Riddle #673

Question: A hobo picks up cigarette butts from the ground and can make a cigarette with 4 butts. If he finds 16 cigarette butts, how many cigarettes can he make?

Riddle Discussion

By: Mongreller on 13/7/16

It depends on whether you think that all butts are identical, which is clearly absurd. If you think that all butts are identical, then the answer is 5. If you think that no two butts are identical, then there are C(16,4)C(12,4)C(8,4)(4!)^4 cigarettes the hobo can make. (He can only smoke 5 distinct combinations, though.) If you think that some butts are identical and some distinct then the world is a very complicated place for you.\n\nIncidentally, I have seen a hobo picking up cigarette butts on several occasions, but never a male hobo. I never realized until just now.)

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