Most of the crossword puzzles available online use Java applets or JavaScript to enable interactive solving. But there are some publishers who provide puzzles as images (my personal grouse is with The Hindu crossword). This means that you need to print them out to solve them. Now that's a pain and isn't exactly environment-friendly.

Enter Cruciverbix, an online converter to convert & present crossword grid images and their clues in an interactive format suitable for solving online. Now, you just need the crossword grid image's URL and the text of the clues.

Behind the scenes, Cruciverbix uses the Python Imaging Library for reading grid images. The interactive grid is implemented using jQuery, a fine JavaScript library.

Cruciverbix can be accessed at

Note: The image analysis isn't perfect yet. This may lead to incorrect display of some grids.

Interactive grid

Venu and I were in charge of the English Crossword event at Incident 2005. We had decided to conduct a written preliminary round and an oral, buzzer-based final round. For the final round, we created a Java applet which listed out clue numbers for both directions. Finalists would choose a clue number for a direction and we would unveil only that particular clue (screenshot). The interactive grid generated by Cruciverbix is mostly based on that applet.