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Internet Scrabble : The TLD game

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Diginomics, Jul 21, 2004.

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  1. Diginomics

    Diginomics Guest

    This Scrabble game board invention is normal dimensions except thicker
    to house the electronics. The letters continue to be loose tiles
    except beneath each tile is an electronic contact. Each square on the
    playing board also contains a reciprocal electronic contact point.

    The idea is the scrabble board "knows" which letter is placed where.
    The housing underneath contains some of these connectivity devices: a
    USB socket, a wireless Bluetooth chip, a Wi-Fi link. There is one
    single button on the board that is pressed to confirm any word played
    and two small LEDs (green = yes and red = no) to give the answer.

    This board might be used to simply confirm or refuse words placed
    according to a closed electronic dictionary. This reference point
    could be held on a laptop, desktop computer or a PDA (personal digital
    assistant) such as a PALM using a combination of the connectivity
    devices. Maybe even a smartphone!

    However the origin and most exciting application of this concept is
    the TLD scope game. A new style Scrabble game that is enjoyed through
    playing website domain names only. This would require a specially
    designed website page which enables players to select before each game
    which TLD (Top Level Domain) is to be played. For instance players
    might select only .com and to be within the scope of the play
    or just .au for example for Australia!

    Words played are thus confirmed or refused according to whether a
    domain name within the agreed TLD scope actually exists. Different TLD
    elections would reflect different languages – hence a multi-lingual
    game. A computer user with a home broadband and Wi-Fi set-up would
    experience little delay in the confirmation procedure. Nor any
    additional costs if the broadband was, as commonly is, unmetered.
    Connectivity options would allow play to be held in any room away from
    the computer, indeed in a café with a smartphone! The option to
    download an updated TLD reference file might be a further option to
    think about to play to happen without even an actual online

    Potential hurdles and issues include:

    1. Should Proper Names, abbreviations etc TLD words continued to be
    disallowed and as such could game websites offer a suitable filter
    2. Should hyphenation be permitted?
    3. Should word combinations e.g. "thedog".com be allowed?
    4. How can players be prevented registering domain names deliberately
    to win future games? Might Google-like ranking procedures help to
    filter out artificial websites without a threshold number of pages or
    links in?
    5. Would letter values continue to work the same? If the game is to be
    multi-lingual is there a way to make letter values electronic and so
    adjustable to reflect the existing Scrabble language letter values
    without changing product?

    Is there interest out there in developing it? Although any design
    should incorporate the ability to play a game from a normal electronic
    dictionary, it is the promised TLD scope games that would distinguish
    it in the market. It would need trials, but there is continued and
    widespread curiosity in domain names. It thus should be anticipated to
    sell well if the product were priced just under 100 dollars. At the
    very least it could be used by marketing executives in the boardroom
    to brainstorm ideas before deciding which "www" to register for a new
    product launch!

    Note: Other suggested product names:
    1. Internet TLD Scope Scrabble
    2. Internet TLD Scrabble
    3. TLD Scrabble
    4. Scrabble TLD
    5. Scrabble WWW
    6. 3W Scrabble

    Your comments welcome…

    Project First Cup inventions development program supports the frank
    exchange of ideas, concepts and prototypes likely to lead to
    commercial success. Project First Cup requests acknowledgement as
    first source when things succeed.
    Please visit to discuss this invention and
  2. Ben Bradley

    Ben Bradley Guest

    For the on-topic portion of my response, I recall that Dallas
    Semi(/Maxim) makes "one-wire" products that might go inside the tiles.
    Another is the chips that go into animals so they and the owner can
    be identified when lost and found. (how exactly do those chips work?)
    I thought of registering domains for playing the game as I read
    your description. Perhaps you could invert the logic - the URL wins if
    it has NOT been registered.
    I dunno, I have my own dot-com website I'm not even using, but it's
    over six months old, so would it qualify as a legal "word"?
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