Power Tools

Miscellaneous Shareware and Freeware

an independent programmer

WORDY : A DOS-based word study system for the Scrabble® competitor (ver. 5.30 revised update). This is a complete suite of pattern matching and custom word list generating utilities, including ANAGRAM, UNSCRAMBLE, SEARCH, XTRACT, XFIND, HOOKTO (front-and-back hook finder), JUDGE word challenge adjudicator, HPR (high-probability filter), and multiple word anagramming, among many others. There is even the notorious WORDY word construction game for practicing word pattern recognition, which was cited by AUDYSSEY magazine as one of the very few word games accessible to blind people. The WORDY system is at least as fully functional as commercial word study software that retails in the $50 - $100 range. An earlier version of WORDY received a 5-star rating (the highest) in the December 1995 issue of PC COMPUTING magazine (page 365). Registration for WORDY is still only $2. [407K]
Download from alternate site

WORDY for UNIX is the generic UNIX* implementation (works fine under Linux) of the WORDY utilities. This is the source code only, in C, which must be compiled. GPL / Freeware, but docs, word list, and batteries not included... you may pick them up from the DOS versions of WORDY and ENABLE, described above. [14K]

Note that WORDY requires the master word list, WORD.LST, from the ENABLE package.

WORDY-game screenshot & example word lists

* SCO Group Unixware and Open Server not supported.
UNIX and Unixware are trademarks of the Open Group.

Quackey, a simplified but almost feature-complete version of Perquackey[TM] implemented in a 12K (Bash) shell script. Linux/UNIX/OSX only.
Package, including instructions. [6K]
The README file.

Requires the yawl word list package, below.

Quackey screenshot

Updated millennial edition of ENABLE (ENABLE2K): The Enhanced North American Benchmark LEexicon package provides a 173,000+ word standardized tournament-level master list, more carefully researched than "official" and proprietary lists. It is not restricted to words of an arbitrary length and it features all "official" updates. The ENABLE list has been placed in the Public Domain and is both free and freely distributable. This is the list used by the WORDY word study system, above, and by various online Scrabble® servers and software developers (at least two commercial word games use it as its dictionary). It is highly recommended that the (updated) ENABLE SUPPLEMENT [785K], and the ABLE SUPPLEMENT [559K], additional lists and documentation packages for ENABLE be obtained. Freeware.

Download from alternate site

There is also a Palm Pilot format version of ENABLE available.

The "classic" first edition of ENABLE has been honorably retired. It is no longer available.

Updated SUPPLEMENT: Additional lists and detailed notes and documentation for the above ENABLE2K word list package. Features an annotated list of the differences between the ENABLE2K and the DOOM/TWL98 lists, a complete cross referenced listing of the hidden italicized "called also" words in the MW10, and a well researched listing of words under 9 letters that should have qualified for inclusion in the OSPD®. Includes a supplementary OSW list for SOWPODS enthusiasts! Freeware. [416K]

Download from alternate site

The YAWL LIST (updated 2008 version) is a combination of the ENABLE list and all the above supplementary lists, effectively a superset of the international SOWPODS list. It contains over 264,000 words and is probably the largest and most comprehensive list of its kind. This free Public Domain list is targeted toward Linux, BSD, Be OS, and other 'nix systems and is in standard UNIX ASCII format. It may require conversion before it can be viewed, edited, or accessed by Windows or Mac users. [703K]

The 12 Dicts Lists comprise a set of two annotated listings compiled from twelve different dictionaries. In the words of author Alan Beale, "The purpose of this project is to create a list of words which approximates the common core of the vocabulary of American English." These lists are not specifically targeted toward word gamers, and would therefore have only minimal relevance for Scrabble® players. They might well interest crossword puzzle solvers and cryptography buffs, however. These lists may even be helpful in generating and testing passwords (attention: sys admins and security types).

Download these lists from the wordlist site at Sourceforge.

Atkinson's Aspell package, which is in the process of becoming the Linux standard spell checker. See also, Kevin's SCOWL (Spell Checker Oriented Word Lists). The 12dicts list is freeware and has been placed in the Public Domain for unrestricted use.

WAK is a tachistoscope/"flash card" word list displayer for Scrabble® players. WAK flashes word lists on screen, one word at a time, in a format resembling Scrabble® tiles, and at a user-controlled flash rate ranging from 1 per second to over 40 per second. Can use the word lists generated by the WORDY utilities, see above. Shareware. [94K]

WAK screenshot

SCRABL is a set of word lists and other goodies for Scrabble® players. Includes extract and word for the day programs. Now has 2PLUS1, 3PLUS1, 4PLUS1, and 5PLUS1 hook lists. Updated for "compatibility" with 3rd Ed. of OSPD®. Freeware. [239K]

Judge is a GPL / Freeware Scrabble® word challenge adjudicator for tournament or club play use. It is also well suited for recreational play (screen shot). Both GUI and text versions for Linux/UNIX enclosed (if you absolutely must have a DOS version, download WORDY, above). [15K]

Pokagram is an all-new anagramming board game combining the word building skills of Scrabble® with the risk-taking thrills of poker. No equipment beyond a standard Scrabble® set and an (optional) set of poker chips required. Best of all, it's free and non-proprietary.

CHSCLK is a full-featured chess clock, with digital display, move counter, pause function, and much more. This is an custom version specially adapted for timing Scrabble® games because it tracks overtime and both clocks can be paused simultaneously. Includes source code (C++ and C). Only $1.00 to register. [61K]

Download from alternate site
By special request, there is now an all-text version of the chess clock available for blind people. This version is free. [27K]

CDNTIMER is a resettable countdown timer suitable as a board game turn timer and for photography and cooking applications. Shareware, and only 75 cents (!) to register. [57K]

mcalc is an easy to use mortgage loan calculator. Featuring a GUI front end, mcalc lets you instantly see the results of changing the payoff period or interest rate of a loan. There is even limited support for prepayments on principal. Saves the amortization tables in editable and printable ASCII files. This software installs under Linux or generic UNIX only. GPL / freeware.

Download [15K]

The shred file deletion package is no longer available.

Checksum is a simple utility that permits checking the integrity of files, to ensure that they have not been tampered with. Cross-platform (Linux, generic UNIX, and DOS), but archived as a UNIX "tarball".

Download [4K]

The Shy Man's Guide To Relationships:
HOW-2 Meet Women

You can download the 'zipped' archive of all installments of this full-length e-book, available for browsing on-line elsewhere on this site. This is a complete self-help tutorial in the essential social skills. Topics covered range from the art of engaging a woman in conversation to writing personal ads. This complete program includes helpful exercises and even a self-test. It has been called one of the most empowering documents on the Internet. Shareware.

Chosen for inclusion on the December, 1999 MacAddict CD ROM.
This is an Internet "bestseller".
An estimated quarter of a million persons (81,000+ verified) have downloaded this book.
Download from an alternate site
Download from another alternate site
Get it from download.com

The PAD file is here.

I've written other software, including swradio [254k], a set of files giving complete info on constructing a powerful shortwave receiver for less than $5, and READ, recommended reading and software lists [55K]. The Department of Commerce Bureau of Export Administration previously refused permission for me to release my software cruft package, a replacement for the UNIX crypt utility. However, the liberalized export policy on encryption now permits posting noncommercial Open Source encryption software on the Net, pending only a reporting requirement by the software author (done!). You may download the cruft package [Linux/UNIX only, 16k] with no legal repercussions, providing you plan to use it for a lawful purpose.

Linux Documentation Project
Guides and HOWTOs

Version 5.5 update of the Advanced Bash-Scripting Guide, including both Docbook/SGML source and HTML, as a UNIX bzip2-ed "tarball". This is the equivalent of a 928-page book. [1.02 mb]

The on-line browsable version is at the LDP site.
Here is a mirror site for a "tarball" download.
Download the tarball . [1020 k] Download the pdf version. [3028 k]
See the change log for current updates. MS Windows users will find little of interest here.)

You can also download the supplementary files for the ABS Guide in a tarred-bzip2'ed archive.
The PAD file is here.
The freshmeat.net entry for the project.

For those interested in porting generic UNIX "tarballs" to Linux, there is the
Software-Building HOWTO.

And finally, for those of you looking for wallpaper, here's something I took with my digital camera. Behold Luminous Clouds. (Click on the thumbnail below to get the full-size image.)

It's 1024x768 (full-screen on most desktops) and only 59K in size. I've granted it to the Public Domain so it's free and freely distributable. If you do use it or pass it on, though, please give me at least a name credit out of courtesy.

And, here's another. 1024x768 and less than 50K. It's a scan of a circa 1985 sunset in Alphabet City (NYC), looking toward the Battery.

Comments invited.

Occasionally, people ask me to write short programs for them, usually customized word search utilities. I do this as a service, normally without charge, for registered users of my software. Effective immediately, I will write custom software (or modify existing software) only for the Linux platform. Likewise, I do not anticipate writing any new software (or updating any old packages) for DOS/Windows. All future development will be for Linux or generic UNIX (including Be OS).

Support Linux in its fight for survival against the unholy Microsoft-SCO Group alliance.

To obtain the above described software,
click on the name of the program, above,
and select download to disk in the dialog box that pops up ...
e-mail the author.

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Last updated 11/23/08