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### Re^2: Compression in Golf: Part III

by primo (Scribe)
 on Jan 07, 2013 at 05:11 UTC ( #1011951=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re: Compression in Golf: Part III
in thread Compression in Golf: Part III

While it's true that Roman to Decimal, Saving Time, and now 99 Bottles have all been effectively post-mortemed, the game doesn't need to stop there, it just changes flavor: "Can the best solution be improved any more?" If I could find a 149 stroke solution as dmd did, or even a 150, I'd post it without thinking twice ;)

And, as eyepopslikeamosquito pointed out, this is also a perfectly valid technique to improve your other scores. I've recently improved my 1000 Digits of Pi score from 102 -> 96, extending my lead to a full 20 strokes, and Oblong Number Spirals from 112 -> 104, breaking a long standing tie with Flagitious, which of course is always satisfying.

Even solutions as short as 80 strokes can often be improved. Admittedly, attempting to pack u an 80 stroke solution might seem like an act of desperation, but if it gets you that ellusive 79 stroker, it's fair game. After all, this technique is available to all golfers, and I suspect that many have been using it for some time.

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Re^3: Compression in Golf: Part III
by eyepopslikeamosquito (Bishop) on Jan 07, 2013 at 10:47 UTC

I suspect that many have been using it for some time
It would be very interesting to learn who has been using it, for how long, and how they stumbled upon it.

I always get suspicious when someone holds a big lead in a high-scoring golf -- as mtve did at sha-256-hashing, leading 396 to 433. So I asked him about it directly. And he then (finally) remembered ... why yes he did use it in that game! You see, he'd completely forgotten about that when I contacted him several weeks earlier to help me research the Compression in golf series! Well, it was years ago. In fact, mtve knew about this technique since 2002 because he co-refereed TPR(0,6) with Ton Hospel and so was privy to the reason behind Ton's new "At least 55% of the code must consist of normal ASCII characters" rule.

I also wonder about Ruby golfing phenomenon flagitious. After all, he led that same sha-256 golf in Ruby by 338 to 386 for years ... until "dmd" recently wrested the lead at 335 by using "pack u" compression. Now dmd is such a strong golfer that if he was using compression and flagitious was not, I would expect dmd to be at least 20 strokes ahead. Whoa, I just realised that I tied flagitious in Ruby at 173 strokes in the 99 bottles of beer game without using compression ... so if flagitious did use compression in that game, that would have to rate as my greatest Ruby golfing accomplishment. :)

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