Topic: The final squares ========================= A note on the Finals. As I worked on this problem, it became increasingly evident that some approaches could tune their algorithms to particular squares ... thus achieving good scores on (say) the system test square, but doing poorly (or even not finishing) other squares. In order to avoid favoring any single entry, I conducted the finals based on the results derived from the runs against FIVE different squares ... all of which are derived from "familiar" strings of letters from which I removed the repeaters.
THEQU FOXY - The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog. ICKBR The old familiar typing drill - almost readable! OWNFX JMPSV LADG+ NOWIS AID - Now is the time for all good men to come to the THEMF aid of their country. More from history, and RALGD since the W and O were used early, this also CUBJK translates to " ... all good women ... "! Of PQVX+ course, the unfound letters were added at the end. QWERT TYPO - This one shouldn't be too hard to figure out. UIOPA No "Y" allowed, so I couldn't call it QUERTY. SDFGH JKLXC VBNM+ THISA FAQ - This is the list of frequently asked questions ... and LOFRE so forth - it's simply the FAQ you see in the QUNKD weekly status mailing every week! WPGMV BCXJ+ WARNI WARN - This is the warning notice you see when you log in GOTCE to AT&T UNIX boxes ... I added a K and a Q at the HSMDL end since these were not in the original! UFBPJ VXKQ+ =========================================================================== I spent a little time trying to come up with a square with five english words in it (reading horizontally) ... it proved to be too much! With only five vowels to work with (Y is not in the letter set), each word had to have only a single vowel ... in order to use the Q, I couldn't afford to use TWO vowels, the only word I came up with (initially) was: " QOPH " ... the 13th letter of the Hebrew alphabet and familiar to most Scrabble players who get stuck with no "U" .... With that as a starting point, I had to find a five letter word with an "X" in it, only a single vowel (AEI or U), and no double letters, and no (QPH). There was ONE that I found ... " STRIX " ... a genus of owls NOW, my space is even FURTHER reduced ... I tackled the J next and looked for words with a single vowel (now AE or U) and only unused letters. Again ... I found only ONE ... " FJELD " ... a barren plateau of the Scandanvian upland But my search had ended ... With only ten letters remaining: --> A B C G K M N U V W <--- I couldn't come up with TWO five-letter english words that used them all. Disappointment. But such is how I derive my small pleasures in life, the search was enjoyable! =Fred =========== Postscript .... If anyone wants to play some more in this mire, here are some other "Q" words that might start you down the solution path: QUNG are people of the Omatako river in southern Africa (proper noun) QURSH was in my wordlist, but not my dictionary!!! QUTB is an Islamic Saint who has attained the highest degree of sanctity SHOQ is another in my wordlist but not my dictionary ... oh well ... To the best of my knowlege, these are all the four and five letter words that have only a single vowel in them (along with the Q of course). I'll circulate any solution, but you'll have to supply the five definitions! (even if you make them up!) =Fred