Thursday, September 6, 2012

NPR Puzzle 9/6/12 - I Used Valets

Here's this week's NPR Puzzle:
An anagram word ladder: Start with the word AUTUMN. Change one letter at a time and anagram the result, make LEAVES in the shortest number of steps possible.
Okay, so there's a semantic confusion here. Given that you start with a six letter word and end with a six letter word that shares only A with the starting word, and you have to change every other letter at least once, I saw this as having six steps, meaning each word is a step. An alternate way of viewing it is that AUTUMN and LEAVES are fixed, so the four intervening words are the "steps." And, finally, you can say that each change/anagram effort is a step, so there are five steps linking the six words.

But surely we all knew that you couldn't do it in FEWER than six words total, right? So who would get upset about revealing that number?

Here's our word ladder from AUTUMN at the top to LEAVES at the bottom.








Time for...
Here are this week's picks:
Fewer than 50
 51 - 100
101 - 150
151 - 200
201 - 250 -- KDW
251 - 300
301 - 350
351 - 400 -- skydiveboy
401 - 450
451 - 500
 
501 - 550 -- EKW
551 - 600
601 - 650 -- meaghn
651 - 700
701 - 750
751 - 800
801 - 850 -- Magdalen
851 - 900
901 - 950
951 - 1,000
1,001 - 1,050 -- David
1,051 - 1,100 -- HenryBW
1,101 - 1,150
1,151 - 1,200
1,201 - 1,250 -- Joe Kupe
1,251 - 1,300
1,301 - 1,350
1,351 - 1,400 -- Curtis
1,401 - 1,450
1,451 - 1,500

1,501 - 1,550 -- Ross
1,551 - 1,600
1,601 - 1,650
1,651 - 1,700
1,701 - 1,750
1,751 - 1,800
1,801 - 1,850
1,851 - 1,900
1,901 - 1,950
1,951 - 2,000
2,001 - 2,050
2,051 - 2,100
2,101 - 2,150
2,151 - 2,200
2,201 - 2,250
2,251 - 2,300
2,301 - 2,350
2,351 - 2,400
2,401 - 2,450
2,451 - 2,500

2,501 - 2,750
2,751 - 3,000
3,001 - 3,250 -- Mendo Jim
3,251 - 3,500
3,501 - 4,000
4,001 - 4,500
4,501 - 5,000

More than 5,000
More than 5,000 + new record.
Our tie-break rule:   In the event that a single round number is announced with a qualifier such as "about" or "around" (e.g., "We received around 1,200 entries."), AND two separate people picked the ranges of numbers just before and just after that round number, the prize will be awarded to whichever entrant had not already won a prize, or in the event that both entrants had won a prize already or neither had, then to the earlier of the two entries on the famous judicial principle of "First Come First Serve," (or in technical legal jargon, "You Snooze, You Lose").  As of July 2012, this rule is officially no longer obsolete (and also I still just like having fine print). 
 

1 comment:

Mendo Jim in Dial-up Land said...

I'm supposed to wait for a half an hour for the pix to download just to see your ladder?
Don't think so.