Talk:Sandbox/Zendo-Tao

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Stone images missing, and more

I'm guessing that you're aware that the stone images are missing in the template. I attempted to find the pics, but they don't seem to be uploaded yet. Just letting you know --Tuxhedoh 03:40, 11 May 2005 (GMT)

Yep, there's a problem with uploading, and maybe something bigger. We've put an alert up on Talk:Main Page, since we don't have a better place yet to talk about system-wide troubles. Thanks for noticing! -- Rootbeer 05:26, 11 May 2005 (GMT)
I didn't know whether it was related to the upload problem or not. I'm interested in trying out Zendo-Tao, but having not played a real game of zendo I'm just not getting it. I'll continue to watch.--Tuxhedoh 13:01, 11 May 2005 (GMT)
I'm actually ready to take a turn, and I took a photo of my new Koan last night. Can't upload it, of course, so it's kind of hard. Once image uploads start working, I'm going to take a turn. -- Jeremiah 19:44, 11 May 2005 (GMT)
Once I thought about it, I came up with a kludge. See my sandbox page for an ugly workaround that can do the job while we can't upload. -- Rootbeer 21:52, 11 May 2005 (GMT)
Personally, I'd rather just wait. Even with all the Koans on a single page, I found that the need to scroll around to look at all of them made it really hard to generate new rules that work. Having koan images linked in from all over the web is just going to make this even more disorienting and difficult to keep track of for me. I just don't think my poor little brain will be able to handle the kluge. -- Jeremiah 00:23, 12 May 2005 (GMT)
It's hard to follow a game if you can't see most koans together in one place. That place is now Sandbox/Zendo-Tao/index. Does that help anything? -- Rootbeer 02:20, 12 May 2005 (GMT)
Yes, that's absolutely fantastic. But I suppose there's not an automatic way to keep this page in sync with the main game, or is there? -- Jeremiah 14:54, 12 May 2005 (GMT)
Yes, automatic ways exist to do minor wiki maintenance tasks like this. In the long run, I'd like to set up something to maintain the index automatically, perhaps in more than one format. That's a long way off, though. -- Rootbeer 00:17, 13 May 2005 (GMT)
Turns out that I don't actually have the right set of rules yet anyways. I have a long list of rules, but they're all the same color (they all rely on the unmarked kaon being marked a certain way). I haven't managed to come up with a single valid rule of the other color yet. Now that we have the index page, it might be easier for me. I'll have to give it a go when I have some time to sit down and think about it (maybe this weekend). Great work so far, though, Rootbeer. -- Jeremiah 14:57, 12 May 2005 (GMT)
Well, was that the right one? I'm probably taking an overly strict view on "simple", but I'm down to four rules right now, which the unmarked koan splits two and two. I like the game, I think. Also, how many koans should go across on the index? Adding a fourth to that row makes it run outside of the white background, but I use a thinner browser window than most.-- GregF 15:53, 14 May 2005 (GMT) (AKA Chris)
How many across? If the page is too wide for somebody's screen, they can reformat it. :-) But I set an initial total width of 500 pixels. Seems that that works for you, so you were right to put the next koan on the next line. And thanks for taking a turn -- even though my rule list barely survived it. -- Rootbeer 01:04, 15 May 2005 (GMT)
Argh. And here I was thinking all this time that the red pieces in Koans 0 and 4 were larges. I totally missed the rule posted with Koan 6, since it didn't fit with my interpretation of Koan 0 and 4. I'll have to pay more attention.... -- Jeremiah 19:26, 16 May 2005 (GMT)

Koan needed

Could somebody make an image of a koan for me? You can host it on http://imageshack.us/ (or anywhere else, so long as there's also a thumbnail image under about 175 pixels wide) and then post the URL here or on my talk page.

There should be three pyramids: an upright large yellow capped with a medium red, then a medium flat blue pointing at the yellow piece, but not quite touching it. Got it, thanks.

Thanks! -- Rootbeer 20:08, 20 May 2005 (GMT)

I should also say that I don't have any special "claim" on this new koan. If somebody posts it as part of a turn before I use it, that's my tough luck. Once a koan is available, it's available for anybody who can use it. And, for that matter, if somebody wants to take a turn now, please don't wait for me. -- Rootbeer 15:03, 21 May 2005 (GMT)

Will someone please make an image of the following koan: Two medium, upright, grounded, yellow pyramids, side by side, but not touching.

Thanks! 67.164.38.94 05:41, 9 Jul 2005 (GMT) Yeah, this was me: -JEEP 05:50, 9 Jul 2005 (GMT)

Thanks, Rootbeer! -JEEP 04:32, 12 Jul 2005 (GMT)

Aha! I can continue with a small blue stacked on a large yellow. It's unambiguous as described, so I can continue the game without it, but it'd be nice to have a picture, I suppose. -- GregF 11:47, 12 Jul 2005 (GMT)

Well, I have one more needed koan, if my last play is acceptable. A small blue, upright, grounded piece, with a large yellow covering it- not touching it (upright, grounded). A large blue piece is stacked on the large yellow piece. -JEEP 04:00, 14 Jul 2005 (GMT)

Any other plays?

Are there any further plays here? Does anybody need a koan in order to take a turn? Describe it well enough that somebody can make a photo of it... and we won't need the photo. — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 02:54, 1 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Pyramid census

When an image of just a few pyramids is scaled, it often seems to use larger or smaller pyramids than it actually uses. Which sizes do you see here at first glance?
Attack.jpg
Upright.jpg

See the full-sized images to find out. But can anyone think of a way to make koan thumbnails that are more clear at first glance? I'm imagining some sort of koan infobox, for one idea, but I don't know where it could be least intrusive (both in terms of space on the page and space on the wiki). Maybe something within the koan image itself? Maybe a badge next to a thumbnail?

Attack.jpg
Upright.jpg

I don't like these a lot. But there's some potential there, especially if we make it into a template . — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 18:52, 1 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Hmm... It would be nice to be able to easily identify the pyramid sizes. These suggestions seem like they'd be difficult with many pyramids. (If all three sizes are represented, it's easier to see, I guess.) The other difficulty is determining if pieces touch. For example, I assume the back blue pyramid in koan 9 touches the yellow pyramid (you can see a little blue in the back). But with the angle it's difficult to know for sure. You can edit the pictures to make the pips black so they stand out more, but that's kind of annoying, too. So, not ideas here, but I think it's a good thing to think about. -JEEP 21:33, 1 Jun 2005 (GMT)
The people who played Zendo on LiveJournal[1] used a different approach in some cases- rendering koans with a 3D program and posting pictures plus the file that defines the pyramids' positions. It'd be more work for everyone posting koans, but it'd mean you can just examine the file for any questions about postioning. -- GregF 12:00, 2 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Here's another try:

Attack.jpgSâ—­Mâ—­

Upright.jpgLâ—­

Maybe better. — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 21:10, 5 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Modified now to allow a count from 1 to 5.

http://img192.echo.cx/img192/8752/koanlyby3to.th.jpg L◭2☓L◭ http://tinyurl.com/7pgcs

Is the count clear enough? — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 21:37, 5 Jun 2005 (GMT)

I like the letters, but yellow on white is hard to see. Otherwise, I'm liking it. -JEEP 01:19, 6 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Good point. Let's try again...

Attack.jpgSâ—­ Mâ—­

Upright.jpgLâ—­

http://img192.echo.cx/img192/8752/koanlyby3to.th.jpg L◭ 2☓L◭ http://tinyurl.com/7pgcs

I like these better. — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 17:56, 21 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Clarification

I'm afraid I'm a Zendo newbie and I don't understand the meaning of this: AKHTBN if "all of the green pieces and all of the blue pieces" in the koan means "exactly one large piece". Can someone please help clarify this for me? Thanks. -JEEP 22:54, 2 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Sorry that I was less clear than I should have been. I just meant that if the phrase "all of the green pieces and all of the blue pieces" in a koan amounted to a set of pyramids best described as "exactly one large piece", that koan has the Buddha nature. In other words, by this rule a koan must have exactly one large green or one large blue, and no other green or blue pieces. Does that clarify anything for you? — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 23:19, 2 Jun 2005 (GMT)
Well, except that I don't see how a yellow tree has the buddha nature with that rule. I guess I'm just super dense today. Finding out I've been playing Volcano wrong might have scrambled my brain. I'll try deciphering it tonight. -JEEP 00:16, 3 Jun 2005 (GMT)
Exactly- He disproved that rule with the yellow tree. (Of course, he could've done something much simpler like AKHTBN iff it contains no yellow pieces).
As an interesting sidenote, any rule from now on must involve color, since two koans identical in every respect except color have been marked differently. -- GregF 00:41, 3 Jun 2005 (GMT)
BAH! That makes too much sense. I will blame it on my Volcano shock. Thanks. -JEEP 00:43, 3 Jun 2005 (GMT)

End Game

Hmm... I see only one rule and I think it's a stretch to call it "simple." So I'm out. -JEEP 07:14, 10 Jun 2005 (GMT)

I've got at least a pair. Three small yellow pieces in a stack lying down would do for the ambiguous koan; could somebody get an image of that up? (It'd mean we have six small yellow pieces all together, but we aren't bounded by reality, are we?) -- GregF 15:09, 10 Jun 2005 (GMT)
http://img275.echo.cx/img275/5368/koans3y0zn.th.jpg
http://tinyurl.com/ajddd Does that image have what you wanted, or did you want the stack to be flat? — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 18:55, 10 Jun 2005 (GMT)
That's fine, thanks. (The orientation doesn't really matter, but I'm hoping varying it might knock out rules I don't tend to think about.) -- GregF 21:37, 10 Jun 2005 (GMT)
Nobody else seems to be taking a turn, so we may be done. Do you want to try to claim the win, or do you want to play another ambiguous koan? — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 00:25, 13 Jun 2005 (GMT)
I think it's more of a loss of interest thing. Let me think about other rules. -- GregF 17:04, 15 Jun 2005 (GMT)
Maybe, but I'm stumped. I can come up with several rules, but only one might be considered simple. -JEEP 07:05, 16 Jun 2005 (GMT)
I'm worried that you (and maybe others) are taking "simple" the wrong way. Did you see this revision to the rules? The gist is that I'm now trying to say "fair" instead of "simple", because it's closer to the correct concept.
Having said that, if you've still got a rule that seems too complex to be fair, you're probably better off not using it. But keep it around, since it might help you to see a better rule, or a better way to say that one. We can post all of the unusable rules after this game is done, and discuss whether they were as unfair as we thought, so that maybe some of them can become "fair game" in the future. (I've got one like that myself.) — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 17:23, 16 Jun 2005 (GMT)
I saw that. I think I understand, but obviously I can't be sure. Basically, I'm thinking that if you call out specific koans as exceptions, it's not "fair." If you call out too many "or" conditions, it's not "fair." -JEEP 19:00, 17 Jun 2005 (GMT)

I got a third rule, so I could take another turn, but I'm knocking out the simplest rule with the way I'd have to mark the unmarked koan. But I think that's the one you guys have come up with, so I'll play cruelly. -- GregF 12:51, 19 Jun 2005 (GMT)

"Cruelly"? "The one you guys have come up with"? I don't know what you're talking about.
Neither do I. I'd gotten things mixed up. -- GregF 20:58, 19 Jun 2005 (GMT)
One of my sore losers on this round is the awkward AKHTBN if the number of pips on each yellow piece, if any, divides more than once into the total number of yellow pips. So any koan without yellow automatically has BN. An equivalent(?) way to say that rule: If you have large yellow pieces in the koan, the total number of yellow pips must be a multiple of three. If you have medium yellow pieces, the total number of yellow pips must be an even number. And you must have more than one yellow piece, if you have any at all. It's not too tough a concept, so maybe there's a better way to phrase it.
Is that rule, or the one I posted on my turn, one that you had been thinking of, JEEP? — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 18:46, 19 Jun 2005 (GMT)
It was one of mine. The other one I lost was AKHTBN iff the total yellow pipcount is an integer multiple of six, (Actually, never mind; that rule's still valid. Editing it now would just give an advantage to the people who read the history.) which is related to that rule but far simpler to my eyes.
As I think I said before, I expect the game to come down to a long debate over the definition of "fair". -- GregF 20:58, 19 Jun 2005 (GMT)
Before you marked the last Koan, I was thinking: AKHTBN unless a yellow piece is being touched by a piece that is neither yellow nor a large blue. I assume that the small blue is touching a yellow in Koan 9 -JEEP 09:35, 21 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Summer could be slowing things down. Should I go ahead and complete the claim, or would anyone still be able to block it? -- GregF 18:11, 6 Jul 2005 (GMT)

After much thought, I have one rule. I'd like a little time to see if I come up with another. 67.164.38.94 05:25, 9 Jul 2005 (GMT)
And indeed, with the help of a friend, I now have two viable rules. If someone makes my requested koan, Groza and I will block the claim to victory. 67.164.38.94 05:48, 9 Jul 2005 (GMT) Yeah, this was me: -JEEP 05:50, 9 Jul 2005 (GMT)
Hmm... maybe I'm the only one still reading this... 134.134.136.5 23:10, 11 Jul 2005 (GMT)
I'm still here, and have two rules that would mark the current unmarked koan black. Just need to find a white one to continue. -- GregF 11:37, 12 Jul 2005 (GMT)

Unending sample game

Although the sample game needs an ending, I suspect that we'll still be discovering new rules that could have been used for some time to come, as we get better at this. So I've decided that the sample is never really going to have a permanent "end", unlike a normal game. When we discover new rules that would improve the sample, we can edit them into the sample after the fact. — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 14:54, 21 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Perhaps. All three pieces in koan 12 are grounded, right? If so, I've got another rule pair- ambiguous koan a standing large yellow with a medium yellow stacked on a medium red close to it, but not touching. -- GregF 20:58, 21 Jun 2005 (GMT)
Does the new koan image in IcehouseOrg:Externally-hosted resources do what you need? — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 14:42, 24 Jun 2005 (GMT)

Unfair rules

So, how do we handle unfair rules that are posted? I'm not sure that my current play is acceptable because the rule is pretty complex. Is it fair? If it's not fair, how is that handled? -JEEP 04:00, 14 Jul 2005 (GMT)

Well, the "how we handle it" part is in the Challenges and Judgments section of Zendo-Tao, but I'm not sure about your rule. I think all three of the rules I had for the last koan were simpler than that one, if that's any benchmark (And two of them'd be disproven by your white stone)
I think the biggest thing about your rule is that it's a compound of two unrelated concepts, both of which are fiddly in terms of exceptions. The rules disproved by koans 13 and 14 were compound, but in a more "elegant" way, if you will. I dunno.
Edit: Or we can just falsify the rule instead of arguing about fairness- I don't think the pieces in koan 12 are flat. -- GregF 12:48, 14 Jul 2005 (GMT)
You've got it. Whether or not the rule is fair, koan 12 makes it useless in this game. Someone should unmark the koan and strike out that text, so that it's still part of the sample game. I'd prefer it if JEEP does so, since it's his. (If it were viable, though, I'd ask JEEP to try to find a simpler rule, or a simpler way to say a similar rule. This rule is not one that I would want used at a Zendo tournament, although it is close to being usable.) — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 18:47, 14 Jul 2005 (GMT)
Done. The question I have, which I didn't see addressed is if I continue to play.  ;) I have two rules that I'm pretty sure are valid even with koan 12 being 3 weird pieces. (I guess it was too late for my mind to process that fact when I came up with that as the third.) But assuming it was valid, it sounds like that's beyond the threshold of "fair," which is what I was trying to figure out. There are rules with exceptions and compound rules, but compound rules with exceptions that are very specific seems like too much. Is it simpler if I invert it: AKHTBN unless it contains an upright medium yellow piece that is not in a single color tree or it contains a flat piece that is not a large blue. I'm not sure. -JEEP 22:05, 14 Jul 2005 (GMT)
As an update: I have found a third rule... it's very similar to my first rule, actually. I'm pretty sure it falls into the realm of "fair." I'll give others time to continue the game before I attempt to post another one. -JEEP 00:51, 15 Jul 2005 (GMT)
The threshold of fair is a problem. Here's what I'm using at the moment. It's a fuzzy rule, not a precise one, but I think that's right because a "fair" rule isn't a precise concept. A secret rule has the Buddha nature (is a fair rule) iff it is easy to remember. If the Master could not confidently hold the rule in memory without writing it down, it's going to be even tougher for the Students!
Note though that the loophole allows some pretty fun rules that might otherwise be considered unfair. I couldn't remember AKHTBN if half of its pips are from blue pieces XOR if it contains an all-green tree plus at least one other piece detached from the tree so well without the mnemonic I'm half Blue except when I have a Christmas present. I would love to see rules like that emerge from ZT. — Rootbeer (Tom) (U | T | C) 18:01, 16 Jul 2005 (GMT)

Endgame

[nevermind! should have read the rules page! ha ha! -- Rain 22:56, 16 Feb 2006 (GMT)]