’Tis the Season for Scrabble

April 23, 2010
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The Wolfram|Alpha Team
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There’s no better time than the rainy spring season to bring friends and family together for a game night. If you happen to find yourself at a table full of ruthless Scrabble players, you might find your new best friend in Wolfram|Alpha.

The Scrabble functionality in Wolfram|Alpha has useful tools, such as a points calculator and a dictionary word verifier. Wolfram|Alpha can also suggest other possible words to be used. Currently, Wolfram|Alpha supports the American English, International English, and French versions of Scrabble. Each of these versions has their own scoring system. Wolfram|Alpha’s GeoIP capabilities will return results based on the default version for the user’s location. However, you can specify a version in your input, like “International English Scrabble umbrella”.

Here are a few examples:

You can find the results for words such as umbrella by entering “Scrabble umbrella” into Wolfram|Alpha:

Wolfram|Alpha calculates the score for the Scrabble word "umbrella"

The results pods tells us that the score is 12 and that this word is in the regional Scrabble dictionary (American in this case). It also gives other words that can be made with these letters, listed in score order.

But what if your first “L” rests on a double letter score? Simply add “*2” after the double-scored letter:

Wolfram|Alpha tallies a Scrabble word with a double letter score

You can also tell the score calculator that you are using a blank tile. To do so, add a “?” in place of the blank tile. Try “Scrabble Thun?er”:

Wolfram|Alpha calculates the score for a Scrabble word containing a blank tile

You may have no idea what word to play, given a set of tiles. Here’s where the “Possible words” pod comes in handy. Let’s try an uncommon grouping of letters such as “Scrabble asdfghj”:

Wolfram|Alpha generates a list of possible Scrabble words

Feel free to share this functionality in Wolfram|Alpha with your fellow players and incorporate it as community tools. But if this is one trick you’d like to keep up your sleeve, learn how fast and easy it is to access the Scrabble functionality through your Wolfram|Alpha App for iPhone and iPod touch.

Happy gaming!

5 Comments

Recently saw this on Youtube. It’s hilarious! I’m a Scrabble fan and you got to see this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bf2T6Ewm9ks

Posted by John April 26, 2010 at 10:19 pm Reply

Hey, if you are interested in playing scrabble with friends and family, check out our games site.
(http://myemailgames.com/playgamesl.aspx) The game will allow you to play scrabble on the web with up to 4 players.
When your turn is finished it will send an email to the next player’s turn. Lots of people are playing it already.
If you have any questions email info@myemailgames.com

Posted by David May 4, 2010 at 3:26 pm Reply

Hmm… on the other hand, if I do the Thun?er example and I leave the blank till the end, [Scrabble ehnrtu?], Alpha assumes that I’m asking a question and punctuating it, rather than using seven tiles including a blank.

Posted by Darren May 6, 2010 at 8:25 pm Reply

Unfortunately I think that this might be way over the heads of the average scrabble player. Fantastic (but not surprising) that wolfram alpha can handle it, but I can’t see my granny using it. She’d probably stick to a more standard Scrabble finder.

Posted by Sean October 13, 2010 at 11:21 am Reply

Very good tool, I also like this one Scrabble finder because it has definitions.

Posted by Ignacio López October 24, 2013 at 3:26 am Reply
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