Thursday, March 6, 2014

Maybe She Won the NPR Puzzle!

Here's this week's NPR Puzzle:
Take the first name of a nominee for Best Actor or Best Actress at Sunday's Oscars. You can rearrange these letters into a two-word phrase that describes his or her character in the film for which he or she is nominated. Who is this star, and what is the phrase?
Very sad. SANDRA Bullock didn't win and Oscar for her role in Gravity as a NASA DR. (Wouldn't it be awesome if she won the NPR Puzzle as the randomly selected person?)

About the wording of the puzzle. Ross and I do a lot of crosswords and related puzzles. (We're big fans of Andrew Ries's Rows Garden puzzles, for example.) Some puzzles--like the Times Crosswords--indicate an abbreviation. Others, like the Rows Garden or the Double-Crostics in the Times, say when the answer is two words.

Here, we got that it's two words, but not that one of the words is an abbreviation. I think that's fair, as the Sunday NPR Puzzle is not standardized on what it does and doesn't tell us. It's all about making the puzzle hard enough.

Now, if you want to argue that this was too hard--? That's a different discussion.

Photos!















Time for
Here are this week's picks:
Fewer than 50 -- Curtis
 51 - 100 -- Ross
101 - 150
151 - 200 -- Magdalen
201 - 250
251 - 300 -- jan
301 - 350 -- Maggie Strasser
351 - 400
401 - 450 -- zeke creek
451 - 500 -- Word Woman
 
501 - 550
551 - 600
601 - 650
651 - 700
701 - 750
751 - 800 
801 - 850
851 - 900
901 - 950
951 - 1,000
1,001 - 1,050 -- David
1,051 - 1,100
1,101 - 1,150
1,151 - 1,200
1,201 - 1,250
1,251 - 1,300
1,301 - 1,350
1,351 - 1,400
1,401 - 1,450
1,451 - 1,500

1,501 - 1,550
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
3,251 - 3,500
3,501 - 4,000
4,001 - 4,500
4,501 - 5,000

 > 5,000
 > 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).

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