Grandchildren love Bumfoozle

Recently I had a chance to watch my grandchildren (ages 3 – 10) as they tried to find solutions in Bumfoozle.  I was surprised that even the 3 year old was able to do it.  He was able to see a space then see the piece in a different orientation that would fit.  It confirmed to me that this was more than just a way to occupy their time, it was a way to exercise their young brains as they learned problem solving, spatial relationships, eye-hand coordination and many other skills.  I asked my six year old grandson why he liked Bumfoozle and he said that it was because it made him think.  Kids love to learn and Bumfoozle is a great tool to help them develop their thinking skills.

Storm preparation hint using trash bags

Large plastic trash bags can be amazingly useful in your disaster preparedness.

Most realize that you can also put a large clean trash bag in your garbage barrel and fill it with water, that way you have a source of clean water.  But did you realize how they can be used when you can’t flush the toilet?

If you have a power outage lasts several days, you may still run out of water, but you still need to use the toilet.  A clever technique that hospitals often use is to lift the seat and place a large trash bag over the bowl, letting it rest on the water and drape down over the outside of the bowl.  Then put the seat back down.  It can be used several times, and when it gets full or begins to smell, you can dispose of it and replace it with a new one.  It is also a good idea to tape the flush lever so that it doesn’t accidentally get flushed.  Be sure to stock up on waterless hand sanitizer.

Turning off the sound

For those who are like me and don’t read directions, you probably won’t read this either, but there is a way to turn off the sound.  On the startup view (the one where you choose the level), in the lower right corner, there is an info button (a round dot with an “i” in the middle).  If you press that button, it will take you to a view where you can turn the sound off.  There are two buttons.  One turns off the background music that plays continuously, and the other one turns off the sounds like the “click” and the happy dance.

New release – version 1.0.5

Bum Guy is not so bashful in this new release.  We’ve coaxed him to come out of the shadows and dance for you on stage.  Yes, it adds 4 seconds between when you find a solution and the time you get to work on the next one, but what’s the rush?  This isn’t Tetris or some shoot ‘em up.  Enjoy the dance, Bum Guy is doing the happy dance for you because you found another solution. (Sorry for you who are using an old iPod running IOS 4.2.  Bum Guy just couldn’t figure out how to dance on your device without crashing.. I think it’s a memory problem, but I don’t remember.)

And for those of you who discovered that there was a defect (“bug” for us old timers) in the version 1.0.4 that allowed you to count a placement of pieces that wasn’t legal, that has been fixed.  For now, we’ll still count them, but in a later version, you will have to option of removing all illegal solutions.

What will be new in the next version?  That’s a secret.  Bum Guy thinks you will like it though.


Bum Guy says:

If you are an avid Bumfoozler you soon realize that you can simply reverse the whole puzzle board or rotate it 180 degrees (90, 180 and 270 degrees on the 5×5 grid of Level 3) and it will count as a new solution.  When I thought of checking for this, I decided that the only person that you would be fudging would be yourself.  So I suggest that you avoid doing it.  Of course as you get hundreds solutions, you might inadvertently find such a solution.  That’s ok because you’ve still had the fun and mental exercise of finding a solution.  My 6 year old grandson discovered this and actually I was pretty proud of him to recognize that you could reflect or rotate the entire puzzle board and have it counted.

Another form of fudging would be to write a computer program to find all the solutions.  If you decide to do that, then more power to you.  It isn’t an easy task and you deserve credit for the hard work and thought process that you have to go through.  You will find that it soon becomes very complex.  Unless you also invent an iPad robot, you will still have to enter all the solutions in manually to have them counted.