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 zenobia43 06-07-2013 12:57 AM

Great puzzle

5 Attachment(s)
The recent post by BillsBayou entitled Thursday's Broken Ladder was a real stumper unless all the exclusions were extracted from the 3 ordering clues.

I think this puzzle is one of the best because it starts out like it's going to be one of the easiest puzzles ever, and then, wham, you've made the first pass through the clues, and you're looking at way too much white space.

Spoiler alert ! The image of the solution (I hope) is at the end of the next post. So don't peek at that one if you want to tackle this one without using a hint.

Here is the starting point.

Attachment 69

Clues 1, 2, 5, 7, 8, and 10 are fairly routine. They give us a couple positive relations and some ordinary looking Xs. I have not placed the Xs that result from the positive relations yet so the other Xs stand out better.

Attachment 70

Then we go through the 3 ordering clues: 3, 6, and 9. Nothing fancy yet; just filling in the routine stuff.

Attachment 74

Then it is time to transpose, make another pass through the ordering clues, and transpose again. We're leaving the thorough processing of clues 4, 5, and 7 until the next step in hopes of resolving at least one of them with all the Xs so far.

Attachment 71

Now we process clues 4, 5, and 7. We fill in the nominal exclusions, and we notice that we can get a few extra Xs. Sea bass cannot be Clara or port, and shiraz cannot be \$26.99 or red snapper. Hmm - that shiraz column that intersects with the entrees is looking interesting.

Attachment 72

Unfortunately, clues 4, 5, and 7 cannot be resolved yet.

The story continues ...

 zenobia43 06-07-2013 01:14 AM

3 Attachment(s)
Now here is where it gets interesting.

The ordering clues, 3, 6, and 9 can be laid out like the Baron shows in the video. We already have a couple positive relations, so I will include those in the layout.

bordeaux -> beef stir-fry = Hannah -> sea bass = Joanna

shiraz -> Clara

Each of the arrows is the same distance.

First thing we notice from the layout that starts with bordeaux is these exclusions (Xs):

bordeaux cannot be beef stir-fry, Hannah, sea bass, or Joanna. The new Xs are shaded in yellow.

Attachment 75

With the shiraz -> Clara layout way on the left, we see that shiraz and bordeaux categories line up in the two layouts, and the distance is the same.

Yippee - Clara cannot be Hannah or beef stir-fry. Duh - we already knew that.

Sliding the shiraz -> Clara layout to the right, we see that the Clara and Joanna categories line up, and the distance is the same. Should we be celebrating yet?

shiraz cannot be Hannah or beef stir-fry. The new Xs are shaded in yellow.

Attachment 76

Now that's progress. We now know that shiraz must be sea bass, and because of all these fixed linkages, the rest of the puzzle is going to fall into place pretty quickly.

Spoiler - the next image is my shot at the solution.

Attachment 77

 stanstar 12-15-2013 09:01 AM

How do you open a thumnail grid with clues? I clicked on the image to enlarge it and I think it appears behind the window I am reading. I can see a black area to the right of my window behind. Unsuccessful atempt to enlarge thumnail. Any help would be appreciated.

Stan

 zenobia43 12-15-2013 09:15 PM

If you have Internet Explorer, try that browser.

This used to work (back in June) in Firefox, but now the image enlargement is not brought to the foreground.

Internet Explorer 11 renders the image differently. There is no black background, and the image shows up where you can see it.