Question: Two men find an old gold coin and want to have a coin toss with it to decide who gets it. The only problem is the coin is heavier on one side so it comes up heads more than tails. What is a fair way for the men to toss the coin and decide who gets the coin?
Answer: They just have to flip it twice. They call the first toss either heads or tails, then the next toss they automatically pick the opposite (ie if one man calls heads on the first flip, he automatically picks tails on the second and vice versa). If they both win one toss (a tie) out of the two, they just have to repeat until one of them wins both tosses.
Question: A man taking the census walks up to the apartment of a mathematician and asks him if he has any children and how old they are. The mathematician says "I have three daughters and the product of their ages is 72." The man tells the mathematician that he needs more information, so the mathematician tells him "The sum of their ages is equal to our apartment number." The man still needs more information so the mathematician tells him "My oldest daughter has her own bed and the other two share bunk beds."
How old are his daughters?
Answer: His daughters are 8, 3, and 3. The prime factorization of 72 is 2 * 2 * 2 * 3 * 3, so the possible ages are 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, 12, and 18. Using the prime factorization and these numbers the only combinations of numbers that work for the first clue are:
18, 2 and 2.
9, 4 and 2.
6, 6 and 2.
6, 4 and 3.
8, 3, and 3.
Since he doesn't know the ages after this piece of information the sum of the three numbers must not be unique. The sum of 8, 3, and 3; and 6, 6, and 2 are the same. Now the final clue comes in handy. Since we know that the oldest daughter has her own bed it is likely that she has the bed to herself and is older than the other two so there ages are 8, 3, and 3 rather than 2, 6 and 6.
Question: Everyday a peasant must pay the king one pound of gold and leave it on a collection plate in front of his house. Every morning a guard comes by to make sure he has put a pound of gold on the plate. The king collects the gold every six days from the plate. If the peasant only has one six pound block of gold, how can he make only two parallel cuts and still follow the kings rules each day?
Answer: He can cut one pound off and two pounds off. This would leave a one pound, two pound, and three pound block. On the first day he leaves the one pound block. On the second day he leaves the two pound block. On the third day he leaves the three pound block. On the fourth day he leaves the three pound and one pound blocks. On the fifth day he leaves the three pound and two pound blocks. On the last day he leaves all of them.
Question: Every time a man lies his nose grows to 150 percent of its size. Every time he tells the truth it shrinks to 50 percent of its size.
What will happen if he alternates between lies and the truth?
Answer: For every pair of a truth and a lie his nose will shrink to 75 percent of its previous size prior to this truth and lie. So the correct answer is 0. As the number of times he tells a lie and the truth ((3/4)n) approaches infinity the length of his nose approaches 0.
Question: In a certain society any time somebody commits a serious crime they must be shot at twice with a 6 bullet revolver. The revolver only has two bullets in it though, both of them right next to each other. They spin the revolver once and shoot the gun. If there was no bullet in that chamber they give the prisoner the option to either spin the chamber again or just shoot again. If the first shot is a blank, should the prisoner ask for the revolver to be spun or should they choose that it be shot again?
Answer: They should have them shoot again. If it is spun again there is a 2/6 chance they will get shot. There are four possible spots that don't have bullets and only one is followed by a bullet. This means that the chance is only 1/4 that they will be shot if they don't spin it.
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