Hey everyone, I am a beginner at python, and on these forums (even though I have lurked here quite a bit). Anyway, I really need some help with recursive functions. I don't exactly know how they work, and I have to be able to answer the following questions:

Turn a line of input containing matching pairs of round (()) or curly ({}) brackets into a mountain range. The height of the mountain should indicate how deeply nested the brackets are.

For example, given this input:

{({(){}()}{(){}()})({(){}()}{(){}()})({(){}()}{(){}()})}

Your program should output:

   (){}()  (){}()    (){}()  (){}()    (){}()  (){}()
  {      }{      }  {      }{      }  {      }{      }
 (                )(                )(                )
{                                                      }

If the brackets are not balanced (that is, a matching bracket appears when some of the brackets in the middle have not been closed), the program should print 'Invalid input!'.

For example, give this input:

((({}{)}){)}

Your program should output:

Invalid input!

and

A new version of the popular board game Scrabble is coming out soon, and they want you to write a program to calculate the score for a word on the board.

In this new version of Scrabble, instead of the score for a word placement being the sum of the values of each individual letter, the score for the word is the number of distinct "subwords" it contains. The definition of a subword is recursive: a subword is constructed by removing a single letter from the word, and the subword has to be a valid dictionary word.

For example, the five subwords for the word lion are lion, ion, in, on and i (in our dictionary). Note that even though lo is made up of the letters of lion and is a valid dictionary word, it is not counted because there is no path of subwords from lion to lo.

So for the sample input:

lion

your program should output:

5

For this input:

bread

your program should output:

15

Your program will read the contents of the dictionary of words from a file words.txt, with each line containing a single dictionary word. You can download the word file here.

I have some idea, but really need pointers on how to do these (or just straight answers). please help?

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