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Diabolically Arcane

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14 December, 2011

We interrupt this week’s Stormathon (Part II) with a cute announcement. A mate called Fred, who loves all things innovative, tugged my sleeve the other day. He said he’d seen a crossword on the Fast Company website that’s designed like a QR code.

Cool, I thought. What’s a QR code?

If you work in logistics, or massive stock transfer, that question is 101. For the rest of us, QR stands for Quick Response, and embodies the next generation of bar code. Easier for scanners to read, apparently, as well as owning the aesthetic advantage of resembling a portrait in melting snow. Or a crossword, as a film-maker Christian Kolding figured, turning the square into many squares.

The gimmick is part of New York’s MoMa expo, Talk To Me, where every artwork comes with its own QR. If curious, patrons can scan any code with their iPhones to hear more about the installation. Nifty idea. Cool crossword. Though with due respect to Christian, I’d say as a clue setter he’s a brilliant film-maker. Worth a peek but.

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Rewording The Brain

Focus & memory, lateral leaps & logic - every aspect of cognitive health is lit in Rewording The Brain, a book revelling in how puzzles boost your brain. Part 2 equips your brain to conquer any twisty clue, plus the wild crossword finale. Pop science meets neural gameplay, Rewording is rewarding, and out now.


Rewording The Brain

Care to renew your noodle? Rewording The Brain explores the latest neural studies, seeing how puzzles (and twisty clues) boost your neurons. Part 2 helps you crack such clues, and prep the grey matter for the crossword showcase to finish. More here

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101 Weird Words (and 3 Fakes)

From Ambidextrous to Zugwang, this mini-dictionary teems with rare or alluring words, plus bonus riddles, puzzles and fun word-facts. Dictionary detective will also nab the collection's three fakes. Ideal for late primary schoolers, or word-nuts in general.

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Gargantuan Book of Words

Sneeze words. Fake pasta. Viking slang. Gargantuan is a jumbo jumble of puzzles & games, mazes & quizzes, tailor-made for that wordy wonderkid in your life. Or anyone in love with letters, secret codes, puns, rhymes, emoji & all things languagey. More here 

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Riddledom Rave

If you missed my riddle chat with Richard Fidler, then feel free to slurp the podcast at http://ab.co/1I9t1x5

Text-speak is creeping into Scrabble. Where do you sit?
OBVS I'm fine with it
Entrenched stuff - like LOL and OMG - but no more.
Words With Friends, maybe. Scrabble, no
Let the 'real' dictionaries decide first
Just the handy stuff, like FAQ and EUW
I mean, WTF?! No way
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