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ErikH2000
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I've been playing around with these abstracted art puzzles for a few months now. I wanted to make a contest based on them, so here is one.

Unlike most of the abstracted art puzzles we've had, this puzzle will not be based on any previously made work. The puzzle depicts a somewhat complicated situation where a man is angry. You must tell me why the Angry Man is angry.

Clues for the puzzle will be gradually revealed in this submission topic. Submission topics, by the way, keep any replies made hidden to everyone except the person who posted the reply and the original creator of the topic. So you can post your guess as a reply to that topic and just you and I will be able to see it.

Rules

1. You can guess as many times as you wish, but only the last guess you make will be evaluated.

2. I strongly recommend that you don't edit any of your guess posts. If you do edit a post, I reserve the right to disqualify the entry--fair or not. Please just make a new post any time you want to correct a guess. Remember, that I will only look at the last guess post you make. If you want to delete old guess posts, that is fine.

3. Don't pose more than one explanation in your guess. Use more general language if you have to. Some examples:

WRONG: The angry man lost a hat or a scarf.
WRONG: The angry man lost a piece of clothing, perhaps a hat or scarf.
RIGHT: The angry man lost a piece of clothing.

WRONG: Either the angry man is angry at his wife or he is pretending to be.
RIGHT: The angry man is expressing anger at his wife.

4. Any questions about the contest should be asked publicly as reply posts to this topic. If I receive any questions privately, I'll just ask you to post them in this topic.

Winning

Sometime soon after the last clue has been given, the winner will be announced. Note that the winner may have supplied a correct guess much earlier, but the contest will continue after that time. I want to extend the drama a little bit, but also someone who posts a correct answer could end up losing if he posts a new answer which is not correct.

The winners are determined this way: from all the entrants who submitted one or more guesses, their latest guess is evaluated. From that group, all entrants who submitted incorrect latest guesses are removed from consideration. From the remaining group, the entrants are ranked by the sequence that their latest guesses were posted. The earliest guess wins first prize--100 rank points and an item of his choosing from the Prize Pile. Runners-up receive 50 and 25 rank points. Rookie bonuses of 10 rank points are given to contest newcomers. Participation credit requires a guess that shows a decent attempt to understand the puzzle. If you spend more than 5 minutes trying to figure out the puzzle, then your guess should be fine.

Strategy

You can guess as many times as you want. It makes sense to guess early, and be prepared to replace your guess with a better one as more information becomes available. It doesn't make sense to post a lot of guesses in case one happens to be right. Remember that only your last guess will be considered. So even if you accidentally hit upon the correct answer in a series of wild guesses, you are likely to replace the correct answer with a later one that is incorrect.

A more useful way to guess is to begin with something general, like for example:

  The Angry Man is angry because he forgot to do something.

...and then as more clues become available, refine your guess:

  The Angry Man is angry because he forgot to pick up a tuxedo.

...and maybe later a clue suggests more specifically why that would make him angry:

  The Angry Man is angry because he forgot to pick up a tuxedo to wear to his wedding.

A difficult problem is knowing when to stop refining guesses. Each time you post a new guess, your official entry time gets set to the time of the new guess. You want your last guess to be both correct and earlier than other people's correct guesses. So when you look at the puzzle, you want to be reasonably sure that your guess is being improved before updating it. How will you know when your guess is specific enough to be correct? Well, here are some clues about what the correct answer must reference:

* An activity the Angry Man himself performs.
* An activity that a different person performs.
* The relation between the two activities.

To give you an idea of complexity, a single sentence like the following could express the correct answer:

   The Angry Man is angry because... (20 more words)


I'm not saying your guess needs to be exactly 26 words. I'm just saying that when I wrote out the answer succinctly, that's how many words I used. You could use a little more a little less, but if you are writing a terse phrase or a verbose paragraph, then you're on the wrong track.

The puzzle is not made of airtight logic that demands a single solution. It requires for you to consider how things often work in the real world by convention and not just necessity. You'll also have to consider that some elements of the puzzle are present to suggest certain facets of the situation, and aren't just coincidental. Finally, not every puzzle clue is important, but most at least serve to establish a setting and define the scope of what will be expressed.

Latecomers, don't sweat it. My feeling is that the first correct answer could be determined anywhere from the second week of April to the time when the last clue is revealed. You can jump into this at any time and still have a chance of winning.

So why is the Angry Man angry?

-Erik

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04-02-2006 at 10:38 PM
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Ezlo
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icon Re: The Angry Man (0)  
So, for an abstract contest, can we give an abstract answer? For instance would, "The man is angry because something happend to make him angry." count?
04-02-2006 at 10:46 PM
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ErikH2000
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quote:
Ezlo wrote:
So, for an abstract contest, can we give an abstract answer? For instance would, "The man is angry because something happend to make him angry." count?

That would be a valid guess, but based on what I said in the "Strategy" section above regarding specificness, you shouldn't expect it to win. Also, I wouldn't give participation credit for that kind of answer because it doesn't really show any analysis of the puzzle. Practically speaking, it won't be possible to give a potentially-winning answer until a week or two from now. You guys are gonna need more clues that are revealed in this topic.

-Erik

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04-02-2006 at 11:14 PM
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ErikH2000
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Hmm. The second clue should have been revealed by now. It says it will be revealed in "negative 2 minutes". Do other people see the same thing?

-Erik

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04-03-2006 at 12:02 AM
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Oneiromancer
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Yeah, I see it too. Perhaps an issue with daylight saving time starting today?

Game on,

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04-03-2006 at 12:03 AM
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ErikH2000
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Good hunch. Maybe the clue will be revealed in an hour.

-Erik

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04-03-2006 at 12:05 AM
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silver
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The clue is thus revealed, yea (and yeah).

EDIT: my joke submissions done during that hour (which I've now retracted because - why make a joke only Eric can read?):

"The angry man is angry because daylight savings made him spend two hours alone in a picture instead of the one he was expecting."



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:yinyang

[Last edited by silver at 04-03-2006 05:53 AM]
04-03-2006 at 01:01 AM
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Tahnan
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Would it make sense to label the pieces as they appear? By picture three, I've already lost track of which square is the podium and which square is the standing man.
04-03-2006 at 07:36 AM
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ErikH2000
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quote:
Tahnan wrote:
Would it make sense to label the pieces as they appear? By picture three, I've already lost track of which square is the podium and which square is the standing man.

Sure, but I didn't do that because it would have taken a lot more time to position the text so that all 76 clues are clearly labelled. You may wish to maintain your own working image with extra labels to show where things are.

-Erik

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04-03-2006 at 08:17 AM
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Mikko
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Does the puzzle depict a fictional situation (that might have coincidentally happened in reality) or a specific historical event?
04-03-2006 at 10:18 AM
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ErikH2000
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quote:
Mikko wrote:
Does the puzzle depict a fictional situation (that might have coincidentally happened in reality) or a specific historical event?

Not saying. I will tell you that the puzzle itself is not based on any preexisting image.

-Erik

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04-03-2006 at 04:37 PM
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stigant
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For the fifth clue, I get "This message will appear in negative xxx minutes"



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04-03-2006 at 06:43 PM
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ErikH2000
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It's a bug related to daylight savings time. The image will get revealed at an hour past the unhide time.

-Erik

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04-03-2006 at 06:51 PM
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ErikH2000
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27 guesses at time of writing, and it's so early! A lot of people seem serious about winning.

-Erik

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04-04-2006 at 06:11 AM
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Chaco
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Well, some of us *think* we have a good idea of the situation... but then some other thing comes up that confuses us. I have an inquiry about the location of one of the clues, but I guess I'll keep it to myself for the time being.

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04-04-2006 at 11:54 AM
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jbluestein
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Cool contest! I thought I knew what was going on, but...well, the newest clues shed some darkness on the situation.

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04-05-2006 at 06:37 PM
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ErikH2000
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quote:
jbluestein wrote:
Cool contest! I thought I knew what was going on, but...well, the newest clues shed some darkness on the situation.

Thanks! I had some childish glee watching people go for my red herring. :lol

-Erik

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04-05-2006 at 07:01 PM
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Chaco
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Heh, darn. ;)

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04-05-2006 at 10:31 PM
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Banjooie
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I have absolutely no idea whatsoever what is going on. o_o
04-06-2006 at 09:51 PM
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Chaco
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I haven't guessed since Clue 8, and my guess is sort-of holding up. I hope I don't have to change it.

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04-06-2006 at 10:06 PM
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Pinnacle
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quote:
Chaco wrote:
I haven't guessed since Clue 8, and my guess is sort-of holding up. I hope I don't have to change it.


As is mine.

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Twice (adv.): Once too often.
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04-07-2006 at 02:26 AM
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Bombadil
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Cool contest. I have had no time to relax a bit and start watching the images till now.

I think I'll give it a shot if get any ideas of what is going on...

Good luck to everyone!
04-07-2006 at 10:28 AM
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Chaco
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I had my doubts when the previous clue was revealed (a window) but this new one... it seals the deal. My new guess is completely different. (and, I hope, correct)

EDIT:

Darn it! Now there's a person where my wall's supposed to be :P

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[Last edited by Chaco at 04-07-2006 10:31 PM]
04-07-2006 at 11:59 AM
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techant
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Well that last clue made me hungry and confirmed I was on track with what I thought was going on. I hope my answer is not too vague.

Great puzzle keeps me coming back waiting for the next clue to be revealed. :D

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[Last edited by techant at 04-09-2006 01:06 AM]
04-09-2006 at 01:03 AM
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ErikH2000
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Right now we have about 70 guesses, many of them re-guesses. There have been some joke posts and far-fetched ideas about what is going on in the picture. It does seem like a good approach to make a guess beyond what you know, since the clues may later align with your posted guess, and you'll have hit upon the answer by luck quite early. Many people are sticking with their early guess until it's shown wrong--sensible, I think. Has anyone found the real reason why the Angry Man is angry yet? I can't say, of course.

-Erik

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04-09-2006 at 02:01 AM
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Chaco
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I think that, by now, the setting is definitely clear, but the events taking place still aren't.

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04-10-2006 at 08:03 PM
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roach strangler
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I don't really get what the clues do to help you... :blush
04-11-2006 at 02:57 AM
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Pinnacle
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quote:
roach strangler wrote:
I don't really get what the clues do to help you... :blush


The puzzle is similar to these.
Each clue is a description of something in the picture.

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04-11-2006 at 03:20 AM
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Doom
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quote:
ErikH2000 wrote:
quote:
Tahnan wrote:
Would it make sense to label the pieces as they appear? By picture three, I've already lost track of which square is the podium and which square is the standing man.

Sure, but I didn't do that because it would have taken a lot more time to position the text so that all 76 clues are clearly labelled. You may wish to maintain your own working image with extra labels to show where things are.

-Erik
Does anyone happen to have something like this, and would like to share? Last time I checked the clues, they were at like 25 or so. Now I could try to get some sense into the situation, but it's an awfully tedious job to collect all that information first into an understandable format.
04-16-2006 at 09:32 PM
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Znirk
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File: angryman_76.jpg (98 KB)
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icon Re: The Angry Man (+6)  
The attached image has everything up to Clue 61 labeled (with numbers only -- refer to the Submission Topic for text).

(Erik, the way I read your comment above you did give permission to modify your Angry Man images; hope you don't mind my posting a modified version.)

[Edit: complete]

[Last edited by Znirk at 04-21-2006 06:29 PM : attachment update]
04-17-2006 at 09:14 PM
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