Saturday, November 6, 2010

Novice Hunt 2—Partial Translation

One of the questions in the 1Malaysia Hunt a few months ago was set for the Lintas Square sector—a sector which is sure to be included in all of my hunts. The question, set by the famous Time Out Solutions, was like this:

Q17) A fun card game needs them to build our party sponsor.

A17) Club M Pub & Lounge

I discussed the question (and answer) mainly on grammatical grounds, but recently an anonymous commenter made an interesting suggestion. You can refer to his suggestion in the comment portion of the post.

He asked, "Can we interpret "them" as The-"M",which would satisfy the single-letter requirement[?]"

A very good question, which I believe originated from the mind of a creative and strong treasure hunter. You can read my arguments against his idea (I'm using a masculine pronoun, although the commenter could have been a woman too), so I shall not repeat them here.

However, the point I'm trying to make here is that it may be possible to break up a single word into several words, each with meanings of its own, provided that the setter signals that possibility. Otherwise, I don't think it is fair to expect the solvers to read a single word with a meaning of its own as several words.

In the Novice Hunt 2, I applied a similar idea, involving a translation from English into Malay, but carefully informing the solvers my intention:

Q1) This business runs a partial translation?

"This business" is of course referring to the name of the business as seen on the signboard within the given sector.

"runs" is the fodder, i.e. the target word which is to be translated. But because of the word "partial" in the clue, the translation involves only the "run" portion with the remaining letter "s" unaffected. The intended solution after that "partial translation" is "LARIS", where "LARI" is the Malay word for "RUN".

This was the first question of the Novice Hunt 2. It wasn't meant to be a tough clue. This signboard was highly visible from the car, and it stood almost exclusively on its own. Yet some teams still failed to solve this clue. Could it have been a case of too slow to build up hunting momentum? Could it have been a case of blind spot?

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