PhD student writes computer program that claims he can find ‘perfect’ first word in Wordle: ‘That’s awesome’
What is the real best starting word in Wordle?
Wordle, the guessing game that asks players to come up with a new five-letter word every day, has exploded in popularity since the start of 2021. By early November, the game had fewer than 90 regular users. Now it has millions of loyal players. So much, in fact, that The New York Times I bought the game recently at an advertised seven-figure price.
And as Wordle becomes more and more popular, so do theories about the supposedly best way to play it. There is now comprehensive study guides to find strong opening guesses. And on ICT Tacthe experts are involved – from professors to linguists to computer programmers and more.
However, one user, a Ph.D. student named Zeb (@tokbyzeb), claims to have cracked the code. All thanks to a program they designed one day while going through an “existential crisis” and procrastinating on their doctorate. to work.
Zeb’s video is a response to another viral video posted by the Canadian linguist behind the popular account @linguisticdiscovery. In his clip, @linguisticdiscovery claimed that gamers should start by guessing “angry”, because it uses the most letters that appear most frequently in English.
However, Zeb argues that this view is too limited. In their video, the TikToker says @linguisticdiscovery’s approach is “heuristic”, meaning it provides a convenient but not entirely optimal solution to guessing the correct word.
The problem, according to Zeb, is that finding the best first guess is really about thinking about how many words the guess will eliminate — because technically eliminating the most potential answers with your first guess gives you the best chance of winning the game.
Zeb’s program therefore evaluates each opening word according to the number of words it eliminates. Their first word, which they believe leaves the fewest number of words available, is “roate”.
As Zeb goes on to show, “roate” leaves players with just over 60 possible guesses. Meanwhile, “irate,” which ranked No. 6 on the list, leaves closer to 64 possible guesses.
TikTokers were very impressed with Zeb’s program and many thanked them for their help.
“This is amazing,” we wrote.
“Yes thanks!” another added. “I was just thinking how much all of this [other] the videos are good in theory but don’t really apply to the game after the first word.”
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The difference, of course, is that Zeb’s program uses a fairly unique approach. And for those interested in how to apply their thinking even further, the TikToker posted a tracking clip explaining how you can eliminate even more words by strategically combining your first two guesses.
Or, you can just do what this writer does and guess the “tears” every time.
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