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Caravel Forum : Caravel Boards : Contests : 2nd Try: Rate the Short/Long Contest Entries! (Rate each entry from 1 - 10)
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RankEntryAverageStandard Deviation
1Watcher: ''You are given nine identically looking balls...''7.64285714285711.912632548428
2Noah #2: ''In a particular numerical code...''6.46666666666672.3055488621054
2Tim: ''You have four sticks...''6.46666666666672.0933757957477
4Bibelot #2: ''I secretly pick four points...''6.33333333333332.0869967789998
5wackhead_uk: ''you have to get 5 things across a river...''5.86666666666672.4729649321322
6Bibelot #1: ''For what positive k is it possible...''5.26666666666672.5420901286583
7Dimono #2: ''A two foot tall man is found dead in his home...''5.23.0155154341063
8NoahT/DiMono: ''In a regular game of Hearts...''52.5298221281347
9Noah #1: ''How would it be possible (regardless of the law)...''4.86666666666672.963481436119
10DiMono #1: ''How can you count the decimal numbers of finite length?''4.66666666666673.0258148581094
11Koro: ''Given an apple, a lemon and the question...''4.53333333333332.4997777679004
12eytanz: ''List the 5000 largest known prime numbers.''2.86666666666672.9181424837652
eytanz: ''List the 5000 largest known prime numbers.''
12345678910
Average Vote 2.8666666666667
Standard Deviation 2.9181424837652

Tim: ''You have four sticks...''
12345678910
Average Vote 6.4666666666667
Standard Deviation 2.0933757957477

Koro: ''Given an apple, a lemon and the question...''
12345678910
Average Vote 4.5333333333333
Standard Deviation 2.4997777679004

Bibelot #1: ''For what positive k is it possible...''
12345678910
Average Vote 5.2666666666667
Standard Deviation 2.5420901286583

Watcher: ''You are given nine identically looking balls...''
12345678910
Average Vote 7.6428571428571
Standard Deviation 1.912632548428

wackhead_uk: ''you have to get 5 things across a river...''
12345678910
Average Vote 5.8666666666667
Standard Deviation 2.4729649321322

DiMono #1: ''How can you count the decimal numbers of finite length?''
12345678910
Average Vote 4.6666666666667
Standard Deviation 3.0258148581094

Dimono #2: ''A two foot tall man is found dead in his home...''
12345678910
Average Vote 5.2
Standard Deviation 3.0155154341063

NoahT/DiMono: ''In a regular game of Hearts...''
12345678910
Average Vote 5
Standard Deviation 2.5298221281347

Noah #1: ''How would it be possible (regardless of the law)...''
12345678910
Average Vote 4.8666666666667
Standard Deviation 2.963481436119

Noah #2: ''In a particular numerical code...''
12345678910
Average Vote 6.4666666666667
Standard Deviation 2.3055488621054

Bibelot #2: ''I secretly pick four points...''
12345678910
Average Vote 6.3333333333333
Standard Deviation 2.0869967789998
Total Votes 21 100%
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ErikH2000
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icon 2nd Try: Rate the Short/Long Contest Entries! (0)  
This is the same poll I made yesterday, but now including wackhead's entry. And here are the same instructions I posted before...

So let me describe your voterly duties before you go marking things up with the red pen...

1. The above entries, short as they were, did require truncatation. You'll want to read through all of them in the original contest announcement.

2. As a voter, you aren't obliged to solve each puzzle by yourself, but give it a shot, then peek at the answer. If it doesn't make sense to you how the answer was arrived at, ask here on the board. In general, don't be in a hurry to vote. You can discuss things openly, express your opinions, even try to sway other people to agree with you.

3. Once you begin voting, you must rate every entry. We can't use partial votes, and it is a pain to remove your vote so you can start over.

4. Authors must give their own entries a rating of 10 so that immodest people don't have an advantage.

5. Give each entry a 1-10 rating based on the following three factors: how well the puzzle met the short/long criterion, how enjoyable the puzzle was, and how original it was. Feel free to weight those factors however you wish. You can go back to the original contest announcement for clarification. Don't vote based on your personal opinion of the author or how many puzzles total he entered. Focus on the individual merit of each puzzle.

-Erik

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09-18-2004 at 08:16 PM
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Continued from the other thread:
quote:
wackhead_uk wrote:
I know I'm not going to win, but I just wanted to get the 10 rank point bonus because it's my first time. I hope I get more than 7!
Me too O:-

-- Tim

[Edited by Tim on 09-18-2004 at 07:45 PM GMT]

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09-18-2004 at 08:43 PM
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ErikH2000
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I'm going to drop it down from 7 to 6 since I feel like the ratings on these entries are going to run on the low side. It is hard to come up with a good original puzzle, and people seem to be voting in the context of the best word puzzles they've played (here and elsewhere), which is a reasonable but high standard. I don't think that change in rules will be unfair to anyone.

-Erik

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09-18-2004 at 09:23 PM
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Well, the real problem is that many of the good puzzles presented in this contest have very short answers, which counts against it. for instance, the 4 sticks puzzle is excellent, but the solution was only twice as long as the initial question.

On an unrelated note, will any votes from the other poll be carried over to this one? For instance, someone voted in that one and then didn't return to the forum before the end of the poll, would their votes count?

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09-18-2004 at 10:06 PM
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Doom
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quote:
DiMono wrote:
On an unrelated note, will any votes from the other poll be carried over to this one? For instance, someone voted in that one and then didn't return to the forum before the end of the poll, would their votes count?
If someone did return to forums, he'd have a chance to post twice. Seriously, only the second poll counts.
09-18-2004 at 10:12 PM
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ErikH2000
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Yeah, only the 2nd poll counts. DiMono and Noah, you gotta revote, sorry.

-Erik

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09-18-2004 at 11:15 PM
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bibelot
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Here are my initial thoughts:

List the 5000 largest known prime numbers.
Not a puzzle.

You have four sticks...
This was nice, fairly original, sort of cute, not too hard.

Given an apple, a lemon...
This was weird, because anyone can tell the difference between an apple and a lemon.

For what positive k...
This is mine. It makes a lot more sense if you draw some pictures.

You are given nine identically looking balls...
I'm not really a fan of these ball weighing puzzles. Not terribly original, but other than that I thought it was nice.

You have to get five things...
Not very original and not very hard.

How can you count the decimal numbers of finite length?
This was weird also, because it's infinite, so the answer didn't make any sense.

A two foot tall man is found dead...
Seen it before, and I don't really believe in lateral thinking puzzles anyway.

In a regular game of Hearts...
I'm pretty sure the answer given to this one is wrong. I don't like probability either.

How would it be possible...
Seen it before, and not very interesting.

In a particular numerical code...
I didn't really like this one. It was basically, find a function that fits these points.

I secretly pick four points...
This is mine. Again, it makes more sense if you draw a picture.

Wow, I'm being sort of harsh. I hope no one takes offense...
09-19-2004 at 01:07 AM
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Continued from the old thread...

quote:
DiMono wrote:
A two foot tall man is found dead in his home...
The place you've seen this puzzle before was by me, in the puzzle thread.
Actually, I saw this on multiple websites years ago. When did you make this up? I know I saw it first about 10 years ago - I know the correct year, because it was when I was working at a previous job, and a couple of guys I worked with and I would sit around and do lateral thinking puzzles, and this was definitely one of them.

If you look here at #18, it's your puzzle. Okay, not *exactly* the same, but it might as well be.

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09-19-2004 at 05:51 AM
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Well I obviously can't prove I've never read it anywhere before, but I can give my best assurance. I thought it up several months ago and tried to post it in the puzzle thread, but failed to include all the necessary data. I've never been to the website you linked to.

Again, I have no way to prove conclusively that I haven't taken the puzzle from somewhere else, so I guess it's a question of how much you trust me.

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09-19-2004 at 06:17 AM
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Schik
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I'm not saying conclusively that you stole it from anywhere. The website I listed is not the site I originally saw it on. It could be that you saw the puzzle years ago, forgot it, and some small memory of it sparked your creation of it. Or you completely independently came up with a very similar puzzle.
quote:
I've never read it anywhere before
Good enough for me.


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09-19-2004 at 06:30 AM
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quote:
bibelot wrote:
In a regular game of Hearts...
I'm pretty sure the answer given to this one is wrong. I don't like probability either.


For the correct answer, look in the "The Hearts puzzle in the puzzle contest..." thread (if you haven't already looked and don't know where to look).

-Noah

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09-19-2004 at 07:06 AM
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acrobat
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Comments on some of the puzzles:

Making the question shorter by failing to include necessary details does not work. On a number of the puzzles the question was not sufficiently clear to work out just what was being asked. Even after looking at the supplied answers for a couple I'm still not quite sure.

eytanz's list has a lot wrong with it (as I'm sure he knew) - I do not think a list counts as a puzzle. In the same vein, one could ask to supply the stock market data for a given day, or the text of one of Shakespeare's plays, or any of a host of boring (but long!) possibilities. But a puzzle should have a puzzle associated with it.

A bigger problem is that someone might find a new prime number larger than all the previously discovered ones.

Given an apple, a lemon and the question, "Can you tell the difference?"
Aside from other ways of telling them apart (smell? shape?), when giving a puzzle like this it might be helpful to include information like the color of the apple. (Apples come in a variety of colors; I am willing to concede that a lemon could reasonably be expected to be yellow.)

In a particular numeric code
While I'm not that big a fan of a simple numeric codes, the DROD-themed names were a nice touch.

A two foot tall man is found dead...
This one was obvious: After sawing his stick down to 1foot 10 inches, he realized that he could no longer solve the sticks puzzle as his wooden rod was shorter than 1.5 meters. Worse, he now had to convert his stick from feet to meters, and after the difficult life he faced as a two foot tall man, he could not take it any more.

So the murderer was Tim, with the stick puzzle, in the Conservatory. Miss Scarlet with the Revolver was merely a Red Herring.

[Edited by acrobat on 09-19-2004 at 07:48 AM GMT]
09-19-2004 at 08:41 AM
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quote:
acrobat wrote:
A two foot tall man is found dead...
[...]
So the murderer was Tim, with the stick puzzle, in the Conservatory. Miss Scarlet with the Revolver was merely a Red Herring.
You've got me. :lol But seriously, is it normal in your country to call it a murder as he's shot himself? We would have called that suicide anyway.

And no, it wasn't in the Conservatory.

-- Tim

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09-19-2004 at 09:27 AM
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I just noticed that someone has forgotten to vote on my puzzle. It only has 7 ratings, but all the others have 8.

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09-19-2004 at 09:47 AM
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People have voted all over for mine! I should have come up with two puzzles...

I was originally going to post one about prime numbers from 1-100 in a table then linking them up with lines and blah-blah yakkity-schmakity, but I couldnt think how I could make the answer long, so I merely used the one I did, which was one I made up with my friend a few years ago when he said that the original one was too easy. without making the boat bigger, this is the hardest one you can do, so I posted this one instead. There is a way to do it with 7 animals if your boat can carry 4, but that is too annoying...
09-19-2004 at 01:01 PM
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If by 4 you mean four of the things you need to get across, then you can do it with 3. First you take over 2, 4, and 6, return empty handed, take over 1, 3 and 5 and return with 2, 4 and 6, go over with 7 and return empty handed, then go over with 2, 4 and 6 to finish it out.

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09-19-2004 at 02:01 PM
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We must have done it wrong then! Ah well, I didnt put it up anyway.
09-19-2004 at 03:34 PM
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My turn to throw around a few quick critiques. Bear with me...

You have four sticks, of 1m, 2m, 3m and 4m...
I liked this one mucho, if it is original. Not terribly difficult, but elegant.

Given an apple, a lemon and the question...
This is my puzzle. Definitely not the best here, but I feel like defending it a bit. A few assumptions are to be made here. First, the apple is red, just like every apple we've drawn since kindergarten. If you want it green, the puzzle still works, just switch Red and Green in the answer. Those are the two most common types, right? Sorry, no yellow. Second, telling the difference between an apple and a lemon is obviously not the point when diagnosing three color-blind people. As a whole, the answer explains the question and the question the answer, and both were stripped down to as short as I could get them for this contest. I apologize to the kids on ritalin that had to look up cone cells and color spectra. However, once you get the premise, the puzzle isn't that challenging to find the secret "bite." Then: eureka!

For what positive k is it possible
Another good one. Very mathy and fairly challenging.

You are given nine identically looking balls
It is so very difficult to come up with a brand new puzzle, that personally, I'm grading big on originality, so low points here. Still, it is an elegant variation to a classic, and it's somewhat challenging.

you have to get 5 things across a river
I know I've seen this one and it isn't very hard.

Puzzle: How can you count the decimal numbers of finite length?
Wow. I want to mess with this a bit more myself. Pretty fun for math geeks.

A two foot tall man is found dead...
Not original. Doesn't give you that "eureka!" effect of knowing the answer for sure when you see it.

In a regular game of Hearts...
Pure probability. More a math assignment than a puzzle for entertainment. And you could have a short answer if you didn't show your work.

How would it be possible...
There is a song by the Flying W's... "I'm my own grandpa"! Cut and paste.

In a particular numerical code...
Quote bibelot, cause I can't put it better: It was basically, find a function that fits these points.

I secretly pick four points...
Original. Though daunting sounding at first it is not very hard. The puzzle kind of works itself if you draw it. Still one of the better ones out here.


This said, I am saving my votes until nearer to the deadline. After all, if I expect my opinion to sway any of yours, I should offer the same courtesy.

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09-21-2004 at 01:04 AM
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quote:
Koro wrote:
As a whole, the answer explains the question and the question the answer, and both were stripped down to as short as I could get them for this contest.


You do realize the contest was to make a large question length to answer length ratio? The point of the contest was to have a short question with a very long answer in comparison, so you didn't really need to cut your answer down any.
09-21-2004 at 02:06 AM
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quote:
Zmann wrote:
You do realize the contest was to make a large question length to answer length ratio? The point of the contest was to have a short question with a very long answer in comparison, so you didn't really need to cut your answer down any.
Yeah, I really sort of thought it would count for more than it is.

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09-21-2004 at 03:22 AM
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Tim
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Here are my first thoughts:

Making the answer longer by nice indentation, or superfluous details is something I did not came up (maybe I should had). On a number of the puzzles the answers were just misleading or has too many blanks.

As Erik said: "Voters will be asked not to focus on specific letter or word counts, but at a more general level, how well (cleverly? enjoyably? quantitatively? philosophically?) was the requirement met."

To be fair, I will vote this according to my own answers, not the ones supplied.

List the 5000 largest known prime numbers.
Later...

You have four sticks...
I'm glad I don't have to come up with a score for this, as it is mine.
It is certainly original. Although I made this one after reading some of those "bottles and water" puzzles, the 10cm difference must be new, as I've never seen this before.

Given an apple, a lemon...
I like this one, as my solution of this one is a lot longer than his.

For what positive k...
I hate math-y puzzles, and "I must have seen this before" feeling, but I like this one. But was it really so hard to replace those "similar but not congruent" with "same shape, different size"? 2 questions though.

You are given nine identically looking balls...
Quote bibelot, cause I can't put it better: I'm not really a fan of these ball weighing puzzles. Not terribly original, but other than that I thought it was nice. Although my answer will not include the reasoning behind it, as that was not asked. (Just joking, I would rather count it as 2 questions with a good answer.)

You have to get five things...
Not that original, not that hard, the original answer was kinda wrong (where's that cabbage?), but since my answer was longer that his, it's ok.

How can you count the decimal numbers of finite length?
Nice question. Although my answer would be a LOT shorter. Quote DiMono: "I did not get any extra credit for it when I was a math student..." You never had to prove countability in Q then?

A two foot tall man is found dead...
The alternative shorter solution a few posts above was much better...

In a regular game of Hearts...
Not that original, the original answer was kinda wrong, but since my answer was longer that his, it's okay too.

How would it be possible...
The alternative answer was better.

In a particular numerical code...
Quote bibelot, cause I can't put it better: It was basically, find a function that fits these points. Although the DROD theme will make me give some bonus points for this.

I secretly pick four points...
No comments on this yet. I will have to reread this one.

List the 5000 largest known prime numbers...
Great, this one made sure I didn't entered my other puzzles with long answers. Long answers alone is just not fun. Bonus points for being a good attempt to cheat at the rules though.

Hope this did not sound too harsh...

-- Tim

------

There were 2 puzzles that actually didn't made it to the contest, since eytan actually killed them, for history purposes, I will list them here:

1. Give all anagrams made from "Mr. Snake in here".
2. What is the order of keys you need to press to finish level 1 to 25 of KDD?

------

[Edited by Tim at Local Time:09-22-2004 at 12:29 PM]

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09-22-2004 at 12:21 PM
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eytanz
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quote:
Tim wrote:
There were 2 puzzles that actually didn't made it to the contest, since eytan actually killed them, for history purposes, I will list them here:

1. Give all anagrams made from "Mr. Snake in here".
2. What is the order of keys you need to press to finish level 1 to 25 of KDD?

------

[Edited by Tim at Local Time:09-22-2004 at 12:29 PM]


Sorry about that... Though of course if you would have posted these I couldn't have posted mine. But as to puzzle 2 - could you really have posted it with a solution?

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09-22-2004 at 01:27 PM
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quote:
Tim wrote:
Although my answer will not include the reasoning behind it, as that was not asked. (Just joking, I would rather count it as 2 questions with a good answer.)


Of course, you could cut out all the sentences containing only reasoning from the solution and still have an acceptable answer. But I was trying to make the solution easy to understand. I thought it would be quite frustrating for someone to work on the puzzle for a while and then check the solution, only to find that he still has to work out why a particular series of weighings will give an unambiguous answer.

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09-22-2004 at 03:37 PM
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quote:
Tim wrote:
How can you count the decimal numbers of finite length?
Nice question. Although my answer would be a LOT shorter. Quote DiMono: "I did not get any extra credit for it when I was a math student..." You never had to prove countability in Q then?
I don't know if you already realize this, but the set he's talking abut isn't Q (the set of rational numbers, or fractions), but a subset of Q. Of course, if you know Q is countable, then any subset is countable.

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09-22-2004 at 05:45 PM
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Tim
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icon Re: 2nd Try: Rate the Short/Long Contest Entries! (0)  
quote:
eytanz wrote:
But as to puzzle 2 - could you really have posted it with a solution?
The answer is: "Yes, and it would probably be at most 20 lines long, and it would not spoil the game that much, and I can even put the explanation in there as well."

This is the first step of the explanation, see if you can complete it:
Click here to view the secret text


quote:
Watcher wrote:
Of course, you could cut out all the sentences containing only reasoning from the solution and still have an acceptable answer. But I was trying to make the solution easy to understand. I thought it would be quite frustrating for someone to work on the puzzle for a while and then check the solution, only to find that he still has to work out why a particular series of weighings will give an unambiguous answer.
You are absolutely right in this. Just like the lateral thinking puzzle, you are allowed to put the reasoning inside your answer. Erik and jdyer have a short discussion about this in the original contest thread:
quote:
ErikH2000 wrote:
I think you could make it work if you added to your question that an explanation is required as part of the answer.
[...]
Keep in mind that there is a wide range of acceptable entries for this contest, and that you are not so much working to please my definition of what consitutes a valid entry, but to craft a puzzle which will be well-received by voters. So if your question is...

"I am dissatisfied with the meager number... What's that arrangement and explain how you arrived at this conclusion?"

...you've probably created a question which will require a longer answer and it would be a valid entry. But it lacks elegance, don't you think? There's a tacked-on compound question that is not so satisfying.
The point I want to make is: Should I (or any other voter) calculate the long/short ratio for an entry based on the author's answer? My answer would be "no".

Don't worry though. I still like your question.

---------------
Note to AlefBet: Yes, I know how to count Q. Since decimals is a subset of Q, it is really easy.
---------------

I will vote some time later though ;)

-- Tim

[Edited by Tim at Local Time:09-22-2004 at 06:18 PM]

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09-22-2004 at 06:14 PM
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wackhead_uk
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icon Re: 2nd Try: Rate the Short/Long Contest Entries! (0)  
Tim, you haven't given our own puzzle 10...You were supposed to
09-22-2004 at 06:17 PM
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eytanz
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icon Re: 2nd Try: Rate the Short/Long Contest Entries! (0)  
quote:
Tim wrote:
quote:
eytanz wrote:
But as to puzzle 2 - could you really have posted it with a solution?
The answer is: "Yes, and it would probably be at most 20 lines long, and it would not spoil the game that much, and I can even put the explanation in there as well."

This is the first step of the explanation, see if you can complete it:
Click here to view the secret text





I'm pretty sure that doing that won't help you figure out the sequence of keys necessary to solve level 25. For one, since I lost all my data a while ago I don't actually have any savegames of KDD past level 5 or so. So you're more likely to get to level 25 by playing on your own computer. The second reason is that I'm a terribly careless player. The puzzle wasn't "what is the sequence of moves necessary to solve level 25 while dying needlessly many times?"

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09-22-2004 at 06:36 PM
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wackhead_uk
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icon Re: 2nd Try: Rate the Short/Long Contest Entries! (0)  
the top is 7, and the second top is 6. Bah.

I dont think I'm going to get those 10 rank points.. ah well, I'll have to think of a better entry for the next puzzle, whether it be eigth-based or not...

[Edited by wackhead_uk at Local Time:09-28-2004 at 08:56 PM]
09-24-2004 at 10:05 PM
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ErikH2000
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icon Short/Long Winners Revealed! (0)  
DiMono is breathing heavy on my neck and muttering I should announce the September winners already. He really wants to get the October contest started. I mean he's trotting around with this whole gung-ho, can-do attitude of his, and it's really starting to get irritating. I tell him "more patience, less coffee" but the man cannot be reasoned with. So I guess the easiest thing is just to make the announcement...

It looks like this business of making good word puzzles is surprisingly tough. When I set out to make my Bunny Puzzle, I was feeling feisty. I thought it was going to come off so incredibly clever, but when I sat down and worked with it a bit, well, the idea didn't seem so genius. I have even more respect for the guys that are actually good at making word puzzles, like the Reverend Charles Dodgson.

And it seems that the voters were probably a bit disappointed at what came up. Most of the authors got less than a 6. I believe this audience is so fluent in puzzles that it's just difficult to impress them. We're comparing the authors' puzzles to all the nifty chestnuts we've collected over our puzzle-loving lifetimes and that's tough competition.

The "He's Not Even Trying" booby prize is awarded to Eytan for his terrible "list the prime numbers" entry. The prize is a low-carb banana which has had its inside filling sucked out through a syringe and replaced in same fashion with sugar-free Jello brand banana pudding. The prize is waiting for Eytan in a refrigerated case at the Jiffymart Stop-and-Go in Elsewhere, Idaho.

Rookie bonus of +10 rank points goes to Tim and Noah. I mean, I'm pretty sure they didn't compete in any other contests. To be honest, I ought to start keeping track as these contests are piling up behind us. Tim, Noah, is this your first time?

Wackhead, you were very close to getting the rookie bonus, but I don't want to bend the rules. Hmmm... Say something about kittens in a follow-up post. Seriously, just do it. You'll see...

For third place, we have Bibelot with six and one-third. I get the feeling he is always secretly picking points, but only the best-looking ones, which he cleans and puts inside his mantle frame. +25 for Bibelot and all his points.

Noah and Tim tied for second, earning a six and seven-fifteenths rating and 50 points. I'm not going to be stingy--you each get 50 points. And you each get congratulated separately: Congratulations, Noah. Congratulations, Tim.

Watcher has a seven and... nine/fourteenths rating. (Weirdly, I just started guessing with fractions and stumbled onto a 9/14 match after about 10 seconds. I'm not very good at math so this surprised me greatly!) And since that's the highest, he wins one hundred rank points plus either an item of his choosing from the DROD Store or a free copy of "DROD: Journey to Rooted Hold" after it is released. E-mail me with your choice, Watcher, or I will almost certainly forget.

(Here we add about thirty minutes of hobbits staring lovingly at each other while swelling orchestra music plays.)

And also... ALSO... Watcher gets +1 rank points because he had a puzzle with a seven-or-higher rating. He was the only one, surprisingly. I suppose it's lonely way up there at the top, but you learn to get along with people of lesser abilities and not let the condescension creep into your voice.

Thanks very much for all this participation. I'm glad we had so many entries, and I was plenty happy with the follow-up discussion. If any of you guys happen to come up with the Ultimate Short/Long puzzle later, please post it--I'm still interested.

-Erik

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10-02-2004 at 02:33 AM
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Watcher
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icon Re: 2nd Try: Rate the Short/Long Contest Entries! (0)  
Hrm. I'm happy to win, of course, but I'm disappointed that the competition for first place wasn't tougher. I don't think my puzzle deserves to be more than a full point ahead of the second-place puzzles. Oh well.

Congratulations to Noah, Tim and Bibelot for second, second, and third place. Your puzzles were really good. :thumbsup

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10-02-2004 at 12:10 PM
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