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I have ordered the US States according to a certain property. A contiguous piece of that looks like the following:

..., XXX, Ohio, Illinois, Minnesota, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, Michigan, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Virginia, Delaware, XXX, ...

Which states are represented by XXX?
What is the property by which the states are ordered?

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The answer fits with:

Pennsylvania and Colorado, based on area codes. 216-219:Ohio-Indiana, 225: Louisiana, 228-229: Mississippi-Georgia etc. The ones skipped don't exist. Ohio is 216, Pennsylvania is 215. Deleware: 302, 303 is Colorado. Source: http://www.50states.com/areacodes/

There are other sites that show discrepancies with this list though and it seems fairly arbitrary considering each state has more than one of these.

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  • $\begingroup$ The three resources I checked all matched. It's not as arbitrary as you might think because I ordered them based on the lowest area code in the state. $\endgroup$ – Engineer Toast Mar 17 '15 at 21:57
  • $\begingroup$ The lowest Florida area code on the site I linked is 305, and the ones before/after (Michigan and Maryland) are 231/240 although I guess that's the only one. I didn't notice the requirement that the area code had to be the lowest in the state (apparent when looking at the later states), which may be the source of other discrepancies I found. $\endgroup$ – Quark Mar 17 '15 at 22:26

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