Thursday, 15 November 2012

Ep 93: Brett Chaiyawat, Adam Dawson (November 14, 2012; originally aired December 8, 2010)

Rounds: Here.

A quick notice about upcoming posts: Obviously I'll not be reblogging the finals episodes, but I shall aim to put something up of interest.  Watch this space, as it were.

This is Brett Chaiyawat's fourth game, and the last before the finals series.  If he wins tonight he carries over to the next series with four wins, which would put him in decent position to get to the finals.  That said, his scores have been a bit low for a finalist and that may prove to be an issue.  Anyway, Richard asks him about his techniques for the show; Brett says that in the letters rounds he tries to get a good balance between the vowels and the consonants so that hopefully he can find a longer word.  In the numbers rounds he is a convert to the balanced mix, which has worked out reasonably well for him so far the times that he has used it.

Tonight's challenger is Adam Dawson, an engineer who specialises in steelwork; in particular, he deals with water tanks, the largest of which can hold up to six million litres.  Richard asks how Adam came to be in that line of business; Adam begins surprisingly by saying that it started when he had a whim to take up tenpin bowling.  On the very first night he walked in and two gentlemen were coming in with all their gear so he held the door open for them.  It turns out that they were his opponents and their team name was The Engineers.  Then a few months later Adam found himself out of a job and so asked them if they had any work for him, and that's how it started.

The contestants started out pretty equally, but Adam risked a fraction too much in the second letters round to allow Brett to get the lead.  Brett managed to extend that lead slightly in the second numbers round -- both had ended up with an invalid answer in the first one -- and Adam's chance of a comeback disappeared when he had another invalid answer on the last letters round.  Neither could solve the conundrum, and Brett took the win, 42 to 23.

I had a good game, although I was a handful of seconds too slow to spot the best answer in one letters round.  The rest of the main rounds were maximal, requiring finding some good words (or so I choose to believe).  Unfortunately I could not solve the conundrum within time either, taking just less than a minute all up to see the answer.  Still, it was a decent effort and another score in the sixties.

Round 1: I A O T R D A E C

This started out a bit amusingly from my point of view: After the first three vowels I was already thinking of the possible sevens of PAROTID or CAROTID, and in fact for each of the first three consonants I was thinking "it would be handy if the next consonant were..." and then the right one showed up.  The fourth consonant was delayed, but it also conformed to the pattern, so that was all rather helpful.

I had IOTA, RATIO, ADROIT, CAROTID, and CERATOID ("hornlike; horny"); I knew this latter thanks to earlier investigations on episode 361 (and before that on episode 347 under the variant form KERATOID).  It was also potentially there in episode 15, although in that case a longer word was found by David.  After time I noted down EROTICA as another seven.

Both contestants start off with six-letter words, Adam with TRACED and Brett with CREDIT.  David has found CERATOID, and states that it has been had previously on the show.  He can only be referring to episode 15, but no such mention went to air.

It looks like the only eight; the other sevens are RADIATE, REDCOAT ("a British soldier") / CORDATE ("heart-shaped, as a shell"), CORDITE (a type of explosive), and ACAROID ("a yellow or reddish resin which exudes from the trunk of the Australian grass tree of the genus Xanthorrhoea, and which is used in varnishes, lacquers, and in the manufacture of paper").


Scores: Brett 0 (6), Adam 0 (6), me 8

Round 2: R A M E D E I H L

I had MARE, DREAM, REMADE, wondered about REMAILED, and EMERALD.  Just after time expired I saw REMEDIAL as a sure eight, which made me more inclined to risk REMAILED as my only chance for a maximum game.  I really didn't like it, though, so I resigned myself to being short of the max and stayed with EMERALD.  That was the right decision, as REMAILED is not listed.

Brett has EMAILED for seven, and Adam chances REMAILED.  That's bad luck for him, as it is a good spot but definitely a risky play.  David mentions EMERALD as another seven, and then REMEDIAL as the eight.

That is the only eight; the other sevens are HEADIER and MEALIER.  Some sources would allow LIMEADE (which makes me think of various Enid Blyton books), but the Macquarie does not.

Adam: [invalid]

Scores: Brett 7 (13), Adam 0 (6), me 15

Round 3: Target 192 from 25 50 100 7 6 8

I recognised the target as 3*64, and thus 6*32; that quickly gave me the solution 192 = 6*(25 + 7).  Then I realised that it could also be expressed as 200 - 8, and there are many solutions to be found of that form.

Both contestants declare that they have reached the target.  Brett made a mess of things trying to do that, though, starting off with 7 - 6 + 50/25, which is 3.  Presumably he intended to make a 2 and multiply by the 100, but he added that extra 1 to it and things fell apart.  While Brett was explaining his solution, Adam realised that his answer used the 8 twice; presumably it was 8*25 - 8.

Lily comes through with a valid solution: 192 = 8*25 - (100/50 + 6).

Brett: [invalid]
Adam: [invalid]
Me: 192
Lily: 192

Scores: Brett 7 (13), Adam 0 (6), me 25

First break: BIAS CORE ("A group experience")

AEROBICS does not have to be in groups, of course, but it often is.

David's talk is about words that have derived from places in India: dumdum, bungalow, doolally, and calico.

Round 4: S O Z U G E C A N

I had ZONES, COZENS, and UNCAGES.  After time I spotted CANGUES (CANGUE: "(in China) a kind of portable pillory formerly worn about the neck by criminals") as an anagram of UNCAGES.

Both contestants have five-letter words this time, Brett with CAGES and Adam with CANES.  David points out that Brett just needed to insert the UN- in front of his word to get UNCAGES as a best result.

That's both sevens listed.  There are quite a few other sixes, some of which are: CANGUE / UNCAGE, GAUZES, OUNCES, and OCEANS / CANOES.

Brett: CAGES

Scores: Brett 7 (18), Adam 0 (11), me 32

Round 5: E I U T D B I S S


Both contestants have found DEBITS for six; David mentions BUSTED as another six, but has also found SUBEDITS for eight.

The other sevens are SUBEDIT, SUBSIDE, and STUDIES / TISSUED (TISSUE as a verb is marked as rare: "to weave, especially with threads of gold or silver"; also "to clothe or adorn with tissue").


Scores: Brett 7 (24), Adam 0 (17), me 40

Round 6: Target 561 from 50 75 3 6 6 3

Arguably I have failed to learn the lesson from yesterday's game, as again I focused on factorisation rather than the standard method.  In this case I recognised the target as the first Carmichael number, and its factorisation is 3*11*17.  There is a 3 handy but the other parts are awkward in isolation; also, 3*17 is 51 which can be made, but again the remaining 11 could be difficult.  That caused me to try to make the target as 3*187, and I then applied the standard method to 187; the pair of sixes do nicely for the offset, leaving the remaining task of getting to 175 from 3, 50, and 75.  Fortunately that can be done, and my solution was 561 = 3*(3*75 - 50 + 6 + 6).

After time I looked at more direct approaches and observed that, although the offset of 11 is difficult, adding 25 to it gives 36 which is much more manageable.  That leaves us wanting to get to 525 with a 6 available for tweaking, and one option is 561 = 6*(50 + 6) + 3*75.

Adam was not able to get very close, while Brett is eight away from the target with 553 = 6*75 + (6/3)*50 + 3.  Note that he could have got closer a couple of ways by tweaking with that final 3.

Lily has found a more direct approach to solving this as 525 + 36 with the solution 561 = 3*3*50 + 75 + 6*6.

Brett: 553
Adam: [not in range]
Me: 561
Lily: 561

Scores: Brett 7 (29), Adam 0 (17), me 50

Second break: REEK CALM ("Holy fish!"

A reference to the phrase "Holy MACKEREL!"

Round 7: O E O K T D T E M

Lots of unhelpful duplication here keeps word lengths low.  I had TOOK, MOOTED, DEMOTE, and TOOTED.

It's sixes again from the contestants, this time Adam has DEMOTE while Brett has EMOTED.  David mentions TOOTED as another six.

That is all the sixes listed.


Scores: Brett 13 (35), Adam 6 (23), me 56

Round 8: Target 846 from 25 100 8 1 6 2

I had a slight mis-step at the start, recalling a numbers round from episode 86 where making 840 as 8*105 led to a solution.  That left me wanting to solve it as 8*105 + 6, but the remaining numbers could not yield the 105 that I wanted.  It took a bit more fussing around before I finally realised that 106 was both easier to form than 105 and much more helpful for a solution.  The resulting solution is 846 = 8*(100 + 6) - 2.

Brett is one away with 845, but Adam declares that he has solved this.  He needed to outscore Brett on this round to have a chance, so it is a good time to come up with a solution.  Unfortunately for him, he gets as far as 8*100 before he realises that he has once again used the same number twice.  I'd guess that he had 8*100 + 8*6 - 2 and just needed the tweak.

That brings Brett's answer back into consideration, although he is guaranteed to win in any case at this point.  Brett had 845 = 8*100 + 2*25 - 6 + 1; that's just a short tweak away from a solution, and indeed Lily demonstrates it: 846 = 8*100 + (25 + 1)*2 - 6.

Brett: 845
Adam: [invalid]
Me: 846
Lily: 846

Scores: Brett 13 (42), Adam 6 (23), me 66


I got a bit hung up on the OUT- fragment here, and if that D were also a T then there would have been OUTFITTER available.  But that was hardly a helpful observation; I was not able to solve this within time, and as it turns out neither were the contestants.  It took me just around a minute in total to find FORTITUDE here.

Brett: [no answer]
Adam: [no answer]
Me: [no answer]

Final scores: Brett 13 (42), Adam 6 (23), me 66

The contestants were evenly matched on the letters tonight; Brett only outscored Adam because Adam overreached with REMAILED in round 2.  But Adam failed to have a valid answer to any numbers round, and that can be very costly; certainly it proved so here, despite Brett only managing to score twelve points from those rounds.

Brett lasts out the series, meaning that he will be back at the start of series two with a good chance of making it into those finals rankings; he'll be at least a five-game contestant, although his total of 154 is a bit low for four games.


Jan said...

Since I couldn't sleep, I have just played the game. Even though I am home lots, I go to a prison on Wed arvos, so have to play it later.

I had a pretty good game, but really fouled up the middle numbers round, and I could not find the conundrum even after many minutes, so gave up. I had another comfortable win against Brett.

EMAILED (7) wondered about remailed too
6*25+50-8= 192 (10)
CONGAS (6) - is this ok Geoff? I looked it up online, and it is a drum as well as a dance, so I am hoping it can be pluralised.
8*100 + (25+1)*2 - 6 = 846 (10)

When you are blogging something interesting over the finals, can you please put up a link to your old blogs of those games? Or is that asking too much? :)

Mike Backhouse said...

Here are mine:

50/25*100-8=192 (one of the many other 200-8 solutions)
CONGAS (me too Jan)
x- out of range
Geoff's solution

Geoff Bailey said...

Jan: Yes, I'll be giving links for the earlier finals posts; I meant to mention that but forgot, so thanks for reminding me.

I assume that CONGAS is fine, but I shall check it when I get home. My personal interpretation is that even as a dance it would be safely pluralisable, in sentences like "I have danced many congas in my life but that was the most frenetic" or somesuch. I also suspect that CONGA is a verb. Nicely done to get CAROTID.

Mike: I think your way to 192 is what Brett meant to do, but he got confused (as so easily happens) and erroneously added that one in.

Geoff Bailey said...

Looks like I was wrong about CONGA being a verb, but the drum sense is listed. So even if you were not comfortable with dances being pluralised, CONGAS is clearly fine.