 [Math Problem] The children  

Author  Message 

 Lisianthus 
Posts : 979 Réputation : 5 Regist Date : 20061103
 Subject: [Math Problem] The children Thu 27 Aug 2009, 22:12  
 Let me see if you can solve this.
Two men meet on the street. They haven't seen each other for many years. They talk about lots of things and after a while one of the men says. “Since you’re a mathematician I would like to give you a problem to solve. You see, today is a very special day to me. All my three sons are having their birthday today. So can you tell me what age my sons are?” “Sure” answers the mathematician. “But you need to tell me something about them.” “Okay I’ll give you a few clues” Answers the father of the three sons. “If you multiply their ages with each other you’ll get 36.” “That’s good.” Says the mathematician “But I need more information.” “The sum of their ages is the same as there are windows on that building.” Says the father and points at a building nearby. The mathematician thinks for a while and says “I still need one more clue to solve the problem.” “My oldest son has blue eyes.” Says the father. “Ah! That’ll be enough clues” Says the mathematician and gives the father the right answer on their ages.
You’re challenge is now to follow the reasoning of the mathematician and solve the problem. There is only ONE answer that is right.
And when answering you have to provide an explanation why your three ages are the correct ones.
And yes, it IS solvable and I HAVE provided enough information to solve it.
Good Luck and have fun. If no one has answered right before 1st September, I will post the answer.
And also if you've seen this one before don't spoil it for the others. Thanks.
S3rius gets an instant cookie for solving it. Tamer gets the a cookie aswell, though it has chewing marks in it,(Lets just say that s3rius didn't like his cookie.) ....................  Quote :
 Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen. ~Winston Churchill
Last edited by Lisianthus on Fri 28 Aug 2009, 00:21; edited 1 time in total 

 
 s3rius 
Posts : 1931 Réputation : 55 Regist Date : 20060212
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Thu 27 Aug 2009, 23:04  
 BULLSEYE Here's the answer:  Spoiler:

Yea, you wish.


 
 Tamer 
Posts : 70 Réputation : 0 Regist Date : 20090726
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Thu 27 Aug 2009, 23:46  
  Spoiler:

The possible age combinations are the following (and the sum of all those) :
{1,1,36} : sum = 38 {1,2,18} : sum = 21 {1,3,12} : sum = 16 {1,4,9} : sum = 14 {1,6,6} : sum = 13 {2,2,9} : sum = 13 {2,3,6} : sum = 11 {3,3,4} : sum = 10
Now, since the mathematician knows the number of windows on the building (even if we do not) and he is still not able to find out the answer, then that's because there must be more than one possible answer for any given number of windows.
In this case, the only solutions that have the same sum are {1,6,6} and {2,2,9} .
Assuming that the twins in these 2 solutions are identical twins, then the oldest son must not have a twin, therefore the answer is {2,2,9}
But the enigma (it really isn't much a math problem as far as I can tell) is not well presented, because there are no assumptions for the twins to be identical. Since blue eye color is from a recessive gene, there is probability of any son born out of the same egg cell is 1 in 4 or 3 in 4 (depending if one of the parents has blue eyes or not, otherwise all kids would have blue eyes or none would) => therefore, twins that result from 2 different egg cell can have blue and nonblue eye colors. Lisianthus: I think that the color doesn't have much to do with it, and rather that he says "Oldest son" But yes still, there is nothing that says that the "oldest son" cannot be a twin. Maybe he just came out first.
But whatever... s3rius: Put into a Spoiler so others can chose to read it or not. Congrats on solving it. The answer is correct. 

 
 calex 
Posts : 2 Réputation : 0 Regist Date : 20090901
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Wed 02 Sep 2009, 08:45  
 Well where's the answer now? Hmm.. I should post my answer first.. For me if that man has three sons and the product of their ages is 36, therefore, 36 divided by 3 is equal to 12. They are triplets! Am I right? That's my answer because the man did not tell how many windows in the building and I don't think the color of the eyes of his older son has got to do with their ages.
"It's just a name, I'm a girl." 

 
 Proxy 
Posts : 746 Réputation : 12 Regist Date : 20090602
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Wed 02 Sep 2009, 08:53  
 Congrats on solving that guys .................... the_underhand: I went to a beauty contest the_underhand: bikini 2009 the_underhand: miss bikini the_underhand: and won [Bnet 3:13 pm 10/9/2009] 

 
 s3rius 
Posts : 1931 Réputation : 55 Regist Date : 20060212
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Wed 02 Sep 2009, 11:28  
  calex wrote:
 Well where's the answer now? Hmm..
I should post my answer first.. For me if that man has three sons and the product of their ages is 36, therefore, 36 divided by 3 is equal to 12. They are triplets! Am I right? That's my answer because the man did not tell how many windows in the building and I don't think the color of the eyes of his older son has got to do with their ages.
"It's just a name, I'm a girl."
You can see the answer when you click on the grey frame in Tamer's post. I hid it in a spoiler so no one would accidently read the right answer while trying to figure out the riddle. To clear it up: The man didn't tell us how many windows the building has, but the mathematican knows, because he can see the building. But even though he knows that it's 36 if you multiply their ages and the numb. of windows, he still asks for another hint. That means that there must be at least two combinations of ages that result in the same numbers when you multiply/sum them up. The only combinations that applies to are: {1,6,6} : sum = 13 (1*6*6=36) {2,2,9} : sum = 13 (2*2*9=36) Now, it's not important what eye color they have, but he said the oldest son  that means there must be one who is older than the others. If you look at the two combinations above there is one where the oldest two are twins (6 years) and one where the oldest one is 9. Logic tells you it must be the latter one. Thus the kids are 2, 2 and 9 years old. 

 
 schattenkrieger 
Posts : 104 Réputation : 0 Regist Date : 20061023
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Thu 25 Mar 2010, 02:30  
 

 
 Eulogy 
Posts : 793 Réputation : 17 Regist Date : 20090126
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Thu 25 Mar 2010, 18:26  
  schattenkrieger wrote:
 abortions are fun
Pretty sure that solves the question without any real mathimatics at all. I say Shattenkrieger wins this round lol xD 

 
 schattenkrieger 
Posts : 104 Réputation : 0 Regist Date : 20061023
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Fri 26 Mar 2010, 01:51  
 

 
 s3rius 
Posts : 1931 Réputation : 55 Regist Date : 20060212
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Fri 26 Mar 2010, 15:48  
 Well, the cookie awards are kinda old already.. and digested.. and excremented.. and.. well, you get it. 

 
 Eulogy 
Posts : 793 Réputation : 17 Regist Date : 20090126
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children Fri 26 Mar 2010, 17:23  
 in other words we should just tell him its ice cream and give him a blind fold? lol 

 
 Subject: Re: [Math Problem] The children  
 

 
