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Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2016 8:17 pm UTC
by LjSpike
Puzzle One, isn't too tricky, if you know the original puzzle. Its a nice one, no theoretical science needed at all.
A boy is walking to a party, he turns the corner and sees on the road, seven men.
Each of these seven men has seven wives, and each of these seven wives has seven daughters, who each have seven dogs, who each are playing with seven boys.
How many people did the boy see going to the party?

Puzzle Two, a slightly trickier one too guess I'd say, one I came up with a while back.
Some ground rules first, you can't shape shift, not can you die, nor can you expel anything but your breathe from your body. You also, cannot communicate to anyone else to aid you in achieving your goal (within the world of the puzzle).

So the puzzle now.
You appear inside a box, with the dimensions of 5 meters, by 5 meters, by 5 meters, with smooth, featureless sides.
You cannot break the box.
You can float about, as if in a zero gravity environment.
You must escape, in less than 10 actions, in less than 2 hours, or you die from suffocation, or some deadly alien rays (or some other horrible danger).


Solutions (or at least the two I know of if there are some other spectacular ones? (so don't fear posting yours))
1:
Spoiler:
One person. The boy was walking to the party, he just saw the other people on the road. For goodness sake, they could all be dead from a road traffic accident!

2:
Spoiler:
Push on each side of the box till one comes free. Most boxes have lids, and considering you can't break it, opening it is the only solution I know of.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Tue Jun 21, 2016 9:31 pm UTC
by DaBigCheez
1:
Spoiler:
Your solution doesn't follow. They could all be dead from a traffic accident...or, they could not. Some subset of them could be going to the party. Or not. There's not enough information in the description to say. This is just an https://xkcd.com/169/ problem.

And even if we're going with your stated solution...wouldn't it be zero? After all, the problem statement never states that he "sees" himself at any point.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 8:19 am UTC
by LjSpike
DaBigCheez wrote:1:
Spoiler:
Your solution doesn't follow. They could all be dead from a traffic accident...or, they could not. Some subset of them could be going to the party. Or not. There's not enough information in the description to say. This is just an https://xkcd.com/169/ problem.

And even if we're going with your stated solution...wouldn't it be zero? After all, the problem statement never states that he "sees" himself at any point.


Spoiler:
Actually, that point of the answer being zero is quite a good point. I admit, there probably is a better way to communicate the puzzle without revealing the answer, its a bit of a tricky one to get perfect in wording though, because in a lot of ways of wording it, you reveal the trick behind it.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 11:15 am UTC
by Cauchy
LjSpike wrote:
DaBigCheez wrote:1:
Spoiler:
Your solution doesn't follow. They could all be dead from a traffic accident...or, they could not. Some subset of them could be going to the party. Or not. There's not enough information in the description to say. This is just an https://xkcd.com/169/ problem.

And even if we're going with your stated solution...wouldn't it be zero? After all, the problem statement never states that he "sees" himself at any point.


Spoiler:
Actually, that point of the answer being zero is quite a good point. I admit, there probably is a better way to communicate the puzzle without revealing the answer, its a bit of a tricky one to get perfect in wording though, because in a lot of ways of wording it, you reveal the trick behind it.


If you turned the corner, you have no way of knowing whether the people are going to the party or not. I think the original does it fine with the wording. If you try to be too subtle, you end up not being informative enough to single out the answer you're looking for. The point of the riddle is that if you pay attention to the words, you *do* figure out the answer.

For the second one, why do I want to escape? None of the dangers can kill me, since, as stated in the riddle, I can't die.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 2:11 pm UTC
by CharlieP
Linguistically the question could be parsed as "How many people did the boy see on his way to the party?" But we still don't know how many he saw before or after the incident described.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 7:15 am UTC
by LjSpike
CharlieP wrote:Linguistically the question could be parsed as "How many people did the boy see on his way to the party?" But we still don't know how many he saw before or after the incident described.

Ehh, thats true. I was hoping only I saw that interpration.

Cauchy wrote:
LjSpike wrote:
DaBigCheez wrote:1:
Spoiler:
Your solution doesn't follow. They could all be dead from a traffic accident...or, they could not. Some subset of them could be going to the party. Or not. There's not enough information in the description to say. This is just an https://xkcd.com/169/ problem.

And even if we're going with your stated solution...wouldn't it be zero? After all, the problem statement never states that he "sees" himself at any point.


Spoiler:
Actually, that point of the answer being zero is quite a good point. I admit, there probably is a better way to communicate the puzzle without revealing the answer, its a bit of a tricky one to get perfect in wording though, because in a lot of ways of wording it, you reveal the trick behind it.


If you turned the corner, you have no way of knowing whether the people are going to the party or not. I think the original does it fine with the wording. If you try to be too subtle, you end up not being informative enough to single out the answer you're looking for. The point of the riddle is that if you pay attention to the words, you *do* figure out the answer.

For the second one, why do I want to escape? None of the dangers can kill me, since, as stated in the riddle, I can't die.

You may not want to, but read the final point of it, that you -must- escape (the logic puzzle demands it, and even if it doesn't conform to common sense to do it, you must always follow what a logic puzzle demands. Additionally, its a bit boring being stuck inside a boring ol' box for eternity (although you could perhaps rederive math in the air, or use the air to create a computer simulating the interaction between particles) anyway, you must escape otherwise the universe which the puzzle resides in would create a paradox, as you must die but cannot die at the same time, and who knows what'll happen, so unless your the type of guy who timetravels to then steal the shopping of a future leader just to see what'd happen, then I advise you escape).

:)

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 12:36 pm UTC
by mward
Second puzzle (based on a solution I first heard in the mid 1970's):
Spoiler:
Float about rubbing your hands until they are sore. Use the saw to cut the float in half. Two halves make a whole, so jump through the hole to escape the box. Shout for help until you are hoarse. Jump on the horse and ride away!

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2016 2:38 pm UTC
by LjSpike
mward wrote:Second puzzle (based on a solution I first heard in the mid 1970's):
Spoiler:
Float about rubbing your hands until they are sore. Use the saw to cut the float in half. Two halves make a whole, so jump through the hole to escape the box. Shout for help until you are hoarse. Jump on the horse and ride away!

Sadly I'm not sure that works.
By making a hole you are breaking the box? Plus, where did the saw come from.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Sun Jun 26, 2016 11:40 pm UTC
by ConMan
LjSpike wrote:
mward wrote:Second puzzle (based on a solution I first heard in the mid 1970's):
Spoiler:
Float about rubbing your hands until they are sore. Use the saw to cut the float in half. Two halves make a whole, so jump through the hole to escape the box. Shout for help until you are hoarse. Jump on the horse and ride away!

Sadly I'm not sure that works.
By making a hole you are breaking the box? Plus, where did the saw come from.

It's a series of puns (sore/saw, whole/hole, hoarse/horse).

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 9:01 am UTC
by Cauchy
ConMan wrote:It's a series of puns (sore/saw, whole/hole, hoarse/horse).


What dialect do you speak such that sore and saw are homophones? I've never, ever heard that. They don't even have the same vowel for me, let alone the same post-vowel sound (which is "none" for saw).

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 9:19 am UTC
by mward
Cauchy wrote:What dialect do you speak such that sore and saw are homophones? I've never, ever heard that. They don't even have the same vowel for me, let alone the same post-vowel sound (which is "none" for saw).

I speak British English, so I don't actually have a dialect :)

http://dictionary.cambridge.org/pronunciation/english/sore
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/pronunciation/english/saw

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 2:19 pm UTC
by jestingrabbit
Cauchy wrote:
ConMan wrote:It's a series of puns (sore/saw, whole/hole, hoarse/horse).


What dialect do you speak such that sore and saw are homophones? I've never, ever heard that. They don't even have the same vowel for me, let alone the same post-vowel sound (which is "none" for saw).


I believe ConMan is from oz, as am I, and it works fine for me. Pretty sure its the old rhotic vs non-rhotic thing.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 11:27 pm UTC
by ConMan
jestingrabbit wrote:
Cauchy wrote:
ConMan wrote:It's a series of puns (sore/saw, whole/hole, hoarse/horse).


What dialect do you speak such that sore and saw are homophones? I've never, ever heard that. They don't even have the same vowel for me, let alone the same post-vowel sound (which is "none" for saw).


I believe ConMan is from oz, as am I, and it works fine for me. Pretty sure its the old rhotic vs non-rhotic thing.

Yep. I think it works in at least some forms of British English too.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:03 am UTC
by Sandor
ConMan wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:
Cauchy wrote:
ConMan wrote:It's a series of puns (sore/saw, whole/hole, hoarse/horse).


What dialect do you speak such that sore and saw are homophones? I've never, ever heard that. They don't even have the same vowel for me, let alone the same post-vowel sound (which is "none" for saw).


I believe ConMan is from oz, as am I, and it works fine for me. Pretty sure its the old rhotic vs non-rhotic thing.

Yep. I think it works in at least some forms of British English too.

It works for me, too. I'm from Bristol, UK. I think there's a subtle difference between "sore" and "saw", but it's almost unnoticable. These are all pretty much the same to me: boar / bore / core / claw / door / draw / for / four / fore / floor / flaw / gore / whore / hoar / haw / jaw / law / lore / more / moor / maw / nor / gnaw / or / ore / oar / paw / pour / pore / raw / roar / saw / sore / soar / tore / war / wore / yaw / yore / your / you're. If you hadn't already guessed, I just went through the alphabet in my head, so I might have missed a few words.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:07 pm UTC
by CharlieP
Sandor wrote:
ConMan wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:
Cauchy wrote:
ConMan wrote:It's a series of puns (sore/saw, whole/hole, hoarse/horse).


What dialect do you speak such that sore and saw are homophones? I've never, ever heard that. They don't even have the same vowel for me, let alone the same post-vowel sound (which is "none" for saw).


I believe ConMan is from oz, as am I, and it works fine for me. Pretty sure its the old rhotic vs non-rhotic thing.

Yep. I think it works in at least some forms of British English too.

It works for me, too. I'm from Bristol, UK. I think there's a subtle difference between "sore" and "saw", but it's almost unnoticable. These are all pretty much the same to me: boar / bore / core / claw / door / draw / for / four / fore / floor / flaw / gore / whore / hoar / haw / jaw / law / lore / more / moor / maw / nor / gnaw / or / ore / oar / paw / pour / pore / raw / roar / saw / sore / soar / tore / war / wore / yaw / yore / your / you're. If you hadn't already guessed, I just went through the alphabet in my head, so I might have missed a few words.


I think you immediately missed "awe". :D

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Tue Jun 28, 2016 6:19 pm UTC
by BedderDanu
If sore and saw don't work, then you can just look at the box.

You see what you saw. You take the saw and cut the float in half. etc.


Alternatively, push yourself around the box until you wear yourself out.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Thu Jun 30, 2016 8:41 am UTC
by LjSpike
BedderDanu wrote:If sore and saw don't work, then you can just look at the box.

You see what you saw. You take the saw and cut the float in half. etc.


Alternatively, push yourself around the box until you wear yourself out.


Pretty much your second solution there.
If you can't break the box, the only way to escape would be to put against each side.
One side then must open.

Re: Two puzzles for the price of 1!

Posted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 4:21 pm UTC
by Trebla
LjSpike wrote:
BedderDanu wrote:If sore and saw don't work, then you can just look at the box.

You see what you saw. You take the saw and cut the float in half. etc.


Alternatively, push yourself around the box until you wear yourself out.


Pretty much your second solution there.
If you can't break the box, the only way to escape would be to put against each side.
One side then must open.


He was punning again, in his solution no side of the box opened. After he "wears himself out" he is "out" of the box.