed to solve yet, so I will need some practice. I wanted to practice anyway; last year's attempt did not go well at all. I think I ended up with 40 points, which is my worst showing yet. :( So, practice practice practice!

I'm kind of tired, but kind of not. Hmm. Maybe I'll watch a movie. Or just lay down and see if I fall asleep.

edit: I'm going to continue to journal about Perplex City, 'cause it'll be fun to keep track of my thoughts. All posts will be tagged "Perplex City", and can be read together here.
xnera: Icon captioned "Geek". (geek)

I'm up to page seven or so. MUAHAHAHAHA!!!!
xnera: Icon of a gray kitten. Caption reads: "Warning: Vampire Kitty. Call me 'bunny' and I'll bite you." (GRR ARGH)
So, that was brutal.

Last year I overslept for the test AND didn't have a working printer. In spite of this, I managed to get 57 points, beating my previous year's score of 45 points.

I had hoped to beat last year's score, but alas, it was not to be. Looks like I'm going to end up with 55 points. *sighs*

My plan of attack was to do the puzzles I like, which also happened to be some of the higher scoring puzzles. First one: the word search. This was a no-brainer choice, since I am good at pattern recognition. It took me seventeen minutes to solve.

I then tried both the Sudoku puzzles. They were BRUTAL this year. Both gave me fits, and I was not able to solve either, though I tried several times over the course of the two hours. Waah!

The other two I managed to do were Groundhog Day (find three pairs of identical tiles within a grid of 36), and the battleship. I also briefly tried both mazes, but quickly gave up on the Icon maze and got stuck on the Factor maze. I toyed with the Fences, as that's one of my new favorites, but didn't get far. I could probably solve it if I had more time.

Others I was interested in but didn't get a chance to try: Arrow Ring, Spinners, Observers, Seven-Letter Hungary, Picnic Lunch, and Crisscross Crash.

Two and a half hours goes waay too fast.

I think I'll take a small break, and then continue working them for fun. I am determined to get the Sudoku puzzles.
xnera: Icon captioned "Geek". (geek)
I have scratch paper, I have graph paper, I have pencils galore. I have colored pencils, and I have soda, and I've had lunch.

I looked at the instructions, which gives a preview of the test. There are two Sudoku puzzles (my favorites!), a couple of mazes, the usual word search (easy for me, and worth a lot of points), a fences, battleship, plus others that sound like they might not be too difficult.

Looks like it'll be a kick-ass two and a half hours of puzzley goodness. Yay!


xnera: Photo of my cat sniffing a vase of roses  (Default)

Reading Filters:

June 2017

1112131415 1617

Most Popular Tags


RSS Atom

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 23rd, 2017 11:35 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios