You and a friend are standing in front of two houses. In each house lives a family with two children.
"The family on the left has a boy who loves history, but their other child prefers math," your friend tells you.
"The family on the right has a 7-year old boy, and they just had a new baby," he explains.
"Does either family have a girl?" you ask.
"I'm not sure," your friend says. "But pick the family that you think is more likely to have a girl. If they do have a girl, I'll give you $100."
Which family should you pick, or does it not matter?
You should pick the house on the left. Specifically, there is a 2/3 chance that the family on the left has a girl, whereas there's only a 1/2 chance that the house on the right has a girl.
This is a very counterintuitive riddle. It seems like there should always be a 1/2 chance that a given child is a girl. And in fact there is. The key word there is "given". Because we are not asking about a "given" child for the house on the left. We are asking about what could be either child. Whereas for the house on the right, we are asking about a "given" child...specifically, we're asking about the younger child.
There are 3 possibilities for the children in the first house:
There is no "Girl, Girl" option because we know the house on the left has at least one boy. Since each of these 3 options is equally likely, and 2 of them have one girl, there is a 2/3 chance of there being a girl in the house on the left.
For the house on the right, because we already know the older child is a boy, there are only two possibilities:
And as we can see, there is a 1/2 chance for the house on the right having a girl.
Search for: Boy or Girl paradox
An intelligent trader travels from one place to another with 3 sacks having 30 coconuts each. No sack can hold more than 30 coconuts. On the way, he passes 30 check points. At each check point, he has to give one coconut for every sack he is carrying. What is the maximum number of coconuts that he can have with him at the end of his journey?
He will have 25 coconuts with him at the end. The trick is to reduce the number of sacks as you pass checkpoints. The first 10 checkpoints require 3 coconuts each, which empties his first sack. The next 15 checkpoints require 2 coconuts each, which will empty his second stack. Now, he is left with 1 sack and 5 more checkpoints. So, the 5 checkpoints will take 1 coconut each. Therefore, he will be left with 25 coconuts.
A bus driver was heading down a street in Colorado. He went right past a stop sign without stopping, he turned left where there was a "no left turn" sign, and he went the wrong way on a one-way street. Then he went on the left side of the road past a cop car. Still - he didn't break any traffic laws.
A man eats dinner, goes up to his bedroom, turns off the lights, and goes to sleep. In the morning, he wakes up and looks outside. Horrified at what he sees, he hurls himself out his window to his death.
Why does he do this?
The man was a lighthouse operator. He wasn't supposed to turn off his lights. When he wakes up in the morning, he sees a giant ship that has crashed into the land, causing much catastrophe. Unable to go on, he decides to take his own life.
Dodge was staying with Cousin Jamie in Jamie's lakeside cabin. They were setting up Jamie's will. As Dodge was Jamie's closest living relative, much of Jamie's estate was being left to him. One day, Jamie went to Dr Dodge very disturbed. "Doctor," he began, "I have just found out that a man named Georgio wants to get me. He will be here very soon. Where will I go? Where can I hide? If he finds me in here, he will surely kill me. I do not have time to leave this clearing and go farther into the woods."
Dr Dodge thought for a moment, and then grabbed a 5' long bamboo pole, with a diameter the size of a quarter. "Jamie, follow me out to the lake. This lake is 4' deep. If you lie on the bottom of the lake and breathe through this pole, Georgio will never find you. I will be in the bulrushes with a shotgun, and I will shoot him when he comes. I will swim down to find you when he is gone." Jamie consented, and lay down on the bottom of the lake with the bamboo pole in his mouth. A few hours later, a ranger passed by. He found Jamie's body, dead. Dr Dodge told the police of the circumstance, and that Jamie had probably panicked, and died. Police arrested Dr Dodge, on the charges of murdering Jamie. Why?
The bamboo pole did not have any cracks or holes. Its opening was above water the whole time.
Jamie died of carbon dioxide poisoning. The pole was 5' long, but only the size of a quarter. The first time he breathed in, he breathed oxygen. When he exhaled, the air could not travel 5' before he breathed in again. He was just breathing what he exhaled. Before long, all he was breathing was carbon dioxide. He died of CO2 poisoning. Doctor Doge was the one who told him to use the pole, therefore the cause of his death. Dodge is a DOCTOR, and therefore knows about the CO2. Dodge did murder Jamie. His motive: the money in the will.
The Smith family is a very wealthy family that lives in a big, circular home. One morning, Mr. Smith woke up and found his gardener's body. He knew it was one of his employees who had killed him. So he asked them what they were doing in the morning and he got these replies.
Driver: "I was outside washing the car."
Maid: "I was dusting the corners of the house."
Cook: "I was starting to make lunch for later."
From the replies he knew who the killer was. Can you guess who it was?
The maid, because they lived in a circular house and she was apparently "dusting the corners" of the house at the time of the murder - the house is round, therefore it has no corners.