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Lettris is a curious tetris-clone game where all the bricks have the same square shape but different content. Each square carries a letter. To make squares disappear and save space for other squares you have to assemble English words (left, right, up, down) from the falling squares.
Boggle gives you 3 minutes to find as many words (3 letters or more) as you can in a grid of 16 letters. You can also try the grid of 16 letters. Letters must be adjacent and longer words score better. See if you can get into the grid Hall of Fame !
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Frame rate (also known as frame frequency) is the frequency (rate) at which an imaging device produces unique consecutive images called frames. The term applies equally well to computer graphics, video cameras, film cameras, and motion capture systems. Frame rate is most often expressed in frames per second (FPS) and is also expressed in progressive scan monitors as hertz (Hz).
The human eye and its brain interface, the human visual system, can process 10 to 12 separate images per second, perceiving them individually. The visual cortex holds onto one image for about one-fifteenth of a second, so if another image is received during that period an illusion of continuity is created, allowing a sequence of still images to give the impression of motion. Early silent films had a frame rate from 14 to 24 FPS but by using projectors with dual- and triple-blade shutters the rate was multiplied two or three times as seen by the audience. Thomas Edison said that 46 frames per second was the minimum: "anything less will strain the eye." In the mid- to late-1920s, the frame rate for silent films increased to about 20 to 26 FPS. When sound film was first introduced in 1926, variations in film speed were no longer tolerated as the human ear was more sensitive to changes in audio frequency. From 1927 to 1930, the rate of 24 FPS became standardized for 35 mm sound film; a speed of 456 millimetres (18.0 in) per second. This allowed for simple two-blade shutters to give a projected series of images at 48 per second. Many modern 35 mm film projectors use three-blade shutters to give 72 images per second—each frame flashed on screen three times.
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Frame rate is also a term used in real-time computing. In a fashion somewhat comparable to the moving-picture definition presented above, a real-time frame is the time it takes to complete a full round of the system's processing tasks. If the frame rate of a real-time system is 60 hertz, the system reevaluates all necessary inputs and updates the necessary outputs 60 times per second under all circumstances.
Owing to their flexibility, software-based video formats can specify arbitrarily high frame rates, and many (cathode ray tube) consumer PC monitors operate at hundreds of frames per second, depending on the selected video mode. LCD screens are usually 24, 25, 50, 60, or 120 FPS.
The designed frame rates of real-time systems vary depending on the equipment. For a real-time system that is steering an oil tanker, a frame rate of 1 FPS may be sufficient, while a rate of even 100 FPS may not be adequate for steering a guided missile. The designer must choose a frame rate appropriate to the application's requirements.
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Frame rates in video games refer to the speed at which the image is refreshed (typically in frames per second, or FPS). Many underlying processes, such as collision detection and network processing, run at different or inconsistent frequencies or in different physical components of a computer. FPS affect the experience in two ways: low FPS does not give the illusion of motion effectively and affects the user's capacity to interact with the game, while FPS that vary substantially from one second to the next depending on computational load produce uneven, “choppy” movement or animation. Many games lock their frame rate at lower but more sustainable levels to give consistently smooth motion.
The first 3D first-person shooter game for a personal computer, 3D Monster Maze, had a frame rate of approximately 6 FPS, and was still a success. In modern action-oriented games where players must visually track animated objects and react quickly, frame rates of between 30 to 60 FPS are considered acceptable by most, though this can vary significantly from game to game. Modern action games, including popular console shooters such as Halo 3, are locked at 30 FPS maximum, while others, such as Unreal Tournament 3, can run well in excess of 100 FPS on sufficient hardware. Additionally some games such as Quake 3 Arena perform physics, AI, networking, and other calculations in sync with the rendered frame rate - this can result in inconsistencies with movement and network prediction code if players are unable to maintain the designed maximum frame rate of 125 FPS. The frame rate within games varies considerably depending upon what is currently happening at a given moment, or with the hardware configuration (especially in PC games.) When the computation of a frame consumes more time than is allowed between frames, the frame rate decreases.
A culture of competition has arisen among game enthusiasts with regard to frame rates, with players striving to obtain the highest FPS possible, due to their utility in demonstrating a system's power and efficiency. Indeed, many benchmarks (such as 3DMark) released by the marketing departments of hardware manufacturers and published in hardware reviews focus on the FPS measurement. Even though the typical LCD monitors of today are locked at 60 Hz, making extremely high frame rates impossible to see in realtime, playthroughs of game “timedemos” at hundreds or thousands of FPS for benchmarking purposes are still common.
Beyond measurement and bragging rights, such exercises do have practical bearing in some cases. A certain amount of discarded “headroom” frames are beneficial for the elimination of uneven (“choppy” or “jumpy”) output, and to prevent FPS from plummeting during the intense sequences when players need smooth feedback most.
Aside from frame rate, a separate but related factor unique to interactive applications such as gaming is latency. Excessive preprocessing can result in a noticeable delay between player commands and computer feedback, even when a full frame rate is maintained, often referred to as input lag.
Without realistic motion blurring, video games and computer animations do not look as fluid as film, even with a higher frame rate. When a fast moving object is present on two consecutive frames, a gap between the images on the two frames contributes to a noticeable separation of the object and its afterimage in the eye. Motion blurring mitigates this effect, since it tends to reduce the image gap when the two frames are strung together. The effect of motion blurring is essentially superimposing multiple images of the fast-moving object on a single frame. Motion blurring makes the motion more fluid for some people, even as the image of the object becomes blurry on each individual frame.