Once upon a time, over a decade ago, I wrote a simple program in C++Builder to help my father solve crossword puzzles and cryptograms. It would let you type a word with blanks such as
f....al and it would tell you which words would fit.
When my father asked whether I still had the program, to install it on his new computer, I decided to rewrite it from scratch. This time round, it is a web app using Ruby, Sinatra and Liquid. The result is at the unimaginative URL crosswordfinder.frozenfractal.com.
Of course, for anyone with basic shell-fu, it’s as simple as
aspell -l en dump master | egrep '^f....al$'
but for the other 99% of the population, this app might be of some use. It currently contains wordlists for Dutch, US and UK English, but I can easily add more on request.
Also, this is Frozen Fractal’s first open source application. The source is on GitHub.