Sympathy Tutorial

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4.7 Filling Using the Playfair Gimmick

At the end of the previous step, the four selected lights should have been shaded, indicating to the solver that they are to be Playfair-encoded:

Step 4.7 Initial Image

Everything is now ready for the grid to be filled, so start Automatic Filling by clicking Fill button (Filling|Fill) on the Filling toolbar.

During the next few seconds you will see the grid changing as Sympathy creates the fills for you. When it has finished, dismiss the result box by clicking on the OK button. The Sympathy window should now look like this (although the words used to fill the grid may be different):

Step 4.7 Intermediate Image

You can now assess the different fills using the Previous Fill button (Filling|Previous Fill) and Next Fill button (Filling|Next Fill) buttons on the Filling toolbar, as described in Module 1 Step 11 and Module 2 Step 8. Note that the tooltips are particularly useful here, as they allow you to see the unencoded answers. In the above example, 13 across has been filled with megilp as confirmed by the tooltip. The status bar shows the same information when a single light is selected.

With a Playfair gimmick, it is important to confirm that the different code pairs allow the solver to deduce enough of the code square to reveal the keyword. For example, if the same pair appears several times, that reduces the help available to the solver. It is a good idea to give at least one coding entirely within a row or column, as these are particularly useful to the solver.

When you have chosen a fill you like, click Commit Fill button (Filling|Commit Fill) on the Filling Toolbar. This will make the uncommitted answers a permanent part of the grid, as if you had entered them using the keyboard. The grid should then appear as at the start of the next step (although the answers may be different).


Relevant Help Sections

Filling Toolbar
Filling|Previous Fill Command
Filling|Next Fill Command
Filling|Commit Fill Command
Answer Tooltips

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Last updated: $Date: 2010/04/10 16:58:54 $
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