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Jim Horne
Seattle
Jim Horne works for a software company in the Seattle area.
Recent Activity
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Each December I take a look back at the most memorable NYT crosswords of the previous 12 months and name my Puzzle and Person of the Year. Crosswords, unlike novels and short stories, are journeys we actively participate in, so here’s my annual travelogue. As usual we’ll start with a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 29, 2013 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
In looking back over the past year, the books I've enjoyed the most happen to be novels and they happen to be long. Whether this is a literary trend, my own evolving proclivities, or just coincidence, I can't tell. There is one very significant exception which I'll get to at... Continue reading
Posted Dec 27, 2013 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
Some thoughts on the state of crossword discussion on the Internet I have a confession to make – I like crossword puzzles. Ok, ok, you probably do too, but I have an even deeper, darker, "please don’t tell a soul" confession – I enjoy New York Times crosswords. Wow, I... Continue reading
Posted Dec 4, 2013 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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What does Will Shortz like to see in a puzzle? What delights him and what are his pain points? How does he decide which puzzles to run and how much editing each needs? If you’re a solver, these are interesting questions. If you’re a constructor hoping to get another puzzle... Continue reading
Posted Nov 2, 2013 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
I hate to brag, really I do, but this year I made a major contribution to the world of crosswords. All I had to do was quit trying to make a major contribution to the world of crosswords. It's a little humbling to realize that the best thing I could... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2013 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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This is a transcript of today’s XWord Info Press Conference. Unfortunately, due to technical issues, some of the recording has been garbled and the text is unrecoverable. We regret the error. JH: Thank you for that kind introduction. Please, sit down, everyone. Yes, I know, I know, please sit. Thank... Continue reading
Posted May 26, 2013 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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Every December I compile some observations on the past year of NYT puzzles. Normally, I include my Puzzle of the Year. This time, it’s a group of puzzles, and a special Person of the Year. Puzzles Let’s start with some of the puzzles that caught my eye. Dan Schmiedeler’s Three... Continue reading
Posted Dec 31, 2012 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
If you’re a crossword person, you probably have a notion of what Maleska puzzles were like compared to Shortz ones. Thanks to The Pre-Shortzian Puzzle Project, I’ve been able to look at nearly 2,000 such crosswords going back to 1989. It’s certainly not true that Maleska grids were devoid of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2012 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
That’s a personal question, of course, but I have a scientific way of determining which crosswords are memorable to me, and I’ve been thinking about what that means for the art form. I’ve been solving crosswords for years but until recently, I wasn’t a particularly careful observer. Puzzles came and... Continue reading
Posted Sep 29, 2012 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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Nope, it wasn't me. I didn’t write it but I can see why you're confused. Where’d You Go, Bernadette is a way insiderly novel about people who live in the Seattle area, some of whom work at Microsoft just around the corner from my building, and maybe travel to Antarctica.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 24, 2012 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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I recently posed the question, what are the most common clues Will Shortz has used in NYT crosswords? Jeffrey Krasnick and joon pahk quickly came up with “Jai ____” which, sure enough, is #1. ALAI is a convenient combination of letters (75% vowels) and there aren’t a lot of good... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2012 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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Each layer of puzzles unearthed by the archeological “litzers” of The Pre-Shortzian Puzzle Project is a step back in time. Newly discovered artifacts shed light on the world of puzzles but also the world at large. So far, they’re only back to the early 1990s but the differences are striking.... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2012 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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All donations to XWord Info made during the month of August will go to David Steinberg and the Pre-Shortzian Puzzle Project. With help from Barry Haldiman and several others, David Steinberg is on a mission to amass digitized versions of published NYT puzzles from before Will Shortz became editor. XWord... Continue reading
Posted Jul 30, 2012 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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Every December I look back on the year of NYT puzzles, highlight some that caught my eye, and pick my Puzzle of the Year. There’s little suspense for the Outstanding Achievement of 2011 but read on anyway. There is much to celebrate this year. Grids As usual, I start with... Continue reading
Posted Dec 30, 2011 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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Which is harder to create from scratch? At the New York Times, acrostics are those rectangular Second Sunday puzzles that appear on alternate weeks in the magazine. Most crossword solvers summarily ignore them but acrostics have a loyal, even fanatical following. The passion and, yes, smugness of the fans reminds... Continue reading
Posted Dec 18, 2011 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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I used to write about crosswords for The New York Times at a blog called Wordplay. That job ended today so, of course, it’s not too soon for my first tell-all exposé that will blow the lid off that whole operation. Here’s the key question: How early did I get... Continue reading
Posted Dec 25, 2010 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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I rarely grant interviews, but how could I say no to a student researching blogs and blogging, especially when the student is Shay Troy. It turns out that after blogging regularly for three years now, I do have some thoughts on the subject. Here are Shay’s questions and my answers:... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2010 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
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A Personal Review of Das Rheingold – I’m Not Completely Impressed In the world of opera, no event is more anticipated than a new Ring production. The Met has been planning their new cycle for years and Part One, Das Rheingold, has already opened. The rest will unfold over the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 27, 2010 at The Further Adventures of Jim Horne
Jim Horne has shared their blog The JimH Crossword Blog
Oct 19, 2010