Never knowingly undersolved.

Now we are one

Posted by neildubya on November 5th, 2007


It’s just occurred to me that this blog is one year old this week (I can’t remember our exact birthday; it might be the 7th). I’d like to thank bloggers and readers alike for helping us get to where we are today and for all your words of encouragement and support along the way.

But what I’d really like to know is: how’s it been for you? How and when did you find us and how often do you visit here? Would you change anything  – is there anything you’d like us to do or something you want us to stop doing?

 Don’t be shy now…

14 Responses to “Now we are one”

  1. Chris says:

    A big big thank you from me.

    I found this blog a few months ago as a relative newcomer to cryptic crosswords, and with my crossword obsession just beginning, and it has been a really invaluable resource for deciphering some of the more obscure clues and for helping me improve my solving skills. Not only that, but it makes the solving itself even more fun when I can then go to the blog and discuss favourite clues, find out what others thought of it etc.

    I come here 2-3 times a day, and it is one of my bookmarked pages. Bravo, thanks, and keep it up!

  2. Geoff says:

    Years ago, I used to do the Times and Guardian crosswords almost every day, but with work, family etc I fell out of the routine. A few months back I started taking The Guardian again and almost immediately resumed the daily habit. Crosswords for me are a bit of mind-exercising relaxation over a cup of tea. I like ones I can manage in a sitting and which entertain as well as challenge (as the Guardian one almost invariably does). Saturday puzzles sometimes take me a little longer, which is fine, but I have a short attention span and don’t have the patience for the more difficult types (Azed, Listener etc)!
    I discovered a link to this blog whilst surfing for info on compilers and I now go to it as soon as I have finished a crossword, to see how others found it. Sometimes it helps with explaining a clue that I haven’t got, or have missed the point of, but as I generally stick to puzzles that are within my experience and capability this isn’t often necessary. I also have the site bookmarked.

    The blog is great fun – the only thing which mildly annoys me is that some bloggers are forever carping about fractionally non-Ximenean clues, as if they solve crosswords not for amusement, but to find and root out any signs of deviation from cruciverbal orthodoxy. If you can find the answer unambiguously, and fairly easily, the clue has done its job. Lighten up, guys!
    But please do keep up the good work!

  3. Comfy Settee says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY BLOG! I would have sent a card if I’d known…

    This blog is one of my favourites, so thanks to all the bloggers who make it tick! And thanks too to all the plodders (like me) who contribute their ramblings at the end of solutions… I find it endlessly reassuring to see that there are others out there like me who *can’t* solve Saturday’s Paul or Araucaria in 0.3 of a nanosecond whilst juggling flaming clubs….

    One suggestion? Less criticism of the “easy” puzzles please… I, for one, don’t find any of them *that* easy! Otherwise, keep up the great work!

  4. muck says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY from me too. I can only agree with ‘Comfy Settee’. Nothing more to be said.

  5. Don Manley says:

    Congratulations on maintaining an excellent website( even if I have only one IOS Quixote solver here!). The only danger with this site and its sister ‘Times for The Tims’ site is that they may be taken as an adequate feedback for setters and editors. There is an increasing temptation (and I feel it myself sometimes) for setters to be aiming puzzles at the ‘young-turk clique’ because that generally has a stronger representation on feedback blogs than Mr or Mrs Retired-down-the-road. Never forget that the feedback here tends to come from a minority constituency and that for everyone here who feels bullish about a hard puzzle there are a few (or many?)poor (often old) souls feeling left behind. That said, I thank all those who put such a lot of love and care into their daily reports. Pasquale/Quixote/Bradman

  6. eimi says:

    Happy birthday Fifteensquared!

    I take Don’s point about the contributors here being a self-selecting group, but I know that most of the Indy’s setters and their editor are frequent visitors to this site and grateful for the feedback.

    Without opening the Ximenean v non-Ximenean debate again (if possible), I have to agree with Geoff. In the crosswords reviewed here, where the setter is identified, solvers will come to know what to expect as far as Ximenean purity goes.

  7. SteveM says:

    Ditto with the praise and thanks here too. I regularly try, but only rarely complete, the Guadrian puzzle, and find the solution blogs and subsequent discussion invariably enlightening, often encouraging and always entertaining. Thanks to all involved (and that includes the setters).

    Many happy returns, and hope 15squared lives to celebrate many more birthdays to come.

  8. Colin Blackburn says:

    I’m amazed it’s a year already, but given that it is we all probably need to add one to our ages!

  9. Mick Hodgkin says:

    … and probably several years to Neil’s, for all the work that’s gone into setting the blog up and keeping it going! Happy Birthday one and all.

  10. Testy says:

    I’m afraid that this website has contributed significantly to what now appears to be something of an addiction for me.

    No longer is it simply enough for me to just try to do a crossword. I now have to spend ages pouring over how other people have deconstructed clues and chip in with my own two cents. It even means that I monitor and enter into discussions on the dozens of crosswords each week that I don’t even do!

    Like a pusher at the school gates you suckered me in with promises of being able to help me with the odd clue I might be stuck on and now I’m hooked and end up jonesing for a fix several times a day!

    Before you know it I’ll be seen running down Edinburgh streets to the sounds of Lust for Life, pockets bulging with newspapers, being chased by security guards from WH Smiths!

    However, so long as you keep producing such high quality gear I’ll be happy (although my wife will continue to despair).

  11. Testy says:

    Damn that spellchecker! I don’t think my computer would like me pouring over it! However I do of course pore over all your blogs/comments and very much appreciated they are too. Keep up the good work and Happy Birthday!

  12. mhl says:

    I only discovered this blog recently, but I’ve found it’s already contributed enormously to my enjoyment of the Guardian crossword and it’s helping me to improve much faster than I would otherwise. The comments on the clues are often very interesting, and it’s perfect for the frequent situation where even with the answer one can’t quite see how the clue works.

    It’s also nice to feel that there is a community of people out there doing cryptic crosswords, given that typically it’s a pretty solitary activity.

    Congratulations on the one year anniversary of the blog, and long may it continue.

  13. Qaos says:

    Maybe a little late for birthday greetings, but I thought this a good place to add my thanks to the bloggers here. I think everyone does an excellent job – even the crosswords I don’t attempt make for interesting reading.

    Also, as an amateur compiler, seeing some of the setters (like Paul and Pasquale) posting here too really gives this site a special status.

    Carry on the good work!

  14. Tom Johnson says:

    I have looked at this website on occasions during the year. My concern about the website is that solutions to puzzles are often posted on the day a puzzle appears. Some will argue that solvers struggling with a puzzle will want to know the solutions and have them explained immediately. But surely it is fairer to all to wait 24 hours until the solution appears in print, before this website reveals comments and criticisms. I, for one, have been disappointed that my FT puzzles have been commented upon during their 24 hours’ currency. Detractors will, of course, say that one does not have to call up the website on the day in question, but by leaving it 24 hours before doing so, one then still see comments on the following day’s puzzle! One can’t win.

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