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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Brain Teaser

Let me pose this scenario to you. You are one step south of the North/South divider, facing north. You are told to continue walking in the direction you currently face for 3 steps and give directions for the steps. What are the directions? 3 steps north? 2 steps north, 1 step south? 1 step north, 2 steps south?

The first step is obviously north, but when you are at the exact intersection of North and South, what direction are you going if you continue in the same direction? I would buy an argument either way but I believe the next step would have to be north. So that's 2 steps north, but then what. You would now be one step south of the divider facing south. Without the prior information, the obvious answer for the next step would be south. But it seems weird to take 3 steps in the same direction with 2 going north and 1 south. So I say you would direct someone to walk 2 steps north and then 1 step south. This isn't really a brain teaser as much as an argument over semantics or specifics or something else. But then maybe the brain teaser is how can you take 2 steps north and then 1 step south and still take end up 3 steps away from where you started.
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1 Comments:

Blogger troutmask said...

What if you are one step south of the north pole? One step north. Then you are at the pole and any step is south. So the same straight line ends up going one north, two south.

3/09/2006 10:25:00 PM  

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