Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Wordfeud and regular expression in SQL

Three family members invited me to play Wordfeud with them this Christmas. At the end of such a game losing badly to my sister-in-law and with only a few letters left I was thinking about how I could find candidate words using regular expression in SQL.

First I found a list of Norwegian words on the net. I should have taken the effort to get hold of the same word list as Wordfeud is using. The list was loaded into a table using SQL Developer.

Say you want to see if there is any word that start with N and uses only the letters C, F, S, and A. The following SQL may find it:

select word
from norwegians
where regexp_substr(word,'^n[cfsa]+$') is not null ;

For those not familiar with regular expressions, well, just Google or check out any good book on Perl. In short, the ^ and $ means the beginning and end of line (word in this case) respectively, [] is used to create a group of letters; [cfsa] means any letter of c, f, s, and a; + means one or more occurrences.

Now I only need to make a mobile interface to this, and create a function that calculate the score for each word based on Wordfeud's rules. Next Christmas, maybe. I do know there are apps ready to suggest this, but that is not half as fun :-)


Anonymous said...

Hi Øyvind!

if you can find the Norwegian wordlist Wordfeud uses, we'll be happy to include it in our (mobile) website and app at

Unfortunately, we don't speak Norwegian...

Happy wordfeuding!

Anonymous said...

P.S. You can contact us through the feudfraud website

Frank said...

Hi there,

You can play WordFeud on line now. Go to

Happy games!!