In the spirit of the What is a Word™/Phrase™ series started by JLee, a special brand of Phrase™ and Word™ puzzles.

*(ApoloGies in advance, I seeM to be havinG soMe trouble with My Keyboard today.)*

If a word conforMs to a special rule, I call it a KMorG Word™.
Use the followinG exaMples below to find the rule.

KMorG Words™ Not KMorG Words™
bands GanGs
basil thyMe
bawdy ribald
beefy brawny
boars piGs
canoes boats
canto chant
chivy chase
covet abhor
extent ranGe
fiefs lands
Glaze shine
Gnaws chews
Golds Metals
Goths punKs
jived jibed
lithe aGile
lusts wants
Meaty stronG
Micas rocKs
Mower tiller
radii radius
slash slosh
tooth teeth
twerps idiots
unsay recant
usury unfair

And, if you want to analyze, here is a CSV version:

KMorG Words™,Not KMorG Words™

The puzzle satisfies the series' inbuilt assuMption, that each word can be tested for whether it is a KMorG Word™ without relyinG on the other words.
These are not the only exaMples of KMorG Words™; Many More exist.

What is the special rule these words conforM to?
Why are they called what they are called?




helpfulness level 0:

There are no fish, red or otherwise, in this puzzle.

helpfulness level 1:

The What is a ... Word™ boilerplate and flavor text is not part of the actual puzzle; spastic capitalization therein does serve a (faintly fishy?) purpose, but can be safely set aside.
In the puzzle proper, case is intentional and relevant.

helpfulness level 2:

With apoloGies to Ferdinand de Saussure and his MaxiM:
TiMe chanGes all thinGs; there is no reason why these lists should escape this universal law

helpfulness level 3:

Why are only certain letters always capitalized? What connotations could those letters share?

helpfulness level 4:

Were I to add here, this puzzle would quite certainly be unsolvable.

helpfulness level 5:

What is the value of a KMorG Word™?

helpfulness level 6:

Today I was on a 10K run, but stopped for a while to see an open house for a property that's been for sale for $950G since MMIX. It was a nice place to visit but I wouldn't want to live there.

helpfulness level 7:

About helpfulness level 4's hint: the (only) reason is not specified is because, while a lot of words can be ruled out as KMorG Words™ by inspection, nearly all the words listed herein require both awareness of what to do, and a web browser (or equivalent, such as "curl"), to ascertain KMorG Word™ness... but no deep technical arcana or capability should be needed.

  • 5
    $\begingroup$ Is the capitalisation necessary or a red herring? $\endgroup$
    – boboquack
    Jan 29, 2017 at 22:39
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @boboquack, I'm thinking that hint is an answer to your question. $\endgroup$
    – DyingIsFun
    Jan 30, 2017 at 20:36
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @CipherRiddle There are plenty of Non- words with no capital letters in theM at all. Surely that cannot suffice as the rule. $\endgroup$
    – Rubio
    Jan 30, 2017 at 20:49
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ My rooMMates and I have been playinG with ways to assiGn a value to KMG or Non-KMG words for a part of the afternoon... We are perplexed by the lenGth of the words : KM are 5 or 6 letters, and non-KM 4, 5 or 6. Not so Much diversity... We tried position-based conversion, assuMing that those words work like numeric values ; we wonder if 'bails' is a KMorG word. We noticed that : no KMorG has a K,M or G in it, only at the beGinninG ; no KMorG starts with K, though ; many KMorG end with 's' or 'y', as if it was used durinG contructinG theM for fit the rules... How is your Keyboard, btw ? $\endgroup$ Feb 11, 2017 at 18:57
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @LilianDelaveau I interpreted the level-6 clue as meaning only "K,M,G all denote 1000 rather than meaning 10^3, 10^6, 10^9 or 2^10, 2^20, 2^30 respectively". But of course that may be a misinterpretation. $\endgroup$
    – Gareth McCaughan
    Feb 23, 2017 at 18:26

1 Answer 1


I think a word is a KMorG word if and only if

it corresponds to an image on imgur.

Reason for the name:

"A picture is worth a thousand words".

So, for instance, the first few KMorG words are

bands, basil, and bawdy

and the first few non-KMorG words are (or, perhaps better, would be)

GanGs, thyMe, and ribald.

Some comments on the hints:

Level 1 "In the puzzle proper, case is intentional and relevant.":

Indeed it is, but the fact that K,M,G are capitalized and other letters aren't is (despite the level-0 hint) pretty much a red herring. (Though perhaps @Rubio would claim that the correct criterion is "capitalization follows the convention found in the puzzle, and the result is an imgur image".)

Level 2 "Time changes all things":

Some things that are not presently KMorG words might become such words later as more images are uploaded to imgur.

Level 5 "What is the value ...":

A reference to the "A picture is worth ..." saying.

Level 6 "10K, $950G, MMIX":

Just steering us away from the idea that M=10^6 and G=10^9.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Finally! Well done, @Gareth :) ... ooh, a box has just been delivered - can it be the new Keyboard at last?! $\endgroup$
    – Rubio
    Feb 23, 2017 at 19:01

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