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Site Feedback

Posted by Admin on December 26th, 2010


This page is where you can provide feedback relating to Fifteensquared or raise issues regarding the website itself.

This post is now closed. New comments can be posted here.

208 Responses to “Site Feedback”

  1. Mark Cann says:

    Are there any blogs for the ‘I’ cryptic puzzles on Fridays?

    Great site btw.


  2. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Mark
    Not at the moment, but if anyone wishes to volunteer to cover them then I am happy to add them to our portfolio.

  3. Robi says:

    Gaufrid, I have been doing the crosswords on my laptop over Christmas and somehow it has latched onto ‘Robii’ instead of ‘Robi.’ I will try to ensure that my blogging comments return to Robi in future!

  4. Tom Roper says:

    You seem to exclude the Guardian Saturday prize crossword. I can understand why you would refrain from blogging about it before the closing date, but would it be possible to post after that date? I rarely finish it, and would be very interested to see what greater minds than mine have made of it

  5. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Tom
    We do cover the Guardian Saturday prize puzzle. The blog is always posted on the Saturday following the one on which the puzzle was published (ie the day after the closing date for entries).

  6. Tom Roper says:

    Ah…clearly I read this site with the same care and concentration that I apply to the crossword. Thanks

  7. sidey says:

    Gaufrid, I like the tweaks, sorry to be late noticing.

  8. OzLiz says:

    Could you check my comment (40) for Puck 25210, where there seemed to be a lot of confusion over two clues in the blog, but to us Australians (comments 39,40) who get the printed versions of the puzzles in the local paper two weeks later than the UK, they seem to be quite straightforward. It almost seems that the two clues in the on-line version may have been different to ours.

  9. OzLiz says:

    Here’s another one today! And I have never seen them before in our local Canberra paper.
    Our clue for 25a in Gordius 25211 is “Wallowing in the sun?”
    I can see the on-line version is probably a better “clue” which was why it was changed, but it makes making sense of the comments a bit hard! At least I know now how to find the on-line version to check. Thank you for letting us Aussies know what is happening.

  10. Davy says:

    I find it annoying that occasionally when I have entered a comment but failed to notice that the Name and Mail have been blanked out, that the whole comment is lost when the error message is displayed.

    Surely it is possible just to re-display the screen and leave the comment intact. If the comment is a long one, then I often haven’t the time to retype it and so it is lost forever.

    Any changes that can be made would be much appreciated.

  11. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Davy
    Unfortunately this is a feature of the WordPress software that 15² uses and I am unable to change it.

    My advice would be to select all and copy (either via right-clicking the mouse or Ctrl+a Ctrl+c) prior to hitting submit, particularly for a long comment. That way, if something goes wrong, you will be able to paste (Ctrl+v) the text into a new comment box.

  12. Richard says:

    I expect this point has been raised before, but, as the problem continues to arise from time to time, I thought it worth a mention. It concerns superfluous words in the headings which some bloggers give their entries, and which are visible when one enters the site in order to consult the blog for a different puzzle. From time to time such headings reveal something about the content (or theme) of the puzzle concerned, and this really does spoil one’s enjoyment if one hasn’t yet started on that puzzle. Could you perhaps introduce, and enforce, the rule that headings must not contain anything other than what is strictly needed to identify the puzzles?

  13. mhl says:

    Gaufrid: would you consider installing the free version of the WP Touch WordPress plugin? It doesn’t affect the appearance of the site for normal desktop browsers, but means that when viewed from an Android phone or iPhone the interface is much easier to navigate.

  14. Gaufrid says:

    Hi mhl
    I’ve downloaded the plugin and installed it in my sandbox. I will check it out later today, or tomorrow, to make sure that it doesn’t interfere with other plugins and the theme template before adding it to the live site.

    Unfortuately I have no means of checking that the plugin works correctly on iPhones etc so I will have to rely on you for feedback ragarding this aspect.

  15. Richard says:

    Gaufrid: are you able to respond to the point I made on 3rd February (see 12 above)?

  16. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Richard
    Sorry I haven’t replied sooner. It was on my ‘to do’ list and then somehow overlooked.

    I agree that spoilers in the post title and opening paragraph of the preamble should be avoided and will remind all bloggers of this requirement.

  17. Eileen says:

    Hi Richard

    Apologies for the preamble to my today’s blog of last Saturday’s Guardian puzzle, if that prompted your reminder.

    I would never include spoilers in my preamble to the blog of a weekday puzzle. Since the Brummie appeared a week ago, it didn’t occur to me that some people might not have done it – unlike the Indy prize puzzle, which is not available online until a week after publication. However, it’s much better to have one ‘rule’ for all – it certainly won’t happen again! :-)

  18. Richard says:

    Thanks, Gaufrid.

    Also, thanks to Eileen, but rest assured that I didn’t have anyone in particular in mind when I posted the reminder. It’s the daily puzzles that concern me most as I don’t always have time to start them on the day of publication.

  19. beermagnet says:

    More cause for celebration.

    Having a suspicion that there was quite a lot of activity on the site yesterday, I just had a glance at the summary stats. (As a relatively lowly blogger I can see some of these.)

    Yesterday had its busiest day: 6,930 hits
    (Over the last few weeks it averages just over 4,000 per day)

    But more than this, coincidently I see that we now have
    * more than 5,000 Posts
    (as I write this 5,003 )
    * more than 50,000 Comments
    (as I write this 50,020)
    (that’s ignoring the spam comments)

    I think that’s a good reason for trebles all round!

  20. flashling says:

    Just a random thought here, we’ve started putting the clues in some of the blogs, are we potentially breaching copyright? Don’t want to get us closed down by some over zealous lawyer somewhere.

  21. nmsindy says:

    Yes, the clues would be copyright, but I doubt if there would be any problem, they are made available to all for free on their websites by the papers we blog here, so not sure why they would want to stop us and they might welcome the extra coverage too. Not that I can speak for them of course.

  22. Huw Powell says:

    Can it be made so one can search directly for old puzzle blogs? The urls prevent simple hacking, since they often include random comments the blogger added.

  23. mhl says:

    Huw Powell: there might be a way to use restrict a search to the title using the WordPress search box in the top right, but if so I don’t know what it is.

    An alternative is to use Google, e.g. try searching for the puzzle number with an expression like this: "25,279" "Blog Archive" to bring up Guardian 25,279.

  24. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Huw
    The current search facility is the only one available. My suggestion (using Google) has already been mentioned by mhl but I would add that if you know the date the puzzle was published, or the date of the blog for prize puzzles (usually one week later), you can access the blog quickly by simply clicking on the appropriate day on the calendar.

  25. Gary says:

    I guess the answer is the same as the previous, but now the i has a daily cryptic, will this get blogged?

  26. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Gary
    All I can say at the moment is that blogging the ‘i’ is under consideration (but don’t hold your breath).

  27. Derek Lazenby says:

    Talking of i, is the XWord online anywhere?

  28. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Derek
    Not so far as I am aware.

  29. Gary says:

    Thanks Gaufrid. Is the ‘i’ cryptic of an ‘easier’ standard standard than the regular Independent, or are they old Indy puzzles recycled?

  30. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Gary
    So far as I am aware it is the latter.

  31. Davy says:


    I would like to complain about Uncle Yap’s persistent spoilers. It’s always UY, no-one else does it. Like today’s Brummie heading “Dr Livingstone, I presume” which I note has now been removed. The other week he actually gave an answer to one of Paul’s clues (CASANOVA) on the front page but that was eventually removed too. Can’t you get him to understand that the purpose of the front page is to prevent the answers from being inadvertently seen !. Thanks.

  32. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Davy
    Your complaint is noted. Before you added this comment I had already removed the offending text from the title and had emailed Uncle Yap to ask him, again, to avoid spoilers in the title or the first paragraph of his preamble.

  33. Robi says:

    Gaufrid – is it worth putting a link from your ‘Boatman’ setter list to his new website at: This even has a picture of the elusive man!

  34. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Robi
    Thanks for the suggestion. I would prefer to keep links on the Setters page solely to Who’s Who so one for Boatman will have to wait until there is an entry under his real name.

    However, I have added Boatman to the list of Setters’ Sites on the Links page.

  35. Robi says:

    Gaufrid, thanks; good idea. He seems to be known on Twitter as: ‘Ashley aka Boatman.’ (not that I use Twitter at the moment)

  36. Robi says:

    P.S. His name seems to be Ashley Knowles, according to his copyright information.

  37. OzLiz says:

    My details (as above) seem to appear permanently for everyone to see, on this site and at the bottom of the crossword blog. I have tried to delete them, but they are still there. Can you possibly delete them permanently? I only sent in two comments last January.

  38. Wolfie says:

    Could the forum moderators please read the comment #35 in the discussion of Araucaria’s puzzle on 3 May. Is this consistent with the site policy in relation to ‘aggressive, insulting and inflammatory comments’?

  39. mhl says:

    Wolfie: I’m not able to moderate that comment thread, but I’d agree that the comment you refer to is completely out of order :(

  40. Wolfie says:

    mhl: Thank you for your concern and support. I very much enjoy the discussions on this forum which rarely fail to entertain and enlighten. Fortunately the type of abusive comment to which I have objected seems to be extremely unusual. Let’s hope that this continues to be the case!

  41. chas says:

    I am looking for the blog for Guardian No 25333/Gordius and I cannot find it.
    Is this because my searching is inadequate?

  42. Gaufrid says:

    Hi chas
    No, your searching was not inadequate, the scheduled blogger had gone AWOL and the post did not exist at that time.

  43. Gordon Roy says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    Is there going to be a blog of Guardian Genius 95 by Lavatch?

    I did finish it, and throroughly enjoyed it. As I haven’t heard anything, I presume I did not win the prize!

    I was hoping to see what other people thought of it.

    If the person who was supposed to do this has forgotten then I would volunteer to do it this time. You would have to explain to me how to do it though.

    Failing that I could just send you my notes and you could publish them yourself.

    Best wishes

  44. Gordon Roy says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    Sorry I used an inaccurate email address. This is the real one for me, if you want to respond.

  45. Shirley says:

    Gaufrid – Is it possible to publicise the fact that John Graham (Araucaria) is going to be the guest on Desert Island Discs next Sunday 10th July @ 11.15 on Radio 4? I think many bloggers would be interested in hearing it – also a great tribute to him as well – my guess would be he’s the only crossword setter to have appeared on the programme

  46. fearsome says:

    Hi was checking the setters list as I have recently started doing the FT in addition to the Guardian so was keen to see who was moonlighting. I seem to remember reading that cyclops (private eye) is Brummie in the Guardian. Are you able to confirm this?

  47. Gaufrid says:

    Click on Brummie in the setter’s list and the link will take you to the appropriate entry in the Crossword Who’s Who (that’s what it’s there for 😉 )

  48. fearsome says:

    Gaufrid, thanks for the tip – it confirms he is also cyclops.

  49. Robi says:

    Gaufrid, is it worth adding Moley to the list of Guardian setters?

  50. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Robi
    Thanks for the suggestion. The list of setters on 15² only includes those who appear in the daily Guardian. There are several setters who are are only seen in the on-line Quiptic and Moley is one of them.

    The aim of the ‘Setters’ page is to indicate which setters have alternative pseudonyms in papers covered by 15² and to provide a link to the more comprehensive information available at Michael Curl’s Crossword Who’s Who, which also inclues a list of Quiptic setters. See:

  51. Robi says:

    Gaufrid, OK thanks.

  52. Toby says:

    Would it be possible to hide individual answers/explanations until we move the mouse over them? I would like to be able to find out the answer for individual clues without inadvertently seeing other ones. This plugin should do the trick and show the kind of thing I mean.

    I would also find it very useful to be able to be able to mouse over individual parts of a clue to be prodded in the right direction with popup tips, without having the whole answer and explanation revealed – is this something that could be considered? For example, using Uncle Yap’s explanation for ‘Scrap tasteless name dropping, Fish!’ (AFFRAY) from today’s Guardian would popup ‘Definition’ over ‘Scrap’, ‘NAFF’ over ‘tasteless’, ‘Minus N’ over ‘name dropping’ and ‘RAY’ over ‘Fish’. This would be of great assistance when I get some parts of a clue, but not all, or just need something to get me started.

  53. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Toby
    I assume from the fact that you have used an example from today’s Guardian that this is your puzzle of choice. If so, it is possible to get the answer to a specific clue, without seeing any others, by visiting the on-line version and then using the ‘cheat’ button. There is a similar facility for the on-line Indy.

    Using the plug-in you have mentioned would involve considerable extra work for the bloggers, many of whom have time constraints due to work or other commitments. They already give their time freely to solve the puzzle and then write and publish a blog and I would not wish to impose a further burden on them.

    The plug-in requires the manual addition of [spoiler] before each answer and [/spoiler] after it (the square brackets would actualy be left and right chevrons but if I used these the ‘spoiler’ and ‘/spoiler’ would not appear in this comment). This would involve a lot of typing and as it must be done whilst editing the raw HTML, rather than using the visual text editor, most bloggers would not have the necessary experience to do it and even those that have would find it very time consuming and difficult to avoid errors.

    Also, having the answer blanked out would seriously inconvenience the vast majority of visitors, most of whom will have already completed the puzzle. Having to hover the mouse pointer over each answer would make reading the blog very disjointed.

    With regard to your second paragraph, the software that this site runs on does not support the popups that you suggest and even if it did it again comes down to the amount time it is reasonable to expect someone to give up, without remuneration, to write and publish a blog.

  54. Toby says:

    Fair enough; thanks for your response and the Guardian/Indy tip!

  55. Michael Callaghan says:

    Has there been any changes to the WPTouch theme that is used to display the site on mobile browsers such as the iPhone? For the last week, the summary of each blog is shown, you can tap to view the full entry but, when you click on the arrow at the end of the main blog entry to read the comments, nothing happens.

  56. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Michael
    There have been about half a dozen updates to the WPTouch plug-in during the last couple of months, the most recent on 15th July.

    Unfortunately I do not have the means for checking how the 15² site behaves on mobile browsers and I haven’t received any other reports of a problem.

    I have just checked the relevant support forum and there has been no comment added during the last month or so regarding a similar problem. I have also just checked the WPTouch setting and comment on posts is definitely enabled.

    The last change to any of the site software took place on 19th July when I installed the latest version of WordPress. You say that you have only had the problem during the last week but could it have started earlier (ie immediately after the WordPress update)?

  57. mhl says:

    For the little that this data point is worth, the comments still work fine in the WPTouch theme with the browser on my Android phone.

  58. Bryan says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    Why are the Comments ‘Off’ in today’s Rufus?


  59. Gaufrid says:

    Thanks Bryan, I didn’t know they were. They’re not now.

  60. Pelham Barton says:

    Similar to Bryan @58: Any reason why comments are off on Today’s FT by Bradman?

  61. Pelham Barton says:

    Further to 60: sorted now. Thanks.

  62. Gaufrid says:

    Thanks Pelham Barton, rectified now.

    That’s twice this week that this has happened. I looks as if some gremlins might have got into the latest version of WordPress. I will investigate.

  63. keith says:

    Any chance Biggles (Guardian) could be added to setters list by some knowledgeable person? Curious to know who Biggles is…

  64. Gaufrid says:

    Courtesy of the Crossword Who’s Who site:

    “Occasional crosswords appearing in The Guardian under the pseudonym of Biggles are produced jointly by four regular Guardian compilers, all with the forename John: John Graham (Araucaria), John Halpern (Paul), John Henderson (Enigmatist) and John Young (Shed).

    Just as the Biggles books were the work of W. E. Johns, so Biggles crosswords are the work of “we Johns”.”

  65. chas says:

    Guardian 25412, Araucaria Bank Holiday Puzzle.
    Could I request that when you blog this one you show clearly the division between the two parts, when two clues are run together.

    I am a recent visitor to this website so I have no experience of how you show these specials. If you already do what I have requested then sorry to bother you with this request.

  66. scchua says:

    Appears that the Sunday Independent has been missing blogs for 1123 Glowworm and, up to now, today’s 1124 Crosophile as well. Quite a pity, as these were enjoyable puzzles providing about the same level of challenge and quality as the average weekday puzzle.

  67. Gaufrid says:

    Hi scchua
    A blog for 1124 has now been posted. I will try and find out why 1123 is missing.

  68. unclerbh says:

    Are you aware that the “i”, the Independent’s 20p affair, has puzzle each day, which is different from that in the main paper?

  69. Gaufrid says:

    Hi unclerbh
    Please see comments 137 and 139 on the following page:

  70. chas says:

    I have been trying to find a blog for an oldish Guardian crossword – without success.
    The one I’m after is No 23716, set by Paul on 17-Mar-2006.
    Note that I have the solution: what I want to find is why the “possible 1″ answers are as they are.

  71. Gaufrid says:

    Hi chas
    I’m afraid you are out of luck because this site did not exist at that time. The first Guardian puzzle that we covered was 23,910 on 1/11/2006.

  72. Eileen says:

    Hi chas

    I think 15² hadn’t started when that puzzle came out.

    I’ve looked it up in the Guardian archive. The answer to 1dn is RAINDROP and all the ‘possible 1s’ are cats or dogs, so it must be a reference to the saying ‘raining cats and dogs’.

  73. chas says:

    Many thanks Eileen!

    I found this puzzle when doing some tidying and it has been driving me nuts. The Guardian website gives the solution but no explanation.
    You have relieved me tremendously.

  74. Eileen says:

    You’re very welcome, chas!

    Funnily enough, I blogged a Brummie puzzle with the same theme:

  75. Jon says:

    Any chance we could get blogs for the i Crosswords, or links back when they’re old Indie ones (as is today’s), I’m not sure if the Prize Crosswords are old or new?



  76. Gaufrid says:

    Please see comment #69 above.

  77. Steve says:

    Hi Gaufrid – are you aware of any reason for the lack of an on-line FT crossword today? I’m based in the backwoods of North Carolina so not that easy to pick up a print copy. Thanks.

  78. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Steve
    This is not the first time that the FT index has not been updated overnight. I suspect that the person responsible for so doing is either away or off sick and nobody has stepped in.

    In the past, the index has been updated the following night (though on one occasion it was a couple of days later) and the missing puzzle(s) became available.

  79. chas says:

    I am looking for the solution to Guardian 25514, Araucaria’s Christmas Prize puzzle. The answers had to be submitted by first post today so I expected to see the results on fifteen squared today.

  80. Gaufrid says:

    Hi chas
    The blog will be appearing at 0005 tomorrow.

  81. chas says:

    This is now my third attempt to post a reply!
    I said “Thanks for the info” and pressed ‘Submit comment’. My comment vanished.
    I said “Thanks for the information” and pressed ‘Submit comment’. My comment vanished.
    I wonder what will happen this time??

  82. chas says:

    I am trying to find out how you write 152 where the “2” appears as a superscript.

    I thought to find it in the same place on your site as the emoticon list: but I can no longer find that!

  83. Gaufrid says:

    Hi chas
    Type the 15 then, having checked that the Num Lock is on, hold down the Alt key and enter 253 on the numeric keypad. This will give you 15².

    There is possibly an alternatve way of doing the same thing on laptops that do not have a numeric keypad but I am not aware of it.

    The emoticon list is still there, you just need to scroll back through the ‘Announcements’ archive to find it.

  84. chas says:

    Gaufrid thanks for the information.
    (1) I have a laptop so I will need to experiment
    (2) ‘Announcements’ was the one place I failed to search!

  85. chas says:

    Gaufrid you might like to know the relevant info for laptops.

    There is a row of keys along the top e.g. 1 and !, 2 and ” etc. These are (mostly) irrelevant!

    There are numbers on some of the letter keys e.g. M and 0, J and 1 up to 7,8,9 on the number keys 7,8,9.
    These are the keys to be used when the NUM key has been pressed.

    ALT+253 gives superscript²

  86. Sam says:

    I have just started doing crosswords over the last two weeks and stumbled across this site last week. It has been a god-send! Just wanted to say thanks to all the people who give up their time to run the site/blog solutions.



  87. Huw Powell says:

    Seems like we missed the Grauniad #25,540. I could blog it (badly) if there is interest. Email me if so.

  88. Val says:

    Huw, please do! I’ve just come to look for it and am very disappointed not to find it.

    I’m currently on a non-email configured iPad so can’t mail but will do so later if it’s still not there. I’d love some explanation for some answers. Thanks!

  89. Eileen says:

    Huw and Val

    25,540 was blogged on Tuesday, the day it was published, but appears to have been wrongly identified as 25,534: it’s here:

  90. Gaufrid says:

    The Guardian puzzle number has now been corrected so Eileen’s link no longer works. The correct link now is:

  91. Val says:

    Thanks, Eileen and Gaufrid, and potentially Huw! Got it now.

  92. NeilW says:

    Why are the comments turned off on today’s Guardian blog?

  93. NeilW says:

    It’s OK – it came on after a while. Thanks.

  94. Davy says:


    I would like to complain about a comment made today relating to Araucaria’s crossword of 11-2-12.

    It would seem that no-one else is particularly bothered about this comment but I found it offensive and disrespectful. The comment is :


    harvey hawley says:
    February 18th, 2012 at 1:26 am

    It amuses me greatly when people use the term The Master to refer to the master of the trite.

    He has been using the same trivial devices which fail miserably to conceal the definitions for more years than you could shake an unfrocked priest at.

    Fans of these school children’s bits of fun really should aspire to something that actually challenges their brain.

    They certainly won’t find them from the current editor of the Guardian puzzles.

    As for the old buffer’s breath of knowledge, I have to pass, he certainly fails to exhibit it muchly.

    Is it within the rules of fifteensquared to refer to Araucaria as an “old buffer” especially from someone I have never seen post before ?. As I said before, it is disrespectful, dismissive and derogatory. I find this totally unacceptable.

  95. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Davy
    I agree with your sentiment and the offender is now under moderation. However, as much as I would like to, I am not going to censor negative comments, we need a balanced viewpoint.

    Every site such as this attracts a troll now and then and the best response is just ignore them.

  96. Joe Morison says:

    I wish the contributers would first put how easy or hard they found the puzzle in the preamble given before one opens up their analysis. This is useful information, unlike the ‘spooky’ fact hat they’ve had the same setter three times in a row or their wishes to us for a happy whatever-today’s-festival-is.

  97. Stef Savanah says:

    Everyone will have their own ‘best clue ever’ – but there is one unique clue that must come under consideration by the professionals. See 1ac and 7ac here:

    As professional setters, you cannot fail to be impressed with this effort…


  98. Dave Ellison says:

    It would be useful to have a device, such as the split screen one in Word, whereby you can view two parts of a document at once, for this site so that you could see the clues and the comments simultaneously. I have never seen this on a web page – is it feasible?


  99. Dave Ellison says:

    Actually, wouldn’t frames do the trick, now I think about them?


  100. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Dave E.
    The software on which this site runs (WordPress) is not customisable enough to provide what you suggest.

    What’s wrong with opening the same post in two windows on your pc and having one displaying the blog itself and the other scrolled down to the comments?

  101. Dave Ellison says:

    Thanks, good idea, especially as I have two screens anyway!

  102. Gordon says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    Did the blogger for the latest Genius forget to post, or is there another reason this has not been put up. It is normally the day after the close, as I’m sure you know.

    Best wishes


  103. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Gordon
    I’m checking to see what the situation is. As the Genius blogger rotation means one blog every six months it’s easy for someone to forget that it’s his/her turn.

  104. Gordon says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    Thanks for the explanation. I see you also did it 6 and 18 months ago too, presumably for the same person. Perhaps you should just take over that rotation!

    If you are stuck in getting anything published, I can supply the answers and explanations if you like [say via you] but I don’t have the experience to write the blog itself.


  105. Henri Picciotto says:

    With Joshua Kosman, I co-set the cryptic crossword in The Nation (a US weekly). We also co-edited the collection National Puzzlers’ League Cryptic Crosswords, available for free download at

    The purpose of this message is to ask you to add Word Salad, our cryptic crossword blog, to your links page. The URL is
    We already link to 15^2.

    Thanks in advance!

    –Henri Picciotto

  106. Patrick Traill says:

    Is there a good reason not to provide a link to where the crossword is published as part of the standard introduction to an article?
    I presume you expect that people will usually come here after solving the crossword (or trying to), which seems fair enough, but surely there are plenty of people who don’t solve all that you cover and may want to visit a puzzle they like the sound of.
    Or is the link hidden somewhere I have not noticed?

  107. Gordon says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    Did this month’s blogger for the Genius also forget? The cut-off was Saturday at midnight for entries, despite the site stating June 3rd. Hugh accepted the date should have been 2nd June for entries.

    I can see you ending up doing this one as well!

    I’m looking forward to the blog as I thought the crossword was great.

    Best wishes


  108. timon says:

    I’ve started doing the Crossword in “The Week”, set by Tim Morley. It might not be quite up to the level of other puzzles but it’s suitably challenging. Any chance of someone blogging it? I fear I’m not good enough yet ….

  109. Gaufrid says:

    My apologies for the delay in replying to the last three comments but my health is not good at the moment and, until now, I’ve not felt up to composing a response.

    Patrick @106
    This would probably work for the Guardian but the Indy and FT appear to have a clear out every now and then so the result would be a lot of broken links in older blogs. The puzzles are easy enough to find, just follow the appropriate link on the Links page.

    Gordon @107
    No, the blogger didn’t forget. He had scheduled his post to appear on the Monday morning.

    timon @108
    I’m not aware of this puzzle, is it available on-line? I don’t know anyone who does this puzzle and who would be willing to blog it. Just at the moment I am not in a position to say that I will do so myself (assuming it is available on-line) but if/when my health improves (this could take several months) I will reconsider. However, I’m not sure how many people, other than yourself, would be interested in it so I wonder if the time/effort expended is justified by the potential readership.

  110. timon says:

    The Week is a news digest magazine launched in 1995 (by Jolyon Connell, ex Sunday Telegraph) so could roughly fit in same category as Spectator, Economist, Private Eye. The latest circulation figure I could find (easily) is for second quarter 2011 and is 187,000 per edition (weekly, of course). Not sure about on-line ( but they have just launched an iPad version. The compiler of the puzzle is Tim Morley, so my guess is that the quality of the puzzle and the number of solvers would be on a par with the other titles covered by Fifteensquared.
    That said, I quite understand that everyone associated with 15^2 gives their time free and it’s impossible to cover everything. I simply ask that it be considered as possible addition.
    Thank you for your efforts and hoping your health improves soon.

  111. Jan says:

    Hi Gaufrid,

    I’ve been waiting all day for the blog for today’s, FT, PHSSTHPOK puzzle – sheesh, that took some typing!

    Is it me? – or my computer?

  112. David Travis says:

    I’ve experienced a few problems accessing the site on a mobile device (an iPhone). For example, it’s not possible to see comments (clicking the comments link doesn’t work); it’s not possible to add a comment (when you submit the comment it reports an error); and the mobile theme on/off switch doesn’t work. Hope this doesn’t sound like a whinge as I love the site — I’m just accessing it more frequently on a mobile these days and these niggles are frustrating.

  113. Trademark says:

    Dear 225,

    I am a relatively new compiler and am keen to get some of my crosswords out into the public domain and get some feedback. I have a growing portfolio (so far 5 grids ready for public consumption – I’m aiming to have 10 in the full portfolio), but I don’t yet have a website.

    Would it be acceptable to distribute my work via fifteen squared in order to get feedback? And if so, what is the best medium to do it (for example, could I forward the pdfs to a site admin who could put it up for members to download or something like that)?

    Thanks in advance for your help!


  114. John (Paul) says:

    Thank you all so much for setting up and running Fifteensquared so beautifully. It’s invaluable to me.

    Only one thing missing really for me. Coming to the homepage, and a one-sentence ‘this is what we are and what our mission is’ so visitors get it immediately.

    I get the people will be finding it from Google, recommendation etc, but there is nothing to cearly say what it is on arrival at the Homepage.

    ‘Never knowingly undersolved’ is totally brilliant, but for me should appear SECONDLY, after a ‘what Fifteensquared is and provides’ line….

    For such a clear, beautifully presented site, I strongly feel this is a missing.

    Many thanks again, and love to all.

    John (Paul)

  115. Gaufrid says:

    Hi John
    Thanks for your feedback and kind comments.

    The WordPress theme that we currently use does not permit changes to the header other than the site name and the sub-title. I’m not sure how long the latter can be so will have to have a play in our sandbox to find out. I don’t wish to change the theme to one that has a customisable header (or multiple headers) because, as you say, the present appearance and layout is “… clear, beautifully presented …”.

    The information you suggest regarding who we are and what we do is given at the beginning of the ‘About Fifteensquared’ page which is linked to on the bar immediately below the header.

    According to the site stats, the vast majority of visitors come directly or via links on other crossword related sites, very few each day have been referred by Google and its ilk. I would have thought that most new visitors would initially look at the pages on the navigation bar, particularly the ‘About Fifteensquared’ page (and hopefully also the ‘Site Policy’ one).

  116. Ilippu says:

    no blog for guardian 25766??

  117. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Ilippu @116
    The blog for this puzzle was published on 20th October, see:

  118. mbc1955 says:

    I’m reporting a problem with your site. Twice tonight, whilst in the midst of reading Guardian blogs, the screen has abruptly cleared itself, leaving me with a grey background and a set of site links at the top of the page. Clicking page return simply takes me to the previous site I’ve been on, clicking the relevany history link takes me only to the blank page. My only escape is to click on the fifteensquared link to the homepage, then return manually to the blog in question.

    I am using Firefox, up-to-date.

    Curiously, the history link gives me the blog I want, correctly, if I open a new window.

    This is my first visit since your change of server.

  119. Gaufrid says:

    Hi mbc1955
    Thanks for your feedback. This is the first adverse comment I have received since the transfer to a new server. I cannot explain the problem since it hasn’t arisen before, or at least not reported. Please let me know if it happens again and I will investigate further.

  120. Jim says:

    Was looking for Guardian Prize crossword 25,826, Araucaria, 22nd Dec, as I have two or three empty spaces I was curious about, in a slightly OC sort of a way. Guess it slipped through the Christmas crack?

    No big deal, but it would be nice to see if its available.

  121. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Jim
    No, not overlooked. This was a prize puzzle and the closing date for entries is today so the blog will be published tomorrow.

  122. Anio says:

    Dear Gaufrid,
    The success of your recent fund raising for 15 squared made me wonder whether it would be possible for Araucaria fans to show their appreciation by sending a fiver-or more- to the charity that he supported by ‘riding and striding’ or ask him who he would like it to go to. I thought it would be nice for him to be able to name a charity and, hopefully see the money delivered before he dies. I wonder also whether you have any contacts with The Guardian or other crossword websites who may like to help? I realise that this is a bit of a bloody cheek but I wouldn’t know where to start with a thing like this. I would obviously be glad to help in any way I could but, unfortunately, my computer skills are pretty poor.

  123. anio says:

    An example of my IT skills is that I couldn’t find your email address!

  124. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Anio/John
    The Admin email address is given on the ‘About Fifteensquared’ page.

    With regard to your suggestion, I think this would be best organised by someone who knows and is in touch with the good Reverend, particularly as there is a new article about him on the Guardian’s crossword page ( ). The crossword editor’s (Hugh Stephenson) email address is also on this page.

    If someone does set this up, I will be happy to post an appropriate announcement on 15².

  125. anio says:

    Thanks Gaufrid, I’ll give it a go.

  126. Matt says:

    was hoping to find some answers to Telegraph Toughie here

  127. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Matt
    Try for Telegraph blogs.

  128. Helen says:

    What does COD stand for?

  129. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Helen
    Under other circumstances I would say ‘cash on delivery’ but on this site you need to read it as ‘clue of the day’.

  130. IanJ says:

    About 3 weeks ago, the mobile version of appeared to change – it now offers a Captcha screen on accessing it, but there is no submit button to get past it!
    Using Opera mini browser on an HTC Android Desire-S phone.

    Certainly got me puzzled :)

  131. Gaufrid says:

    Hi IanJ
    Thanks for the feedback. I’ve not heard of this problem before. The WPtouch plug-in which converts the site to a mobile friendy format was updated at the end of last month but I doubt that this is the cause of the problem.

    One possibility is that your IP address has been picked out by CloudFlare as being a possible source of a spambot (or worse) and is therefore asking you to prove that you are human.

    What sort of Captcha are you seeing, the usual distorted text or a numeric one similar to that which we use for comments? This might help me to narrow down the cause but without a means of replicating the problem (no smart phone) I don’t know what I can do about the missing submit button.

  132. IanJ says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    I’m seeing a row of national flags along the top right of the screen

    on the next line a message “One more step to access”
    on the next line “”

    Then the CAPTCHA box with two words in it and a text entry box, so not the style you are using. To the right of the captcha box is a large orange triangle with an exclamation mark in it which does appear to be a button, but pressing it merely causes the redisplay of the same captcha text.

    Below the Captcha box is another text entry box headed “Optional message for site owner (100 characters max)

    Hope this helps


  133. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Ian
    Thanks for the further info. You are definitely being picked out by CloudFlare as a potential threat or spambot.

    It would appear from your IP address that your ISP is BT. In which case, your address is probably not static so I am unlikely to be able to resolve the problem by adding your address to the ‘allow’ list (though I will try doing so anyway after I have posted this comment).

    I will also investigate the lack of a submit button now that I know that the captcha is CloudFlare’s.

  134. Gaufrid says:

    I have added the first half of your IP address to the CloudFlare ‘trusted’ list. Please let me know if this stops the captcha from appearing.

  135. IanJ says:

    Well – that’s worked, I’m on now without the Captcha screen appearing!

    But as you say, I’m with BT and I don’t have a static IP address so if we reboot our router or the lease on the address expires, or I access the site through another gateway then I guess I might see the same again?

    Thanks for your help

  136. Gaufrid says:

    “Well – that’s worked, I’m on now without the Captcha screen appearing!”

    Good! I have put all 81.151.*.* addresses in the ‘trusted’ list so there is a good chance that you will not see the captcha again unless you change your ISP. However, so far I have been unable to find any explanation for the lack of a submit button.

    If you want more information on why you started seeing the captcha visit here:

  137. IanJ says:

    Many thanks – I suspect there may be an issue using the Opera Mini Browser – I believe that in some way, Opera intercept all site access requests and then compress the data, giving a reduced volume and hence increased performance on mobile devices, effectively like having a proxy server in the loop – but it’s normally completely transparent to the user.

  138. coltrane says:

    Dear Gaufrid,
    Is it too early for me to alert you that there is no Blog for todays Rufus. Please tell me to get lost if I am ahead of myself/

  139. Gaufrid says:

    Hi coltrane
    Yes, I am aware of the lack of a blog for today’s Rufus (I visit the site regularly throughout the day and check for such things). As bridgesong has pointed out elsewhere, a blogger may be unable to post for any number of reasons: domestic/work commitments, illness, pc failure, power failure etc or just plain forgetfulness.

    If a blog hasn’t appeared by early afternoon I either seek a volunteer to write one or, more usually, prepare one myself. I was in the process of so doing when you posted your comment and it will appear shortly.

  140. coltrane says:

    Gaufrid @139

    I have apologised to birdsong elsewhere for my impatience, please accept my apologies here as well!!! As I also mentioned to birdsong I am immensely grateful to the site for all it provides. I recognise the level of commitment shown by you all and would like, here, to formally thank you!!

    I note that RCW is still not posting and assume that there is no further word of his well-being?


  141. wellywearer says:

    Hi 15squared,

    I don’t know if this is the best way to contact you but I thought you might like to check out my new site:
    …. and add to your links if you like it?

    Much ta.

  142. Brendan (not that one) says:

    Message for Gaufrid

    Thanks for your advice re WordWeb and an electronic version of Chambers.

    I’ve been looking for ages for something but the sites for Chambers and SOED are pretty useless. Even more worrying are the doubts that what they actually do offer wont run on 64 bit Windows!

    I was even more pleased to see that I can get the SOED with word web as this is my dictionary of choice. (My old version won’t run under Windows 7 which is most inconvenient.)

    You’ve made two people very happy as this also gets my wife off my back now that she has something to buy me for my upcoming birthday.

    Thanks again.

  143. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Brendan

    You are more than welcome. I have been using WordWeb for several years, with just the Chambers dictionary addition. The ability to do a wildcard search is most useful, particularly with puzzles like the Listener. I can assure you that it works under Win7 (64-bit).

  144. MickBee says:

    Appearance of this site has changed (for the worse) – w.e.f. (Guardian cryptic) solutions & comments dated Thursday 18/4/13

    Solutions before this date are still fully readable, but now in a reduced central column & with pictures.

    For 18/4/13 on, all change. The comments, when selected, are more than full width – the comment numbers are no longer visible on the LHS.

    Are there any settings that I can change to get a better view, please? (I’m using Firefox 20.0.1 under Windows 7.)

  145. Gaufrid says:

    Hi MickBee
    I’m sorry to hear that you are having problems viewing the site. Is this something that you have only noticed recently (and have gone back through Guardian blogs until you saw a difference between the 17th and 18th) or was it happening back in April? I ask because there were no software changes on or around 18 April but I did add a plug-in five days ago that caches all the posts to reduce the server resource load.

    Over 20% of the site’s visitors use Firefox and I’ve not heard from anyone else who is having a similar problem so it is most likely to be an issue with your browser (I have checked and all posts are displaying correctly in IE10). I am not sure what settings can be changed in Firefox but your fist step must be to clear the browser’s cache in case this has become corrupted. In IE this is done by selecting ‘delete browsing history’ in the ‘Tools’ menu and Firefox will have something similar.

  146. chas says:

    Normally the blog for the Guardian prize crossword goes up on 15² soon after midnight on the following Friday. It is now 0740 and it has not appeared. When can we expect to see it?

  147. Gaufrid says:

    Hi chas
    I am aware of the situation and have emailed the scheduled bloggers (the Indy post hasn’t appeared either). A blog will be published later today, even if I have to write one myself.

  148. chas says:

    Gaufrid thanks for that.

  149. Mitz says:

    Hi Gaufrid,

    Tiny problem – over the last couple of days the “Preview Comment” button has not been working – is this local to me or has anyone else reported similar?


  150. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Mitz
    Thanks for the feedback. This is the first I have heard about a problem with the Preview Comment option. I have just tried it on this comment (now a couple of times) with no problems.

    If your situation continues, please let me know, along with details of your browser, and I will look into the matter further.

  151. Shenguin says:

    Why is the Observer Everyman 3,447 26th May published already even though it is a prize crossword and entry has not yet closed?

  152. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Shenguin
    Thanks for the feedback.

    So far as I can see, it isn’t published. It is scheduled for next Sunday, 2nd June. It is possible that the blogger clicked on the ‘publish’ button before changing the date of publication, but then realised his error and rectified it.

    If you can still view the post, or see a reference to it, please let me know, either here or via an email to the Admin address (admin{at}fifteensquared{dot}net).

  153. james g says:

    I wonder if you’d mind my saying that I felt some of the banter on Tuesday’s Guardian post was a bit offensive and personal and had very little to do with crosswords. Clearly there’s some history here. But though I do feel there’s often quite a bit of unkind and unhelpful criticism of setters, it all really went well over the line on Tuesday.

  154. Maurice Kay says:

    Why can’t I read archive comments from before this summer?

  155. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Maurice
    I’ve checked and, so far as I can tell, all the posts and associated comments since the site’s inception can be accessed either via the category archive, the calendar or the search facility.

  156. Dewey says:

    has the mobile site been discontinued? I cannot seem to access it.

  157. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Dewey
    The WPtouch WordPress plug-in, which detects access from a mobile device and alters the display to suit, has had a major update which I installed yesterday evening (~1800 GMT).

    I don’t have the necessary hardware to check it myself but have asked the members of the blogging team who do to let me know if they encounter any problems. So far the feedback has been positive, with no reported errors.

    Please let me know what mobile device you are using to access the site and I will investigate further.

  158. flashling says:

    My issue is that you can’t see who the blogger is on the mobile version anymore and some blogs the page layout seems odd, for example the latest Beelzebub it tries to centre justify which looks really weird.

  159. Gaufrid says:

    Thanks for the feedback, flashling. I don’t know what is preventing the bloggers name from appearing nor why the Beelzebub is centre justifying. I have checked the post’s source and it is a simple table layout. As there are no ‘align’ instructions in it I would have expected the usual default, ie left justified.

    When there has been a little more time for feedback to come in I will contact the writers of the plug-in to notify them of the errors.

  160. Mitz says:

    Mobile version works perfectly for me, and looks great – thanks very much.

  161. Gaufrid says:

    Update to #159
    The missing post author has now been rectified. Normally when a plug-in is updated existing settings are retained but in this instance I had to change some of the default settings that had been re-applied.

    The plug-in software developers are now aware of the table formatting problem and have stated that a fix for this, and other bugs, will be found. A new updated version of the plug-in will be made available as soon as possible.

  162. flashling says:

    Thanks boss. Be nice if the number of comments could show on the home page too.

  163. David Hall says:

    The mobile version has stopped working for me at about the time you did the WordPress upgrade. I am running on a Nexus 7 using latest version of Android. I can now only see the normal website in Chrome. Its not the end of the world but even on a 7 inch screen the mobile version is more user friendly.

  164. Gaufrid says:

    Hi David @163
    Thanks for the feedback. According to the official documentation, “WPtouch will be active when any of the following user-agents or user-agent combinations are matched:

    iPhone & Mobile, iPod & Mobile, Android & Mobile, BB & Mobile Safari, BlackBerry & Mobile Safari, IEMobile/10.0 & Touch, IEMobile/7.0, IEMobile/9.0, webOS”.

    I will add ‘nexus’ as a custom user-agent but, again quoting from the documentation, “Please note that full functionality is not guaranteed on non-officially supported mobile devices”.

    Please let me know if this has resolved your issue.

  165. David Hall says:

    Hello again Gaufrid,

    Your latest change has restored mobile mode on the Nexus; if only more web site managers were so responsive to their users’ needs.

    Whilst I have your attention, I would just like to thank you and your team of bloggers for the enormous pleasure the site has given us over recent years since we retired. We can now give full attention to the Guardian Cryptic every day and the experience is always enhanced by following the words of wisdom, erudition and often wit on the blog. I know you don’t always have an easy time steering a course between some of the conflicting views expressed, but I think you do the job magnificently.

  166. Trailman says:

    Just quick congratulations to whoever programmed the new mobile design. It’s much clearer than its predecessor.

  167. Pelham Barton says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    I am coming in a bit late to the discussion about the new mobile layout. I agree that it is generally much more pleasant to the eye, but would like to support flashling’s request @162. I like to scan the home page from time to time to see if anything has been added to any of the blogs on which I have commented, and at present it is necessary actually to open each individual page to check this. I have no idea how difficult it would be to add the number of comments to the (mobile) home page, but if it can be done easily I would appreciate it. Again, depending on how difficult it would be to program, it would be nice if the comment numbers could appear as they do on the “full” version of the website, to track cross-references between comments.

    With thanks for your continued hard work in keeping this site a joy to use,


  168. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Pelham
    Thanks for the feedback. The mobile version of the site is generated by a WordPress plug-in which converts the standard display into a more suitable format and I have very little control over what is shown on the home page. I will see if there is a way to include the number of comments but I am not optimistic about finding a solution.

    As for comment numbering within a post, I doubt that this will ever be supported. The WordPress theme that 15² uses is rather old now and on several occasions I have spent quite a bit of time looking for a more up-to-date one. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of themes available but very few include comment numbering, and of those few there have been other factors that rendered them unsuitable. Nested comments, which I strongly dislike, are now the norm and these are problematic to number which is probably why the majority of more recent themes do not do so.

    If the vast majority of themes do not include comment numbering then I think it unlikely that the creators of the WPtouch plug-in will ever provide support for it.

  169. Pelham Barton says:

    Thanks Gaufrid – it always helps to know how difficult something would be. I agree that nested comments would be highly undesirable on a site like this.

  170. flashling says:

    One more thing the links page appears to not show any links…

  171. Gaufrid says:

    Thanks flashling
    I will raise this issue with the plug-in developer. Until it is resolved, if you need a link just switch to desktop view.

  172. Pelham Barton says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    Thank you for putting the number of comments on the front page of the mobile view.

    Best wishes


  173. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Pelham @172
    Nothing to do with me. It was a bug that was corrected in the WPtouch plug-in that provides the mobile view. My only involvement was to install the updated version this morning. The ‘display number of comments’ option had been selected previously but did not work.

  174. Pelham Barton says:

    Gaufrid @173: In that case, thanks for your honesty – and for having selected the option in the first place.

  175. Dewey says:

    Hi Gaufrid,

    The only device I am having problems with is my tablet. It is a Visual Land VL-107 running Android version 4.0.3. Even when I go to the browser settings and choose to identify as a mobile device, I do not get the option to choose “mobile” at the bottom of the page.

    Interestingly, this only affects the Opera “Classic” browser (which I predominantly use because it is the only browser which renders the Guardian crossword grids properly) and Chrome. The native Android browser works normally and displays the mobile site with the “mobile/desktop” buttons at the bottom.

    Perhaps an easy solution is to display the “mobile” option on the bottom of the page regardless of the device type? Or to allow explicit request for mobile in the URL (i.e. “”)?

    Thanks for your attentiveness and especially for the website. My solving skills have greatly improved thanks to the bloggers.

  176. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Dewey

    Thanks for the feedback. Please see my comment #164 for the list of user agents that are currently supported by the WPtouch plug-in that converts the standard, desktop version of the site to one that is better suited to mobile devices. You will note that Opera and Chrome are not included, whereas Android is, which would explain your findings.

    I can add other user agents to the custom list once I know what they are. Would you mind accessing the following site using Opera (and then Chrome if you are likely to use it) and then emailing me the result(s) ( admin{at}fifteensquared{dot}net )? Once I have the user agent information I will add it to the custom list.

  177. Dave Ellison says:

    Just a small point: why do the links to this Site Feedback and the General Discussion pages go through an intermediary “here” link?

  178. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Dave @177
    I can only include a ‘page’, not a ‘post’, in the menu bar. When I had comments enabled on a ‘page’ entitled General Discussion or Site Feedback there were many spam comments added, which I had to wade through each day to check for false positives.

    When spam comments are added to a ‘post’, I can, and have, set the spam filter (Akismet) to automatically delete them if the ‘post’ is over three days old, something I cannot do with a ‘page’. So I decided to close the ‘page’ to comments, hence no spam, but instead provide a link to a ‘post’ that Akismet can deal with.

    To put this into context, the site has received over 2,600,000 spam comments since its inception, with a peak in 2011 of nearly 1,000,000 in one year. I have taken various steps to reduce this unwanted load on the server, and my time, so that we are currently running at just over half that number of spam comments each year. Automatically deleting those on ‘posts’ over three days old means that I only have to view a few, if any, each morning when I first log-in instead of 100-200+.

  179. Mick O'Brien says:

    My wife and are working our way through old Guardian cryptics, and often need to consult Fifteensquared for explanations.

    However, we have found we can access these only by repeatedly clicking “Previous Entries”, as entering the puzzle number in the search box doesn’t work. Is there any way we can find these old entires more quickly?

  180. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Mick @179
    The search facility should enable you to find old puzzles quickly by entering the puzzle number. However, you may need to try this twice, both with and without the comma, eg 26,151 and 26151, because the numbering in the puzzle title varies depending on who has blogged it.

  181. grimalkin says:

    I am trying to post a comment on todays FT crossword but the site won’t accept my catcha ie 6+4=10. This is very frustrating !

  182. chas says:

    I am looking for the blog on Guardian Prize 26214 published on 22-Mar. So far I have been unsuccessful. When will you have it?

  183. NeilW says:

    chas, mhl published it on Friday – (I responded because I thought the deadline rules must have changed.) I checked back a few hours later, when the UK had woken up, and the blog had been pulled. It seems that somebody forgot to reinstate it. Gaufrid?

  184. Chas says:

    Thanks NeilW.
    Please enlighten me: what is mhl?

  185. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Chas
    mhl is the blogger’s pseudonym. NeilW is right about yesterday but unfortunately, instead of rescheduling the post to appear early this morning, mhl reverted it to a draft. I tried to contact him at around breakfast time to see if there was a reason for this, thinking that perhaps he wanted to edit the post.

    I have been busy since then and have only just returned to find that there has been no reply and no action taken. I will publish the blog, as is, very shortly.

    Correction, while I was typing the last sentence a reply from mhl arrived.

    My apologies for the late appearance of this blog.

  186. chas says:

    Thanks to mhl for the blog. You explained a couple where I had the right answer but not the parsing.

    I also found this one was solved pretty quickly for a prize.

  187. chas says:

    1) Thanks to Gaufrid for getting the blog published
    2) I was going to complain that my post was refused with error message (something like) “you put the wrong value in the captcha” but I see that my post has been added here!

  188. ValM says:

    Could you remove comment 29 (currently the last) on the blog for Guardian 26266? It refers to another crossword, I have a horrible suspicion it’s 26267, which I’m about to start, and contains lots of the answers, so being a spoiler on a grand scale. It’s too late for me but it would be nice to spare anyone else from the disappointment. Thanks!

  189. Gaufrid says:

    Hi ValM
    Thanks for letting me know about the offending comment. I have moved it into the correct post.

  190. ValM says:

    Thanks for doing that, Gaufrid.

  191. Monk says:

    Dear Gaufrid

    Please could you remove comment #13 from FT 14645 (June 11th 2013) which has little to do with cruciverbalism!



  192. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Monk
    There isn’t a comment #13. It is possible that there was one and that I marked it as spam earlier this morning but as all the overnight spam has now been deleted I cannot check to verify this.

  193. Monk says:

    Hi Gaufrid

    It was a weird posting, cetainly timed after 9am on July 12th, from an Anita (in [deliberately?] broken English) and was still on the site as I was typing message #191 above at 09:54. (My wife saw it too, so I didn’t imagine it!)

    So it sounds as though it appeared after both your earlier spam markup and overnight spam clearout. If that is indeed the case, someone may have non-kosher access to your site.

    Might be worth a check because of the combination of weirdness of content and uncertain mode of disappearance.



  194. togo says:

    Dear all

    Am I the only one finding the site increasingly slow to load?

  195. Gaufrid says:

    Hi togo
    The site response times did deteriorate earlier in the year, particularly when ‘behind the scenes’ in the admin area. By the end of last month the problem had become so severe at times that it was proving difficult to publish a post.

    However, at the beginning of this month our hosting company moved the accounts that were causing the slow response times onto a different server. Since then I have not noticed any untoward delay when loading a page.

  196. togo says:

    Thanks Gaufrid

    I’m afraid I’m noting very slow loading of the main page (it’s fine once ‘in’. Doesn’t seem to be a problem for me with any other websites, but maybe it’s just my bad luck! Thanks as ever for your work on fifteen squared – a diverting and civilised place to loiter!


  197. Gaufrid says:

    Hi John @196
    Is it possible that you are using an out-of-date bookmark? The site address used to be but it changed about 18 months ago to

    The former address can still be used but there is a delay whilst the request is redirected.

  198. togo says:

    For a moment I had hope! My bookmark has been there for an age, so I junked it Sadly, though, this isn’t the problem: I have also tried googling fifteen squared (on my and my wife’s computers, got to the link and clicked, with the same very slow load up. Anyway, it’s not the end of the world – and let’s see if it’s anyone else’s problem!

    Thanks Gaufrid.


  199. Brendan (not that one) says:


    I haven’t been able to use bold tags on the Guardian section for the last couple of days. (Left pointy bracket b right pointy bracket etc.)

    I get

    403 Permission Denied
    You do not have permission for this request /wp-comments-post.php

  200. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Brendan (nto)
    Thanks for the feedback. It would appear that none of the HTML codes work (or at least the ones I have checked) since including one gives the HTTP403 error.

    The last WordPress update was on 7/8/14 and the HTML was working on 15/8/14 so I will have to investigate further to see if a file has become corrupted or if a plug-in update has caused the problem.

    This may take a while as there is nothing listed in the error logs that relates to this issue so I have nothing to guide me in the right direction.

  201. Gaufrid says:

    Brendan (nto)
    The issue which was causing a problem when using HTML tags in comments has now been resolved, as you can see.

  202. Brendan (not that one) says:

    Thanks Gaufrid.

    Now I can once again bore everybody with my extracts from the SOED 😉

  203. Sylvia says:

    Regarding Guardian Prize 26351, please see last comment on FRIDAY’s Qaos 26351!

  204. Davy says:

    Just wondering why there is no information on the Quiptic crossword setters under SETTERS.
    Obviously, Orlando, Nutmeg and Arachne occasionally, also set the Cryptic crossword but
    there is no information on Hectence, Pan, Moley, Beale, Provis etc.

    After today’s wonderful Quiptic, I wanted to see who Pan is but there is no info.

  205. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Davy
    As you will see if you follow the following links, there doesn’t appear to be any information about Pan in the public domain:

    Regarding who is listed in the Setters page, I have enough of a problem keeping the page up-to-date when it only includes the three main dailies. Trying to do so for all the puzzles we cover on 15² would, I think, lead to errors creeping in.

    For any setter not listed, you can always follow the link to Michael Curl’s excellent Who’s Who.

  206. muffin says:

    Hi Gaufrid
    No, the font isn’t causing any problems. I’m using Chrome.

  207. Ilene says:

    Not an issue, more a question. I use my iPhone to view site. Many other websites allow me to touch the very top of screen to get to the top of the page. Fifteen Squared does not. Sometimes there are a lot of comments to scroll through to return to top of page to get to menu. Is this feature something you can change? Thanks.

  208. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Ilene

    We use a WordPress plug-in (WPTouch) to generate the mobile version of the site and, unfortunately, this is not something I can edit. I will forward your comment to the authors of the plug-in to see if this issue can be addressed in a future update.