15
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[This is just a fun little puzzle for humans. We'll see you next time, computers!]

It's interesting to think about words contained in other words. How often do we notice, for example, that VOLCANOES contains the word CANOES, or that CONCERNS contains the word ONCE?

But why stop there? We can find words within words within words, nested like Russian dolls.

The most impressive nested series I've found are 9 levels, like this:

REARRANGEMENTS
  ARRANGEMENTS
  ARRANGEMENT
  ARRANGE
    RANGE
    RANG
    RAN
     AN
     A

But why be content with contiguous letters only? How about nested words in which the letters selected are not contiguous in the parent?

For example, REPUDIATE contains the word EDIT, only that the letters E-D-I-T are not necessarily contiguous.

(However, they must be in the same order in the child word as they are in the parent word.)

Here's how a nested series with noncontinuous letters might look. The starting word is NONREPRESENTATIONAL:

NONREPRESENTATIONAL
   REPRESENTATIONAL
   REPRESENTATION
     PRESENTATION
        S  TATION
        S  TAT IN
        S  TA  IN
        S      IN
               IN
               I

I.e., NONREPRESENTATIONAL, REPRESENTATIONAL, REPRESENTATION, PRESENTATION, STATION, STATIN, STAIN, SIN, IN, I



In each case below, I have given you the starting word. See if you can find the indicated number of nested levels.

  1. Start with TRANSCENDENTALISTS and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  2. Start with INTERRELATIONSHIPS and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  3. Start with SLAUGHTERHOUSES and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  4. Start with STARTLINGLY and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  5. Start with INTEGRATIONISTS and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  6. Start with NONCONFRONTATIONAL and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  7. Start with NONDENOMINATIONAL and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  8. Start with DECONSTRUCTIONISTS and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  9. Start with CRAFTSPERSONS and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  10. Start with CONTRAINDICATIONS and see if you can find 9 more nested levels

  11. Start with RESTORATIONISTS and see if you can find 10 more nested levels

  12. Start with UNCHARACTERISTICALLY and see if you can find 10 more nested levels



P.S. — I should have noted upfront that I construct my puzzles so as to be solvable with only very well-known words. (Otherwise, I risk incurring the wrath of the Scrabble community by casting aspersions on words like AE!)



Excellent work, @North @OmegaKrypton and @JonMarkPerry !

I was expecting someone to say, "How dare you malign AE! It's a perfectly cromulent word..."

Epilogue on #1:

Thank you for using the wonderful mathematical term TRANSCENDENTALS.

For those not comfortable with a word from a specialized field, here is an alternative solution:

TRANSCENDENTALISTS
TRANSCENDENTALIST
TRANSCENDENTAL
TRANSCENDENT
TRANSCEND
TRANCE
TRACE
RACE
ACE
A

Note on #7:

There still seems to be a typo in the solution for #7.

Here is another solution:

NONDENOMINATIONAL
DENOMINATIONAL
DENOMINATION
DOMINATION
DOMINION
DOMINO
DINO
DIN
IN
I

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Holy moly sweet mother of mary this should be fun $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:06
  • $\begingroup$ When you say find nine more nested level are you asking for a total of nine or total of ten including that word $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:23
  • $\begingroup$ I'd say 9 more, personally -- so total of 10 including the first word, but I could be wrong! $\endgroup$ – El-Guest Feb 28 at 1:25
  • $\begingroup$ @North — I'm saying, I have given you the base word, now go and find 9 additional words nested within it. So, in my given example above, the base word is NONREPRESENTATIONAL and then there are an additional 9 nested levels. BTW, I see in your answer to TRANSCENDENTALISTS that you have only provided an additional 8 nested levels. $\endgroup$ – SlowMagic Feb 28 at 1:30
  • $\begingroup$ Fixed it, thanks $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:31
9
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1)

TRANSCENDENTALISTS
TRANSCENDENTALIST
TRANSCENDENTALS (@JonMarkPerry thx)
TRANSCENDENTAL
TRANSCENDENT
TRANSCEND
ASCEND
ACED
ACE
A

2)

INTERRELATIONSHIPS
INTERRELATIONSHIP
INTERRELATIONS
INTERRELATION
RELATION
RATION
RAIN
RAN
AN
A

3)

SLAUGHTERHOUSES
SLAUGHTERHOUSE
SLAUGHTERS
SLAUGHTER
LAUGHTER
LATER
LATE
ATE
AT
A

4)

STARTLINGLY
STARTLING
STARTING
STARING
STRING
STING
SING
SIN
IN
I

5)

INTEGRATIONISTS
INTEGRATIONIST
INTEGRATIONS
INTEGRATION
INGRAIN
GRAIN
RAIN
RAN
AN
A

6)

NONCONFRONTATIONAL
CONFRONTATIONAL
CONFRONTATION
CORONATION
ORATION
RATION
RATIO
RAT
AT
A

7)

NONDENOMINATIONAL
DENOMINATIONAL
DENOMINATION
DOMINATION
DOMINION
DOMAIN
MAIN
MAN
AN
A

8)

DECONSTRUCTIONISTS
DECONSTRUCTIONIST
DECONSTRUCTIONS
DECONSTRUCTION
CONSTRUCTION
SUCTION
SCION
ION
IN
I

9) (@OmegaKrypton did majority of the work, just fixed a couple stuff, upvote theirstuff y'all)

CRAFTSPERSONS
CRAFTSPERSON
CRAFTERS
CRATERS
CRATES
RATES
RATE
RAT
AT
A

10)

CONTRAINDICATIONS
CONTRAINDICATION
CONTRADICTION
CONTRACTION
CONTRACT
CONTACT
TACT
ACT
AT
A

11) (again, @OmegaKrypton for majority of the stuff. Just slight adjustments.)

RESTORATIONISTS
RESTORATIONIST
RESTORATIONS
RESTORATION
RESTRAIN
STRAIN
TRAIN
RAIN
RAN
AN
A

12) (note @OmegaKrypton did most of the work, I just adjusted it slight; so upvote their answer!)

UNCHARACTERISTICALLY
CHARACTERISTICALLY
CHARACTERISTIC
CHARACTERS
CHARACTER
CHARTER
CHART
CART
ART
AT
A

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ More's gonna come, I just don't wanna get sniped $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:11
  • $\begingroup$ I think for number 1, you should do r13( NFPRAQ -> FRAQ -> RAQ -> RA -> N ) which will get you one extra line... $\endgroup$ – El-Guest Feb 28 at 1:20
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @El-Guest thank you, but how can I get from r13(RA-> N) without that letter being inside of it? $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:24
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @El-Guest Also found an alternative solution (the stuff you learn from scrabble) $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:28
  • $\begingroup$ TRANSCENDENTALS? $\endgroup$ – JonMark Perry Feb 28 at 1:34
8
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9

CRAFTSPERSONS
CRAFTSPERSON
CRAFTERS
CRATERS
CRATER
RATER
RATE
ATE
AE
A

11

RESTORATIONISTS
RESTORATIONIST
RESTORATIONS
RESTORATION
RORATION [Thanks jafe]
ORATION [Thanks North]
RATION
RAIN
RAN
AN
A

12

UNCHARACTERISTICALLY
CHARACTERISTICALLY
CHARACTERISTIC
CHARACTER
CHARTER
CHART
HART
HAT
HA
A

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ how about rot13(bengvba) $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:49
  • $\begingroup$ It's a word, apparently $\endgroup$ – North Feb 28 at 1:49
  • $\begingroup$ thanks very much! @North $\endgroup$ – Omega Krypton Feb 28 at 1:50
  • $\begingroup$ You're doing great so far! I'm a pretty lenient grader, but I'm having a hard time with CHARACTERISTICAL. Suggestion: There is more you can do after CHART than what you currently have. That might give you an additional level to compensate for the loss of CHARACTERISTICAL. $\endgroup$ – SlowMagic Feb 28 at 3:03
  • $\begingroup$ Additional one for 11 ;) $\endgroup$ – jafe Feb 28 at 5:54
5
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These don't appear to always have a unique answer. For example:

INTERRELATIONSHIPS
INTERRELATIONSHIP
INTERRELATIONS
INTERRELATION
RELATION
ELATION
LION
ION
IN
I

differs from @north's after RELATION -> RATION, or RELATION -> ELATION. But I only found a 4 letter word next anyway.

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Yes, I like this alternative as well, because it follows a different path from the other -ation- words, and because it includes a certain charismatic animal! $\endgroup$ – SlowMagic Feb 28 at 14:55

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