Nonabelian SET

Date started: Spring 2019
Leads: Concept and physical implementation: Cathy Hsu, Jonah Ostroff, and Lucas Van Meter. Digital implementation: Gabriel Dorfsman-Hopkins


The popular board game SET can be thought of as looking for elements of the abelian group (\mathbb{Z}/3\mathbb{Z})^4.  Can the game be made as fun and compelling for other groups?  Hsu, Ostroff, and Van Meter created a fun playable version for the symmetric groups, as well as direct produts of symmetric groups, and semidirect products of symmetric groups with cyclic groups.  The goal becomes to search for tiles (each representing a group element), which compose to the identity, and now since the group is not abelian, order does matter. Dorfsman-Hopkins implements various of these using Javascript, adding animation and colors to help identify sets.


Some laser cut tiles:

Online implementation: