Riddle #695


Horse race

Two men ride their horses to the town blacksmith to ask for his daughter's hand in marriage. To help decide who will get to marry her, the blacksmith proposes a very strange race: "You will race your horses down the mile-long road from here to to the center of town, and the man whose horse passes through city hall's gates LAST will get to marry my daughter." The men have no idea how to proceed, but after a few minutes of thinking, they come up with a great idea to abide by the blacksmith's rules. 30 minutes later, one of the men is gloating, having won the daughter's hand in marriage. What was the idea the men had?
Each man rides the other man's horse. They race as they normally would. The blacksmith said the man whose horse crosses last would win, so the man who wins the race would have his horse finish last.
93.39 %
38 votes

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2 Player and N Coin – Strategy Puzzle

There are n coins in a line. (Assume n is even). Two players take turns to take a coin from one of the ends of the line until there are no more coins left. The player with the larger amount of money wins. Would you rather go first or second? Does it matter? Assume that you go first, describe an algorithm to compute the maximum amount of money you can win. Note that the strategy to pick maximum of two corners may not work. In the following example, first player looses the game when he/she uses strategy to pick maximum of two corners. Example 18 20 15 30 10 14 First Player picks 18, now row of coins is 20 15 30 10 14 Second player picks 20, now row of coins is 15 30 10 14 First Player picks 15, now row of coins is 30 10 14 Second player picks 30, now row of coins is 10 14 First Player picks 14, now row of coins is 10 Second player picks 10, game over. The total value collected by second player is more (20 + 30 + 10) compared to first player (18 + 15 + 14). So the second player wins.
Going first will guarantee that you will not lose. By following the strategy below, you will always win the game (or get a possible tie). (1) Count the sum of all coins that are odd-numbered. (Call this X) (2) Count the sum of all coins that are even-numbered. (Call this Y) (3) If X > Y, take the left-most coin first. Choose all odd-numbered coins in subsequent moves. (4) If X < Y, take the right-most coin first. Choose all even-numbered coins in subsequent moves. (5) If X == Y, you will guarantee to get a tie if you stick with taking only even-numbered/odd-numbered coins. You might be wondering how you can always choose odd-numbered/even-numbered coins. Let me illustrate this using an example where you have 6 coins: Example 18 20 15 30 10 14 Sum of odd coins = 18 + 15 + 10 = 43 Sum of even coins = 20 + 30 + 14 = 64. Since the sum of even coins is more, the first player decides to collect all even coins. He first picks 14, now the other player can only pick a coin (10 or 18). Whichever is picked the other player, the first player again gets an opportunity to pick an even coin and block all even coins.
93.84 %
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Chickens and Rabbits

There are several chickens and rabbits in a cage (with no other types of animals). There are 72 heads and 200 feet inside the cage. How many chickens are there, and how many rabbits?
Let c be the number of chickens, and r be the number of rabbits. r + c = 72 4r + 2c = 200 To solve the equations, we multiply the first by two, then subtract the second. 2r + 2c = 144 2r = 56 r = 28 c = 44 So there are 44 chickens and 28 rabbits in the cage.
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38 votes


Leave 6

Take 9 from 6, 10 from 9, 50 from 40 and leave 6. How is it possible?
SIX - 9 (IX) = S 9 (IX) - 10 (X) = I 40 (XL) - 50 (L) = X
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Appleland to Bananaville

You have been given the task of transporting 3,000 apples 1,000 miles from Appleland to Bananaville. Your truck can carry 1,000 apples at a time. Every time you travel a mile towards Bananaville you must pay a tax of 1 apple but you pay nothing when going in the other direction (towards Appleland). What is highest number of apples you can get to Bananaville?
833 apples. Step one: First you want to make 3 trips of 1,000 apples 333 miles. You will be left with 2,001 apples and 667 miles to go. Step two: Next you want to take 2 trips of 1,000 apples 500 miles. You will be left with 1,000 apples and 167 miles to go (you have to leave an apple behind). Step three: Finally, you travel the last 167 miles with one load of 1,000 apples and are left with 833 apples in Bananaville.
94.59 %
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Infinite number of mathematicians

An infinite number of mathematicians are standing behind a bar. The first asks the barman for half a pint of beer, the second for a quarter pint, the third an eighth, and so on. How many pints of beer will the barman need to fulfill all mathematicians' wishes?
Just one.
94.24 %
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Rainy Day Elevators

A man lives on the 44th floor of his building. On rainy days, when he gets home from work, he takes the elevator all the way up to his floor. But on sunny days, he goes up to floor 20 and walks the rest of the way. Why does he do this?
The man is a midget and cannot reach button "44" in the elevator on sunny days. On rainy days he has his umbrella with him and is able to use it to press the button.
93.05 %
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logicshortwhat am I

It will follow you

If will follow you for 1000 miles but not miss home. It desires neither food nor flowers. It fears not water, fire, knives, nor soldiers. But it disappears when the sun sets behind the western mountains. Who Am I?
90.67 %
45 votes


Stop the stealing

One company had two factories, in different parts of the country, that were making the same style of shoes. In both factories, workers were stealing shoes. How, without using any security, could that company stop the stealing?
Make one factory make the left shoe, and the other make the right shoe.
93.39 %
38 votes


Thirty-four minutes past noon

What is the significance of the following: The year is 1978, thirty-four minutes past noon on May 6th.
The time and month/date/year are 12:34, 5/6/78.
93.05 %
36 votes