Search found 501 matches

by Clive Brooker
Sun Sep 10, 2017 7:37 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Things you can't do that it always seems like everyone else can
Replies: 51
Views: 2603

Re: Things you can't do that it always seems like everyone else can

Jennifer Steadman wrote:
Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:40 pm
- boil an egg (although i've only ever tried to boil 8 at once)
Therein lies your mistake. The correct number to boil at once is 7 (in a suitably sized pan).
by Clive Brooker
Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:42 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: (I Think I'm Going To) Snap General Election Poll
Replies: 81
Views: 7016

Re: (I Think I'm Going To) Snap General Election Poll

- What was the fucking point of the Fixed Term Parliaments Act?? I think the Fixed Term Parliaments Act is a good thing. Just because we have the most inept opposition in history doesn't make it not so. There was every reason for Labour to reject May's call for a GE, but Corbyn seems to be living i...
by Clive Brooker
Tue Jul 05, 2016 5:51 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: EU Referendum
Replies: 182
Views: 10598

Re: EU Referendum

A few people have made similar points and I think it's worth repeating. People voted out for all sorts of reasons (whether valid or not) - e.g. the perceived bureaucracy or lack of democracy of the EU, immigration levels, sovereignty, lack of jobs, low wages, the shape of bananas, and even good old...
by Clive Brooker
Mon Jun 27, 2016 11:35 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: EU Referendum
Replies: 182
Views: 10598

Re: EU Referendum

The reason that I don't mind sounding undemocratic about this is that there is anecdotal evidence that some people who voted Leave regretting the way they voted (now that they see that no-one appears to have any coherent plan as to what to do next). A second referendum potentially saves those peopl...
by Clive Brooker
Sun Jun 26, 2016 1:17 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: EU Referendum
Replies: 182
Views: 10598

Re: EU Referendum

Absolutely no way that enough Leavers have felt 'Bregret' to change the result. I don't know this to be true. Certainly if another vote were held tomorrow, then barring a statistical fluke the result wouldn't be 51.9%-48.1%. I don't have any problem imagining that a substantial proportion of leaver...
by Clive Brooker
Sat Jun 25, 2016 2:55 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: EU Referendum
Replies: 182
Views: 10598

Re: EU Referendum

I've just returned from a remote Scottish island, and this is all quite a surprise. I wish people would stop being nice to Cameron, or even worse feeling sorry for him. He gambled Britain as we know it for his own personal gain - an almost unimaginably high stake which he didn't own in the first pla...
by Clive Brooker
Fri Apr 22, 2016 7:49 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Wednesday 20th April
Replies: 11
Views: 886

Re: Spoilers for Wednesday 20th April

Susie should ask the contestant to spell their word if in her opinion there's any doubt over whether they've got it right, and I think this is exactly the policy they have. When you put it like that it sounds quite unsatisfactory because it's entirely down to Susie's subjective opinion of whether a...
by Clive Brooker
Fri Jan 29, 2016 3:19 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?
Replies: 134
Views: 6121

Re: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?

Fantastic research, it goes without saying.

I think I'm right in saying that the selection which makes the game hardest (fewest games solvable) is 1,1,2,2,3,3. This is also the only selection where it is impossible not to max the round whatever the target.
by Clive Brooker
Sun Jan 17, 2016 11:09 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: How many UK cities have you been to?
Replies: 40
Views: 1943

Re: How many UK cities have you been to?

I can stretch to 57. All except Bradford, Durham, Ely, Hull, Peterborough, Ripon, Sunderland, Bangor, St Asaph, Armagh and Lisburn. I've probably given more priority to exploring these islands as compared to the rest of the world than most do, so it may not be entirely and age thing. Quite a few hav...
by Clive Brooker
Sun Jan 17, 2016 10:49 am
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?
Replies: 134
Views: 6121

Re: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?

If you want the hardest possible variant, what about choosing six from 1-100 with equal probability? You'd want two of each in the pack I would imagine. Or perhaps this already exists.
by Clive Brooker
Sat Jan 16, 2016 9:08 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: How many countries have you been to?
Replies: 142
Views: 8407

Re: How many countries have you been to?

My list in entirely restricted to Western Europe. In chronological order: UK (4) Ireland (1966) Denmark (1979) Belgium, Luxembourg, West Germany, Switzerland (1980) France (1982) Portugal (1992) Italy, San Marino, Austria, Liechtenstein (2013) The 2026 eclipse will probably rectify the surprising om...
by Clive Brooker
Thu Jan 14, 2016 2:00 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?
Replies: 134
Views: 6121

Re: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?

The point with this one though Clive is that you can only use integers on the show (and on Apterous), so it is necessary to multiply by 75 before dividing by 100. According to Countdown rules it's unsolvable without going to 99,600. Essentially the whole thing is a variant on the 937.5 trick, i.e. ...
by Clive Brooker
Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:20 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?
Replies: 134
Views: 6121

Re: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?

We probably have a winner. Numbers: 100 75 50 25 3 3 Target: 996 found solution: 50 + 3 = 53 53 * 25 = 1325 1325 + 3 = 1328 1328 * 75 = 99600 99600 / 100 = 996 number of operations attempted: 1685356 number of solutions: 1 There must be something better than that, surely? I would argue that there i...
by Clive Brooker
Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:50 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?
Replies: 134
Views: 6121

Re: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?

Thomas Carey wrote:What about something like 100*75+6-6/25? 7500 is your intermediate, but...
Any decent solver would regard that as equivalent to 100*75/25.
by Clive Brooker
Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:27 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?
Replies: 134
Views: 6121

Re: How many Numbers puzzles are there in total?

I've dug up my old code (and made a couple of tweaks) and it can chow through all the standard numbers games, including recording an optimal* solution to each one, in a matter of minutes. I'm happy to use it to answer any nagging questions people might have that haven't yet been answered. Here's on...
by Clive Brooker
Sun Jan 03, 2016 5:11 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: More work for the Countdown team
Replies: 5
Views: 921

Re: More work for the Countdown team

James Laverty wrote:Still have to put up with it for another year though. Personally I hope with more episodes needed it means we might get some more specials!
That is a big assumption.
by Clive Brooker
Tue Dec 08, 2015 7:09 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: New -IZE words, whose -ISE variants come up blank in the search tool and are not specified
Replies: 33
Views: 2016

Re: New -IZE words, whose -ISE variants come up blank in the search tool and are not specified

Using dead-tree ODE: A player offers a common everyday word such as SELFIES or FRACKING, and to everyone's surprise it's disallowed. Susie explains "Sorry, we're still using a dictionary that was printed in 2009 and which OUP have no plans to update , and that word wasn't in common enough usage bac...
by Clive Brooker
Sat Nov 21, 2015 7:55 am
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

That's still not helpful because I just scrolled down to the bottom of the thread and saw the spoiler before the spoiler space. Plus it would be hard to read later posts (like this) without seeing it. Quite. It would've been much better to put the comment in the spoiler thread, making the reference...
by Clive Brooker
Thu Nov 19, 2015 11:43 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Monday 16 November 2015 (Series 73 Prelim 94)
Replies: 17
Views: 975

Re: Spoilers for Monday 16 November 2015 (Series 73 Prelim 94)

I haven't noticed this. Do you have any examples in mind? Basically any time she's incorrectly disallowed a word. E.g. RIGHTEST v BENTER . There's no direct proof, but I can imagine a "normal" contestant struggling to get BENTER past DC. Since the "very strange" pronouncement, my impression is that...
by Clive Brooker
Mon Nov 16, 2015 10:39 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Monday 16 November 2015 (Series 73 Prelim 94)
Replies: 17
Views: 975

Re: Spoilers for Monday 16 November 2015 (Series 73 Prelim 94)

Tony Atkins wrote:According to apteous FAUXEST is allowed as a beater
Using the established criterion of being very strange, I wouldn't be surprised if this were disallowed.
by Clive Brooker
Fri Nov 13, 2015 8:13 am
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

Is this the new spoiler thread?
by Clive Brooker
Wed Nov 11, 2015 5:14 am
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Supreme Championship (Mark I) Question
Replies: 6
Views: 1075

Re: Supreme Championship (Mark I) Question

At about 4:05 in this clip , Whiteley appears to be telling us that they're about to invite applications from all and sundry for the first time. I'm sure I remember reading (on GevinCountdown perhaps?) that up to this point it had all been done through the Scrabble scene. Can someone confirm? If tha...
by Clive Brooker
Fri Nov 06, 2015 9:27 am
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How do I know if my word is valid?
Replies: 29
Views: 6114

Re: How do I know if my word is valid?

My post was sarcastic. I don't think Clive's was though. Correct. My point was that an online dictionary for general use probably wants to do things like pushing you towards what it thinks you meant if you enter an invalid word. It will also devote a lot of its energy to the meanings of the words i...
by Clive Brooker
Thu Nov 05, 2015 9:01 am
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: How do I know if my word is valid?
Replies: 29
Views: 6114

Re: How do I know if my word is valid?

You'd think that with an online dictionary you could just enter a word in the search box, and if it's a word then it'll find it, and if it isn't then it won't. Sadly, it doesn't seem that this is the case with ODO... I'm sure that when the ODO was being put together there were many competing requir...
by Clive Brooker
Fri Oct 30, 2015 3:13 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Thursday October 29th 2015 (S73 P82)
Replies: 25
Views: 1212

Re: Spoilers for Thursday October 29th 2015 (S73 P82)

Interesting, MILEAGES and MILAGE(S) don't seem to be valid any more. When I watched earlier today I thought Susie was implying this, but having just watched again (to check that I was happy with the comments I was about to make) I have the impression that a bit might've been edited out. But at my a...
by Clive Brooker
Fri Oct 30, 2015 1:14 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Thursday October 29th 2015 (S73 P82)
Replies: 25
Views: 1212

Re: Spoilers for Thursday October 29th 2015 (S73 P82)

Interesting, MILEAGES and MILAGE(S) don't seem to be valid any more. When I watched earlier today I thought Susie was implying this, but having just watched again (to check that I was happy with the comments I was about to make) I have the impression that a bit might've been edited out. But at my a...
by Clive Brooker
Wed Oct 28, 2015 7:32 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Tuesday October 27th 2015 (S73 P80)
Replies: 13
Views: 872

Re: Spoilers for Tuesday October 27th 2015 (S73 P80)

Interesting looking at the solver for the 2nd numbers game. It must have a glitch somewhere, as it seems to suggest only one method to solve the numbers, yet it's not the way that Rachel (and me) did......... It's a "weakness" that is acknowledged in the FAQs , but the author seems to be trying to ...
by Clive Brooker
Sat Sep 19, 2015 8:57 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for S22 P10 (repeated on Friday 18th September 2015)
Replies: 10
Views: 499

Re: Spoilers for S22 P10 (repeated on Friday 18th September 2015)

Mark Deeks wrote:22 series in and Carol's still using two hands to put the tiles in.
I think tile technology was still in its infancy.
by Clive Brooker
Sat Sep 19, 2015 8:53 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for S22 P3 (repeated on Tuesday 15th September 2015)
Replies: 18
Views: 618

Re: Spoilers for S22 P3 (repeated on Tuesday 15th September 2015)

I wasn't having a go at James. Far from it. I do think there's a problem in that someone reading the recaps now can't be sure what standard was used when it was created, as this example shows. There used to be a pdf version of the COD8 on a file-sharing site, now sadly departed. I'm pretty sure some...
by Clive Brooker
Thu Sep 17, 2015 8:40 pm
Forum: Countdown - Historical recaps
Topic: Monday 8th July 1991 (Series 22, Prelim 6)
Replies: 4
Views: 1222

Re: Monday 8th July 1991 (Series 22, Prelim 6)

I watched the morning repeat of this today and since no-one has started a spoiler thread, I think it would be a bit much to start one now. I got 81 playing along at home, equalling DC in every round, so I thought I might have maxed it. But it turns out I only Jossed* it. *Verstappen joke (as in Max...
by Clive Brooker
Wed Sep 16, 2015 8:07 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for S22 P3 (repeated on Tuesday 15th September 2015)
Replies: 18
Views: 618

Re: Spoilers for S22 P3 (repeated on Tuesday 15th September 2015)

HRYVNIA in round 2, if it's in the old dictionary. Edit: Apparently not according to the wiki. :( Since the recap has HRYVNIA out but ANGREZI in, it must've been done using the original NODE. I think some recappers did manually remove words not in the dictionary of the time, but I'm pretty sure Jam...
by Clive Brooker
Tue Sep 15, 2015 2:12 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for S22 P1 (repeated on Monday 14th September 2015)
Replies: 3
Views: 428

Re: Spoilers for S22 P1 (repeated on Monday 14th September 2015)

Graeme Cole wrote:
Rhys Benjamin wrote:Amazed UNFAZED wasn't in!
It was UNRAZED.
As a matter of interest, UNFAZED was a new entry in the COD8 (1990).
by Clive Brooker
Fri Aug 21, 2015 10:11 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Charity/Effective Altruism
Replies: 53
Views: 2075

Re: Charity/Effective Altruism

But anyway, what makes a human life more valuable than an animal life? Your comments are all about animals which are kept by humans. Whilst I would naturally like to minimise the suffering of kept animals, it's not a subject about which I have the greatest concern. I often speculate that the world ...
by Clive Brooker
Mon May 18, 2015 8:17 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: You Are The Ref
Replies: 136
Views: 11375

Re: You Are The Ref

Graeme, do you have any data on games where errors have been corrected during the game? You'll only find the one I've quoted in you happen to remember it or if you trawl through Mike Brown's scans. Sadly, in the mad rush to complete the historical recapping project, nuggets of information like this...
by Clive Brooker
Tue May 12, 2015 9:04 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)
Replies: 58
Views: 2630

Re: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)

I don't think it's fair to describe the Canadian proposal as offering "limited proportionality. I think any sort of normal voting pattern will give fully proportional results, subject to rounding limitations of course. It's easy enough to construct a situation which will break it, such as one party ...
by Clive Brooker
Mon May 11, 2015 8:14 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)
Replies: 58
Views: 2630

Re: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)

I had a skim through it, and it seems quite similar to mixed-member proportional representation, which exists in a few places (Ian was saying they have that in Scotland). Except that this system doesn't work using party lists, which is obviously a bonus. One problem is that it still works uses FPTP...
by Clive Brooker
Mon May 11, 2015 3:06 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)
Replies: 58
Views: 2630

Re: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)

When you say there are perfectly fair systems, did you have any particular ones in mind? All electoral systems have certain problems. Not suggesting your're predictable, but I kinda knew you'd ask that. I see you've beaten me to the draw, but here goes anyway. Have you come across this ? To a layma...
by Clive Brooker
Mon May 11, 2015 10:56 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)
Replies: 58
Views: 2630

Re: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)

I'm all for proportional representation. And I think the latest result just underlines how undemocratic our system is. Read this . That's all very fine, but I think this election has been a disaster for proponents of electoral reform. A few weeks ago there was an article in the Independent (I think...
by Clive Brooker
Sat May 09, 2015 8:53 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)
Replies: 58
Views: 2630

Re: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)

The fact that the pre-election polls were so consistent suggests to me that they were as near as they could have been to being correct at the time they were conducted, and that the differences observed in the final results were caused by last-minute movements or very late decisions. From time to tim...
by Clive Brooker
Sat May 09, 2015 9:38 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)
Replies: 58
Views: 2630

Re: Who are you voting for in the General Election 2015? (Poll)

Steven M. McCann wrote:Once again great forecasting by the pre-election pollsters! who on earth did they they poll? liars, loonies, toddlers, windup merchants?
How on earth could they get the result so badly wrong?
What evidence is there that the pre-election polls were wrong?
by Clive Brooker
Tue Apr 28, 2015 8:37 am
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *
Replies: 98
Views: 5324

Re: The General Election of Thursday 7 May 2015 *

So what do we make of the Liberal Democrats saying that the party that gets the most seats should have the priority to making a government? The LibDems are expected to be the 4th largest in terms of seats this time, and if they want to be at the forefront of negotiations they'll need to position th...
by Clive Brooker
Fri Mar 27, 2015 5:05 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Friday March 27th 2015 (S72 P56)
Replies: 7
Views: 906

Re: Spoilers for Friday March 27th 2015 (S72 P56)

LITTLER/LITTLEST were explicitly specified in the COD8 and COD9, and derivable as regular forms in the COD7 (a two-syllable adjective ending in -le after a consonant). I think "more little" sounds ludicrous and clearly there are degrees of littleness, so I can understand Susie's obvious surprise. Th...
by Clive Brooker
Fri Feb 20, 2015 7:21 am
Forum: Countdown - Current recaps
Topic: Monday 16th February 2015 (series 72, prelim 31)
Replies: 9
Views: 954

Re: Monday 16th February 2015 (series 72, prelim 31)

Gavin Chipper wrote:Well, I suppose it's interesting to note these things in the historical record, and it's also useful for threads like this.
Ironically, had these things not been noted in the historical record, analyses such as the one in the thread referred to might have had some validity.
by Clive Brooker
Mon Feb 02, 2015 11:05 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers For Monday January 26th 2015
Replies: 54
Views: 2340

Re: Spoilers For Monday January 26th 2015

It could have been a properly thought out system. It just turned out not to be. Even if it were, it wouldn't automatically follow that it always means what you think it ought to. For example, CLEAROUT redirects to clear-out, thereby showing you the error of your ways rather than condoning the use o...
by Clive Brooker
Sat Jan 17, 2015 11:42 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Monday January 13th 2015 (S72 P7)
Replies: 21
Views: 1429

Re: Spoilers for Tuesday January 13th 2015 (S72 P7)

Your objectives and Countdown's are somewhat different. Maybe. But what do you think Countdown's objectives are? I would imagine that Team Countdown's primary objective is to continue being paid to produce the show for as long as possible. Do you remember the days when we used to make helpful comme...
by Clive Brooker
Thu Jan 15, 2015 10:29 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Monday January 13th 2015 (S72 P7)
Replies: 21
Views: 1429

Re: Spoilers for Tuesday January 13th 2015 (S72 P7)

If you type in PONGEES it finds the entry for PONGEE. Have you discussed with OUP what can and can't be inferred in this situation, or are you just guessing? Some words don't come up when you type in the plural. It's more than a guess. It's really the most sensible way for Countdown to base their r...
by Clive Brooker
Wed Jan 14, 2015 8:00 am
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Monday January 13th 2015 (S72 P7)
Replies: 21
Views: 1429

Re: Spoilers for Tuesday January 13th 2015 (S72 P7)

Gavin Chipper wrote:If you type in PONGEES it finds the entry for PONGEE.
Have you discussed with OUP what can and can't be inferred in this situation, or are you just guessing?
by Clive Brooker
Mon Dec 22, 2014 5:22 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

It's certainly possible in principle to write a script that reads the wikitext of an episode, recalculates the max according to a supplied wordlist, and then updates the page. Getting the wordlist isn't trivial, though, even with a copy of the dictionary. It's not something that can be done entirel...
by Clive Brooker
Mon Dec 22, 2014 2:31 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

FWIW, I do usually point out that information about letters maxes prior to the introduction of the ODE2r can be wrong ( example , example , example , example , example ), I just forgot to include such a note in this instance. I'm certainly not intentionally having a go at anyone - just glad of the ...
by Clive Brooker
Mon Dec 22, 2014 12:28 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

A couple of surprises though - Simon Born getting 30 maxes in three consecutive games. Also, Susan Shilton getting 20 in the 9-round era. I had to look both of these people up. Also, that no-one managed a minimum of five maxes (the minimum you need for most of the maxes in a game) in their octorun ...
by Clive Brooker
Sun Dec 21, 2014 10:12 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

A couple of surprises though - Simon Born getting 30 maxes in three consecutive games. Also, Susan Shilton getting 20 in the 9-round era. I had to look both of these people up. Also, that no-one managed a minimum of five maxes (the minimum you need for most of the maxes in a game) in their octorun ...
by Clive Brooker
Wed Dec 17, 2014 10:49 am
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

Thank you, yes that one is a bit tricky, I'm surprised it is rated at only 70% on the WTP solver tool (although I've long believed that it sometimes knocks off too many difficulty points for games with solutions that don't happen to use all 6 numbers). When I was hunting for 6 small examples I simp...
by Clive Brooker
Sat Nov 22, 2014 10:41 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

Cheers Clive, that certainly covers one of the areas I was looking for. I wonder which pot all the games with 90%-98% difficulty get shoved into? I'm pretty sure that the proportion of games getting the 99% rating is much lower than 1%. I've always assumed that William T-P's criteria value division...
by Clive Brooker
Thu Nov 20, 2014 2:33 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: Ask Graeme?
Replies: 1259
Views: 98132

Re: Ask Graeme?

This might be more of an "Ask Anyone" but I'm on the lookout for any exceptionally difficult numbers games (ie. games that score 99% on the solver tool, and ideally with just a single solution) that anyone may have come across that meet any of the following criteria:- - Six small selections - A rel...
by Clive Brooker
Mon Nov 17, 2014 12:11 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: People you shouldn't trust
Replies: 496
Views: 34491

Re: People you shouldn't trust

Are they really even cats? The "official" family name is Felidae but we informally call them cats, because cats are the most familiar animal to most of us in this family. That's why actual cats don't have another name - because it's not really a family name. Whether you like it or not, the term cat...
by Clive Brooker
Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:33 pm
Forum: Off-topic
Topic: People you shouldn't trust
Replies: 496
Views: 34491

Re: People you shouldn't trust

Gavin Chipper wrote:People who think they're being really clever by saying "sabre-tooth cat" instead of "sabre-tooth" tiger. Get over yourselves - they're sabre-tooth tigers.
The sabre-toothed tiger (smilodon) is the most recent of a number of species of sabre-toothed cats that have existed from time to time.
by Clive Brooker
Thu Nov 13, 2014 10:41 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Thursday November 13th 2014 (S71 P86)
Replies: 10
Views: 990

Re: Spoilers for Thursday November 13th 2014 (S71 P86)

Well, I wouldn't there to be any subjective decisions made, because contestants then have to guess whether a lexicographer might consider a word to be reasonable. Also, Susie has used her own subjective judgement in the past and it has led to criticism on here. That doesn't mean FEINTER has to be a...
by Clive Brooker
Thu Nov 13, 2014 4:34 pm
Forum: Countdown - Spoilers
Topic: Spoilers for Thursday November 13th 2014 (S71 P86)
Replies: 10
Views: 990

Re: Spoilers for Thursday November 13th 2014 (S71 P86)

Interesting that FEINTER is a word today. An extra dose of blood-pressure medication needed I think. Having a blanket one-syllable rule would OK if it could be applied consistently, but it plainly can't be. As far as I'm aware the current dictionary gives no support for it's continued half-use, whi...
by Clive Brooker
Sun Oct 26, 2014 9:12 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: You Are The Ref
Replies: 136
Views: 11375

Re: You Are The Ref

Even early in the game (round 3) people might pick numbers based on the score. Also, while it's rare for a letters choice to reflect such tactical thinking, someone might still decide to risk a word or not depending on the current score. So it's difficult to know where you draw the line, even if th...
by Clive Brooker
Sat Oct 25, 2014 9:43 pm
Forum: Countdown - General
Topic: You Are The Ref
Replies: 136
Views: 11375

Re: You Are The Ref

Personally I take a completely opposite view. IMO changing the result of a round retrospectively is worse than the problem it's attempting to resolve. Once a round is completed, the adjudication should stand, no matter what. This is the way practically all competitive activities with a formal set of...