Nonograms are also known by many other names. If you know of any more synonyms, or the details about who uses them, please tell me.



Paint by Numbers

Invented by Tetsuya Nishio (date unknown). Published in/by Games Magazine.


Oekaki” is Japanese for “drawing picture”.


A puzzle game for Nintendo's Gameboy


This is a Windows game from Star Graphics, including coloured solids.

StarPic Puzzle Game (FigurePic) (Paint by Numbers) Uncover the hidden pictures for hours of puzzle fun!” — A commercial site with a game for Windows, including coloured cells
[External site] [Puzzle collection] [Software] [Editor/creator] [Game/helper]

Keith Wolcott wrote this shareware game for the PalmPilot which allows Nonograms to be created and solved. The software is available from many PalmPilot archives.

PictureLogic A solver and helper for a PalmPilot, and puzzle collections
[External site] [Information] [Puzzle collection] [Software] [Editor/creator] [Solver] [Game/helper]

Liberty Software's implementation of “Paint by Numbers” takes the form of a Macintosh application or a Netscape plugin for Mac or Windows.

CrossPix This uses plug-ins for Netscape on Windows and Macintosh to give what I expect is a helper.
[External site] [Information] [Puzzle collection] [Software] [Editor/creator] [Game/helper]

As of 1998-07-26, The Sunday Telegraph newspaper in the U.K. publishes a Griddler each week in its Review section, having changed the puzzle's name from “Nonogram”. The numbering continued from the old name, so the first Griddler was № 409, “It's all in the name”.


These appear in The Courier-Times of Roxboro, NC, and also in The Wake Weekly of Wake Forest, NC.

Japanese Crossword

This name is used in some countries, including Russia.

Cross+A. Nonograms Shareware solver and crossword/anagram helper, from Russia; includes coloured puzzles
[External site] [Software] [Editor/creator] [Game/helper]

Following the major tsunami of December 2004, a new name was chosen, it seems.

Hanjie A comprehensive site with information, puzzles, and a JavaScript helper — yet it somehow manages to avoid using the word ‘Nonogram’!
[External site] [Information] [Puzzle collection] [Software] [Game/helper]

Another name

(Nemonemo) Logic

Logic’ is the Korean name for Nonograms, shortened from the name of a book Nemonemo Logic. ‘Nemo’ is Korean for ‘square’.

(Thanks to 김경래 (Kjung-rae Kim)!)


A very brief history:

  • In 1987, Non Ishida has the idea for a type of puzzle.

  • In 1990, her sole agent outside Japan, James Dalgety, invents the name Nonogram after ‘Non Ishida’ and ‘-gram’ meaning ‘to draw’. (In fact, ‘-gram’ means ‘to write’.)

The Sunday Telegraph newspaper in the U.K. published a Nonogram each week in its Review section, usually offering a £50 book token as a prize. On 1998-07-19, it presented its last puzzle (№ 408, “Down Under”) under the name “Nonogram”, offering a £250 prize in a competition to select a new name.


This appears to be the name of a quarterly Nonogram magazine in France.

Shady Puzzle

According to the link below, someone in Singapore invented the puzzle concept independently, not realising it was already a decade old.

Singapore a puzzle hub? Another shoddy reporting by the state media : The Temasek Review An article about a concept Shady Puzzle being independently invented in 2005
[External site] [Information]

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