## Tips for New Players

First of all, DON’T get caught up with the most efficient solution to the circuit. Just try to get it solved first, even if it’s a mess.

It’d be really helpful to learn how binary works if you don’t already know. It’s a numeric system like decimals 0-9, except it only uses 0 and 1. You can think of these like on and off or true and false. You’ve probably heard that “computers are just a bunch of 1’s and 0’s.” or something similar. That’s essentially true. All computers, even modern ones, are built on an enormous amount of calculations that all boil down to true and false, on and off, 1 or 0, etc., depending on how the designer chooses to interpret it. It’s all electrical signals in the end.

The NAND gate that you begin with is a combination of two of the most basic logic gates, NOT and AND. A logic gate takes one or more signals and produces one or more signals depending on the intended purpose.

NOT can be thought of like inversion. Whatever you feed to the gate, you want it to give you the opposite:

- OFF = ON
- ON = OFF

AND can be thought of like binary multiplication:

**AND**

- 0 times 0 = 0
- 0 times 1 = 0
- 1 times 0 = 0
- 1 times 1 = 1

A NAND gate combines both of these. Whatever the AND gate outputs, you want NOT that.

**NAND**

- NOT 0 times 0 = 1
- NOT 0 times 1 = 1
- NOT 1 times 0 = 1
- NOT 1 times 1 = 0

An OR gate basically means “if either is true then output true”.

An XOR gate or exclusive OR means “Output true if one is true but not both”.

Computers are built on complex combinations of these basic logic gates. So, make sure you understand them thoroughly. That should give you a pretty good grounding for the game.

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