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I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.
I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm.
I get paid to do what costs me nothing.
Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

What am I?

HINT ONE

I would define paying someone or something as giving it/them money.

HINT TWO

The lines of the riddle may refer to different parts of me, but they all refer to the same me, no synonyms are used.

HINT THREE

The title is also a clue.

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10 Answers 10

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My attempt:

Is it a jukebox?

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

Jukeboxes have buttons with numbers that let you select a song.

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm.

This is the hardest to relate, but I guess some jukeboxes are pointy. Also some old jukeboxes, like phonographs, have a sharp stylus to play vinyl.

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

Jukeboxes have a coin slot, but it costs them nothing to play the music.

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

You can prefer phonographs, hi-fi systems, Walkmans, iPods...

The title:

Is an acrostic of "music".

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ yaaaaaasssssssssss! rot13:Gur 2aq pyhr ersreerq gb gur erpbeq cynlre arrqyr naq gur sbhegu pyhr gb qvssrerag whxrobkrf univat qvssrerag fbatf ba gurz $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 11 '18 at 8:44
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    $\begingroup$ I thought "costs me nothing" would refer to something less physical. After all, there are still costs in setup, maintenance, licensing, energy expenditure, etc. But good question and good answer! $\endgroup$ – WAF Dec 11 '18 at 8:59
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    $\begingroup$ @AHKieran pardon me, but why the rot13? $\endgroup$ – trogper Dec 11 '18 at 21:45
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    $\begingroup$ @trogper Because the comment literally explains the meaning of some of the clues and would thus be a major spoiler. There's no built in way to spoiler a comment. Its become the de facto way on this SE in absence of an actual feature. $\endgroup$ – jpmc26 Dec 11 '18 at 22:33
  • $\begingroup$ @WAF my thinking was that there is no loss to the machine as the contents all remain in there, but you put money in it to use it, as opposed to a vending machine, which needs its stock replenishing.. $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 12 '18 at 8:42
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Are you a

d20 (a 20 sided dice)?

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

d20s have the numbers 1 thru 20 on them

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm.

There are many points on a d20, hopefully relatively sharp, not rounded.

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

you buy d20s to roll, which is free

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

some people may prefer a d4, d6, d8, or d10

Title

a d20 is used in D&D to roll for an investigation.

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  • $\begingroup$ Solid attempt but unfortunately not the answer I was looking for rot13(bar pbhyq nethr n q20 pnhfrf n ybg bs unez (gb vzntvanel tevooyvrf) $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 10 '18 at 12:12
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Are you a:

Pair of scenic point pay to view binoculars / telescope?

I am covered in numbers but do no maths:

It has prices for time. And some have heading/pitch numbers for directions of points of interest.

I am sharp and pointy but do no harm:

Telescope definitely points and has sharp focus.

I get paid to do what costs me nothing:

It literally takes money to uncover a/two lens(es) that operate(s) without price or effort.

Some people like me but other may prefer my friends:

Some prefer telescope, others binoculars.

And it takes advantage of one of the hints

The title hint is definitely relevant. "Maybe u should investigate carefully". It lets you investigate distant things more carefully.

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  • $\begingroup$ This answer is the closest so far. rot13(rfcrpvnyyl sbe gur guveq pyhr) $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 11 '18 at 8:42
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Are you a

Roulette table?

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

Both the layout and the wheel are covered in numbers but they are just used as bet indicators, no maths is done with them.

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm.

The handle is pointy, but is just used to turn the wheel.

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

You put money down on the layout, but any payout comes from the casino not the table itself.

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

There are lots of other casino games that others may prefer to play.

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  • $\begingroup$ You're getting closer, but not what I had in mind. $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 10 '18 at 16:22
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Are you a

Toll Road

I am covered in numbers but I do no maths.

Most toll roads have their unique identifier number every mile or so.

I am sharp and point but I do no harm.

Some toll roads can have sharp turns and all roads point in a direction

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

Everyone traveling on a toll road has to pay

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

Some like toll roads or convenience, others prefer freeways.

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Are you a

Analogue clock / wall clock?

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

This probably needs no explanation

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm.

The hands of a clock are somewhat sharp and definitely pointy

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

Time is indeed money

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

Sometimes time is on your side / Some people prefer a wristwatch?

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Maybe you're a

PENCIL?

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

As well as writing a lot of numbers, pencils might also have numbers written on themselves, e.g. "3H", "2B", etc. They don't technically do maths, although people can do maths with them.

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm.

Pencils are sharp and pointy, but they're not weapons or used for harm.

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

Writing?

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

Some people like to use pencils, but others prefer pens.

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  • $\begingroup$ good attempt but unfortunately incorrect. rot13(V'z abg fher ubj lbh cnl n crapvy gb jevgr gubhtug...) $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 10 '18 at 13:57
  • $\begingroup$ @AHKieran That (3rd) line is the one I'm having trouble with in general ... the first two lines suggest the answer is an inanimate object, but how do you "pay" an object? (If not for the 2nd line, I would've said "accountant"!) $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Dec 10 '18 at 14:02
  • $\begingroup$ See the new hint :) $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 10 '18 at 14:07
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Are you a

Note?

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

A note is covered with numbers(its value)

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm

I didn't relate this

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

I got stuck here

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

Notes are liked by everyone but their friends (coins).

It even fulfills hint number one

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  • $\begingroup$ I'm afraid not. $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 10 '18 at 15:15
  • $\begingroup$ hmm... I think it has something to do with a mode of transaction $\endgroup$ – Quark-epoch Dec 10 '18 at 15:41
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Are you a

Pin?

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

A pin is made up of numbers

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm

Alternate use of pin- e.g. a needle

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

You make deposits or withdrawal money using your pin at an atm

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

People choose their own (most often unique) pin numbers

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  • $\begingroup$ Nice idea but in this case all of the clues point to the same thing, not synonyms of it $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 10 '18 at 15:28
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I think that you are

1. Amusement park game, which is usually called somehow like "Hammer" or "King of the hammer" or 2. Compass or 3. Syringe

I'm covered in numbers but I do no maths.

1. This game has numbers which "measure" strenght or 2. Also numbers - degrees. or 3. Numbers are for volume

I'm sharp and pointy but I do no harm.

1,2. And moving pointer which stops on numbers or 3. Literally very sharp; used for treatment, though

I get paid to do what costs me nothing.

1. Coin slot is for quarters or 2. You buy compass; it points north anyway, even if you won't buy it. 3. You buy syringe; all work is done by nurse, though

Some people like me but others may prefer my friends.

1. You have a lot of things in amusement park, you may prefer something else or 2. You may prefer GPS or 3. You can take your medicine/vitamins in a different way.

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  • $\begingroup$ One of these is also close-ish, the other two, not so much. $\endgroup$ – AHKieran Dec 10 '18 at 16:51

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