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Messages - jancsika

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Words / Word suggestion: summons
« on: August 08, 2020, 03:28:51 AM »
This was not accepted in the MOMENTOUS 7 by many, whereas its plural "summonses" was! I guess this is because it's also  the second person singular of the verb "to summon", but it is nonetheless a fairly common singular noun in its own right and should be allowed, I  think.

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Words / Word suggestion: lossless
« on: August 01, 2020, 03:37:27 PM »
"Lossless" (and its opposite, "lossy ") qualify data compression algorithms where the original data can be faithfully recovered, or is irretrievably lost, respectively (.mp3 files are "lossy" and .wav files are "lossless" for example).

Yes, they are technical terms but they have been around for quite a while and would be good candidates for "rare words", at least.

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Words / Hippies
« on: July 27, 2020, 07:09:07 AM »
Not accepted, presumably because it's the plural of "hippie". However it is also the plural of "hippy" (which dictionaries list as a variant of "hippie" and which as an ageing hippy myself I am more familiar with!).

I accept that "hippie" might be more common, but I'd be curious to know if there is any rule governing cases where a word (such as hippies) is the plural of two different singular words (hippy, hippies) ?

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Words / Re: Common? Really??
« on: June 24, 2020, 10:53:02 PM »
I think, particularly with the 7-by-many puzzle, a word might get a low score not only because it is relatively rare, but because it’s combination of letters make it difficult to pick out (chihuahua, having 3 h’s, two u’s and two a’s being a case in point). In fact, it is this very feature which differentiate it from the other puzzles, in my mind.

 (From this you might have guessed that a) I ‘m a 7-by-many fan and b) I managed to get chihuahua!)

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Words / Anatomical adverbs
« on: May 30, 2020, 02:52:13 PM »
Aurally, anally, orally etc. are all accepted as words, even common ones, but "renally" comes up as unknown. It might not be as common as those above, but it's still a word, I think.

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Words / Re: Tangoed/tangoes
« on: April 14, 2020, 03:45:09 AM »
Maybe it's because the third person singular really is rare.

It takes two to tango, after all!

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Words / Re: Yesterday's 7-by-many
« on: March 28, 2020, 05:53:20 PM »
No indeed.

Talking of topicality, a few days ago I tried to enter the word "prepper", which I thought might be apt in these toilet roll hoarding times, but it wasn't accepted!

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Words / felafel v falafel
« on: March 05, 2020, 08:44:27 PM »
According to yesterday’s 7-by-7 the game, the former is common whereas the latter gets the italic treatment. I had always seen is spelled “falafel” and indeed, if you click on the definition for “felafel”, it says: "(less common) alternative spelling of falafel". Also, if you google “felafel” it immediately pops up with “did you mean “falafel?”.

Candidates for reclassification? I think so....

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Words / Re: Omicron
« on: February 17, 2020, 08:31:52 PM »

I would add 'iota' and 'omega' to Jancsika's original list of four; many of the others are used in Science and Mathematics, but often to denote quite advanced concepts.


Yes, as in “not one iota” and “ I am the alpha and the omega” (or omega-3, for the health conscious among us.)

Most of the Greek letters are used as mathematical symbols (although I don’t recall “omicron” ever being used, I guess its resemblance to the letter “o” and the digit “0” render it it a bit useless!). Of these, I’d be tempted to include “theta” as common, as it is generally used to refer to an unknown angle, even in high-school mathematics.

The one that has me wavering is “epsilon”. It’s used in maths to demote a very small or infinitesimal quantity, which probably counts as “advanced” (and therefore “rare”). On the other hand, , it also is used to refer to the lowest caste of workers in Huxley’s classic “Brave New world” which just might tip it in the balance towards “common”!

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Words / Re: Omicron
« on: February 12, 2020, 07:45:52 PM »
All the names of the letters in the Greek alphabet are common

Are they really though? For sure many of them are commonly used in English expressions (alpha male, beta blocker, gamma ray, delta wing, etc.) but others not so much (I can’t think of any occasion to use “omicron” except to refer expressly to the Greek letter itself, although I am happy to be proved wrong on this!).

I can see where the argument for consistency is coming from, but this isn’t applied to other categories (currency units, for example: “dollar” and “krone”’ are  common whereas “forint” and “ringgit” are rare). Yes, the diving line between “common” and “rare” will always have an arbitrary element to it, but trying to second guess where the dividing line is is half the fun!

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Words / Emcee v Compere
« on: February 10, 2020, 07:17:17 PM »
Apparently the former is "common" (despite being a phonetic transliteration of "M.C." (master of ceremonies)) whereas the later is "rare".

I guess it must be a US v UK thing...


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Words / Re: froing and tooing!!
« on: January 29, 2020, 05:12:18 AM »
Well, T, I'm not convinced about toing, because it never seems to be used apart from the expression toing and froing. So, it doesn't seem to be a word in its own right.

Just because a word is seldom seen except alongside another word, does that actually mean it not a word in its own right?

Not an easy call to make: it certainly had me umming and ahhing...


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Word Games / Re: 7-by-many puzzles using the letter S
« on: January 20, 2020, 07:35:06 PM »
Thanks for all your comments.

I think my main argument for including plurals ending in “s” is that it would get rid of a lot of grey areas as to which plurals are allowed and which are not (I seem to recall that “odds” is accepted, for example). Also it would resolve the anomaly where words in the singular form are considered “rare” but their plural would be common(“annal/annals”, and “arrear/arrears” are two I can think of off the top of my head).

I do accept though, that by convention plurals ending in s are generally not included in target style word-games.

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Word Games / Re: 7-by-many puzzles using the letter S
« on: January 17, 2020, 01:42:46 AM »
This is something which I noticed a while ago, but never really understood the rationale behind it, especially since the letter “S” is frequently included in the other puzzles. I just feel that so many common words in the English language aren’t getting a look in and it just seems so unfair on poor old “S”!

(My radical solution would be to dispense with the plural rule altogether. If we allow the formation of past tenses by adding “-ed” or of present participles by adding “-ing” then the anti-plural rule just seems a bit arbitrary…)

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Words / Unmute (vb.)
« on: December 21, 2019, 12:49:03 AM »
A term with which anyone who has ever struggled with teleconferencing systems will be all too familiar, but nevertheless rejected by the 7-by-many yesterday!.

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