It’s always an honor to be mentioned in MIT Tech Review. Even better when it is in the definitive story about Advent of Code, the annual holiday-themed programming puzzle contest. Like a traditional advent calendar, participants in the Advent of Code receive a daily gift—a programming puzzle which you race to solve—counting down the days to December 25th.

We’ve always had a puzzle-loving culture here at Primer. In the Before Times when we all worked together in a single office, a new mathematical puzzle would appear on the lunch table each week. It was always remarkable to see a group of people take a break from their busy days solving hard problems…to delight in solving another hard problem!

Here is a Primer puzzle we created for you to enjoy over the holiday.

Cheers from San Francisco!

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ACROSS
1: F-down honoree’s invention
5: Cat runme.py ⊢ print(open(__file__).read())
6: Second longest word in Moby Dick
B: K-down novel by J-across
C: Mighty source of coding solutions and failures
D: One god’s son’s mother’s famous singer namesake’s confirmation name
E: 3E8
H: The second S-across[::-1][1:]
I: GGGGAAGAAAAA translation, probably you
J: Author(BPM 37093 core + solar orbits since birth)
L: Chemical fear induced by 4-down
M: Given name of 5-across
O: Wikipedia’s founder’s wife’s former boss’s wife’s occupation’s South African equivalent
P: Total stopping time of collatz(21845)
Q: J-across’ Hackworth occupation
R: Third most common word in US constitution
S: “”.join([chr(i) for i in [80, 82, 73, 77, 69, 82]])
T: First-author affiliation of Erdős-Bacon 7’s arXiv paper


DOWN
2: Size of most famous set of 9-down
3: 700 THz
4: Another name for M-across[-4:]
7: Original L-across[-4:] of S-across
8: Today’s annoying version of Simpsons 2F05 NLP feature
9: Well-known canine of historical region south of Edison’s rival’s birthplace
A: Fearsome extinct member of N-down
E: Capital of “”.join([1-across(n) for n in [67, 60, 92, 88, 16]])
F: Name of actinide 1-across(2-down)
G: Most famous product of T-across
J: Vigenére(x, key = Q-across) ⊢ WBLBJEVV
K: Western cross street of J-across homophone Street in 7-down
N: Biden’s former boss’s wife’s alma mater’s mascot’s family