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4 groups of 4 (Posted on 2016-08-16) Difficulty: 4 of 5
Each of the words an, am, at, come, rate and many others can be transformed into a new valid word by adding a prefix be.
The following list consists of 16 words, which may be sorted into 4 groups, each of 4 words fitting the same two-letter prefix, specific for that group.
One such group needs KN as a prefix.
Other 2-letter prefixes are up to you to find.
All 16 words must be used.

1. able
2. aid
3. air
4. and
5. ant
6. art
7. ash
8. ave
9. easy
10. eel
11. idle
12. irk
13. other
14. out
15. own
16. ows

No Solution Yet Submitted by Ady TZIDON    
Rating: 2.0000 (1 votes)

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Solution with computer assistance | Comment 3 of 8 |
The program

DefDbl A-Z
Dim crlf$, suffix$(16), prefix$(100, 100)


Private Sub Form_Load()
 Form1.Visible = True
 
 
 Text1.Text = ""
 crlf = Chr$(13) + Chr$(10)
 
 suffix(1) = "able"
 suffix(2) = "aid"
 suffix(3) = "air"
 suffix(4) = "and"
 suffix(5) = "ant"
 suffix(6) = "art"
 suffix(7) = "ash"
 suffix(8) = "ave"
 suffix(9) = "easy"
 suffix(10) = "eel"
 suffix(11) = "idle"
 suffix(12) = "irk"
 suffix(13) = "other"
 suffix(14) = "out"
 suffix(15) = "own"
 suffix(16) = "ows"
 
 Open "c:\words\words.txt" For Input As #1
 Do
   Line Input #1, l$
   DoEvents
   For i = 1 To 16
     If Mid(l, 3) = suffix(i) Then
       Text1.Text = Text1.Text & Space$((i - 1) * 8) & l & crlf
       If InStr(prefixes$, Left(l, 2)) = 0 Then
         prefixes = prefixes + Left(l, 2) + ","
         prefixCt = prefixCt + 1
         prefixNo = prefixCt
       Else
         prefixNo = (InStr(prefixes, Left(l, 2)) + 2) / 3
       End If
       howMany = Val(prefix(prefixNo, 0)) + 1
       prefix(prefixNo, 0) = LTrim(Str(howMany))
       prefix(prefixNo, howMany) = l
     End If
   Next
 Loop Until EOF(1)
 
 Text1.Text = Text1.Text & crlf & prefixes
 
 Close 1
 
 For i = 1 To prefixCt
   For j = 1 To Val(prefix(i, 0))
     Text1.Text = Text1.Text & prefix(i, j) & " "
   Next
   Text1.Text = Text1.Text & crlf
 Next
 
 Text1.Text = Text1.Text & crlf & " done"
  
End Sub
                                     
finds (after some other output):                                     

By prefix, the words are:

adown 
agave 
aland alant 
another 
apart 
arable 
avant avows 
awash 
bland blown blows 
boart 
braid brand brant brash brave bridle brother brown brows 
chair chant chart chirk chows 
clash clave clout clown 
crash crave creasy creel crown crows 
deair deash deave 
dhows 
doable 
drave drown 
dyable 
eland 
enable enows 
flair flash flout flown flows 
frown frows 
giant 
glair gland glout glows 
gnash 
grand grant grave greasy grout grown grows 
heart heave 
knave kneel knout known knows 
leant leash leave 
liable 
lyart 
meant meows 
peart 
plaid plant plash plows 
prows 
quant quart quash queasy quirk 
reave 
riant 
scant scart scout scows 
shave shirk shout shown shows 
slant slash slave slows 
smart smash smirk smother 
snash snout snows 
soave soother 
speel spout 
stable staid stair stand start stash stave steel stirk stout stows 
suable suave 
swart swash 
trash trave trout trows 
unable uneasy 
usable 
viable viand 
vrows 
weave 
wheel 

So we have a couple of prefixes that would do for irk: ch, qu, sh, sm, but let's throw out chirk as too uncommon.

The sets with four or more:

       braid       brand brant       brash brave              bridle       brother       brown brows 
             chair       chant chart                                 chirk                     chows 
                                     clash clave                                   clout clown 
                                     crash crave creasy creel                            crown crows 
             flair                   flash                                         flout flown flows 
             glair gland                                                           glout       glows 
                   grand grant             grave greasy                            grout grown grows 
                                           knave        kneel                      knout known knows 
       plaid             plant       plash                                                     plows 
                         quant quart quash       queasy              quirk 
                         scant scart                                               scout       scows 
                                           shave                     shirk         shout shown shows 
                         slant       slash slave                                               slows 
                               smart smash                           smirk smother 
stable staid stair stand       start stash stave        steel        stirk         stout       stows 
                                     trash trave                                   trout       trows 

We need st for (st)able and br for (br)idle.

For easy we need cr, gr or qu. And we're told we want kn, which will handle known.

       braid       brand brant       brash brave              bridle       brother       brown brows 
stable staid stair stand       start stash stave        steel        stirk         stout       stows 
                                           knave        kneel                      knout known knows 
                                     crash crave creasy creel                            crown crows 
                   grand grant             grave greasy                            grout grown grows 
                         quant quart quash       queasy              quirk 

Let's try to make some cuts:

       BRAID       BRAND                                      BRIDLE       BROTHER                   
STABLE       STAIR             start stash                                         STOUT             
                                           KNAVE        KNEEL                            KNOWN KNOWS 
                         QUANT quart quash       QUEASY              QUIRK 
leaving out:
                                     crash crave creasy creel                            crown crows 
                   grand grant             grave greasy                            grout grown grows 

   
So the groups can be:

BRAID, BRAND, BRIDLE, BROTHER
STABLE, STAIR, START or STASH, STOUT
KNAVE, KNEEL, KNOWN, KNOWS
QUANT, QUASH or QUART, QUEASY, QUIRK


  Posted by Charlie on 2016-08-16 13:48:36
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