What is the Sandbox?

This "Sandbox" is a place where Code Golf users can get feedback on prospective challenges they wish to post to the main page. This is useful because writing a clear and fully specified challenge on the first try can be difficult. There is a much better chance of your challenge being well received if you post it in the Sandbox first.

See the Sandbox FAQ for more information on how to use the Sandbox.

Get the Sandbox Viewer to view the sandbox more easily

To add an inline tag to a proposal use shortcut link syntax with a prefix: [tag:king-of-the-hill]

abcdefghijklmno
pqrstuvwxyz{|}~

¡,,#$%⅋,)(*+'-˙/ 0ƖᄅƐㄣϛ9ㄥ86:;>=<¿ @∀qƆpƎℲפHIſʞ˥WNO ԀQɹS┴∩ΛMX⅄Z]\[^‾ ,ɐqɔpǝɟƃɥᴉɾʞlɯuo dbɹsʇnʌʍxʎz}|{~  The rest of the characters are kept as-is(yes, the unprintable characters are in the ASCII character set). The characters that are larger than 0x7f will be mapped back by subtracting the character code by 128. If you are using a character that is larger than 256, modulo the character's character code by 128 before checking the availability. Rules • No standard loopholes, please. • Input and output will be taken with our standard input methods. • If you force Jono 2906 to change a key on their keyboard (allowing typing your specified character), you will get a penalty of +2 bytes for every key you add. • I don't think I quite follow. Are we given a character as input and need to output the upside-down version? – AdmBorkBork Aug 27 '19 at 14:06 • (1) I still find the question confusing even as to the basic functionality required. The "Input/Output" section seems to me to say that it's a Kolmogorov problem, but the "Rules" section talks about input. (2) If a character remapping is involved, the question should list Unicode codepoints for the characters in question, and should list test cases with Unicode codepoints. (3) Is the last rule saying that the program must work as is and after mangling? Or is it just a gimmick ("Post your code upside down, but it only has to work the right way up")? – Peter Taylor Aug 28 '19 at 8:39 • "The rest of the characters are not kept as-is(yes, the unprintable characters in the ASCII character set)." should this not be there? As for that entire paragraph, if I understand correctly: unprintable characters < 33 (as well as 127) will be kept as is; printable ASCII characters displayed will be converted to upside down; other printable ASCII characters and any character above 127 will be modulo-128 before doing the same check. – Kevin Cruijssen Aug 28 '19 at 9:24 • As for the last rule: we can only use those upside down characters in our source code, and when converting it to regular it should also work? So both programs ABC and ∀qƆ should work exactly the same? – Kevin Cruijssen Aug 28 '19 at 9:25 Wrong position I typr re;atively accuratrly, but so,etimes I made a whole nlock of text illegible by shifting a key right. So I need a program that corrects my text back to its original meaning. Rules • You have to left shift on a standard English QWERTY keyboard. • Whitespace do not count for the procedure before left-shifting and are kept as-is in a standard left-shifting procedure. If the key is the leftmost letter/symbol on a keyboard(i.e. The ~key, Q key, A key, Z key.), the key is kept as-is. If you reach a control character while left-shifting (Caps lock and Shift), their effects will not be triggered and the character before left-shifting is kept. • This is a contest; the shortest answer wins. • Both the input and the output shall be given via our default methods. Representation of a subset of the QWERTY keyboard that you will need The two lines connected are possible values of the key: shifted/unshifted. ~!@#$%^&*()_+
1234567890-=

QWERTYUIOP{}|
qwertyuiop[]\

ASDFGHJKL:"
asdfghjkl;'

ZXCVBNM<>?
zxcvbnm,./

(Space)
(Space)


Input

The input will always be a non-empty string conforming the rules above.

Output

The output will be the input string corrected to the originally intended meaning.

Examples:

Yjod ,sfr yjr, imjsppu/ -> This made them unhappy.
vpfr hp;g -> code golf


Feedback

I think this is not a duplicate; however, is any part of this challenge unclear or needs improvements?

• I think you are mixing up left and right. Clearly, ~, Q, A and Z are leftmost keys, NOT rightmost. And your examples appear to be left-shifting, not right-shifting. – wastl Sep 7 '19 at 11:27
• "I think this is a duplicate" - so why sandbox it? Or did a not go missing in editing? – Peter Taylor Sep 9 '19 at 8:36
• Thank you. Predominantly my mouse was not working again, I didn't get around to fix this. – user85052 Sep 9 '19 at 8:56
• "sonetimes" and "vlock" are shifted the wrong way. – Hiatsu Sep 9 '19 at 16:20

Path to Path Rearrangement

In the xkcd comic "Map of the Internet", a special fractal path was used, similar to this:

0  1  14 15
3  2  13 12
4  7  8  11
5  6  9  10


Ascii art version:

-0---1  14---15--16 19--20---21
|   |       |   |       |
3---2  13---12 17---18 23---22
|           |           |
4   7---8   11 30---29 24---25
|   |   |   |   |   |       |
5---6   9---10 31  28--27---26
|
58---57 54---53 32  35--36---37
|   |   |   |   |   |       |
59  56---55  52 33---34 39---38
|           |           |
60---61 50---51 46---45 40---41
|   |       |   |       |
63---62 49---+---47 44--43---42
\|/


This path, known as the Hilbert curve, has some interesting properties. Among other things, it can be flipped diagonally without changing most of those properties.

-0   3---4---5  58--59---60  63->
|   |       |   |       |   |
1---2   7---6  57---56 61---62
|           |
14---13  8---9  54---55 50---49
|   |       |   |       |   |
15  12--11---10 53--52---51   48
|                           |
16---17 30---31--32--33 46---47
|   |           |   |
19---18 29---28 35---34 45---44
|           |   |           |
20  23---24  27 36  39---40  43
|   |   |   |   |   |   |   |
21---22 25---26 37---38 41---42


Your task is to apply this transformation. Given a space on one path, find the corresponding location on the other. For example, the fourth space in the top path is located at (0, 2), which is the 14th space along the second path, so the correct output for 4 is 14.

As with similar challenges, this can be done as:

• An infinite sequence along the second path of the corresponding locations along the first path
• A function/program that takes a numbered position on the first path and returns the distance to that point on the second path.
• A function/program that takes a numbered position on the first path and returns all path 1 positions along path 2 to the point specified.

The first 64 terms of this sequence (zero indexed, add one to each for one indexed) are:

0 3 2 1 14 15 12 13 8 11 10 9 6 7 4 5 58 57 56 59 60 63 62 61 50 49 48 51 52 55 54 53 32 35 34 33 46 47 44 45 40 43 42 41 38 39 36 37 26 25 24 27 28 31 30 29 18 17 16 19 20 23 22 21


This is code golf, so shortest code in bytes wins.

Meta Questions

• Do I need a better description of the paths?
• Is the challenge itself clear?
• Any other issues I should fix before posting?
• The default output formats for sequence challenges can be found in the tag wiki – Jo King Sep 10 '19 at 4:03
• (1) Related. (2) I don't find "Find the location along the second path of a point on the first path" at all clear. It seems to be talking about output in 2D. I think it would be clearer to say "Given an index on the first path, output the index of the same coordinate on the second path". And then give a worked example (e.g. 4 vs 14). – Peter Taylor Sep 10 '19 at 10:53

Is this number part of a Collatz Prime sequence?

Each step of a Collatz Sequence can be summarized as:

$$p_{2} = \frac{3*p_1+1}{2}$$

Where p1 is the input number, and p2 is the output number.

You task is to find where both the input and output are primes.

Here are some test cases:

1  -> (3*1+1)/2 = 4  : false
3  -> (3*3+1)/2 = 5  : true
5  -> (3*5+1)/2 = 8  : false
7  -> (3*7+1)/2 = 11 : true
11 -> (3*11+1)/2= 17 : true
15 -> (3*15+1)/2= 23 : false
91 -> (3*91+1)/2=137 : true
97 ->(3*97+1)/2 = 146: false


Output should be some truthy value, and false may be an error.

• What is the definition defining? Is $p$ a Collatz prime iff it's a prime and $\frac{3p+1}2$ is a prime? If $p$ a Collatz prime iff it's a prime and $\frac{2p-1}3$ is a prime? Or is a prime Collatz if either of those conditions hold? – Peter Taylor Sep 13 '19 at 10:56
• @PeterTaylor are they not the same thing? – Pureferret Sep 13 '19 at 11:09
• Alternative phrasing: which of $p_1$ and $p_2$ are you calling a Collatz prime? – Peter Taylor Sep 13 '19 at 11:11
• @PeterTaylor I mean $p_1$ – Pureferret Sep 13 '19 at 11:22
• So neither the input prime nor the Collatz prime need to be prime? – Jonathan Frech Sep 17 '19 at 7:56
• "Input MAY be non-prime, in which case the output is always false (see 15)" -- did you specifically define this behavior or why is the above the case? – Jonathan Frech Sep 17 '19 at 8:00
• @JonathanFrech I'm (personally) only interested in going from prime to prime, but I wanted to define the haviour for non-prime input. When I say 'may be non-prime' I mean, it should be able to handle it, it's an allowed/expected input but not one that gives a True output. – Pureferret Sep 17 '19 at 10:55
• To me it feels like an unnatural extra constraint. – Jonathan Frech Sep 17 '19 at 12:54
• @JonathanFrech it's just defining how to behave with certain inputs. – Pureferret Sep 18 '19 at 9:12
• Citing Exceptional edge cases; such out-of-place definitions are generally frowned upon. – Jonathan Frech Sep 18 '19 at 9:56
• @JonathanFrech I've changed the initial ask, and now it shouldn't be an exception – Pureferret Sep 18 '19 at 10:23
• Cf. A158709. – Jonathan Frech Sep 18 '19 at 10:53

Maximize the Hello, world's in code permutations

In this task you should output this exact string: hi orb (because Earth is a sphere). However, here is the catch: you must output as many hi orb's as possible in all of your code permutations. Identical permutations do not count(e.g. aa's permutations count as one permutation)

Say you have a program abc that outputs this string. You should try your best to make acb, bac, bca, cab, and cba (i.e. the permutations of abc) also output this exact string.

Rules

• No standard loopholes, please.
• Input/output must obey our standard methods.
• Your score is simply the factorial of the length of your code. You shall also present the following score: The score is counted in the negative of the length of your source code divided by the number of permutations that your code generates; (expression: -(source length/permutations).) Of course you want to keep your score as low as possible.
• All comment characters in your language are disallowed, in order to avoid collapsing into a radiation-hardening challenge.
• If you are using the filename as data, the filename must also count in the permutations.
• The source code length should be <1000. (Don't ask why, it's just an attempt of avoiding abusing the source code length.)

Feedback

• Is it detailed enough?
• Is the input/output rules clear enough?
• Do I need any more information?

I don't think this is a duplicate because nobody has asked a question tagged with both permutation and hello-world. However, I worry that this challenge will collapse into a radiation-hardening challenge if you comment out a single character and then make sure that this will produce the same result, therefore making it a flavored version of this question and close to a duplicate.

• Can't you just extend your score by increasing your byte counnt, as long as you have some commented out part or no-op? – Jo King Sep 19 '19 at 8:50
• Unneccecary NOPs are disallowed, and at least 1 permutation of your code must only contain relevant code and nops. is rather vague, since no-ops aren't really defined, nor is this challenge really that possible to increase score if you don't have no-ops, otherwise it will turn into a duplicate of the normal Hello World question – Jo King Sep 19 '19 at 9:25
• This reminds me of a challenge I sandboxed a while ago, but deleted since it was clear it would produce only trivial answers – Jo King Sep 19 '19 at 9:27
• code-golf scoring usually has lowest score (=code length) wins. If you break with that convention, you should mention it in the rules. I think a big problem with this is that for any non-trivial answer (Like H in HQ9+), the proof of correctness of the score is almost impossible, because unlike radiation-hardening, the amount of variants increases factorially instead of linearly with the code length. – AlienAtSystem Sep 19 '19 at 11:52
• Hmm, it is okay, I will make the score negative then. I believe a program running the permutations of a string (not counting repeated ones) and evaluating them to check the result will be sufficient. Hmm, that's why the submittor needs to golf their code: to allow others to check their answers. – user85052 Sep 19 '19 at 12:09
• That's where it's unfeasible: The highest-scoring answer in the challenge you linked has 96 bytes. That's 9.9*10^149 permutations to check if they output the correct result. Even assuming your implementation is the fastest possible, that would take years, just for that single answer. You can't brute-force determine the score, but using mathematical trickery to try and calculate the score by hand will be arduous and prone to errors. – AlienAtSystem Sep 19 '19 at 13:10
• I don't think the limitations you have put are going to prevent this from falling apart. For example, this Pyth program works for any permutation of the code where only characters after the third " are permuted. Completely filling up the code allowed will achieve a score exceedingly close to zero. I don't think that is what you want, but I'm not really sure you can fix it (like what happened to Jo King), sorry. – FryAmTheEggman Sep 19 '19 at 18:38
• @FryAmTheEggman this particular snippet fails the rule that all code needs to be relevant. However, even if we tighten the rule to all code being life and necessary, that is, in one permutation, all code is executed, and a deletion of any statement resulting in the code not outputting "Hello World" any more, you can still cheese the challenge by bloating the code. The only way to stop that would be to change the scoring method to also use the factorial of the byte count, but then A) HQ9+ is unbeatable and B) It's a math challenge because you have to calculate the amount of viable permutations – AlienAtSystem Sep 20 '19 at 10:06
• Instead of helo word, wouldn't it make more sense to just use a different phrase like greeting earthlings or something along those lines? I agree with @AdmBorkBork that helo just looks weird. I do think it shouldn't be hello world to prevent builtins, so helo word is already better, but it still looks weird and will raise questions for sure.. – Kevin Cruijssen Sep 20 '19 at 12:38
• I don't understand the scoring. If we're scored only on the factorial of the length of code, why does it matter how many permutations output hi orb? I would figure that the number of ways that is output should factor into the scoring somehow... – AdmBorkBork Sep 20 '19 at 14:11

The Celestial Bureaucracy king-of-the-hill

Posted

• This sounds like a lot of fun. When the exam is asked, is it possible to know which bot gave the exam? – Pureferret Sep 18 '19 at 11:58
• You are given the ID of the bot via the parameter for ask, which allows you to identify if you've interacted with that bot before and if it's the Jade Emperor (because his ID is always -1). You won't get the name - if you want to identify the bot, you'll have to analyse its question and answer pattern. – AlienAtSystem Sep 18 '19 at 12:08

Creep Spread Territorial Control (WIP)

(probably)

Blah blah blah flavor blah blah blah something about Starcraft blah blah blah

Gameplay

Initial State

There is a 150x150 grid of square cells with approximately 7500 random cells missing in a symmetric Perlin noise pattern. There are four creep spread factions competing for dominance of this territory beginning as a single cell 10 cells in from a corner of the grid (one faction per corner). Each faction starts with 50 energy. The board does not wrap around at the edges.

Expansion

Each turn, each faction earns 1 point of energy for each controlled cell plus 20 base energy. This energy is used for expansion. How much a cell costs to expand to depends on how many cells controlled by the same faction are in the Moore neighborhood of the target cell.

• 0 neighbors: cannot expand to this cell
• 1 neighbor: 50 energy
• 2 neighbors: 20 energy
• 3 neighbors: 12 energy
• 4 neighbors: 8 energy
• 5 neighbors: 5 energy
• 6 neighbors: 3 energy
• 7 neighbors: 2 energy
• 8 neighbors: 1 energy

There is no limit to how many cells can be expanded to in one turn other than energy costs. All expansions occur simultaneously. If two or more factions attempt to claim the same cell on the same turn, the one with the most neighbors of its own faction will claim the cell. If there is a tie, none of the factions claim that cell. Players whose expansions failed due to competition will not be refunded. Factions may expand onto each other's territory, stealing ownership of the cell.

Game End

The game lasts 10,000 turns or until there is only one faction remaining, whichever happens first. The winner is the faction with the most owned cells. Ties are broken by remaining energy.

The overall winner will be resolved with a randomized pool where each bot plays an equal number of games followed by 12 games of the top 4 contenders. (one for each possible corner positioning)

Coding

Write a bot that plays this game

• Bots must be deterministic. As a way to provide localized pseudorandomness, a random integer between $$\0\$$ and $$\2^{32}-1\$$ will be passed to the bot, which will be seedable in the controller.
• Bots have perfect information of the current state of the board, which turn it is, and their own energy, but not the energy of other players.
• Bots may not remember anything between turns, but may initialize constants and utility functions at the beginning of each game.

The list of desired expansions is ordered. As soon as an invalid expansion target cell is encountered (whether by cost or lack of same-faction neighbors) in this list, the rest of the list will be ignored and a warning will be logged.

• So if I build at 0,1 and 1,0 on the same turn while having a cell at 0,0, the cost would be 2000, yeah? Are failed expansions refunded? Also, I think having a source of randomness would be good. – Veskah Sep 13 '19 at 17:40
• @Veskah, that would cost 2000, correct. I'll add some rules about when failed expansions are refunded. – Beefster Sep 13 '19 at 19:38
• Suggestions: 1. Maybe allow expanding to own territory too? Could be used as a defensive mechanism when you can predict that you are going to be attacked. (should be thought about, could be bad) 2. Maybe set a limit on how many cell expansions can happen per turn to avoid exponentially expansion? I'm thinking that a bot which gains some advantage might get unstoppable when it is unlimited. – Night2 Sep 14 '19 at 7:33
• 3. More clarification in rules about expansions, for example if player 1 and 2 have a tie on this turn for cell X and they both go for it, but player 1 also goes for a neighbor of cell X in same turn, will player 1 win? (@Veskah mentioned another scenario too) 4. I would suggest using JavaScript so more people can write and run the code (anyone with a browser can do it), also a controller with some helper functions could be nice, for example a function which returns expansion cost for a cell in an optimized way to avoid tens of different implementations for same common action. – Night2 Sep 14 '19 at 7:39
• 5. "Bots have perfect information of the current state of the board.", does this include current energy value of other players? – Night2 Sep 14 '19 at 7:45
• @Night2 1 Interesting. It seems a bit fiddly. 2 This should actually come out to a quadratic expansion rate since where you can expand to is derived from perimeter, which grows linearly. 3 All expansions are resolved simultaneously (as in Conway's Game of Life), so player 1 does not win that tie. 4 Javascript is the likely plan since I intend to have a significant graphical component. 5 I'll have to think about it. That could be rather interesting as 'private' information. – Beefster Sep 15 '19 at 3:00
• 6. Proposal to spice things up: board is randomly generated, with some cells being unavailable for expansion. Uniform random, Perlin/Simplex noise, cellular automaton-based cave generation, etc. 7. Will the bots have access to the turn counter? 8. Maybe rotate and/or mirror the board provided to the bots so that each bot starts at, for example, the top-left corner from its perspective? – Alion Sep 15 '19 at 10:36
• 9. Allow bots to pre-calculate some data on load or game start. This will allow people to speed up their bots. Especially useful if you end up implementing 6. – Alion Sep 15 '19 at 10:47
• @Alion 6 That sounds pretty interesting. I'll probably expand the board slightly in that case. 7 Yes, they'll know what turn it is. 8 I don't think that adds much. I'm probably going to have to make copies of the board every turn anyway to make it impossible to cheat on accident though... 9 Seems reasonable. – Beefster Sep 16 '19 at 0:39
• "Bots must be deterministic. As a way to provide localized pseudorandomness, a random integer ... will be passed to the bot, which will be seedable in the controller.". Why not make a custom random function available or override the default random generator and make the controller generate and handle the seeds? For example in JavaScript users can still use the normal Math.random(), but you can use this to make it deterministic: davidbau.com/archives/2010/01/30/… – Night2 Sep 21 '19 at 11:21
• @Night2, yeah. I'll probably do that since I'm going to have to use an RNG library anyway. – Beefster Sep 22 '19 at 2:32

Turing-complete regex subset

It's widely known that a programming language is one iff it's capable of addition of natural numbers and primality testing. In practice, this criterion has a high accuracy for distinguishing Turing-complete languages too.[citation needed]

Cops' challenge

Choose any of the programming languages available on tio.run. Write a regex that will define a subset of this programming language. The subset must still match the definition, though ideally this should be far from obvious.

Write two programs in this language that match this regex:

1. Take two natural numbers, a and b, as input. Output a + b. The program must work for 0 ≤ a + b < 215.
2. Take a natural number n as input. Output whether the number is prime. The program must work for 0 ≤ n < 215.

The behavior outside of this range is undefined. This means that you can output the correct answer, a cute cat ASCII art, an error, an invalid answer, invoke nasal demons, or anything else you can, or cannot, imagine.

Regex come in multiple flavors. Choose one. You can choose any flavor available on regex101, or Retina.

• the programming language and regex flavor you chose
• the regex delimiter and flags you chose (for example: //gm; does not apply to Retina)
• the regex you wrote and its byte count
• the byte counts of your two programs

Robbers' challenge

Write two programs that prove the subset to be a valid programming language. The rules that apply here are the same that apply to the cops. Additionally, your programs must not exceed the cops' in length.

When you crack an answer, post your programs to the robbers' thread.

Meta questions

The above will be posted as the cops' thread, with the robbers' thread simply linking to it.

• Any improvements to challenge structure? I've never done this before.
• Do you see any loopholes that need addressing?
• Are the allowed regex flavors reasonable?
• Duplicates?
• I think this is a duplicate of codegolf.stackexchange.com/questions/136150/… – pppery Sep 22 '19 at 18:11
• @pppery Hmm. These are definitely pretty similar. On the other hand, regexes might allow more interesting answers. – NieDzejkob Sep 22 '19 at 18:25
• I'm not convinced this is a dupe since most of the interesting work here is in selecting the regex rather than in choosing a sequence, though I think the other challenge is cleaner. I think the optimal scoring regex will usually be to make an "unhash" that produces the appropriate programs. Unfortunately I don't have any suggestions at the moment to help fix that, but if you can then I think this is alright. – FryAmTheEggman Sep 22 '19 at 18:32
• @FryAmTheEggman I can't see what you mean by "unhash" here. Could you elaborate? – NieDzejkob Sep 22 '19 at 18:36
• Consider this program which performs the first task. The regex that matches only programs like this would be short but but not very informative. I think doing this but making guessing the magic number arbitrarily hard would usually be the best approach in a given language. – FryAmTheEggman Sep 22 '19 at 18:43
• @FryAmTheEggman Like, /^\.vC\d+$/? I think that making it complicated enough would take quite a lot of bytes. – NieDzejkob Sep 22 '19 at 19:02 • The point is that the number could be manipulated, so I could pad my program arbitrarily until I got a number that let me write a regex like ^...(2|10|76|345?)*$. That's neither very long nor easy to crack. – FryAmTheEggman Sep 22 '19 at 19:06
• I like the idea of the challenge but I feel including the bit about Turing completeness is a bit of a red herring, it only really distracts from the challenge. – Wheat Wizard Sep 22 '19 at 21:30
• To elaborate the particular part I like is regex selection part. I do agree that my challenge is a bit cleaner otherwise. – Wheat Wizard Sep 22 '19 at 21:31

• I'd recommend removing the text with a strikethrough; I think it is just confusing. "Accurate to 6 significant digits" isn't a very good validity criterion since it would require testing each and every possible input the program could handle. I'd recommend saying it has to be that accurate for your test cases but not be hardcoded for them, or something like that. – FryAmTheEggman Sep 19 '19 at 19:33

Byte-sized Huffman Coding (WIP)

Huffman codings are a method to compress data with certain frequency properties, usually text. Normally, these operate on bits rather than bytes, but this challenge will instead operate on whole bytes instead. Since you wouldn't get any benefit otherwise, you can represent multiple consecutive characters with a sequence of one or more bytes, for instance '. ' (a period followed by a space) could be represented by byte 1, 'The' could be represented with byte 2, and 'Ishmael' could be represented by a 255 then a 7 (among many other sequence codings).

Challenge

Create a program that compresses a plain-text version of a work of literature by returning a byte-wise Huffman coding table and a sequence of bytes that represents the text with that table.

Rules and Assumptions

• You may assume that the text is written in English and uses only printable ASCII characters plus space, newline, and tab.
• It must be a proper Huffman coding; no mapping may be the prefix of another.
• Not all Huffman sequences need to be mapped to a particular character sequence; you could, for instance, not have 7 mapped to anything or not have 255, 39 mapped to something, but have every other 1 and 2 byte sequence mapped to something.
• The returned coding table must be able to encode every possible sequence of valid characters (as per the first assumption above). The simplest way to do this is to make sure that every individual character is mapped to a Huffman byte sequence.
• It can be possible to encode a body of text multiple ways using the returned encoding table. If both ca and at are mapped to byte sequences, cat could be encoded two ways. This is totally fine.
• Case must be preserved.
• Runs do not need to be deterministic, i.e. two runs of the same program with the same input could produce different Huffman tables and compressed output.
• Your program must return a result within a reasonable amount of time to be considered a valid solution. (If you want a hard limit, I'll say 5 minutes on a 2GHz Intel dual-core i5 with 16 GB RAM running Windows 10)

Scoring

Your results will be run against a corpus of (TBD) 12 publicly available literary (and non-fiction) works. For each work of literature, your score will be the size, in bytes, of the compressed text, plus the total length of all text strings mapped to a byte sequence in the Huffman-coding table. Your overall score is the total score across all 12 works.

Literature list

• The King James Bible
• Hamlet by William Shakespeare
• Dracula by Bram Stoker
• Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
• On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin
• Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
• Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
• Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
• Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
• The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle
• < Something that entered the public domain in 2019 because it was published in 1923 >
• < Something written in the last 20 years willingly released into the public domain or with a Creative Commons license that allows derivative works >

Sandbox

At least one of the last two literary works should preferably be written by a female author to hopefully make writing styles diverse enough to make hard-coded Huffman tables ineffective. Each work should be comparable in length to the other works.

Links to these books (in plain text) would be appreciated. Substitution suggestions are welcome.

I'm considering using something like the Weissman Score relative to gzip for the scoring method so that performance is factored into the score, but I'm concerned about reproducibility of time since that tends to vary even on the same machine due to caching and OS scheduling.

• If you want to vary writing styles, is there a non-fiction work that only contains the allowed characters? – trichoplax Sep 24 '19 at 23:21
• @trichoplax The most notable non-fiction book I can think of for that would be "On the Origin of Species" by Charles Darwin. I've also thought about throwing in the King James bible. Maybe I could bump up the total to 12 works. I also probably will drop War and Peace because the plain text version I found was machine converted and has issues. – Beefster Sep 25 '19 at 15:21
• Regarding plain text books, have you checked Project Gutenberg? They have plaintext versions of many of their books. – AdmBorkBork Sep 25 '19 at 18:35
• I have no idea how much sample text is a good amount for this challenge (number of books, length of books) but it's probably worth doing some kind of rough check that there is enough text to give variation between answers (no optimal solution) while still being little enough text that running in a reasonable time is realistic (doesn't require weeks of work before an answer is efficient enough to meet the time restriction). Maybe others can suggest good ways of approximating this? – trichoplax Sep 25 '19 at 20:16
• @trichoplax so basically you suggest sampling out, say, a few chapters instead of the whole book and then reducing the required runtime? I'm open to that, especially since the word count difference between Hamlet and the Bible is so big. The interesting thing about the Bible is that it has a ton of different authors, so it would almost be better to have the first chapter of each book instead of inserting, say, the entirety of Genesis. – Beefster Sep 26 '19 at 4:41
• I couldn't guess at this point whether more text or less text would be better, and I don't have a way of estimating, just wondering if anyone else does. – trichoplax Sep 26 '19 at 7:32
• I see no problem with 5 minutes as a rough time limit. I'd lean towards a time limit that allows someone to write a quick answer and then improve on it gradually, to encourage more participants. How long that needs to be for the text you settle on I don't know. As long as you're confident an optimal solution can't be found, you could just time a naive approach and then choose a time that doesn't exclude that. Then you can get lots of early answers to get the competition going, but still have open ended improvement over the long term – trichoplax Sep 26 '19 at 7:38
• Not to say that this isn't an interesting challenge as it is but I do wonder if it wouldn't be more interesting without requiring that we use Huffman Encoding? – Shaggy Sep 27 '19 at 22:21
• For the tiebreak, what does code with the fewest bytes mean, given that we're outputting a county assignment? – xnor Oct 7 '19 at 22:24
• @xnor - I modified the scoring mechanism to not require tie breaks. Thanks to this modification, I expect the code submissions to be much more interesting. – Dustin G. Mixon Oct 8 '19 at 17:06
• I like your new assignment score and no longer having a code golf tiebreak.The leave-one-out looks kind-of complicated and might take a long time to run-- is there a way to simplify it? The challenge looks a lot more intimidating that when I last commented, though the idea looks the same. I guess you want to make sure people actually write code that kind-of generalizes rather than possible finding an assignment by hand. Maybe also consider something with the standard deviation in assignment place of the max-min ratio so there's also an incentive to try to balance populations in the middle? – xnor Oct 8 '19 at 22:48
• @xnor - Great points, thanks! I simplified things by cutting the number of leave-one-out instances by a factor of 10. (I selected these 10 counties based on political geography considerations.) I also toned down the math speak to make the challenge less intimidating. I thought about standard deviation instead of max-min, but max-min is closer to how we enforce one person, one vote in practice. – Dustin G. Mixon Oct 9 '19 at 2:20

I came across this little web game Drench Its a fairly mindless game , I wrote a small JS snippet to play this game for me in the background of my browser, it cycles through and clicks on the 6 possible moves

let ind =0;
let games =0;
let wins =0;
let lastMoves = "";
setInterval(function(){
if (jQuery('.moveNum').text() != lastMoves) {
lastMoves = jQuery('.moveNum').text();
ind++;
ind = ind%6;
jQuery('.pbutton:nth('+ind+')').click();
} else {
games++;
if ((jQuery('.moveNum').text()*1)) {wins++;}
jQuery('#myCanvas').click();
}
},200);


This Strategy wins about 3% of the time My question is, is there a more optimal strategy that will allow me to win a greater % of the time (without looking at the board)?

• Hi and thanks for using the sandbox! Though this is a bit unusual for this site, I think your question is on-topic, just far too broad. "Can I do better" just isn't something you can really ask on the SE network. I think the best way for you to move forward is to fully explain the game in the body of your post, and then score submissions based on their win percentage. – FryAmTheEggman Sep 21 '19 at 19:37
• I really like the idea though - I think win% is the way to go – simonalexander2005 Sep 23 '19 at 15:20
• Make this a code-challenge? To verify, you can run it for, for example, 500 times and calculate the winning percent? – null Oct 13 '19 at 8:49
• Coded this up in p5.js, you can play it here hoppingmad9.github.io/dench Happy to convert it to pure js if needed and could add an interface to get the board state and input moves. – Sam Dean Oct 18 '19 at 12:14
• oops, well I guess the code golf version can be called "Dench" not "Drench". I thought "Dench" was a weird name – Sam Dean Oct 18 '19 at 15:29
• Probably needs a time limit for each turn to prevent people trying every single possibility of moves – Sam Dean Oct 25 '19 at 15:39

Create a safe crossing.

Given a string/number/array of any two distinct characters make the "squarest" 2D array that allows "someone" to cross from left to right or top to bottom "stepping" only on whichever character you have chosen as your stepping stone

or

Make the "squarest" array possible that contains a complete row or column of stepping stone characters. (clearer but takes away the fun story-ness)

"squarest" meaning smallest difference between the dimensions of the 2D array.

Input

• A string/number/array of your choosing consisting only of your two chosen distinct characters. So no error checking needed. Allow true/false values if input is array?
• input will have at least 1 stepping stone character so that a valid solution is always possible 1 by x or x by 1
• a minimum length of x? needed? might make it easier if there's some weirdness with very short arrays in the algorithms people come up with
• the last row can be incomplete to allow for prime number length inputs and to more easily allow non trivial 1xX/Xx1 answers

Output

The output should be the dimensions of the array

• and specify the row or column to use?
• print your 2D array so that the path can be seen graphically?

Test Cases

100100100 -> 3x3 array

100
100
100


11111000 -> 4x2 or 3x3 - 3x3 is squarer so is correct

1111    111
1000    110
00


11000011000101001001 -> 5x4

11000
01100
01010
01001


1000000000000 -> 12x1 - trivial as only 1 stepping stone

100000000000


010111 -> 3x2 or 2x3 - either acceptable as both are only "1" away from square

010    01
111    01
11


Issues

• allow diagonal crossings? does that make it a lot harder?
• need a lot more test cases I think?
• input spec
• output spec
• better/more tags?

ASCII Sum of your code

Encoding is nice, adding things is also nice. Let's do both !

Your task will be to create a program that read itself, convert every of its character into ASCII values and return the sum of those numbers.

Example

Let's say your program is Hello, world !. Convert every character into ascii values

H  e   l   l   o   ,  (space) w   o   r   l   d   (space) !
72 101 108 108 111 44 32      119 111 114 108 100 32      33


Now, sum everything into a meaningless very useful value

72 + 101 + 108 + 108 + 111 + 44 + 32 + 119 + 111 + 114 + 108 + 100 + 32 + 33
= 1193


Here it is, Hello, world! returns 1193 !

Rules

• The code have to read itself and calculate the result
• Standard loopholes are not allowed
• This is codegolf, so the fewer bytes wins.
• Non-standard languages with non-ASCII characters should use their own codepage's encodings (Thanks for @Veskah for this rule)

Feedback

• Is the challenge clear enouth ?
• Is there an already existing challenge like this one ?
• is this considered as a duplicate of this challenge ?
• I would probably have non-standard languages use their codepage's encodings (pretty much all of them should be 8 bytes) to crunch their output. The big hammer approach would be to ban non-ASCII languages but I would not recommend that. – Veskah Oct 23 '19 at 14:06
• Requiting the code to read itself and do the calculation is a non-observable requirement. Since it seems you don't want programs that just hardcode the value, I think the best way to be just to require the program take in an input string to use. Regardless, I don't really see room for interesting golfing in the challenge, since pretty much any normal-ish language has built-ins to take ASCII values and compute sums, and weird languages that don't have already done these as subtasks for many many challenges. – xnor Oct 25 '19 at 0:52
• @xnor Does this challenge with string input already exist ? – The random guy Oct 25 '19 at 7:06
• I don't remember an exact one, but I'm finding very close ones: averaging ASCII values and summing then counting binary 1's, which was closed as a duplicate of one without the character adding. I also found an unrestricted quine challenge with the same task as yours. So I think there's a good chance this would be closed as a duplicate either way. – xnor Oct 25 '19 at 7:11
• Yup, the last one is quite the same as mine. Duplicate it is then. – The random guy Oct 25 '19 at 7:13

It's slashing time

(Inspired by Seven Slash Display)

You're lying in bed, awake. Sleepily, you turn your head to the alarm clock and read what time it is. Since you're lying down, the clock is facing diagonally, making it difficult to read. You decide to write a program to help you out (hey, you're awake anyway).

Given a "slashed" seven-segment display, output what time it is in 24-hour format.

      /\
/\
/\  /
\ \
. \/
/\ .
/
\/

2:03


You can choose where to place the : between the numbers (for example, evenly spaced as above or left-aligned as below, etc.), but the : must be present.

Some further examples:

       \
\
/\
/\
/ . /
\/\.
\  /
\

15:31

\
\/\
\
\
\.
\.

1:14


Here are the precise digit shapes:

/\
\ \
\/

\
\

/\
/
\/

/\
/\
/

\
\/\

/
\/\
/

/
\/\
\/

/\
\

/\
\/\
\/

/\
\/\
/


Rules & Standard I/O boilerplate

• The time will always be valid. For example, you'll never receive something like 30:25 or 7:99 or the like.
• You're allowed to pad the input with whitespace however necessary (e.g., padding it to always be a rectangle with trailing spaces).
• Input always a valid time? Can we shift the dots? – Veskah Oct 29 '19 at 19:01
• 2 in 2:03 is not aligned with other digits :( – tsh Oct 31 '19 at 8:53
• @tsh Indeed it wasn't. Thanks for the correction! – AdmBorkBork Oct 31 '19 at 15:11

Room volume as a function of paint on the walls/ceiling

Task: Write a function that will take in the size of a room (height, width, and length) and a number of paint layers (given that the layers are of a consistent thickness) and return the area of free space in the room after that many layers of paint are applied.

Requirements:

• Return the final area left in the room after the paint layers are added
• should be able to run on a room of any size
• The answer must account for the decreasing area in the room as each layer is applied.
• number of layers and paint layer thickness should both be inputs
• must account for walls and ceiling
• standard loopholes are disallowed

The winner is determined via byte count

• How thick is each coat of paint? Also, do you mean return the volume of free space in the room? – girobuz Nov 14 '19 at 4:30

Substitute Unprintable ASCII Characters

Have y'all ever written an answer with unprintable ASCII characters in it and wished that there was an easy way to represent those characters in a printable way? Well, that's why the Control Pictures Unicode block was invented.

However, manually substituting these characters into one's answer is time-consuming, so that's what today's challenge is about: swapping out the nasty invisible characters for nice, readable characters.

Input

You will be given strings that contain a mix of ASCII-only characters (i.e. the UTF-8 code point of each character will be in the range: $$\0 \lt char \le 127\$$).

Output

For all unprintable characters, replace it with its corresponding character in the Control Pictures Unicode range.

In other words:

• Characters in the range $$\0 \lt char \lt 9\$$ are replaced with their corresponding character
• Vertical tabs and newlines (9 and 10) aren't replaced
• Characters in the range $$\11 \le char \lt 32\$$ are replaced with their corresponding character
• Spaces (32) aren't replaced
• The delete character (127) is replaced with its corresponding character: ␡

Tests

Characters are given as escapes for nice formatting here, but each character will be replaced with the unprintable character

In -> Out
\x1f\x1c\x1f\x1e\x1f\x1e\x1f\x1f\x1e\x1f\x1e\x1f -> ␟␜␟␞␟␞␟␟␞␟␞␟
Hello\x07World! -> Hello,␇World!
\x01\x02\x03\x04\x05\x06\x07\x08\x0c\x0b\x0e\x0f\x10\x11\x12\x13\x14\x15\x16\x17\x18\x19\x1a\x1b\x1c\x1d\x1e\x1f\x7f -> ␁␂␃␄␅␆␇␈␌␋␎␏␐␑␒␓␔␕␖␗␘␙␚␛␜␝␞␟␡


Rules

• All standard loopholes are forbidden
• Character substitutions must be made according to the Control Pictures Unicode block

Scoring

This is code-golf so the answer with the fewest amount of bytes wins.

Test-Case Generator

I have provided a test case generator for y'all. It prints inputs in the way they will be passed to your program and outputs the expected result.

Try it online!

• "DEL" (ASCII 127) is also unprintable. Also, did you mean 0≤char≤127? – Bubbler Nov 15 '19 at 8:00
• Updated! (I forgot DEL wasn't printable) – Lyxal Nov 15 '19 at 8:04
• I think you need to give test input as JSON (i.e. with escapes) – Adám Nov 15 '19 at 8:46
• Space has a substitution character (␠`). Should it be replaced? I think you should clearly state that ≤ (or < 32) and 127 should be replaced. – Adám Nov 15 '19 at 8:48
• Updated accordingly. – Lyxal Nov 16 '19 at 1:33