Worth Thinking About

The Adventures of Life

Month: January 2022 (page 1 of 8)

One Wordle a day not enough? Dordle gives you two at once.

Another day, another Wordle, and also another Wordle clone offering a delightful or diabolical twist on the viral word game.

A quick recap: In addition to Josh Wardle’s massively successful daily format, there’s Lewdle (rude five-letter words only), Absurdle (a truly evil variant that switches up the guessing process), Primel (five-digit prime numbers only), Sweardle (four-letter words, obviously), and probably more in the works. But like the original flavour, all of these refresh once a day, so you can’t spend endless hours guessing endless words to your heart’s content. That’s part of the appeal — Wordle isn’t trying to monopolise and monetise your attention like so many games and apps do — but it does mean that once you’ve done the day’s puzzle, that’s it until tomorrow. And because you’re human and thus wired to crave fun, you always want a little more. So Dordle is granting your wish — the way a monkey’s paw would.

Dordle — described by developer Zaratustra Productions (aka Guilherme S. Töws) as “Wordle plus Wordle” — is definitely in the diabolical category of Wordle variants, and not only because there is zero clarity on how to pronounce the name. (Doordle? Durdle?)

The game consists of two Wordle grids side by side, both working as the standard format does — five letters, six guesses, greyed-out squares for letters not present in the solution, yellow squares for letters in the wrong place, and green for letters in the right place.

The difference here, though, is that although there is double the wordle-ing, you still only get six guesses — each of which apply to both games simultaneously. With each one, you have to make a decision: Can I guess effectively enough to get more data on both words, or should I sacrifice a guess on one side to try and solve the other?

A partially completed Dordle game, showing a successful third guess of THIEF in the left grid and a few yellow squares on the right.


Credit: Screenshot: Dordle / Zaratustra Productions

If you’re lucky and/or smart, you can get one side in the first few guesses and have several left over so you can concentrate on solving the second. But if you solve the first on even your fourth or fifth guess — especially if you focused a guess or two on getting that side solved at the expense of more useful guesses on the other side — you may find yourself throwing a Hail Mary word in there to try and get the twofer.

And what about those handy colour-coded keyboards, you ask? That might be the most ingenious twist. While you’re solving both puzzles, letters that have been guessed are split down the middle — if there’s a correctly placed E in the left grid and no E in the right-hand word, for example, the E on the keyboard will be half green and half grey on the corresponding sides. Once you solve one side, the solution’s letters get an unobtrusive green stripe down one side and the second side’s relevant colours take over the rest of the key. In other words, the keyboard actively helps you focus on that unsolved side.

The good news is that in addition to a daily Dordle that’s the same for everyone, Zaratustra also made you a non-daily, randomised version you can play as many times in a row as you like to hone your strategy (and your vocab). And yes, both the daily and the unlimited version generate the now-familiar blank grid you can copy to your clipboard to show off your genius (or your failure, or failures, plural).

The bad news is, as you might suspect, that unlimited Dordles make it as addictive as it is difficult. A timely reminder to anyone working on their own Wordle variant right now: you can have too much of a good thing.

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Second GOP governor calls for Trump-less 2024 election

Donald Trump’s presidency is one and done, according to a pair of Republican governors, who have said the 45th president is not the future of the GOP Party.
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People Who Work Graveyard Shifts Are Sharing Their Unsettling On-The-Job Stories, And I’m Not Going To Lie — I’m Scared Y’all

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LG’s All-in-One cordless stick vacuum makes cleaning less of a drag, then empties itself

The purple and red flash of a Dyson probably comes to mind when someone thinks of the dream cordless stick vacuum. Those aren’t the only stick vacuums on the market, of course, but it’d take some really unique features for a brand to get their own “Girls don’t want a boyfriend, they want a Dyson stick vacuum” tweets.

LG’s All-in-One cordless vacuum (as well as Samsung’s Jet Stick) is gunning for the high-end vacuum market with two convenient tricks up its sleeve that not even the most expensive Dyson vacuum offers yet. So when I, a Dyson V10 owner who craves the rush of manual vacuuming, heard about a stick vacuum that could empty itself and mop, I had to see if it was really a game changer.

Setup: There’s a lot to unpack here, which is good

Sorry to anyone residing in a fourth floor walkup unit — this box weighs more than 46 pounds upon delivery. LG’s All-in-One is technically a bundle of the CordZero A939KBGS stick vacuum, an auto-emptying charging tower, a power mop nozzle, a multitude of other accessories, and two rechargeable batteries that can be swapped mid-cleaning if the one dies. For $1,000, you do get a lot of extras.

The physical act of unpacking the included goodies is the hardest part of setup. The tower is already assembled and just needs to be plugged in.

I don’t know why the WiFi button on the vacuum exists, honestly. It’s easy to set up, but there’s much less to do with an app-connected manual vacuum than an app-connected robot vacuum. I guess it’s helpful to know how many times you’ve had to vacuum that month or receive a head’s up about when to change the filter.

Noticeable suction at a not-too-noticeable noise level

The CordZero A9 is a delight to whip around, and it doesn’t even require your finger holding down a trigger. I felt super in control, even in hard-to-reach spots where bulkier or corded vacuums feel like a bull in a china shop.

My main suction test attempted to clean the carpeted floors at my parents’ house, which is currently home to four cats (two long-haired, two short-haired, all heavy shedders).

Half down, half to go.

Half down, half to go.
Credit: leah stodart / mashable

Fuzzies, threads, and tumbleweeds of pet fur — stuff that’s likely to stick on low- and medium-pile carpets or rugs — almost always disappeared on the first pass. I sometimes find that low-pile rugs (like doormat material) are the most stubborn because they act like velcro. The ones in my house are dark and make every piece of fur visible without squinting. Not every vacuum is able to grab the pieces that have been stepped on and pressed in, but I could trust the LG to leave those looking relatively spotless.

The “turbo” button can boost suction for a few minutes, but I didn’t find myself going turbo too often. The default suction setting was more than enough for dry debris on hard floors. Neither mode is unbearably loud. The loudest part was actually the crackle of kitty litter being sucked up.

The LG was also a lifesaver over the holidays, when the floor was regularly littered with pine needles or random specks of glitter.

The auto empty station is so much less gross than manual emptying

Emptying a vacuum’s bin is arguably worse than the act of vacuuming itself. It’s one of those detested chores that you slyly pass off to another person you live with, like leaving a single drop of water in the Brita so that you don’t have to fill it up.

That’s partly because most bagless vacuum require the owner to dig around in the dust bin to pull out dust bunnies or tangled hair, despite the supposed “dump and go” design. I was thrilled that LG’s auto empty station kept me from coming in contact with that filth or inhaling a puff of dirt hovering above the trash can. Instead, the dust bin automatically empties into the All-in-One station every time you dock it. Then for next time, you’re starting fresh with presumably better suction.

This fully enclosed HEPA system is much more hygienic than the manual alternative, and may provide some relief for people looking to keep airborne household allergens at bay.

If you want, the CordZero's attachments can be stored on the dock itself.

If you want, the CordZero’s attachments can be stored on the dock itself.
Credit: LG

Though it requires more floor space than stashing a vacuum in a closet, the All-in-One station is a practical storage alternative that looks more refined than a vacuum just leaning on the wall. Its extra attachments can also be stored inconspicuously on the side of the tower.

A little jingle plays to let you know that the vac is docked correctly, and then… it begins. I wouldn’t recommend being in ear shot, but the auto-empty whoosh only lasts for about 15 seconds.

For quick full dust bin relief, the debris already in the canister can also be compacted to create more space. LG says that its Kompressor technology can double the bin’s capacity to keep you from having to stop to empty halfway through. At this point, I don’t believe that a vacuum that doesn’t hoard hair around its brush roll exists. But I do feel like I’ve had to cut my spooled hair out of the LG’s brush roll less than I’ve had to with other vacuums. That means that hair may add up in the dust bin faster, pointing to the handiness of the Kompressor lever.

As of this writing, I had been using the LG vacuum exclusively for almost two months and still hadn’t had to empty the docking station’s bin.

A mop and a ferocious pet-specific head are its best attachments

I’ll vacuum religiously on the daily but draw the line at digging extra attachments out of a bag. LG’s All-in-One station providing such easy access to the included extra tools showed me that they really deserve to be used.

The motorized brush roll for pet hair was a miracle worker on matted down pet hair on upholstery. I put it to work at my parents’ house, where the cats sit on the furniture as much as the humans do. One of my mom’s biggest cleaning gripes (a literal *pet* peeve) is coming across yet another chair that has been dubbed the hangout spot of the week and is subsequently doused in fur. Though it required a few passes, even the thick layers of fur were uprooted by the powerful suction and rubberized brush.

My cats sit on the furniture more than the people do, so…
Credit: leah stodart/mashable

This is how you know a vacuum is working.
Credit: leah stodart/mashable

Plus, being able to quickly grab the CordZero A9 (as opposed to a corded vac) made regular upkeep more likely than putting off the cleaning job until the fur got too thick to handle.

The power mop attachment could transform a cleaning routine that wouldn’t incorporate frequent mopping otherwise. It’s a hefty full-sized cleaning head with a fillable tank, two spinning fiber cloth pads, and an LED light to better spot grime. The pads almost propel the vacuum forward, leaving behind a wet trail. The amount of water released is controlled by a toggle on the mop.

I typically question the effectiveness of mops that don’t use a cleaning solution or hot steam, but there’s still satisfaction in giving a freshly-vacuumed tile a nice gloss to pick up any lingering dust. (More on its effectiveness below.) I think the mop attachment would be a nice addition to a home with hardwood floors that need to be kept shiny without worry of a cleaning solution damaging the top coat.

The pads attach with velcro and are washable.
Credit: leah stodart / mashable

S/O to the LED light for highlighting the sticky stuff under my fridge.
Credit: leah stodart / mashable

Other tools in the box include a 2-in-1 brushed combination tool that’s handy for anything from spiderwebs on the ceiling to crumbs in a keyboard and a crevice tool that’s great for debris shoved into car seats. The telescopic wand can be adjusted depending on height needs, or removed for transformation into a handheld.

Downsides

The fact that this LG vacuum costs as much as a 65-inch LG NanoCell TV can’t exactly be pinned as a downside. I mean, it’s incontestably premium. But it’s probably overboard for small spaces and homes without pets. Some floors just don’t have enough gunk to justify paying for automatic emptying of the bin each time.

The term “power mop” kind of insinuates that the attachment provides enough elbow grease to wipe up something like dried mud. While the spinning pads do a fine job of polishing sweaty footprints or dust around the litter box, anything caked on was more stubborn. The fact that the mop is just using the temperature of your tap water doesn’t help. A steam mop attachment would be the real groundbreaker.

Should you spend $1,000 on a vacuum that’s still manual?

The $1,000 price point isn’t THAT uncommon in the vacuum world anymore — with robot vacuums at least. Usually, much of what you’re paying for is that hands-free automation that all but erases the chore from your to-do list.

SEE ALSO: Samsung’s Jet Bot AI+ robot vacuum is a must-have for pet owners

A stick vacuum clearly isn’t saving you the effort of vacuuming, and this premium version certainly isn’t saving you money. But the LG All-in-One CordZero is one hell of an investment that’ll save you some serious time and energy. If you have the budget for the LG All-in-One CordZero, you should buy it.

Not only is its approach to emptying less gross than what you’re dealing with now, but it makes the task of vacuuming as a whole feel less tedious — both with scheduled upkeep or sudden messes. The attachments also aid in its clutchness in a variety of situations: Such an easily-accessed mop attachment could also make mopping second nature in a home with lots of hot floors or foot traffic. A robot vacuum can’t clean the car or stairs, but the CordZero’s ability to turn into a powerful handheld is perfect for such jobs.

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San Diego Zoo’s Skyfari ride vandalized, stranding 100-plus riders, police say; 4 suspects arrested

More than 100 riders were stuck on the San Diego Zoo’s “Skyfari Aerial Tram” gondola ride Saturday in what authorities said was a case of suspected vandalism.
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20 TV And Movie Lines That Were Totally And Surprisingly Improvised By The Actor

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Secure your digital privacy with the best deals on Private Internet Access

SAVE 83%: Private Internet Access offers fast connection speeds, powerful levels of encryption, and much more. A three-year subscription to Private Internet Access is on sale for £1.67 per month, and includes an extra three months for free.


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With a strict no-logging policy and a lot of customisable privacy features, Private Internet Access can be trusted with your data. It’s also one of the best services for bypassing geo-restrictions to unlock bonus content from around the world. What we’re saying is that Private Internet Access pretty much covers all bases.

To help you find the best Private Internet Access deal for you, we’ve lined up a selection of plans for your consideration:

These plans are all fully refundable for 30 days. You can also connect 10 devices simultaneously with the same plan, which is useful if you regularly use a lot of devices simultaneously.

Secure your digital world with the best deals on Private Internet Access.


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Credit: Private Internet Access

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Wayne Stenehjem, North Dakota’s longest-serving AG, dead at 68

North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, a former legislator and the state’s longest-serving attorney general, died at age 68, his office announced Friday, just hours after he was taken to a hospital.
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50 Actors Who Played Villains So Perfectly That People Hate Their Faces Now

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This Python and Git course bundle is on sale for 98% off

TL;DR: The Python Programming and Git Certification Bundle is on sale for £21.48, saving you 98% on list price.


Coding is already complicated enough. Why make it harder by being disorganised?

It may seem impossible to new coders, but staying on top of your projects is actually pretty easy if you use the right system. Git is the most commonly used version control system; it lets you track all the changes you make to files, so you have a record of what’s been done and can revert to specific versions in case something goes awry along the way. It also makes collaborating with multiple people a more streamlined process.

Newbies looking for the most beginner-friendly entry point into the world of coding should definitely check out the Python Programming and Git Certification Bundle. It’s packed with nine courses that will show you not only how to program using Python — which is widely known as the easiest language to learn — but also how to keep track of your work in Git.

With 29 hours of content total, the team of working programmers at Coding Gears makes learning to code and manage your projects accessible to everyone, no matter your skill level. You’ll kick things off with a course laying out the fundamentals of code, then apply those lessons to the basics of Python. You’ll work through an online lab and courses on object-oriented programming, machine learning, and more until you feel comfortable writing your own code from scratch. Don’t worry, you can work at your own pace and return to lessons as often as you need to.

Next, you’ll dive into using Git to track your work. The open-source tool basically acts as a repository of all the data for your projects, including any changes you made, when you made them, and why. There are three courses that touch on Git, how to use it, and all the tips and tricks you’ll need along the way.

And finally, you’ll touch base on YAML, a data serialisation language that lets you add notes and details on your code. That way, when you look back at changes you made in your code, you can understand your headspace at the time.

This nine-course Python and Git bundle is valued at £1,333, but you can sign up for only £21.48 for a limited time.


People talking around desk

Credit: Coding Gears

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