Defender in 16 by 16 pixels

Minimalism is big. We’ve got 5k chess (an entire game of chess written is less than 5 kilobytes of JavaScript). We’ve got Lego versions of the Old Testament. We’ve got presidents with tiny cardboard facsimiles of a real brain. But here’s one that really blew me away: a tiny version of the old arcade game Defender. And when I say tiny, I mean crazy tiny like building a house on the head of a pin tiny. This is Defender in the space of a 16 by 16 pixel icon. That in itself is impressive, but this guy gets extra credit for making a playable game of Defender run in the favicon space for the browser.

Favicon Defender.

Planarity OCD game is a nifty game I found on LifeHacker tonight. You just shift around network nodes until the lines are all uncrossed. The good news is that you can easily play it over and over and over. I’ll let you guess the bad news. Like Sudoku puzzles, it’s a breeze to teach a computer how to solve it, but for some reason it particularly tickles our mushy wet-brains. As you play with it, you start to get an idea how an untangling algorithm would work.

If you have any obsessive-compulsive tendencies, please don’t follow this link (on the other hand, you’ll quite enjoy it). This game is so simple, mindless, and pleasing in that clean-it-up-and-make-it-better way that it could practically be used as a diagnostic tool.