New: Puzzles are Everywhere, Maybe Even mental_floss

I work at an internet search company. I think that the awesome part about internet search is that you don't have to remember stuff anymore. If you might need to know the capital of California in the future, don't bother trying to memorize that kind of stuff. You should devote those neurons to something more useful... like maybe IMSpeak decoding. Just look up the capital of California when you need to know it.

Surprisingly, there are many people at work who cache facts in their heads. These people know the capital of California--they know it really well. And lots of other stuff. The deepest lake in South America. The 19th century American poet known for wearing a straw hat. Which European monarch witnessed the greatest loss of population to his/her country during the course of his/her reign. These people, they like trivia.

mental_floss is a magazine for people like this. It's also a website, a line of books, ... The magazine's founders, Mangesh and Will, came to my place of employment to talk to give an Authors talk. I'd heard about mental_floss... was it from Ken Jenning's Brainiac? Or maybe from his blog? Or maybe via osmosis from hanging out with so many puzzlers and geeks? I dunno. Anyhow, I attended their talk.

They talked about how they founded the magazine while they were in school. They talked about how popular it is now, their success with the trivia books. More background blah blah blah. They asked some trivia questions. Look, if you're a trivia fan you probably want to check out the magazine. If you're not, but if you're a regular reader of this blog, then there was still something...

After the talk, I went up to the front where Mangesh and Will were chatting with a few folks. Tom introduced Wei-Hwa to them, pointing out that Wei-Hwa. was an international puzzle champion and everything. Will perked up at that, and asked him if Wei-Hwa wrote puzzles. Because they were thinking that mental_floss could have a puzzle feature. And you might be thinking "Oh, probably they just want more trivia quizzes", but when Wei-Hwa said that he had just made a bunch of Sudoku puzzles for the upcoming championship, Will didn't blink but said that he and Mangesh would love to hear about puzzles for the magazine. So anyhow, that's another place to send your puzzle ideas if you'd like to make them visible to a wide audience.

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Posted 2007-10-20