The Ecphorizer

Le Coin d'Archimède 4
Nikolai Ivanovich Lobachevski

Issue #14 (October 1982)

An archaeologist sets out to cross a desert 1,150 miles wide. His truck gets 10 miles per gallon of fuel and can carry a total of 75 gallons, including the fuel in its tank. There are no supplies in the desert, but fuel may be safely left along the way. What procedure should he follow to cross the desert, using the least possible amount of fuel?

Last Month's Solution. P = 14; Q = 68. Q is simply the lowest number of members in any one category. P is calculated by subtracting the number in each category from 100, adding the remainders, and subtracting the sum from 100. Thus 27 + 22 + 32 + 5 = 86; 100 - 86 = 14. 

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Nikolai Ivanovich Lobachevski




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Chorhomographs
Ed Oram

Issue #14 (October 1982)

For about three months now I've been helping fellow Atlanta M, Joel Chinkes, to increase his list of homographs. These are words which can be pronounced correctly two ways, with a separate meaning for each pronunciation Common examples are CONTRACT, ENTRANCE and BASS.

Trickier examples of homographs are SEWER, WINDY, DOES, and EVENING, but by now the list contains such Mensa-worth dillies as UNIONIZE (UN-IONIZE), NUMBER, INTER, and PUSSY. Our search for ever more examples has become almost compulsive. We scan books, billboards, and cereal boxes hoping to find words like COAX, MOPED, and COOP - all subject to extra syllables, or DESERT, POW, and REFUSE, subject to different emphasis and vowel changes. Joel welcomes any additions to his list, but please check a current copy before suggesting LIVE or COMBINE. [Ed. Note 2006:  This list is no longer accepting contributions.'/>

Sometimes we get lucky and find a new word - either during the night or maybe driving around only to forget the word before listing it. There are many homographs besides the 139 listed to date. Words like CONVICT are not true homographs because both pronunciations have the same root, but we list them anyway.

Incidentally, I realized that I had a three-way homograph on my hands on seeing the word PRESENT which can mean "up-to-date," "give to," or "sent previously" with a separate pronunciation for each. This is the only triple homograph discovered, so far as we know, and if so, I'd like to coin a term for such words: ORHOMOGRAPH (the OR signifying another alternative, and the ORHOM approximating the name if its discoverer.) If a quadruple homograph is discovered (REPRESENT, perhaps?, its term shall be the CHORHOMOgraph to memorial Chinkes, and to signify the mental chores that each new homograph represents. 

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Nikolai Ivanovich Lobachevski




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