11
$\begingroup$

This is in the spirit of the What is a Word/Phrase™ series started by JLee with a special brand of Phrase™ and Word™ puzzles.


If a word conforms to a special rule, I call it an Immiscible Word™. If it does not conform to this rule, I call it a Miscible Word™. Here is a list (not exhaustive) of some Immiscible Words™ and Miscible Words™:

Immiscible words™ Miscible words™
BEST WORST
WAXY SHINY
ROBUST FRAGILE
MINISTRY DEPARTMENT
EDITOR AUTHOR
CHECKROOM LOCKER
GLAMOUR ELEGANCE
OCCUPY EMPLOY
JEALOUSY RIVALRY
BANKRUPT BROKE
JACKPOT FLUKE
ELECTRON FERMION
PLEXUS CARDIAC
NASTY AWFUL

CSV version:

Immiscible words™,Miscible words™
BEST,WORST
WAXY,SHINY
ROBUST,FRAGILE
MINISTRY,DEPARTMENT
EDITOR,AUTHOR
CHECKROOM,LOCKER
GLAMOUR,ELEGANCE
OCCUPY,EMPLOY
JEALOUSY,RIVALRY
BANKRUPT,BROKE
JACKPOT,FLUKE
ELECTRON,FERMION
PLEXUS,CARDIAC
NASTY,AWFUL

Question: find the rule which determines Immiscible Words™ and Miscible Words™.

Hints and further information:

  • The order and the meaning of the words do not matter.

  • There is no significance in the particular choice of Miscible Words™: they're just words vaguely similar to the Immiscible Words™.

Additional hint

Here are ten small words, in the hope that the rule behind these words will be more apparent:

 | Immiscible | Miscible      |
 | ---------- | --------      |
 | HINT       | PLEASE        |
 | MANY       | MUCH          |
 | GNU        | OXEN          |
 | TUX        | PUFFY         |
 | LINUX      | UNIX          |
 | JAZZ       | FUNK          |
 | PEST       | PAIN          |
 | IRS        | VAT           |
 | BELL       | RING          |
 | HELP       | HOPE          |

$\endgroup$
2
  • $\begingroup$ Question skeleton was shamelessly copied from What is a Fair Word?. Hope @Randal'Thor will forgive me. $\endgroup$ – xhienne Jan 11 at 1:16
  • $\begingroup$ ! Ain't this better than a memory go round! $\endgroup$ – humn Jan 11 at 1:20
7
$\begingroup$

A word is an Immiscible Word™ if the following rule apply:

Every letter to the left of the middle position is smaller than every letter to the right of this position.

Middle position is the middle position for words with an even number of letters, or either position adjacent the middle letter for words with an odd number of letters (the examples aren't enough to determine for certainty - adding the words CRAZY and ABYSS would suffice).
Smaller than is defined as "located before in the English alphabet" (i.e. A to Z).

And vice versa - a Miscible Word doesn't follow the above rule.

Explanation by case:

Immiscible words

BE|ST
WA|XY
ROB|UST
MINI|STRY
...
NA|STY

Miscible words

WO|RST (W > R, S and T)
SH|INY (S > I and N)
...
AW|FUL (W > F, U and L)

Why is this property called Immiscible:

Oil and water are immiscible, so oil always float over water and there's a clear line between the layers.

Alcohol (Ethanol) and water are miscible so there's never a line between layers - in fact, there's no layer at all.

$\endgroup$
4
  • $\begingroup$ You are pretty close and your explanation about "immiscible" is perfect (and correct). You are right that the part in italic is incorrect: this rule does not exist. The reason is that the "position" is simple and well defined for all words. I hope I didn't make any mistake in the OP that may have misled you. $\endgroup$ – xhienne Jan 14 at 9:34
  • $\begingroup$ If there's an even number of letters it seems you can always make the mark half way. If there's an odd number, it seems the middle letter is always "half way" so you can make the mark either side of it. $\endgroup$ – hexomino Jan 14 at 10:19
  • $\begingroup$ @xhienne I've fixed that part. $\endgroup$ – iBug Jan 14 at 11:00
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Congrats for finding the answer. "the examples aren't enough to determine for certainty - adding the words CRAZY and ABYSS would suffice": no, this was intentional. See @hexomino's comment above. The examples were all chosen so that you do not have to scratch your head wondering were to put the mark. You put it in the middle, it does not depend on the number of letters being odd or even, and if you are hesitant to put it across a middle letter (you should not), you put it on the left or on the right of it and it still works. $\endgroup$ – xhienne Jan 14 at 20:59

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.