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# Friday Quiz #9

Posts: 21,583
Here's a quiz derived from one that appears every Sunday in the New York Times Magazine:

The object is to find as many common English words of seven letters or more (not proper nouns) that can be formed using the center letter and the letters surrounding it, in any order. Letters can be used more than once. Score one point for each word you find, plus an additional two points for a word that uses all seven letters.

The objective is to do this from your head -- i.e. not by writing a program that scans an English word list. When you think you have enough words, post your score here. Please do not post the words you've found, so as to give everyone an equal chance.

-Phil

P.S. Once enough people have responded, I'll open it up to a programming "golf" contest and provide a word list to see who can come up with the shortest program that accomplishes the task.
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery

• Posts: 2,295
Can you repeat letters? And must the letters be next to each other? Or is the layout not significant?
• Posts: 9,873
I like this one. :)

Infernal Machine
• Posts: 21,583
edited May 2017
Seairth wrote:
Can you repeat letters? And must the letters be next to each other? Or is the layout not significant?
... that can be formed using the center letter and the letters surrounding it, in any order. Letters can be used more than once.

The only significance to the layout is that each word must contain the center letter at least once. Otherwise, anything goes.

-Phil
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 2,295
Seairth wrote:
Can you repeat letters? And must the letters be next to each other? Or is the layout not significant?
... that can be formed using the center letter and the letters surrounding it, in any order. Letters can be used more than once.

The only significance to the layout is that each word must contain the center letter at least once. Otherwise, anything goes.

-Phil

Dangit! Now I'm back down to four.... :(
• Posts: 2,703
In about 15 minutes while eating I got to 23, but totally blank the rest of lunch. 10 of them start with a P, the rest have it elsewhere. One word using all but the R. Longest is 9 letters.

Will take another look later and see if I can drum up more, if not, I head to the scrabble solver to see what obvious words I missed....

I am interested in other people's mental process in solving this. Here is what I was doing:
Started with P and worked around each other letter as second to come up with words.
Started with each other letter and worked around all letters as second
Used some common letter combos to find words.
Looked for double p, e, o, r and L words
Repeated steps above a few times...
• Posts: 825
In about 15 minutes while eating I got to 23, but totally blank the rest of lunch. 10 of them start with a P, the rest have it elsewhere. One word using all but the R. Longest is 9 letters.

Seven letter or more?

I was able to find three defensible words and an additional four that are contrived.

Re-inventing the wheel is not a waste of time if, when you are done, you understand why it is round.
Cool, CA, USA 95614
• Posts: 21,583
edited May 2017
I was able to find three defensible words and an additional four that are contrived.
Do the contrived ones end in "-er" or begin with "re-" by any chance -- or both? :)

-Phil
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 825
I was able to find three defensible words and an additional four that are contrived.
Do the contrived ones end in "-er" or begin with "re-" by any chance -- or both? :)

-Phil

Pretty much.

Re-inventing the wheel is not a waste of time if, when you are done, you understand why it is round.
Cool, CA, USA 95614
• Posts: 2,295
edited May 2017
I'm up to 9 10. None contrived. But 23? Wow! I need to read more books!
• Posts: 2,175
To give the first one away off the top of my head: (PROPELLER)
• Posts: 21,583
MikeDYur wrote:
To give the first one away off the top of my head: (PROPELLER)
There's a reason for my choice of letters!

-Phil
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 2,295
MikeDYur wrote:
To give the first one away off the top of my head: (PROPELLER)
There's a reason for my choice of letters!

-Phil

Yeah, the style of the "P" was a bit of a gimme. :D
• Posts: 2,175
MikeDYur wrote:
To give the first one away off the top of my head: (PROPELLER)
There's a reason for my choice of letters!

-Phil

Pretty cool that the mother ship is really front and center.
• Posts: 21,583
MikeDYur wrote:
Pretty cool that the mother ship is really front and center.
Well it is Parallax's forum. Whenever possible, I try to keep things relevant and on-topic -- however tenuously.

-Phil
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 210
9 words so far!
• Posts: 18,731
Parallax and Propeller are both in the mix!
"When you make a thing, a thing that is new, it is so complicated making it that it is bound to be ugly. But those that make it after you, they don’t have to worry about making it. And they can make it pretty, and so everybody can like it when others make it after you."

- Pablo Picasso
• Posts: 18,731
Loop before you Leap!
"When you make a thing, a thing that is new, it is so complicated making it that it is bound to be ugly. But those that make it after you, they don’t have to worry about making it. And they can make it pretty, and so everybody can like it when others make it after you."

- Pablo Picasso
• Posts: 21,583
At this point, I would invite the entrants to display their word lists. 'Curious to see what you came up with!

Here's a text file with 479K English words:

https://github.com/dwyl/english-words/blob/master/words.txt

If you use it with a program, it will produce 67 words, many contrived (re- and -er words), with one that uses all seven letters, also somewhat contrived.

BTW, my Perl program that found the 67 words is five lines long, including a line with a single right brace. Viva la regexes! :)

I wonder what the shortest Spin program reading the word list from an SD card would look like -- and how long it would take to execute ...

-Phil

Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 825
```poleaxe
explore
explorer
repealer
exraper
reraper
poleaxer
```

Some are contrived.
Re-inventing the wheel is not a waste of time if, when you are done, you understand why it is round.
Cool, CA, USA 95614
• Posts: 21,583
Congrats: poleaxer is the only word in the word list that uses all seven of the letters. I would never have found it otherwise.

-Phil
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 18,731
Congrats: poleaxer is the only word in the word list that uses all seven of the letters. I would never have found it otherwise.

-Phil
Mayhaps you forgot about loxpear, my favorite fish/fruit bagel topping. And oxpearl, the lesser-known cousin of rocky mountain oysters?

"When you make a thing, a thing that is new, it is so complicated making it that it is bound to be ugly. But those that make it after you, they don’t have to worry about making it. And they can make it pretty, and so everybody can like it when others make it after you."

- Pablo Picasso
• Posts: 21,583
LOL! -P.
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 2,703
Here's my post-it from the other day. After looking at a word solver I found several more obvious ones that I should have gotten. And, yes, I did start the second row bottom up.

[img][/img]
• Posts: 210
Andrew, the original rules state 7 letters or more...
Here's a quiz derived from one that appears every Sunday in the New York Times Magazine:

The object is to find as many common English words of seven letters or more (not proper nouns) that can be formed using the center letter and the letters surrounding it, in any order. Letters can be used more than once. Score one point for each word you find, plus an additional two points for a word that uses all seven letters.

• Posts: 2,703
Well, heck, that explains how I appeared to be smarter than others here, which we all know is far from the truth. I totally missed that piece of the rules.

So, my 23 is now 2.
• Posts: 21,583
Here is the list of words my program found:
```alepole
apoplex
apparel
appealer
appearer
appellee
appellor
appropre
expellee
expeller
explore
explorer
lapeler
palapala
paleola
pallall
papelera
paperer
parallax
parallel
paralleler
parella
parelle
parolee
paroler
parrall
pearler
pelopea
peopler
pepperer
peroral
perpera
perplex
perplexer
poleaxe
poleaxer
pollera
popeler
poroporo
preloral
preloreal
preoral
prepare
preparer
prepeople
prepollex
proller
propale
propeller
propellor
properer
proplex
propper
rapparee
reapparel
reappeal
reappear
reexpel
reexplore
relapper
repaper
reparel
repealer
repeller
repeople
reperplex
reprepare
```

Some are pretty questionable, IMO.

-Phil
Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
• Posts: 2,175
edited May 2017
Phil, at first glance, some of words look foreign.

EDIT: Could be Hawaiian and American Indian. Throw a little Mexican Spanish and French Canadian. The list goes on and on.. .