A Voyage of Exploration: Find Serendip

"--- you don't reach Serendib by plotting a course for it. You have to set out in good faith for elsewhere and lose your bearings ... serendipitously" (John Barth, The Last Voyage of Somebody the Sailor)

The rich and magical land of Serendip is to be found somewhere on one of the islands on the map below. Your task, if you choose to accept it, is to find Serendip. Rich and magical lands are, of course, rarely to be found in the same place twice. And, to make life even more interesting, we've arranged things so that Serendip can be made easier or more difficult to find, and so that you will need to use different search strategies to be find Serendip in, on the average, the shortest number of moves.

To play, pick a difficulty level from the buttons below, and then click on the map wherever you want. If you find Serendip, you'll know it. If you don't, we'll tell you where Serendip was (first three levels only) and how many tries you've made, and give you another chance. A moral? Sure, every story has a moral. But it'll make much more sense if you do the best you can with all the difficulty levels first. After each successful journey you can come back here. And after you've acquired some hard won life experience for yourself, then you can check out the moral (or at least our version of it). Bon voyage, and good hunting.

Choose a level of difficulty:
Easy (no more than 5 or 6 moves)
A little harder (but still 5 or 6)
Still harder (but still 5 or 6, if you're good)
Hard (with any of several reasonable strategies, 10 or 12 moves gives you a pretty good chance, but you might need 30 or 40)
Hardest! (10 or 12 moves gives you a pretty good chance, but you'd better use a particular strategy or you may NEVER get there)

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© by Serendip 1994- - Last Modified: Wednesday, 12-Jul-2006 14:16:33 EDT