One of my favorite puzzle books as a kid was Perplexing Puzzles and Tantalizing Teasers, by Martin Gardner. It had fun "real life" type problems (how can you drive an 11-foot-9 truck under a bridge with 11-foot-8 clearance?) and it introduced me to palindromes ("Straw? No, too stupid a fad. I put soot on warts.")
Here's another "real life" puzzle: a person brings four pieces of a broken bracelet to a jeweler and asks him to repair it. The jeweler says he charges $1 for each link he cuts apart and welds together again. "Since I have to cut and weld four links, the job will cost you four dollars." But the customer correctly tells the jeweler he can make the bracelet by cutting and welding only three links. How?
View this post on Instagram A post shared by Popular Mechanics Magazine (@popularmechanics) on Jan 29, 2020 at 12:14pm PST Sure, you can count them. I did, and, er, I missed a few. Or you can take one of the approaches suggested by the mathematics professors that Andrew Daniels interviewed in Popular Mechanics: “I would […]
The Knight’s tour is a traditional chess problem where a lone knight is placed on a chess board and must visit each square only once. You can play this perfectly simple free implementation created by u/psrwo on Reddit. The source code is at github. The knight is randomly placed at the outset. I can’t visit […]
The Red Bull Rubik’s Cube World Cup was held November 17 in Moscow. Competitors squared off in four events: 3×3 Speed Cubing – solving the Rubik’s Cube as fast as possible; Fastest Hand – a challenge that solves the Rubik’s Cube with only one hand; Re-Scramble – pits competitors trying to replicate a computer generated […]
Spring cleaning time is right around the corner, and, if we’re being honest, the whole thing is kind of a drag. But keeping your home clean in any season is necessary for both health and happiness, so why not make it a little less daunting? The correct tools help make any work easier, and that’s […]
Quality knives matter — and in more ways than you might expect. At the most basic level, having a functioning set of proper kitchen knives means you can actually get in a kitchen, start putting together a meal and have the right tools to handle all tasks. From the blunt force of the clever to […]
You kill it at the gym all week, your nutrition is dialed in, and you’re drinking so much water that your spare time is spent walking back and forth to the bathroom (way to get those steps in!)—so how do you take things to the next level? By focusing on recovery. A proper post-workout routine, […]