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Normale Version: Solving LM portal puzzles in an applet
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I know this might be a sensitive issue for some puzzle solvers and authors so let me warn people that are offended by some people using computer assistance to solve some of the puzzles in the portal to stop reading here.

I often don't have the possibility to print puzzles and like to solve puzzles right on my computer. For some puzzles MSPaint will do just fine, but for many it's not so practical. Therefore I wrote a little program that helps me convert some of the puzzles to an applet-like puzzle that can be solved on my computer, a bit similar to some of the croco-puzzles. I've used and updated this program for quite some time now and I would like to share this program with anyone interested.

The program only works for puzzles with a rectangular grid, for example sudoku puzzles. It basically overlays the puzzle image with transparent buttons, one for each possible symbol in each cell (9x9x9 buttons for a sudoku) the buttons can then be selected (left-click) or removed (right click) as the puzzle is being solved. The main advantage of the program is that it uses a custom background which is perfect for chaos, killer or kropki sudokus or any of the other variations. For standard sudokus there are already other programs out there. The program just uses the image as background and does not read the puzzle.

The program is not really a solver for puzzles, just a notation tool. But the program can automatically apply simple sudoku rules, to give hints or even automatically solve the last steps in the sudoku (single occurences in a row, column or 3x3 square). A very easy sudoku will be solved automatically by the program as soon as the given clues are clicked, but any variation of a sudoku will never be automatically solved by the program. Some people might still consider this cheating, but for me it is mostly about skipping the most repetitive part of solving the puzzle. I admit the program is definitely a great help when solving larger sudoku puzzles like 12x12 or 16x16. (In case anyone cares, I made certain never to be the first solver on a puzzle where i used the program and never used the program in contests). The program also makes it easier to use trial and error.

The program can be found on:
<updated> I noticed the file is no longer at it's old location, I will put it online in a better location during some of the next days</updated>

The standard settings in the program are for a standard sudoku but the size or symbols used can all be changed.

To use the program you need java on your computer, then just start the jar-file, enter the size of the puzzle and put the image of the puzzle on the clipboard, preferably not too small and without any whitespace around it. Then press START. More instructions are in the program.

If you are interested I can also share the (very sparsely documented) source code.

Any comments welcome.

Looks fine, but what should I do, if I want to undo the last change?
OK, very interesting. Thanks.
I use the Firefox extension "Screen Draw" (but also without undo).
Thanks for sharing! I just used it - after making an error on my print-out - and probably never solved a 9x9 Sudoku this fast (just writing all the little numbers into the boxes takes a lot of time). Greetings, Danielle