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Re today’s Indy crossword 7558-Phi, on-liners like me with no access to the dead-tree version, are at a disadvantage because there’s no enumeration for 12/28/4/1A/22, merely “(17 words)”. Could someone kindly post in the Independent category, the enumeration, to put us out of our difficulty. Thank you!
Hi tupu (again),
…… As I’ve noticed the word ‘fens’ in one of your posts [the one re KD's Derby Party], I’d even thought of finding a construction to go there together – that is, if you were indeed from this part of the country.
I decided, though, nót to go: by train it will take about 3 hrs from (my) door to (their) door. Times two, a bit too much.
And trains aren’t that cheap [approx 50 pounds for a cheap (?) day return to Derby]. And taking the car isn’t an option either. It will take just as much time & I can’t have a beer (or two).
Anyway, as you might know, I have your email address, so it’s not that hard to arrange a Saturday (or Sunday) coffee in beautiful Cambridge.
If you want to contact me, please use [email protected].
It will be the same address that will be open to ‘shooting at me’ when my next Dalibor crossword will see the Light of Day [at the website of Alberich, end of January].
Suspected something was up when today’s (8 jan) online Indy was an old Nimrod-6101, which I duly tackled. Surprisingly (or rather, unsurprisingly), today’s Indy blog was for Phi-7554 which appeared on 1 jan, and normally would be online today. Haven’t read the blog, but suspect something different about it that it couldn’t be put online? Any clarification from a kind soul? Thank you!
Last Saturday’s Phi had a theme that is out of date today so Eimi decided to use a Nimrod from the pre-online days instead. I found it very interesting to compare the style and degree of difficulty of this old puzzle with his more recent ones.
Thanks Gaufrid. I guess no chance of having 7554-Phi online at some point in time? Yes, I noticed the difference between the old and later Nimrod. I could finish this one quite easily, ie. the Nimrod now has got tougher…far from mellowing there!
Well done Sylvia. Yes, they were all in 4 crosswords by Pasquale, Araucaria and Enigmatist about a year ago (29/30 Dec 2009, 12 Jan 2010 and 2 Feb 2010). They were all of the variety “I learned something today” and I was just wondering if solvers had remembered them! Personally, I can’t recall a single one of them, and certainly not their meanings! I am not sure what that says.
Re Great Wen etc. It is a C19 sarcastic name for London. Classics don’t come into it. My dad went to art school and was a better man for it than I am! I wear my classics lightly – there’s not enough left to do otherwise!
Re art: The wen remark followed my saying that (after so much trouble over ‘Edinburgh’) I was going to see the Glasgow Boys exhibition in London. We also went to the Modern British Sculpture one as well. Both were for the most part enjoyable despite the Evening Standard slating of the latter. I’m going to watch a TV programme on the Boys tomorrow. I’ve got a hunch there must have been broader links to Scandy art as well as France. My wife suggests it may be something about northern light and water.
Great puzzle Sil I had to cheat on a few but i agree with Alberich it is worthy of a broadsheet publication and a professional fee.
I liked 5dn and 12ac and 20ac and at first glance I thought it was a music theme or a Huxley one with the Palestine opener somehow related to “Eyeless in Gaza” I wondered for a while about an anagram of Paul Gascoinge without the i just shows how off message a solver can be.
26ac is a bit obscure sounds like a place Don ( 8ac )Pasquale might have had a high tea sometime.
Hey Tupu! Thanks for this. If you`re prepared to foresake your cosy riverbank to oggle at a few Glasgie daubers, you can`t be all fur coat and no knickers. But at least your wife, I think, gets the star prize…I`ve noticed a distinctive quality in some Danish 19th C. painters who seem to stick the sun close to the horizon and include a reflection of it in water which seems to be on the point of freezing over. Gawd, wot a boring place.
I did my final thesis on Contemporary British Sculpture and I`ll be going to the RA show in a few weeks time. The Evenin` Starndad wouldn`t know a work of art from a Jersey Cow.
Good to hear that you`ve changed your mind about The Derby Do: I`m sure it will be great fun and well worth the trip. Is Sil coming?
Stiofain (#17), once more many thanks for your comments on my Dalibor crossword. As your post initially contained solutions to the puzzle, I have asked Gaufrid to “delete” these. My own post (#18) is an empty one now as it not relevant anymore [although it also thanked you for your feedback, which was much appreciated].
If anyone feels the need to say something about the crossword, then please do so through the email address given in #15.
When using this section of fifteensquared for it, please do not mention things that could spoil the fun [I hope] for others.
I am a final year Computer Science student at Glasgow University, and as part of my Honours project I am developing an application to help solve Rufus crosswords by detecting the category(or potential categories) a clue may belong to. As part of this I’ve conducted a basic analysis of the frequency of each category appearing in Rufus crosswords from the solutions being posted on this site. Here’s the basic stats(there were some clues whose categories were not stated in the 2000 solutions I looked at, I’ve marked them as “NONE”):
For those interested, the code and documentation for my project’s fully open source and the so-far completed bits are available at code.google.com/p/crypticcrossword.
I was also wondering if anyone here would be interested in helping me evaluate the application once it is complete sometime in early March, it would involve downloading the app to your system, completing some defined tasks and filling an online questionnaire and shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes.
I would be happy to help you with your application. Mail me at [email protected] when you are ready.
I tried to get the source but got this message when I try to open the svn repository:
Import C:\DATA\PAUL\Temp\crossword to http://crypticcrossword.googlecode.com/svn/trunk
Server sent unexpected return value (503 Service Temporarily Unavailable) in
response to MKACTIVITY request for ‘/svn/!svn/act/37818c03-5e85-8e41-8ff9-095ee3e40c54′
Sincere apologies. I thought that, since the closing date had passed, and since the blog used to appear on Fridays, it was OK but see now that Site Policy does specify “until the appropriate post has been published after the closing date for entries.”
A message for Tupu, Eileen, Sil, Mike C & J&JH…and new acquaintances too numerous to mention:
It was great fun to meet you all at last at K`s Dad`s “Do” in Derby yesterday. I do wish I could have stayed a bit longer, but I had a dinner party to attend and the trains were not exactly convenient. It is, perhaps, as well, because if I had returned to the Brunswick with “good stayers”, some poor blighter would probably have had to deliiver me to the station in a Tesco Trolley.
I`ve already mentioned to K`s D that I managed to survive dinner without falling asleep with my head in the soup. (This was a favourite trick of Jeffery Bernard). I eventually did fall asleep (in bed) clutching John`s Nimrod puzzle, which I was utterly convinced by that time I could do in my head. Today I awoke still grasping it…and my head.
But it was worth it. I`ve told Carrots he had better behave himself in future when addressing such auspicious company, but with him it`s bit like throwing snowballs at the moon.
Loved the pics of the Derby do but so jealous that I couldn’t be there to meet everyone, particularly those with whom I feel some affinity. Don’t suppose there’s any chance of a northern get-together in the future? Manchester’s a great place!
You are entitled to your opinion, as is everyone else. John Graham has given a lot of enjoyment to a great number of people over many, many years and if some wish to consider him a, or the, Master then who are you to criticise.
The solution to your problem is to stop reading the blogs.
Well said, Gaufrid. I am a relative newcomer to crosswordland but recognise that Araucaria has a special place in people’s hearts for his long-standing contribution to this genre. He set a standard for others to follow.
BTW, sidey, if you want a mind-blowing experience, try today’s FT crossword and blog. I am just amazed at the talent of the setter.
I’d like to refer you to comment 55 on today’s Guardian blog by Paul B [Neo / Tees], in which, after paying his tribute to Araucaria’s puzzles, he says,
‘ But could it be that the most important thing about Araucaria is his ability to inspire the rest of us? I wonder what the panels today would be like had budding compilers not fallen under his influence.’
Today, in the three crosswords blogged on this site, five of our top setters have paid their own tributes to Araucaria. One of them, John Halpern [Paul], on his Cryptica website, speaks of ‘my favourite setter and crossword legend’ who set him on the cryptic road, and says, ‘ My hero is now my friend.’.
I’m curious as to which setters you regard as better than ‘mediocre’. Perhaps they might never have made it without inspiration and encouragement from Rev John.
I am trying to be polite about this, I have not tried to derail today’s thread. But, after many years of solving the good gentleman’s puzzles, many of his clues are so transparent they may as well clue the Quick puzzle. He obviously provides much enjoyment, to me included, but the pseudo deification is rather wearing.
I could point out the clue in the recent Genius puzzle that no one was able to parse, it is not unique.
Anyway, I shall continue to enjoy his puzzles and continue to read the blogs.
Can anyone post a scan of the blank printed version of the Indy 7593 Araucaria tribute by Eimi, please? The online version omits the alphajig aspect which was the main point of the puzzle! (So I’ve been careful not to look at it.)
Sat here in amazement that I managed a prize Paul in less than an hour and only two cups of Darjeeling.
However, if anyone can explain 15A to me I will be eternally grateful.
Or am I nine days too early with this query. If so then apologies and I will get my coat.
I think Eileen @ 40 said the right things.
It is all about inspiration.
My first ever UK crossword was an Araucaria.
OK, boys and girls, I should have started with a Sun puzzle or one in the Cambridge Evening News, I know. But I didn’t.
I clearly remember trying to solve it with my PinC in an English country garden, The Orchard Grantchester – source of one of the greatest anagrams ever.
“Pretty Girl In Crimson Rose” was in that puzzle, and a few days later I bought this great Sandy Balfour book for her.
A new universe opened up right in front of me.
As I said, it is all about inspiration.
Three years on, I do agree that Araucaria is not the setter that I would like to be, but I also have to say that there’s never a dull moment when tackling one of his puzzles.
He’s not Ximenean, he’s not even just Libertarian. He’s Araucarian.
Araucaria was my gateway to Crosswordland and surely his flexible way of clueing helped me find out what I like and what I don’t like. So, inspiration.
In the meantime, other setters became more on my wavelength (Alberich, Boatman, Crucible, Dac (yes ABCD), Orlando, Neo/Tees, Crux, Falcon/Everyman and Paul (who boosted my self-confidence enormously in healthier Cryptica days)), but I wouldn’t have been the one I am now without Araucaria.
I have met three out of four Biggles so far, but how nice it would be to have a high tea on a Sunday afternoon somewhere in Cambridgeshire with the man that made it all happen for me.
I guess, it will never happen.
But without him, there would never have been a Dalibor crossword.
sidey, I agree with you about deification, but …………..
Sil (if I may call you that), are you the Dutchman who came up with the the follow-up clue after Archer had been convicted – “Where shaken Archer’s ‘I’m noble!’ palls (1,8,6,4)”. The answer: A Belmarsh prison cell” ??
No, Paul8hours, I’m not.
This is the first time I see this (fine) clue.
Was it really a Dutchman who came up with it?
Hard to believe.
Anyway, it wasn’t me (I wasn’t even in the UK yet when all this Archer business happened).