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 2016-12-28 06:49:35 

Christmas (2016) is Over

More than ten correct solutions to this year's Advent calendar puzzle competition were submitted on Christmas Day, so the competition is now over. (Although you can still submit your answers to get me to check them.) Thank-you to everyone who took part in the puzzle, I've had a lot of fun watching your progress and talking to you on Twitter, Reddit, etc. You can find all the puzzles and answers (from 1 January) here.
The (very) approximate locations of all the entries I have received so far are shown on this map:
This year's winners have been randomly selected from the 29 correct entries on Christmas Day. They are:
1Jack Jiang
2Steve Paget
3Joe Gage
4Tony Mann
5Stephen Cappella
6Cheng Wai Koo
7Demi Xin
8Lyra
9David Fox
10Bob Dinnage
Your prizes will be on their way in early January.
Now that the competition has ended, I can give away a secret. Last year, Neal suggested that it would be fun if a binary picture was hidden in the answers. So this year I hid one. If you write all the answers in binary, with each answer below the previous and colour in the 1s black, you will see this:
I also had a lot of fun this year making up the names, locations, weapons and motives for the final murder mystery puzzle. In case you missed them these were:
#Murder suspectMotive
1Dr. Uno (uno = Spanish 1)Obeying nameless entity
2Mr. Zwei (zwei = German 2)To worry others
3Ms. Trois (trois = French 3)To help really evil elephant
4Mrs. Quattro (quattro = Italian 4)For old unknown reasons
5Prof. Pum (pum = Welsh 5)For individual violent end
6Miss. Zes (zes = Dutch 6)Stopping idiotic xenophobia
7Lord Seacht (seacht = Irish 7)Suspect espied victim eating newlyweds
8Lady Oito (oito = Portuguese 8)Epic insanity got him today
9Rev. Novem (novem = Latin 9)Nobody in newsroom expected

#LocationWeapon
1Throne roomWrench (1 vowel)
2Network roomRope (2 vowels)
3Beneath reedsRevolver (3 vowels)
4Edge of our gardenLead pipe (4 vowels)
5Fives courtNeighbour's sword (5 vowels)
6On the sixth floorSuper banana bomb (6 vowels)
7Sparse venueAntique candlestick (7 vowels)
8Weightlifting roomA foul tasting poison (8 vowels)
9Mathematics mezzanineRun over with an old Ford Focus (9 vowels)
Finally, well done to Scott, Matthew Schulz, Michael Gustin, Daniel Branscombe, Kei Nishimura-Gasparian, Henry Hung, Mark Fisher, Jon Palin, Thomas Tu, Félix Breton, Matt Hutton, Miguel, Fred Verheul, Martine Vijn Nome, Brennan Dolson, Louis de Mendonca, Roni, Dylan Hendrickson, Martin Harris, Virgile Andreani, Valentin Valciu, and Adia Batic for submitting the correct answer but being too unlucky to win prizes this year. Thank you all for taking part and I'll see you next December for the next competition.

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Comments

Comments in green were written by me. Comments in blue were not written by me.
 2017-02-03 
Thanks for the prizes. Fascinating books!
Steve Paget
 2017-01-19 
I got my prize in the mail today. I really liked the stories from Gustave Verbeek; I thought that was pretty clever. I really appreciate you being willing to send the prizes internationally.

Thanks for setting this all up; I had a lot of fun solving the puzzles every day (and solving half them again when my cookie for the site somehow got deleted). I'll be sure to participate next time too!
SC
 2016-12-28 
Thanks, Matthew! The puzzles were really fun, and piecing the clues was very interesting too!
Jack
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 2016-11-27 15:57:54 

Christmas (2016) is Coming!

This year, the front page of mscroggs.co.uk will feature an advent calendar, just like last year. Behind each door, there will be a puzzle with a three digit solution. The solution to each day's puzzle forms part of a murder mystery logic puzzle in which you have to work out the murderer, motive, location and weapon used: the answer to each of these murder facts is a digit from 1 to 9 (eg. The murderer could be 6, the motive 9, etc.).
As you solve the puzzles, your answers will be stored in a cookie. Behind the door on Christmas Day, there will be a form allowing you to submit your answers. The winner will be randomly chosen from all those who submit the correct answer on Christmas Day. Runners up will then be chosen from those who submit the correct answer on Christmas Day, then those who submit the correct answer on Boxing Day, then the next day, and so on. As the winners will be chosen randomly, there is no need to get up at 5am on Christmas Day this year!
The winner will win this array of prizes:
I will be adding to the pile of prizes throughout December. Runners up will get a subset of the prizes. The winner and runners up will also win an mscroggs.co.uk 2016 winners medal:
To win a prize, you must submit your entry before the end of 2016. Only one entry will be accepted per person. Once ten correct entries have been submitted, I will add a note here and below the calendar. If you have any questions, ask them in the comments below or on Twitter.
So once December is here, get solving! Good luck and have a very merry Christmas!
Edit: added picture of this year's medals.
Edit: more than ten correct entries have been submitted, list of prize winners can be found here. You can still submit your answers but the only prize left is glory.

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Christmas (2015) is Over
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Comments

Comments in green were written by me. Comments in blue were not written by me.
 2016-12-27 
Ten correct submissions have been made. Just updating the pages to reflect this...
Matthew
 2016-12-27 
Have 10 correct submissions not been made yet?
Another Matthew
 2016-12-25 
Thank you, Matthew!
Lyra
 2016-12-25 
Really enjoyed the extra bit at the end this year! Looking forward to 2017's calendar.
Louis
 2016-12-25 
I'll email you if you are one of the winners to get the rest of your address!
Matthew
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 2016-01-01 11:32:52 

Christmas (2015) is Over

The deadline for entering the 2015 Advent calendar competition has now passed. You can see all the puzzles and their answers here.
Thank-you to everyone who took part in the competition! In total, 23 people submitted answers to the puzzles. Every one of these had correct answers to at least 18 of the puzzles. The winners are as follows:
#NameDetails
1ScottAll correct at 5:00:18 GMT on Christmas Day
2Louis de MendoncaAll correct at 5:00:32 GMT on Christmas Day
3Alex BoltonAll correct at 5:00:34 GMT on Christmas Day
4Martin HarrisAll correct at 6:15 GMT on Christmas Day
5Linus HamiltonAll correct at 14:12 GMT on Christmas Day
6ZephiAll correct at 20:40 GMT on Christmas Day
7Daniel ChivertonAll but one (5 December) correct at 5:00:24 GMT on Christmas Day
8Jon PalinAll but one (12 December) correct at 5:00:34 GMT on Christmas Day
9Kathryn CoffinAll but one (5 December) correct at 6:28 GMT on Christmas Day
10Félix BretonAll but one (15 December) correct at 9:05 GMT on Christmas Day
I will be in touch will all the entrants in the next few days and I will post pictures of prizes here once they are on their way!
I have already started working on puzzles for next year's (in fact this year's) calendar, so make sure you're back here in December...

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Comments

Comments in green were written by me. Comments in blue were not written by me.
 2016-07-14 
It looks like the code I wrote to check the solutions were unique contained errors. This might explain why first question was very difficult to solve with logic alone.
Matthew
 2016-01-16 
Are you sure http://www.mscroggs.co.uk/puzzles/126 have unique solutions. See e.g. http://cryptarithms.awardspace.us/solver.html which gives lots of solutions
stephan
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 2015-11-24 15:05:00 

Christmas (2015) is Coming!

This year, the front page of mscroggs.co.uk will feature an advent calendar. Behind each door, there will be a puzzle with a three digit solution.
As you solve the puzzles, your answers will be stored in a cookie. Behind the door on Christmas Day, there will be a form allowing you to submit your answers. The first person to submit the correct answers will win this array of prizes:
The prizes include an mscroggs.co.uk t-shirt, a DVD of Full Frontal Nerdity and a beautiful mscroggs.co.uk 2015 winner's medal:
I will be adding to the pile of prizes throughout December.
The next nine people to submit the correct answers will win a winner's medal plus a smaller goody bag of prizes. If less than ten correct entries are submitted, prizes will be given to those with one incorrect answer, then those with two incorrect answers and so on.
Each day's puzzle (and the entry form on Christmas Day) will be available from 5:00am GMT.
To win a prize, you must submit your entry before the start of 2016. Only one entry will be accepted per person. Once ten correct entries have been submitted, I will add a note here and below the calendar. If you have any questions, ask them in the comments below or on Twitter.
So once December is here, get solving! Good luck and have a very merry Christmas!
Edit: The winners and answers can now be found here.

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Comments

Comments in green were written by me. Comments in blue were not written by me.
 2015-12-28 
Other winners and answers will be available from 1st January
Matthew
 2015-12-28 
How many wrong answers do I have ? And when will you publish the solutions ?
Anonymous2
 2015-12-25 
You are (now) correct and on the leaderboard. Well done!
Matthew
 2015-12-25 
I've submitted my answer! On Christmas too! It's just that I sorta crammed all of the answers today :/

Are you allowed to tell me if I am correct?
Anonymous1
 2015-12-25 
I'm so glad for OEIS.

hint hint
Anonymous
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