Physics Crosswords


I’ve relaunched the physics crosswords project. There’s only one puzzle posted so far: a loosely-themed American-style 17×17, a centennial commemoration for

July 11, 2016.

Once I’ve put up another couple of puzzles, I’ll dress this page up a little. For now: sorry.

Cookies Policy:

  1. I use cookies, especially Lebkuchen and selected Pepperidge Farm offerings.
  2. I use a cookie to avoid double-counting visitors.
  3. The “Save” function on the crossword puzzle applet stores the current state of play in a cookie on your computer. I don’t know how accessible that information is, but I’m not collecting it. To recover the last saved state of play, reload the page. (Hence item 2 above.) I haven’t sorted out precisely what the Revert button does.

Crossword Policy:

These are “physics” crossword puzzles in the sense of having many physics-related fills and clues. The theme for any themed puzzle will either be narrower within or other than physics.

American-Style Puzzles:

American-style puzzles will usually conform to the standards prevalent in big-city broadsheets, with some foreseeable exceptions:
  1. Clues usually won’t indicate whether fills are abbreviations, acronyms, or symbolic constructs (like HCl) of any sort.
  2. Grids may be rectangular, as in the inferior puzzles (that was a nonrestrictive modifier) of Knight-Ridder newspapers, but the rectangle area will not be less than 221 squares.
  3. The grammatical number of mathematical objects is sometimes problematic, and may not always be properly indicated in clues.
  4. The grid patterns will always have nontrivial symmetry, but they may not always be symmetric under a half turn.
I promise that I will only break crossword-construction rules as I see fit.

Few of my puzzles are thematic in the approved ways. If I have two or three symmetrically placed, middling-length thematic fills, and three others scattered around, I'm happier than I would be with just four symmetrically placed fills. (Ask a few of your friends who construct serious physics crosswords. I'm sure we all feel the same way.)

The treatment of diacritical marks is still largely undetermined. In German words and names, though, umlauted vowels will normally be represented by digraphs with e, and ß by ss. Spanish ñ will not be treated as equivalent to n.

I plan to adhere as closely as possible to the rule that a word appearing in a fill must not appear in its clue. I will also try to avoid having any content word in the expansion of a fill appear in its clue. This all can be difficult, as scientific terms tend to have precise meanings and sometimes only very approximate synonyms. The resulting presence of the odd tortuous circumlocution should serve as an added hint.

Quickoidal Puzzles:

There will be puzzles approximating a British style. They will have drafty grids like cryptic and “quick” puzzles, but larger, and the clues will be closer in style to those of American puzzles.

Page last modified, however minimally, on July 29, 2016 3:37:06 am (in your time zone).
© 2016 Alfred M. Kriman