2011: The Year of the Waterbear

WaterbearDo you know how cool waterbears (aka tardigrades or moss piglets) are? Do you? We do. Here are some fun facts about water bears:

  1. These microscopic beasties can survive tempertures from just above absolute zero to over 150ÂșC!
  2. They can survive solar, gamma, and ionic radiation at doses hundreds of times higher than a lethal dose for a human.
  3. They can tolerate pressures higher than the pressure of the deepest ocean trenches...and can survive the vacuum of space (and even breed in such conditions).
  4. They can go without food and water for over 10 years (drying up in the process to a fraction of their original weight), then rehydrate and resuscitate.

They are quite the survivor. And key to this year's puzzles, as a genius scientist who has harnessed the amazing powers of the waterbear has been kidnapped, and the secrets he has left behind must be found!

Here are some of the Puzzle Lords' favorite puzzles from that year:

Medium-Easy | Medium-Hard | Hard (Note: reference to using a Mac in this puzzle is irrelevant to solving it.)

...and here are the answers for these three, if you want them....

And the results?

The Winners were Team Potassium Oxide (KO)...who never let a fact like potassium oxide's formula is actually K2O get in the way of a good name.

The First Losers were The One-Eyed, One-Horned, Flying, Purple People Eaters, who also won the Best Teamwork Award.

The Iron Puzzler award went to Team Got Tiger Love.

The Coveted Spirit Award went to Team Fly.

Other awards included Beat Team Name, We Are Working On It, and Best Team Motto:

glyphs of the motto

...which apparently phonetically says "The Team Your Team Could Smell Like"...went to Team Zygorzyce.

The Puzzle Lords would also like to acknowledge this awesome video one of the participants made, unsoclicited. Silver Chips and The Gazette also ran stories on the event.

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