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The * key will automatically generate a random grid design from a prefill pattern. It is based on 'quality' cryptic designs, as found in The Times newspaper. There will usually be two words per each alternate row or column, with no words smaller than four letters, and uses rotational symmetry order 2, regardless of the current symmetry setting. Make sure 'prefill squares' is checked when you make the new grid, and that the 'Fill' toolbar button is selected. Making a XWord has never been so quick!

Fun Fill

If you press the Command key as you click on the Autofill button for a Fun Fill, the process will repeat until all the words in the current dictionary are used, or you cancel, whichever is the sooner.

Use this for small lists where you feel it should be possible to use all the words.


Notice that sometimes this won't work even for a small list if there are no common letters to allow intersecting. Eg Dog and Cat won't work, unless you add Parrot!

Using a Fun or Wordsearch Fill with a large dictionary used to take ages as the program checked whether each and every dictionary word could be inserted. Now it moves on after 600 random words per wordlength. It no longer matters what black squares are already there - it simply works round them. Thus 'Fun Fill' is always selectable for normal 'Filled' grids.

General Improvements

If you get the alert "Couldn't find word in selected dictionary", or "Word already in dictionary", the previous dialog remains open for further attempts.
There is now a folder called Grids, which is the default destination when you save a grid.
A new grid will use the last selected symmetry plan, if appropriate for the shape of the new grid. Similarly, it will use the last selected autofill method, except that 'Mixed' will revert to normal, because no user dictionary could yet have been selected for it.
There is now a command-key equivalent for 'Statistics' window (I - think of 'Info').
If the user typed words in to the grid, they used to only appear in the Clues or Solution window if they happened to exist in the dictionary. Now, they will be shown regardless (in CAPS).
The Main Dictionary has had about 300 phrases added. The user wordlists included in the 2.7 download have been checked and edited.