Questions tagged [lateral-thinking]

A puzzle solved through an indirect and creative approach, using reasoning that is not immediately obvious and involving ideas that may not be obtainable only using logic.

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4answers
1k views

What is the thing the boys could not eat?

There were $3$ BOYS living in a house with their father and mother. One day, they decided no matter what, they are going to eat ONE THING. One of them said: "Today is SUNDAY, we can wake up late and ...
-2
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3answers
1k views

Why Tom didn't get food? [closed]

There were two friends, Joy and Tom. Tom was oversmart and always thought he was brilliant and smarter than anyone else, especially Joy. Once Tom and Joy went for a trip around the world and got ...
12
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1answer
1k views

What do these colorful triangles mean?

The following picture shows an arrangement of colored triangles. What is their meaning?
7
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4answers
938 views

Nerd on the Loose I - WHEN

Chat. I've created a chat room in case anyone wish to discuss this further. Preface. This is the first time I'm creating a puzzle. Since I find enjoyment in science and technology, the series of ...
2
votes
3answers
399 views

The 7 Young Men

There are 7 young men. All are excellent basketball players. They each started to 1v1 another player on their team. They all played and nobody was left out. Everyone was present and none left the ...
9
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3answers
803 views

Shifted symbol cipher

This is a cool cipher I determined. It involves lateral thinking, so try it out. The answer is a English plaintext, with the following being the cipher text... Try to decrypt it... or decipher it, you ...
9
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5answers
3k views

Seemingly Impossible Maze

I assure you it's completely possible. I made this maze myself so no copyright stuff :D Rules: You start at the bottom right corner. You end at the top left corner. No going around the maze, over ...
5
votes
3answers
508 views

Where did you end up? [Part 2!]

Follow the clues and tell me where you are in the end. You are here The birthplace The biggest child The first letter of it's name Go left Note: This one is harder, ...
3
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3answers
1k views

Neanderthal Man

A neanderthal walks into a room. Inside are a man and a woman with large sticks, surrounded by dozens of unintelligible glass discs and squares. The man (with the stick) comments he can see the ...
27
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1answer
4k views

The Comforting Death Message

Linda sadly passes away in a stampede of elephants and when she reaches St. Peter, she is distressed because she doesn't think she'll be buried properly on the family grave plot and having to listen ...
15
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5answers
2k views

Race of patience for the sake of love

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful girl who had a lot of lovers. Every guy wanted to marry her, be with her. Given a lot of options, she had reduced the candidates from 128 to 2. Yet it was ...
-3
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4answers
567 views

How many Jellybeans are in the bottle

There are $n$ jellybeans in a bottle with unknown dimensions. What is the only surefire way of knowing how many jellybeans are in the bottle?
4
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1answer
585 views

A Strange Sequence [duplicate]

This puzzle is taken from a French bestseller I read years ago. The solution is much simpler than it looks... Find the following line in this sequence : ...
4
votes
5answers
34k views

What color was the bear [duplicate]

This is an old one but I don't see it here. A man stepped out of his tent with his rifle and walked 1 mile south, 1 mile east and 1 Mile north. Then he shot a bear in front of his tent. What ...
23
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12answers
17k views

Two sisters born on the same day [closed]

Two sisters were born on the same day in the same year, yet they aren't twins. None of their other sisters share the birthday. What's going on? Explain.
-4
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1answer
543 views

Eggs on the Roof!

A small family of chickens were discussing very important business, the conversation went like this: "The farmer needs eggs! Someone has to lay them!" "No quiet down! You have to be quiet! The ...
17
votes
6answers
3k views

Cremation in New York

I am not from US. I have heard that US laws don't allow to cremate a man living in Texas, in New York. Can anyone tell me why? Note: Don't think that I have posted this question here by accident. It'...
4
votes
3answers
775 views

The Alaskan Dream

Scott is an expert outdoorsman, pursuing his dream by living in the remote Alaskan wilderness. Scott has everything he needs, and would prefer to remain a recluse, yet he will have to leave his home ...
12
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4answers
4k views

The Dragon or the Magnifying Glass?

You've been sent to prison, but the prisons where you are from are very clever. They do not just lock you up, they put you in a room with 2 doors. Door A is guarded by an evil dragon that will kill ...
4
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3answers
2k views

A Drawer of Socks

Bob wakes up one morning, and he needs to grab a pair of socks for work. In his sock drawer, he has 5 pairs of blue socks, 3 pairs of red socks, and 4 pairs of white socks (Bob is American and very ...
8
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2answers
2k views

The way to Acarien puzzle

You are on a quest to the find the lost kingdom of Acarien. On your way, you end up at a fork in the road. Both paths look exactly the same. At the junction sits a wise man. The wise man will only ...
140
votes
12answers
20k views

A double-agent with a conundrum

You are a double-agent in the most important war of the 20th century, The Falklands war. For years you have been playing the United Kingdom and Argentinian governments against each other, taking ...
14
votes
12answers
3k views

Up to your head in trouble

You've gotten in trouble with a Mob Boss, and as punishment have been brought to a sandy beach. You're ordered by him at gunpoint to bury yourself in the sand up to your neck. He specifies a spot ...
0
votes
3answers
913 views

Inheritance by cards [duplicate]

An old farmer passes away in his sleep. After a suitable period of mourning, his three sons find their father's will in his study. Amongst other, simpler bequests is the following: "I wish my small ...
74
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11answers
130k views

Poisoned Iced Tea [closed]

Two girls went to dinner together and both ordered iced tea. One girl pounded down five of them in about a minute, and the other took her time drinking one. The girl who drank one died, while the ...
53
votes
4answers
34k views

A seven letter word - the meaning doesn't change if you remove letters

I am a seven letter word. If you remove one letter from me my meaning does not change. If you remove two letters from me my meaning still does not change, and if you remove three letters from me, my ...
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3answers
631 views

A Forked Path in the Forest [closed]

You, a young adventurer, are travelling through the forest. Suddenly, your path splits in 2. You have no map or compass - well, you do but your compass is broken. You know you have to keep travelling ...
4
votes
3answers
783 views

Hey. Don't tap on the glass [closed]

A man works at an aquarium. Every day, he has to spend way too much time telling people to stop tapping on the glass at the shark tank. Finally, he gets fed up with it and comes up with a solution. ...
120
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8answers
20k views

The Sheikh dies

The Sheikh dies, leaving behind three sons, 17 camels and the following order: His oldest son shall inherit one in two camels. His middle son shall inherit one in three camels. His youngest son shall ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

100 Marbles Puzzle

Here's a puzzle I heard some time ago, but I never heard the asker's solution. It took me ages to think up a satisfactory solution, but I'm wondering if there are any others you can think of? 100 ...
-4
votes
1answer
699 views

What's the problem in the following paragraph?

Brian wrote: Hi, my name is Brian. I love to play video games, and write stories. Nobody is better than me at it! The only problem is I'm running out of story ideas. Can you help me? Pitch some ...
-5
votes
2answers
383 views

The Blown Lightbulbs [duplicate]

Sitting on the table are 3 light bulbs. 1 of them just blown, 1 of them has been blown for ages, and the other works fine. You don't which is which, but you're allowed to test (turn on) 1 bulb . How ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

A sequence named by a children's toy [duplicate]

Here's a part of the sequence: (A) (B) (C) (D) (E) 1113122113 311311222113 ... The letters are the missing members (there are 5 missing members) and A is the ...
4
votes
1answer
756 views

The Secret Passcode

A top secret facility is guarded by 1 man, this man will kill anyone with the wrong, or without a, passcode. There are 5 spies. They have determined the code is one of the following; Orange Apple ...
-6
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2answers
638 views

The Long Bus Ride [closed]

I expect multiple answers to this, however only 1 of them is correct. A bus was scheduled to stop 10 times today. Each time, 7 people got on the bus and 5 got off. At the last stop, how many people ...
3
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3answers
1k views

The Tricky Tunnels!

The king had a mutant rat problem in his kingdom, so he ordered 3 young men to go down under the depth of the ground to find the cause. The 3 young men jumped down the hole, and followed the tunnel. ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Elevator puzzle [closed]

A guy lives in the 10th floor of an apartment building. On a normal day he goes to the 5th floor with the elevator and then climbs the remaining 5 floors. On a rainy day he goes to the 10th floor ...
1
vote
2answers
778 views

Who? What Color? Rank? Number? in a running match

There is a running match, but there isn't anyone to judge; we have only information that the audience gave us (but we know their info is true). We the have name, rank, T-shirt color, and T-shirt ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

Miss Danner and the Elmer Boys

Miss Danner, a primary school teacher, is on her way to school - it's the first day of school this year. In class, she sees two identically looking boys sitting in the first row. Aw, twins, so cute!...
1
vote
1answer
646 views

3 Switches identification [duplicate]

Picture this. You are in a hallway of a very large office building. Near you are 50 light switches of which 3 are unlabled. These lightswitches are connected to 3 lights in 3 separate rooms. The ...
6
votes
1answer
785 views

What's the more general case of this puzzler?

There is a puzzle which I remember from many years ago which can be summarised as It is easy to arrange 20 items in five rows of four items, but how could you arrange just 10 items in five rows of ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

To be a bookworm

I have a complete set of encyclopaedias on my bookshelf, beautifully bound and neatly arranged with volume 1 on the left and volume 32 on the right. They were a talking point when I bought them 30-odd ...
52
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3answers
198k views

What is the number of the parking spot?

One needs to find the number under the car.
31
votes
3answers
6k views

Doctor's Dilemma

I found the following puzzle by Martin Gardner in an archived copy of Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine. I've heard it before, but in a more vulgar setting, involving condoms instead of gloves. ...
6
votes
2answers
968 views

Lighthouse keeper stuck the bath [closed]

A lighthouse keeper decides to take a bath an hour before the next lighthouse keeper comes to relieve him of his shift. This lighthouse keeper is having a bad day. First he accidentally locks ...
27
votes
3answers
4k views

Differentiate between the numbers from 1 to 5 with one single yes/no question

This question requires a bit of logical distortion to get the information required to answer the question. However, I've never seen it asked before what would happen if more modes of question ...
9
votes
5answers
3k views

A rope-cutting problem

Here's another oldie from a book, slightly paraphrased to make it more quantitative. You're in a room with a ceiling exactly 100 feet high. Two thin but sturdy ropes are hanging from fixed hooks at ...
40
votes
4answers
4k views

Which switch goes to which bulb?

You are in a room with three switches, labeled $A$, $B$, and $C$. Initially, each switch is in an off state. In an adjoining room, there are three incandescent light bulbs. Your task is to ...