I’ve been playing around with the iPhone SDK, and decided on a “Jumble Solver” as my first as a good learning project. It’d include a whole bunch of objective C and general programming concepts – Recursion, delegation, Interface builder, inheritence, sqlite.
My general approach was to build a decision tree with the available characters in the jumble, and compare the leaf nodes with an english dictionary. Finding a sqlite database of words … or rather a list of words was really hard. I stumbled upon a word list in text format found at the national puzzle solvers website. To dump that into a database I used the following simple ruby script. You’ll notice I limited the words to less than 7 characters. The search algorithm is n! complexity so limiting the jumble to 7 characters proved optimal performance. :
word_list.each do |word|
if word.length <8
db.execute(“INSERT INTO words (word) VALUES (?)”, word.chomp)