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 Post subject: A New Old Web Site!
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2002 7:35 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2002 1:10 am
Location: Toronto, Canada
Hello and Happy Canada Day everyone! (I've got the day off, but have to use it to go to my sister's wedding... she's so selfish!) Anyway, here's something I hope you will really enjoy!

I am VERY pleased to announce the launching of a new Rubik's web site called TwistyPuzzles.com (http://www.twistypuzzles.com). While I'm calling it "new", it is (as of this date) only a repackaging of the Virtual Puzzle Museum data.

However, I have "databased" the entire thing and written some nice CGIs in the background that will both increase the usefulness of the site to the user, and seriously reduce the amount of "administrator" time required to update it. It is my hope (my dream, my plan, my scheme) that using this database method and encouraging user contributions will result in a monster of a resource for us all.

Please enjoy the site to its fullest!

http://www.twistypuzzles.com

Sandy


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 Post subject: Superb effort!
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 7:35 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 27, 2001 7:03 pm
Well done Sandy! An excellent job. And the same goes to anyone who has helped with it...


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 Post subject: Very well done
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 9:39 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 24, 1999 12:18 pm
Location: Palerang Shire, NSW, Australia
Brilliant resource! Nice coding. Strangely co-incides with new plans for twisty... I'll be contacting everyone for opinions on various parts of the site.


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 Post subject: Cool work San.....now if....
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2002 11:08 pm 
there were just a little more info on some of the puzzles like Supernova, IQ!Megaminx, and a few others that I briefly scrolled thru, it would be a bonus!!
The new look is refreshing, definately a plus point!
Thanks again for upkeeping the site for us all puzzle cracks :)

Cheers,
Chris


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 Post subject: Doh! Disassembled images?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2002 9:40 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2001 6:14 am
Location: Orange County, CA, USA
Will those go back up?


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 Post subject: Re: Cool work San.....now if....
PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2002 11:08 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2002 1:10 am
Location: Toronto, Canada
First off, thanks for the accolades, all.

You're right Omegaminx, each individual puzzle is desperately short of information. This is particularly noticable since I've set the bar high with my template. But I think we can easily exceed it if we just put in a little time here or there.

It would be near impossible (and extremely impractical) for one otherwise-employed person to research then write up a page for each puzzle. I'm not even going to try to do it all. If I'm reduced to that because of a lack of submissions from the sites users, growth will be disappointingly slow.

The big contribution I hope to be making in the next few months is photographs. I own a lot of puzzles (about half of which are already on the site), and have a digital camera ready for a workout. I'm planning to take a few hundred photographs and get them all online. A huge job, to be sure, but it will be worth it!

Sandy


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 Post subject: Re: Doh! Disassembled images?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2002 4:23 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2002 1:10 am
Location: Toronto, Canada
Good question. The answer is a definite "yes". I love those pictures as much as the next person! They're way too great to even think about leaving out. In fact, I hope that eventually we'll have similar pictures for all of the significantly different mechanisms. Since this is the ultimate goal, it wouldn't make sense to have a special section for them. Therefore, I will place them in individual entry of the puzzle itself.

This is one of the many things I've got to find time for! My wish list for the site is longer than my arm (and much more ambitious than my personal time permits). I've got another big idea (an extension of the site, really) and I'm not sure how well it'll go over, but it should only take another 10-15 hours programming time to realize. Prioritizing all of these things is hard... but I guess I should try to finish up the conversion before opening up new cans of worms!

I'll try to get to those pictures sometime in the next few days.

Oh, BTW, a few people have already begun submitting to the site! 10 modifications to existing puzzles, and 3 new ones as of last night. (Of course, they're not added to the site yet... sigh... but that'll happen later today!) I'm very excited and relieved that the "contribution" ball seems to be rolling.

Thanks to all!

Sandy


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 Post subject: Thanks, Sandy!
PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2002 9:02 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 08, 2000 2:32 am
Location: San Francisco, CA
I'd like to join the crowd in thanking Sandy for his hard work. I'm very glad that he stepped up to take the reigns; when I volunteered to keep the VPM alive after Denny departed I knew I wouldn't be able to put the time in to make it a great site, but I thought it was better than nothing.

I've taken down the old site at http://www.calormen.com/vpm - the images files will stay in place for a while so that legacy image includes won't break, but the pages are all now redirects to the new site.


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 Post subject: New Stuff?
PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2002 1:39 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2001 10:09 am
Location: Great State of Washington
Will the new photos be added on to the end of whichever group they belong to, or will they be in a special "newly added items" at the front of each section? In the case of the 3x3x3 cubes, I would hate to go through all 200+ pictures looking for the new pics.

Thanks Sandy


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 Post subject: Re: New Stuff?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2002 1:39 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2002 1:10 am
Location: Toronto, Canada
Since very little on the site is "hard-coded", it is relatively easy to whip up new methods of finding and displaying items from the database. The "What's New" search simply checks the database for puzzles whose "DateAdded" field is within the specified time range. It doesn't care what the value of the "Section" field is.

Similarly, when you choose to view the section "3x3x3", it will display (in alphabetical order by title) all the puzzles that have "3x3x3" set as the "Section" field value, regardless of the value in the "DateAdded" field.

So, if you just want to find out what's been added or modified recently, use the "What's New" section on the search page. If you try it now, you should find about a dozen new puzzles. Some are completely new, others just have new information.

Sandy


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 Post subject: Some additional puzzle types
PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2002 12:32 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2000 4:37 am
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.A.
Very good job. Some possible additions:

Ball Moving: Hungarian Rings, Rubuk's rings, Rubik's Shell, Billards 9, Billards 8, Kaos, Astolabacus

Hole Moving: 15, Coke can, Pepsi can ... all other cans, Vadasz, IQ, Magic Jack ...

Electronic: Lights Out, Luminations, Lights out cube, Orbix

Flat puzzles: Triple Cross, Port to Port, Rubik's 15 (should be moved to this section), Triamid 3 , Triamid 6, the Rashkey's, the Puzzlers, Griple, Rubik's Clock, ...

Ask Hendrik Haak if he wants to share some of his pictures. Make sure his site is referenced.


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 Post subject: Re: Some additional puzzle types
PostPosted: Tue Jul 09, 2002 12:32 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2002 1:10 am
Location: Toronto, Canada
Hi Oscar. Sorry I didn't respond to this a little sooner. I hope this thread isn't too far down the page to be noticed!

There is definitely room for some rearranging of puzzles into more specific categories. Your suggestions are right on target. I'm just a little afraid of getting to general in what to display on the site! A "slide puzzle" category, for example, would include countless thousands of items all by itself, one of which would be Rubik's XV. I feel like I have to draw the line somewhere, or next thing you know, we're going to be including "Snakes & Ladders" and "Pick Up Sticks"!

It does sound like "Ball Moving" and "Hole Moving" are pretty good suggestions that can/should be added soon. I'll add that to my 3-meter-long TwistyPuzzles.com to-do list.

I also keep meaning to ask people like Hendrik (among other related site owners) if they'd be interested in sharing info as you suggested, but I can't imagine why they'd want to! I'll probably get around to that when my own rush of work on the site slows down (I took over 200 pictures of my puzzles over the weekend... which is only about 25% of the way through them all!).

Feel free to e-mail me with more suggestions. A fresh perspective is as good as gold, and is always welcome.

Thanks again!

Sandy


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