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Old 03-07-2010, 07:33 PM
pcuser pcuser is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 167
Default Is it even possible?

I've just finished reading this post from start to finish. Is it even possible to write a program that can solve a puzzle automatically. If so, then these speeds make sense as computers are fast enough. However, I can't believe many people can write or even know how to write code for this purpose. As far as using a spreadsheet to solve them, I wondered if one could do so when I learned how to solve these puzzles on this site. However, even if you created a spreadsheet that could do it, it would still require time to input data from the clues to allow the spreadsheet to work, thus defeating the intent. When I considered a spreadsheet, I thought of it as an intellectual challenge to myself, not as a way to get a leg up in competition. I have found that my times and depth of understanding has dramatically improved as I do more puzzles. I also don't understand someone being perturbed about fast times as there will always be someone better out there and I do these puzzles for myself, not to impress anyone else. I guess that's just me however.
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Old 04-01-2010, 12:01 AM
bobcat1 bobcat1 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 1
Default Multiple Answers

I haven't played to long but I have found some puzzles for which a number of answers work, but the site only accepts one. So there is a lack of info in the clues in some cases
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Old 11-02-2012, 10:05 PM
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Laura Laura is offline
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 79
Exclamation Fast Times

I know this issue was raised a few years ago, but I'm seeing quite a few average solve times that are absolutely astounding! It takes an average of 30 mouse clicks to solve a puzzle and for a very fast reader, it would take each question about 2 seconds to read.

I've solved a few in about 80 seconds (very few ), but am wondering what the secret is for the consistent low scores.

Last edited by Laura; 11-02-2012 at 10:08 PM.
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Old 04-08-2013, 03:50 PM
DumperDimple DumperDimple is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5

I just solved a 4x4 puzzle in 59 seconds, my first ever under one minute (although I've come close before).

No cheating, just logic, and luck, because if the clues come in a convenient order it makes it quicker to solve.

Definitely doable.
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Old 04-08-2013, 10:41 PM
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Laura Laura is offline
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 79

I wasn't talking about individual puzzles — since that post a few months ago I actually did one in 40 seconds, but that's because I had done the same puzzle less than an hour before. My solve time on some puzzles has lowered quite a bit and I'm not hooting anymore when I solve a puzzle under 80 seconds.

My question was about average solve times of 30 and 40 seconds. And individual game solves of 14 seconds. (Interestingly we haven't seen those since the new puzzles were introduced — they don't have such discernible patterns.)

Last edited by Laura; 04-09-2013 at 02:31 AM.
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Old 06-12-2013, 12:23 PM
DumperDimple DumperDimple is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5
Default So does it count or not?

Hi, I just solved a puzzle in a new personal record time of 46 seconds. Am I right in thinking that it won't be counted toward my stats because it's too fast? I solved the puzzle straight-ahead, no cheating of any kind, no pattern recognition... it was just a particularly easy 4x4 puzzle. It would be sad if there were a disincentive to solve puzzles in under a minute because they might not be counted. Just sayin.
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Old 06-12-2013, 12:29 PM
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admin admin is offline
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 184

Hi DumperDimple -

Your solve will still be counted toward your stats, both monthly and lifetime.

Thanks for playing,
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Old 06-12-2013, 11:41 PM
Nusa Nusa is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 2

Hmm, it only took me a few minutes to figure out one way to do it, at least for a computer professional like myself. Input is easy, all you need is prior access to puzzles so they can be solved, which is also easy if you think about it.

Certainly you can detect the more obvious users, but I don't see any way to eliminate the possibility other than handing out unique puzzles every time.
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Old 12-12-2013, 07:50 PM
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gypsywyz gypsywyz is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: There
Posts: 6

It's not about access to the puzzles, it's about repeating patterns....I find that a lot when I get working a lot of puzzles in one day. After awhile I start seeing the same patterns in the grids.
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Old 12-14-2013, 08:38 AM
bocci bocci is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 21

Confession Time!

I've never achieved a monthly trophy, but I had a simple system to achieve record times when I felt so inclined.

Before Logic Puzzles added heavily to their puzzle list, I worked 4x5's exclusively, and soon discovered that the solutions to puzzles containing a '5 person' clue could be predicted solely from the 'x' pattern resulting from that single clue. Of the thousands of 4x5 puzzles, there were probably only about three-hundred patterns, and it seemed like two-thirds of those contained one '5-person' clue. And those '5-person' clues always resulted in nine 'x's. Most of those made for 4 'x's in the uppermost 5x15 squares. I focused on those.

I printed up sheets of blank grids, onto which I would record the four upper deck 'x's from the '5-person' clue of a given puzzle, and then, after solving, I would also record the 15 answer circles. Repeating this until I had around 120 distinct patterns was enough so that I could simply 'look up' the answer to a large percentage of the 4x5's that I encountered. I arranged the patterns in a quasi-numerical order according to where the 'x's fell row/column-wise, so I could quickly locate a particular 'x' pattern/solution that matched a new puzzle, and simply plug in the answers. It was crude, but I achieved some blazingly fast 'solve' times. Several were in the thirty-something seconds range.

My main motivation was to equal, or eclipse, the crazy records I saw. After doing so, I was satisfied that they were achieved by methods essentially the same as mine, and I threw all my cheat sheets away. But it was fun thinking about how it so irked and confounded some players. There you go!

Last edited by bocci; 12-15-2013 at 11:08 AM.
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