Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Inquisitor 1111: First XV by Eddie

Posted by kenmac on February 12th, 2010

kenmac.

When I learned that The Inquisitor numbers were changing to what they would
have been if they had gone sequentially from 1, I wondered if the editor had
something up his sleeve for 1111 and I wasn’t disappointed.

Once again we had separate thematic clues and a confusing preamble. Since
there were no extra letters and suchlike, it was on to solving the normal clues
first. On solving 6a, 8, 12 and 13, I saw that we had LEGS (in the 12th
column), coupled with the tenth thematic it looked like we were looking for
eleven somehow. Then when I saw BLA_E_ appearing in row 2 which brought forth
BLAKES seven. Aha, it looks like we need VII but wait, how does that fit in
with LEGS, is it 10+1 or something? A little later, the penny dropped :-).

Of course, we are looking for binary. In case any readers don’t understand
binary, in any binary number all digits must be 0 or 1, the rightmost digit
represents 2^0 = 1, the next digit to the left represents 2^1 = 2, the next is
2^2 = 4, then 2^3 = 8. So in a 4-digit binary number with all bits set to 1,
the maximum value (1111) is (8×1)+(4×1)+(2×1)+(1×1)=15 and 0111 =
(8×0)+(4×1)+(2×1+(1×1)=7. And usually, we don’t bother writing leading zeros.
Therefore, the numbers 1 to 15 are: 1, 10, 11, 100, 101, 110, 111, 1000, 1001,
1010, 1011, 1100, 1101, 1110, 1111.

OK, so we have to miss out 3 binary numbers from the thematics. The preamble
says “one” didn’t get changed. Another “unfortunately” didn’t fit, so that’s
(unlucky for some) 13. And the “last” must be highlighted. It turns out that
the thematic clues were nicely in order, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12,
14. When it came to the last one, I did wonder for a while if the number was
going to be Fifteen O’s but in the end there were 16 zeros in
the completed grid. So it looks like what we had to do was highlight the number
of the puzzle.

There was one answer I didn’t understand – 28 BAHIA and there were two
errors in the lengths specified for the thematics. The first one should be 8
and the last should be 10.

Thematic
No. Binary Definition Wordplay Answer
2 10 Theft of cars CC (cricket club)+ING (meadow) TWOCCING
3 11 Rebuked Northern PIT (mine) THREEPIT
4 100 Wild laughter IRE (rage) FOU RIRE
5 101 Greeting HIGH (elated) HIGH FIVE
6 110 Cowboy’s weapon GUN[K] (sticky stuff) SIX GUN
7 111 SF TV series LAKE (Superior) inside BE (Bahamas) BLAKES SEVEN
8 1000 Map ref SPOT (mark)+H(otel) SPOT HEIGHT
9 1001 Dog CA ([chartered] accountant) CANINE
10 1010 Giant from the past E(nglish) ETEN
11 1011 Bingo call GELS (anag) LEGS ELEVEN
12 1100 &lit Mood of Arnold’s music? TONE (mood) TWELVETONE
14 1110 Line in verse ER (Queen) FOURTEENER

Across
No. Entry Wordplay
1 OATH [L]OATH[E] (the French going)
4 VOID VO (very old)+ID (card)
6 JHALA J(ack)+H(enry)+ALA (in the style of)
8 IDEE I (one)+DEE[D] (unfished exploit)
9 LORY [G]LORY “no more” = dead (a la Monty Python) = beheaded
10 EMIR E(astern)+MIR (farming commune)
12 GAGE G(overnment)+AGE (become mature)
13 AGHAST AG+HAS (silver’s)+T(arnish)
15 GIMPY PIGMY (anag)
17 SEC Double definition mo[ment] – dry
18 AILIE AI (A1 = first class)+LIE (story)
19 ORTHO Hidden word: pORTHOle
21 EOS E(nglish)+OS (oversize=very large)
22 SOS SO-S[O] (indifferent)
23 OUNCE [P]OUNCE – P (weight – not sure :-()
25 TOSCA ASCOT (anag)
27 RAW Double definition
28 BAHIA HI (greeting) inside BAA (bleat). Bahia is a Brazilian state not
Israeli. What’s going on?
29 ATOCIA ATOC (skunk)+IA (sloth (AI) reversed)
32 SORI Hidden word: galaxieS ORIginally
33 LONG Double definition: LONG dozen – another name for baker’s dozen.
Account of (locally) – surely it’s ON ACCOUNT OF.
34 BEHN H(ard) inside BEN (Johnson) – Aphra Behn was an English dramatist
35 INON [N]INON
36 SENGA AGNES (reversed)
37 HILT HILT[ON]
38 ASHY SH (quiet) inside AY (always)

Down
No. Entry Wordplay
1 OBLIGE BLOG+IE (that is, briefly) (anag)
2 ALOO ALOO[F] – fellow
3 TARO [B]ORAT (reversed) (Sacha) Baron (Cohen)’s character. Not too sure
that Baron’s entirely valid here.
4 VEERY V (see)+EERY
5 DIRAC I inside CARD (caution – as in yellow card in football)
6 JIRGA RIG+A+J(udge) (anag)
7 AEETES TEE (support) inside SEA (marine) (all reversed)
11 MESON M(ass)+ONES (anag)
14 ALEPH ALE (beer)+PH (public house)
16 MOSSO [KATE] MOSS+O (ring)
20 TEWIN WET (damp) (reversed)+IN
22 STASIS STASI (secret police)+S(on)
24 TANNOY ANN (favoured girl) inside TOY (flirt)
26 AILSA AILSA (Craig)
27 RALPH A(merican)+LP (album) inside RH (right hand)
28 BIGHT Sounds like BITE (take the bait)
30 GEOS GOES (anag)
31 UH-OH rUsH bOtH. Couldn’t see it in Chambers :-(

14 Responses to “Inquisitor 1111: First XV by Eddie”

  1. HolyGhost says:

    I agree with Ken’s take on BAHIA at 28a, and his comments on the clue for 33a and the answer for 31a.

    Regarding the preamble, “one” of course doesn’t change, being 1 as a decimal or binary number (or indeed in any other base), and the unfortunate/unlucky 13 is absent. However, the “last” could be either 14 or 15: if the answer length for the final thematic clue is correct, then the answer must be FIFTEENER entered as 1111ER, & since the character before the E is unchecked we cannot tell if it should be 1, or 0 from FOURTEENER entered as 1110ER and with an incorrect answer length. If the former, then we can highlight 1110 for 14 in Row 9 of the grid, starting at Col.7; if the latter then we can highlight 1111 for 15 in Row 2, starting at Col.7, or, as Ken says, the number of the puzzle.

    And since the numbering change was announced only on Boxing Day, maybe there’s circumstantial evidence that Eddie is the editor?

  2. HolyGhost says:

    PS At 23a, I had the wordplay for OUNCE as a double-definition: “cat” and “(lost) weight”, Chambers defining the latter as “… 1/12 of the (legally obsolete) pound troy …”.

  3. Simon Harris says:

    Chambers has “fourteener” defined as “a verse line”, and “fifteener” only as “a verse”, so I’m certain that Ken is correct, and we were to enter FOURTEENER (duly modified) and to highlight 1111, being 15, which is indeed the last.

    The dilemma for me was whether to highlight the 1111 in the puzzle’s header or in the grid, and I plumped for the latter.

  4. HolyGhost says:

    But Chambers has “verse” defined as “a line of metre” …

  5. Mr Crossy says:

    I am pretty sure we were meant to highlight 1111 in the title, not in the grid. Otherwise, the significance of the title would not have been driven home, and Eddie might well, as setters often do, have asked that we highlight whatever-it-is in the completed grid, which he (to my mind, significantly) did not do.

    Also agree that OUNCE is a double definition, although the word “lost” in the clue is, well, itself rather “lost”.

    And I too am flummoxed by “Israeli” in 28a. I delayed sending in my entry for days, hoping to understand that. Does anyone have an explanation??

    It was a satisfying puzzle, but let down a bit by poor surface-reading in some of the clues, the worst being 31. All clues, when read literally, should have some pretence of sense to them.

  6. kenmac says:

    Yeah, I did know that 23 OUNCE was a double-definition when solving. When I came to the blog, which I only did on Thursday evening, I had forgotten and couldn’t justify it.

  7. Hihoba says:

    A good puzzle with one major error (Bahia), inaccurate clue length (leading to the problem with fifteener and fourteener – if the clue for two had the right length there would have been no confusion) and ambiguous preamble – the word “last” is a poor choice is it the last one left (1110) or the last of all (1111)?. This is becoming a bit of a trend in the Inquisitor and is leading to some loss of faith by this blogger!

  8. Mike Laws says:

    Inquisitor 1111: First XV by Eddie
    Posted by kenmac on February 12th, 2010
    ?
    When I learned that The Inquisitor numbers were changing to what they would
    have been if they had gone sequentially from 1, I wondered if the editor had
    something up his sleeve for 1111 and I wasn’t disappointed.
    Once again we had separate thematic clues and a confusing preamble. Since
    there were no extra letters and suchlike, it was on to solving the normal clues
    first. On solving 6a, 8, 12 and 13, I saw that we had LEGS (in the 12th
    column), coupled with the tenth thematic it looked like we were looking for
    eleven somehow. Then when I saw BLA_E_ appearing in row 2 which brought forth
    BLAKES seven. Aha, it looks like we need VII but wait, how does that fit in
    with LEGS, is it 10+1 or something? A little later, the penny dropped ?.
    Of course, we are looking for binary. In case any readers don’t understand
    binary, in any binary number all digits must be 0 or 1, the rightmost digit
    represents 2^0 = 1, the next digit to the left represents 2^1 = 2, the next is
    2^2 = 4, then 2^3 = 8. So in a 4-digit binary number with all bits set to 1,
    the maximum value (1111) is (8×1)+(4×1)+(2×1)+(1×1)=15 and 0111 =
    (8×0)+(4×1)+(2×1+(1×1)=7. And usually, we don’t bother writing leading zeros.
    Therefore, the numbers 1 to 15 are: 1, 10, 11, 100, 101, 110, 111, 1000, 1001,
    1010, 1011, 1100, 1101, 1110, 1111.
    OK, so we have to miss out 3 binary numbers from the thematics. The preamble
    says “one” didn’t get changed. Another “unfortunately” didn’t fit, so that’s
    (unlucky for some) 13. And the “last” must be highlighted. It turns out that
    the thematic clues were nicely in order, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12,
    14. When it came to the last one, I did wonder for a while if the number was
    going to be Fifteen O’s but in the end there were 16 zeros in
    the completed grid. So it looks like what we had to do was highlight the number
    of the puzzle.
    There was one answer I didn’t understand – 28 BAHIA and there were two
    errors in the lengths specified for the thematics. The first one should be 8
    and the last should be 10.
    Thematic
    No.
    2
    3
    4
    5
    6
    7
    8
    9
    10
    11
    12
    14

    Across
    No.
    1
    4
    6
    8
    9
    10
    12
    13
    15
    17
    18
    19
    21
    22
    23
    25
    27
    28
    29
    32
    33
    34
    35
    36
    37
    38

    Down
    No.
    1
    2
    3
    4
    5
    6
    7
    11
    14
    16
    20
    22
    24
    26
    27
    28
    30
    31

    This entry was posted on Friday, February 12th, 2010 at 1:23 am and is filed under Inquisitor. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
    Responses to “Inquisitor 1111: First XV by Eddie”
    HolyGhost says:
    February 12th, 2010 at 11:43 am
    I agree with Ken’s take on BAHIA at 28a, and his comments on the clue for 33a and the answer for 31a.
    Regarding the preamble, “one” of course doesn’t change, being 1 as a decimal or binary number (or indeed in any other base), and the unfortunate/unlucky 13 is absent. However, the “last” could be either 14 or 15: if the answer length for the final thematic clue is correct, then the answer must be FIFTEENER entered as 1111ER, & since the character before the E is unchecked we cannot tell if it should be 1, or 0 from FOURTEENER entered as 1110ER and with an incorrect answer length. If the former, then we can highlight 1110 for 14 in Row 9 of the grid, starting at Col.7; if the latter then we can highlight 1111 for 15 in Row 2, starting at Col.7, or, as Ken says, the number of the puzzle.
    And since the numbering change was announced only on Boxing Day, maybe there’s circumstantial evidence that Eddie is the editor?
    HolyGhost says:
    February 12th, 2010 at 11:49 am
    PS At 23a, I had the wordplay for OUNCE as a double-definition: “cat” and “(lost) weight”, Chambers defining the latter as “… 1/12 of the (legally obsolete) pound troy …”.
    Simon Harris says:
    February 12th, 2010 at 1:35 pm
    Chambers has “fourteener” defined as “a verse line”, and “fifteener” only as “a verse”, so I’m certain that Ken is correct, and we were to enter FOURTEENER (duly modified) and to highlight 1111, being 15, which is indeed the last.
    The dilemma for me was whether to highlight the 1111 in the puzzle’s header or in the grid, and I plumped for the latter.
    HolyGhost says:
    February 12th, 2010 at 2:33 pm
    But Chambers has “verse” defined as “a line of metre” …
    Mr Crossy says:
    February 12th, 2010 at 10:08 pm
    I am pretty sure we were meant to highlight 1111 in the title, not in the grid. Otherwise, the significance of the title would not have been driven home, and Eddie might well, as setters often do, have asked that we highlight whatever-it-is in the completed grid, which he (to my mind, significantly) did not do.
    Also agree that OUNCE is a double definition, although the word “lost” in the clue is, well, itself rather “lost”.
    And I too am flummoxed by “Israeli” in 28a. I delayed sending in my entry for days, hoping to understand that. Does anyone have an explanation??
    It was a satisfying puzzle, but let down a bit by poor surface-reading in some of the clues, the worst being 31. All clues, when read literally, should have some pretence of sense to them.
    kenmac says:
    February 12th, 2010 at 10:44 pm
    Yeah, I did know that 23 OUNCE was a double-definition when solving. When I came to the blog, which I only did on Thursday evening, I had forgotten and couldn’t justify it.

    Yes, Eddie is the diminutive editor, and also a reference (via Eddie the Eagle) to the Indy’s masthead.

    At the eleventh hour, I decided to exploit the puzzle’s number with a binary theme (last chance before IQ 10,000!) and set it very quickly – the reason (but not an excuse) for the errors pointed out above, and I apologise for them.

    HolyGhost and Hihoba – how can the last member of the First XV be fourteen?

    Simon – I can’t understand why, having woven your way through the errors, and noticed the ‘coincidence’ of the serial number, you went for the one that ran across a bar. As Mr Crossy pointed out, there was no mention of ‘in the grid’ in the preamble. That was deliberate.

    BTW, it’s an old one, but what comes next in the series 110, 20, 12, 11, 10 … ?

  9. Mike Laws says:

    Sorry about that. All I meant to say was:

    Yes, Eddie is the diminutive editor, and also a reference (via Eddie the Eagle) to the Indy’s masthead.

    At the eleventh hour, I decided to exploit the puzzle’s number with a binary theme (last chance before IQ 10,000!) and set it very quickly – the reason (but not an excuse) for the errors pointed out above, and I apologise for them.

    HolyGhost – how can the last member of the First XV be fourteen?

    Simon – I can’t understand why, having woven your way through the errors, and noticed the ‘coincidence’ of the serial number, you went for the one that ran across a bar. As Mr Crossy pointed out, there was no mention of ‘in the grid’ in the preamble. That was deliberate.

    BTW, it’s an old one, but what comes next in the series 110, 20, 12, 11, 10 … ?

  10. HolyGhost says:

    Mike –

    As Hihoba said: Does “last” refer to the last one left (1110) or the last of all (1111)?

    The preamble could have said something like “… another unluckily didn’t show up, and the biggest wouldn’t fit [in the grid] but must be highlighted …”

    And the next one in the series is to do with sixes and sevens.

  11. Mike Laws says:

    HolyGhost – Yes, something like that would have been better, I agree. (Note to self – more care with cryptic preambles)

    ” … is to do with sixes and sevens.”

    But what is it?

  12. HolyGhost says:

    Mike – Didn’t want to spoil your little puzzle for others, hence I wasn’t explicit. The next element in the series is 6 [base 7] (and indeed all subsequent elements are 6′s).

    At this time of year I’m setting exams, and I know only too well that if there’s any chance that candidates might misinterpret a question then one surely will. Hence I’m more alert than usual to potential ambiguity in instructions.

  13. Hihoba says:

    I’m with HolyGhost. I used to set and mark O and A level exams (showing my age here!) and I know that the slightest ambiguity in the instructions leads to trouble and potentially to invalidating questions – then lots of pain and strife for the exam board. PLEASE avoid it in the preamble! The odd problem in clues is forgivable, but it really should not be too difficult to get the number of letters right!

  14. Mike Laws says:

    In the hope that this thread isn’t buried yet:

    “21 Dawn, English, and very large! (3)” EOS. Ref Dawn French

    “5 Physicist upset one restrained by caution (5)” DIRAC. Chambers: card = a comical or eccentric person; caution = an amusing or astonishing person or thing (inf). No football reference intended.

    “31 Rush, both forgetting odd items, showing dismay? (4)” UH=OH (in ODE and COD). And “All clues, when read literally, should have some pretence of sense to them,” said Mr Crossy (I am aware of that, thank you), citing this one as the worst. So, two people in a hurry forget things, then are dismayed when they realise they have.

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


− three = 1