Archive for May, 2016

The Three Hats

Tuesday, May 24th, 2016

A billionaire enters a reality show saloon with five bellboy hats, three red and two white.

“I need three volunteers to play a game for a million dollars,” he said. “Any takers?”

Three men put down their beer mugs immediately and volunteered: Jack, Tobias and Charlie.

“Very well. Set up three chairs in a triangle so each of you can see the other two,” commanded the billionaire.

This was speedily arranged.

“Close your eyes while I place one of these five hats on each of your heads. I’ll tell you when to open them. The hats are so small you won’t be able to see the color of your own hat,” he explained cheerily.

He put the hats on their heads and threw the remaining two out the window.

“I’ll give a million dollars to the man who can say which color hat he has on his head,” he said.

They opened their eyes and looked eagerly at their respective companions.

“What do you say, Jack?” asked the billionaire.

“Ummm, I don’t know,” Jack said with a sad face.

“What about you, Tobias?” asked the billionaire.

Tobias looked studiously at his two companions. “Well, I can’t say either,” he grumbled.

“But I know,” exclaimed Charlie jubilantly, “and I am blind.”

And, sure enough, he did know and received the million dollars with a big smile.

What was the color of Charlie’s hat, and how did he know?

Three Piles of Coins

Friday, May 20th, 2016

Three piles of coins are placed in front of you, which respectively contain 11, 7 and 6 coins.

You are to obtain three piles with eight coins each.

The rule is that you can only move the same number of coins onto a pile which the pile already has.

You have three moves.

Age Conundrum

Friday, May 20th, 2016

“Can you tell me about the ages of the new caretakers, the Jones family?” asked the math student Lanoo of his teacher Orion.

“Yes, I will be happy to. Perhaps you won’t be so pleased,” smiled Orion, “when smoke starts coming out of your ears.”

“The difference between the ages of John and Mary is twice that of Cuthbert.

One of the former is ten times as old as Cuthbert. Reading backwards, the age of John is the same as that of Mary.

What are their ages?”

Einstein’s Balls

Monday, May 16th, 2016

Supposedly Einstein solved this problem in three minutes. It might take you longer.

You are given 12 balls and told that one of them has a different weight, whether lighter or heavier.

With three weighings using any scale you are to locate this ball.

Patience is a virtue.

Good luck!

The Mathematician’s Kids

Wednesday, May 11th, 2016

A mathematician named Albert meets a colleague and says: “Nice to see you again John. How is life?”

“I am prosperous, Albert, and happily married with three kids.”

“That’s nice. How old are they?” asked Albert.

“The product of their ages is 36 and the sum is equal to the number of swans you can see in my private lake,” pointing out the window.

Albert thought for a while, then he said. “That’s not enough information, John”

“You are right, I forgot to tell you that the age sum divides that of their squares,” replied John.

Albert thought for a while, smiled and said: “Ok, now I know how old they are, John”

How old are the kids and how many swans are in the private lake?

The Wrong Train

Tuesday, May 10th, 2016

Joe gets up in the morning whenever he wakes up, rubs his eyes, jumps out of bed and runs down to the train station to jump on the first train that arrives to go to work.

It is a one-track station and trains have a 20 minute interval between their respective arrivals.

The problem is that nine out of ten times Joe arrives in the wrong city. Soon he will get fired for coming late to work so often.

How is this possible?