Which word has the most valid subwords?

As is pretty common at SF tech companies, lots of people at Stripe have laptop stickers with various company logos (including our own) on them. So there have been at least a few cases where I’ve sat in a meeting, maybe slightly distracted, facing a laptop with the word STRIPE on it, and let my mind wander. And where it tends to go is to the observation that there’s lots of other words inside of STRIPE. STRIP is a word, TRIPE is a word, TRIP is a word, and RIPE is a word. There are valid words all up in this thing! And then I tend to think two very specific questions:

  • How many subsets of the word STRIPE are valid dictionary words?
  • What’s the English word which has the highest percentage of its subsets be valid dictionary words?

I’ve thought these questions far too often. And so in the interest of self-discovery, growth, and hopefully moving on to other useless things to think about, I decided to find some answers.


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