The Stack Overflow podcast is back! Listen to an interview with our new CEO.

Questions tagged [open-ended]

NOTE: This tag is currently being debated on Meta. Questions asked under this tag may not fall under the scope of the site. Please be mindful of that when asking a question. Used when the tagged puzzle is open ended to all solvers and could be "bested" at any point, if a given solver has a better solution that fulfills the askers requirements.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
12
votes
3answers
511 views

Masyu puzzles with many circles

The rules of Masyu: Make a single loop with lines passing through the centers of cells, horizontally or vertically. The loop never crosses itself, branches off, or goes through the same cell ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

How many consecutive integers can you make using only four digits?

In the spirit of the classic four fours, I wonder what's the optimal set of four numbers? Your goal is to make the most consecutive integers using four digits of your choice. Pick four: $0,1,2,3,...
11
votes
11answers
4k views

Longest sentence with each letter repeated n times

Inspiration: This question was inspired by Word sets with no repeating letters Rules: Sentences can be of any length. Every letter used in this sentence, must be used n times. n can be any number. ...
4
votes
1answer
116 views

Kill me or I kill you first!

How many mates are possible under 10 moves? Rule: Mate can go both ways. Under 10 moves. Feel free to let White or Black move first. Board diagram: Apronus PGN Viewer board for white taking the ...
14
votes
3answers
606 views

Forced selfmate in n-moves

I assume most people on PSE know a bit of chess With white to move, this is checkmate (1. Qb7#): That's boring. Let's try something more interesting. With black to move, black can FORCE white to ...
1
vote
1answer
208 views

A sentence with all numbers [closed]

Crazy thought. Can you make an (grammatically correct) english sentence using english words which are all numbers? Each word in that sentence must represent a number. I am expecting a minimum 6 ...
18
votes
1answer
783 views

Peaceful Encampments

This math puzzle is due to Donald Knuth (as far as I know; maybe he got it from someone else) circa 2014. Consider a plain represented by the unit square. On this plain we want to “peacefully ...
-1
votes
1answer
108 views
26
votes
7answers
11k views

The most words that can be made by successively adding one letter to the original word?

What is the largest number of words that can be made by just adding one letter to the original word, where each iteration is a meaningful word? E.g. ...
13
votes
6answers
359 views

Pulling Apart a Jigsaw Puzzle

Assume you have a jigsaw puzzle that is also a tessellation. This means every piece has an identical shape and can be assembled into a 2D pattern that fills the plane with no gaps. Such a jigsaw ...
2
votes
2answers
754 views

Dreadful Dastardly Diseases, or Always Atrocious Ailments [closed]

So the other day, I was in a pharmacy and I saw that they had a "cold 'n' cough" medicine. The alliteration caught my eye, and I wondered it would be possible to create alliterative names with other ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

From jafe to El-Guest

Largely inspired by From Puzzling to StackExchange by CodeNewbie From jafe to El-Guest jafe > cafe > cate > cete > cet > get > gest > egest > e gest > e guest > el guest Rules: In any move, you ...
28
votes
9answers
5k views

How many consecutive positive integers can you make using exactly four instances of the digit '4'?

Starting at 1 (which is 4 - $\sqrt4$ - 4/4), how many consecutive integers can you make using exactly four instances of the digit '4'? Basic rules: Any operator symbol is "free". Any printed '4' ...
7
votes
5answers
681 views

Highest possible score my friend could earn in one Scrabble turn?

My friend has a great vocabulary but is also quote humble. Every time we play Scrabble he wins easily. He says he tries his best, with one exception: If the opportunity ever arose, he would never ...
9
votes
2answers
513 views

Missing checkmates in one

Have you ever missed a one-move checkmate and immediately realized it after making your move? If you have, you just might have what it takes to crack this problem. Let's take an example: g4 e5 ...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

Second-rate spelling

Find the longest word which can be spelled with the second letters of a group words in alphabetical order. An example with incomprehensible (16 letters): a...
18
votes
7answers
3k views

What is the longest rhymonym?

What is the longest pair of words you can find that rhyme and can also be synonyms / used to describe the same phenomenon? For instance, spot and ...
-4
votes
3answers
2k views

I before E, except in the following sentences:

"I before E" is a common mnemonic that is taught for spelling certain English words, but this mnemonic is often wrong, as pointed out in this Language Log post. The aim of this question is to create ...
7
votes
5answers
332 views

Breaking Balance (Part A)

If we assume the classic balance puzzle (Twelve balls and a scale) is phrased like this: You have 12 coins that are identical except for one counterfeit that is heavier or lighter. Can you use a ...
15
votes
3answers
2k views

The Sphinx's Dice

"I'm bored of riddles, I'm going to ask you a question about dice instead", says the Sphinx. "Now, I've got this set of Efron Dice here. There's four dice, and they have these values on their faces:" ...
9
votes
2answers
303 views

Create a 1 meter measure

How many folding steps do you need to create a $1 \, \text{m}$ measure from an ideal DIN A0 sheet? This sounds easy, but consider that this paper has edge lengths of $\sqrt[4]{2} \, \text{m}$ and $\...
21
votes
9answers
3k views

Riddles/puzzles having answer hidden in the question? [closed]

Can you give any example of riddles or puzzles in which the answers are someway "cleverly hidden" inside the question? I think that such examples are more common in word-related riddles, but maybe ...
12
votes
3answers
348 views

You may remove pieces of your opponent's!

You are in a regular chess tournament, your opponent is Deepest Blue AI who considers every kind of possibilities and does not make any mistakes. But you are given an opportunity to remove any pieces ...
4
votes
1answer
128 views

What's the most triangles you can make with 4, 5 or 6 straight lines?

All the triangles can stick together. The triangles counted is the independent triangles, triangles made up of two shapes, a triangle made up from 3 shapes, or the outline of the shape consisting of 4,...
0
votes
1answer
124 views

Need help to decipher this encrypted text

I am relatively new to deciphering texts and I have the following ciphertext: xbt ufp ekyzkikn dt nkojvhk? e ndmr jfo nggv du kwjt gun pjv. I tried Caesar Cipher but to no avail. It would be ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Three coins for the fair king [duplicate]

Based on the question Eight coins for the fair king: I saw a comment saying "There isn't a good solution known even with three coins in all cases". So the challenge here is to try to solve the same ...
3
votes
1answer
134 views

A construction toy for children [closed]

Alice has an idea for a construction toy made from plastic. Each building block is in the shape of an uppercase letter of the alphabet. No other characters are to be used. Children will ...
2
votes
2answers
165 views

Heaven or Hell? [closed]

To decide whether you go to heaven or hell, your life is put on the balance. All depends on which way it tips. John dies and waits in line to have his life weighed. Eventually he reaches St Peter who ...
20
votes
4answers
1k views

Strategy to beat the casino over the long haul

$A$ and $B$ are attempting to beat the casino again, and the rules are the same: Each round, $A$, $B$, and the casino simultaneously decide to show a $0$ or a $1$. If all three numbers match, $A$ ...
1
vote
1answer
138 views

Wicked Winding Words!

What is the highest number $n$ of $n$-letter words can you find that share this property? i.e. highest number $n$ that you can find (not found on any other sites). I will accept the answer with the ...
59
votes
19answers
9k views

Growing anagrams - What is the longest possible list forming a sentence?

This is a challenge for word-puzzle lovers. It might be a bit more of a game than a puzzle, but I think it is not limitless in it's answers, so a final answer could be found (eventually). What is ...
5
votes
1answer
543 views

What is the longest word that can be made out of all the scrabble tiles?

What is the longest word that can be made out of all the Scrabble tiles? If you didn’t know, there are 100 tiles when you play Scrabble. I was wondering what was the longest word you could make out ...
12
votes
18answers
22k views

Find words with the highest proportion of a single letter

Thanks to JoeZ, pacoverflow, isaacg, Sp3000, Novarg, Ram, h34, and all those who contributed answers that have since been beaten. I've accepted JoeZ's answer since he has the most mentions on the list ...
-5
votes
4answers
916 views

Longest Word made from Smaller Words

Objective: Find the longest word, which can be made from concatenation smaller words. Rules: * Words (and smaller words inside) must be findable at dictionary.com * Punctuation (for example ') does ...
3
votes
5answers
5k views

Longest Calculator Word?

Current Best; Babingtonites = 5371207621898; 13 letters We all know from fooling around with a calculator at some point in our lives, the when we turn a calculator upside down we can make words. For ...
5
votes
3answers
261 views

Moans to Rocky in 4 moves?

In his novel A Case of Need, one of Michael Crichton's characters claims that the classic word‑ladder‡ "MOANS to ROCKY" can be made in 4 moves (5 lines total). But the book does not ...
20
votes
8answers
4k views

Craft the longest Scrabble sentence

This is another challenge along the same vein as similar challenges that have shown up on this site, requiring the puzzle to craft the longest possible sentence given a specific requirement. What is ...
18
votes
4answers
3k views

A Tic-Tac-Toe type game

I found this interesting game with no name: You have a 1x11 grid, like this. The way you play is similar to Tic-Tac-Toe (aka Noughts and Crosses). Players take turns to place Xs and Os on the grid, ...
10
votes
1answer
455 views

Conway's Siege of Life

They are immortal and they are killing us. We may not be able to kill them, but we might be able to keep them occupied, distracted, for eternity. But we need to figure out how. Before there are no ...
55
votes
13answers
12k views

Making π from 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

There have been two other questions here and here that are similar to this one, but this changes the rules up a little. Your job is to approximate $\pi$ using the sequence of digits (in order): 1 2 ...
3
votes
3answers
483 views

Make a sentence with the most different uses of the same word [closed]

Background I recently stumbled across the following grammatically correct sentence: Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo. This sentence relies on the fact that the ...
2
votes
2answers
257 views

Longest autological loop?

A word is said to be autological if it describes itself. This can be a property of both nouns and adjectives; for example, "noun" is a noun and "pentasyllabic" is pentasyllabic. We can also construct ...
3
votes
3answers
341 views

Make me a room-filling pattern!

So I need a new knitting pattern, but I figured this might be a nice puzzle. I'm looking for a pixelated 2D-shape that can be used in a room-filling pattern (rotation and flipping allowed). The ...
5
votes
2answers
412 views

Improve my 3D puzzle

3D View of one solutions http://autode.sk/2Dg4FWx I designed a 4x4x4 soma cube in AutoCad and then built it with wood cubes. There are twelve pentacubes and one tetracubes. Each piece is unique and ...
6
votes
3answers
510 views

Place three Knights, three Bishops and three Rooks on this board snippet

Place three Knights, three Bishops and three Rooks on this board snippet. The only rule: each piece has to be attacked exactly once. Notes: Ignore color, so every piece attacks every other piece ...
-2
votes
4answers
423 views

What's my number? [duplicate]

I am thinking of an integer $1,2$ or $3$. You can ask me only a single question to which I can reply "Yes", "No" or "I don't know". I will be completely honest. What will you ask me to figure out what ...
-10
votes
6answers
1k views

Find English words with Sound of V or W?

Search and find some English words which when written starts with o and when speaking they pronounce with sound of v or w lets see who ll find maximum words?
4
votes
7answers
4k views

Find the longest string of words such that the (4 letter) end of one word is the start of the next

Here is an open-ended challenge. Find the longest series of English words such that the final four letters of word $n$ are the same as the first four letters of word $n+1$. Example (3 words) ...
6
votes
1answer
416 views

Picture a graph without words

You may have played/sung/heard a song without words in concert, in choir, and in a Sushi restaurant. Who hasn’t?! Well here is a picture without words, only axes: And here it is without JPG-...
5
votes
6answers
1k views

Challenge: Longest x-height word/sentence

A common puzzle is to see how to make sentences from the same letters, or the longest word in alphabetical order, etc. see here for a list. Now 'the x-height or corpus size refers to the distance ...