Questions tagged [word-problem]

A mathematical puzzle that's stated in words, usually in terms of a story or a situation that dresses the problem up.

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18
votes
5answers
5k views

Evil Kidnappers are the worst!

You wake up to the sight of a lamp hanging from a grey ceiling. You ask yourself, Where am I? The last thing you remember is falling asleep in bed last night. Sitting up, you look around. You're on ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Finding Mr. Rich's Password

It was a slow day at the office. Despite its name, Problem City was fairly quiet as of late. Joey was slowly melting into his chair when he recieved a phone call. Joey slowly swiveled his chair to ...
11
votes
2answers
533 views

Two Affinity, and Byonde!

A group of 10 students in a summer learning camp (fun times!) is asked to complete a brief survey to help them determine which of their new classmates they're most compatible with. The survey lists 10 ...
2
votes
2answers
363 views

Which candidate is most washed up?

Donovan Clump and Hermione Timmon are political candidates in the electoral race for "Most Thankless Job in Modern History". Both candidates set out into the wilderness at the same time. Rains are ...
0
votes
3answers
489 views

What happened to the missing £10? [duplicate]

I have come across a puzzle, which makes no sense. Does anyone know the answer to the below? You and two friends go on holiday. When checking out, the total bill comes to £300. You pay the bill ...
16
votes
1answer
4k views

A grammatically valid sentence in English containing seven "that"'s in a row?

About 20 years ago on a forum now long gone, someone posted the above question. After people had had a chance to try it, he also posted the answer. I no longer remember the answer but really wish I ...
24
votes
2answers
2k views

Which data file is genuine?

NASA has spent hundreds of millions of dollars gathering data about cave systems in one region of the planet Mars. The project just finished up, and analysts will soon be ready to start analyzing the ...
7
votes
1answer
888 views

About Grelling's Paradox

Grelling's Paradox is about certain types of words. An adjective is heterological if it does not describe itself; like 'long', 'German', or 'monosyllabic'. An adjective is autological if it does ...
33
votes
2answers
2k views

The Nuclear Missile Standoff

Three world powers have just entered a nuclear war! They have been waiting for this day for decades; everyone has their nuclear missiles ready to fire, and only need to choose a target. The Chinese ...
12
votes
1answer
794 views

Jack Sparrow and The quest for the missing Compass . Part 1

Hopefully this puzzle is not as easy as the last one. Jack Sparrow wakes up startled just when he was deep in slumber, after his night out with the "Ladies". He checks his pocket and finds it empty. ...
16
votes
1answer
934 views

Two lists of favorite words

My great aunt Edith keeps this list of her favorite words tacked on the refrigerator: Atlas Chance Detail Frost Hand Magnet Orange Ring Sand Tiger Winter Wolf My great uncle ...
20
votes
3answers
5k views

Too Many Damn Buffalos [closed]

"Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo" The sentence above is an actual sentence which makes perfect sense and is not wrong. The word "Buffalo" has three meanings: ...
4
votes
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. ...
4
votes
1answer
762 views

A Murder Most Foul: Alicia Adams

Forgive me if this matches an existing murder mystery. I tried to search before writing this one up Outside the office building, sirens wailed and flashing lights illuminated the snow covered ground. ...
20
votes
2answers
2k views

Ernie and the Alien Invasion

Yesterday I dropped in on Ernie to show off my new j-watch. Ernie wouldn't be impressed by instant wrist-mounted access to social media sites like me-tube, tweeter and farce-book so I thought I would ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Diabolic Substance

What is it : Colloquially, it is a Diabolic way to win at athletic events. Take a single one, and it might be shaped like a star.
4
votes
3answers
616 views

A Second Benjamin Button

This was inspired by A curious case of Benjamin Button but has a different solution. In 1980 AD (or 1980 CE, if you prefer), Jack has an age of 20. In 1985 however, he is only 6 years old. How did ...
33
votes
9answers
6k views

Find the composite poison in the wine bottles

You are the ruler of a medieval kingdom who loves throwing parties. The courtier who tried to poison one of your wine bottles last time was furious to learn that you managed to identify which bottle ...
4
votes
4answers
773 views

A village of pick pockets!

There is a small village of 100 people. An unknown number of these villagers are pick pockets. Each day, you're allowed to take as many villagers as you wish out of the village. When a pick pocket has ...
1
vote
5answers
1k views

Obi-Wan vs Grievous

19 BBY, the Galactic Republic spots General Grievous in Utapau, the Separatists' Council Base; the Jedi Obi-Wan Kenobi is sent there to deal with him. After a long search, Obi-Wan comes face to face ...
1
vote
4answers
537 views

Puzzle: Covert spy investigation

You are working for the CIA as a spy. One day you get a secret offer from the US president to spy on the CIA for him and to go and investigate the truth about a CIA covert operation which happened 10 ...
17
votes
5answers
1k views

Our spies are listed, but which one is actually next to be hit?

Berlin, 1973 We knew that they were on to several of our people, but unfortunately we weren't sure which ones. Pulling them out before we were certain would needlessly disrupt important sources of ...
32
votes
1answer
4k views

Ernie and the Island of Stability

Unfortunately, it appears that I may have misled you a little in this puzzle (as you probably know - my memory of events isn't always perfect). When I was writing it, I re-checked the Kzijekistanian ...
6
votes
2answers
296 views

Recipe for Success

One evening you receive an e-mail from an acquaintance, asking for your help. The e-mail runs as follows: Dear friend, I need your help! I've forgotten the combination to my safe and I need ...
7
votes
9answers
888 views

Secrets over the phone [closed]

Let's say, for instance, your friend needs one of your passwords to do something while you're away. He calls you and asks for it. Thing is, you don't want him to know your password. How then would ...
0
votes
1answer
668 views

How Many Coins Were There

There were three men in a boat. They received an amount of coins in a chest from 200 - 300 as a reward for surviving the storm without damaging anything. One night, the first man thought that he would ...
28
votes
1answer
5k 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 ...
14
votes
1answer
944 views

Ernie and the Calendar

I had taken an extended summer break over the Christmas New Year period but finally returned to the city at the end of January, feeling relaxed and tanned. I was looking forwards to getting back in ...
11
votes
2answers
779 views

The Mysterious Disappearance of Doctor F. Andrews [Part 1]

This is my first real puzzle, so I hope you enjoy it! Sorry if the writing is a little poor, etc.. You are the unstoppable Detective Joshua Brown, and no puzzle can stand in your way! The Case: ...
1
vote
0answers
3k views

The mad king and the 100 men who each have to guess the colour of their own hat [duplicate]

The following is the puzzle that I am trying to figure out. I know the "expected solution of 99". But honestly, I think this puzzle is flawed. How exactly can each wise man know the number of hats ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

I'm stumped on a simple roman numeral puzzle

I was working on this puzzle called cupid which listed a bunch of greek gods. I filled in all the answers in the answer grid which were their roman counterparts. Since these answers were now left ...
10
votes
5answers
1k views

Ernie and the Mystery of Madame Mu

Quite a few years ago (I can't remember the date but it was obviously some time after I first met Ernie at a New Years Eve party in 2001) I got an unexpected phone call late one afternoon. It was ...
17
votes
1answer
3k views

The Laziest Surveyor

The new land surveyor and his boss arrived at the work site, a huge and perfectly flat parking lot. His boss said, "Your first assignment is going to be a tough one. You see this parking lot? It ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

What Am I - Riddle Part 7

In one form I am very tall, in another, elegant In one form I am happiness, in another, an eyesore In one form I am metal, in another, paper In one form Sasaki's lament, in another Greek ingenuity ...
5
votes
2answers
540 views

The Security to the Party [Part 13]

After pretty sick 12 parties, obviously 13th party occured during "Halloween". Halloween themed party is being held at a local mansion. The host is very rich and his success is because of one thing ~...
26
votes
4answers
9k views

How do you solve a word puzzle when you have no idea where to start?

When you're looking at a logical word puzzle, what sorts of clues should you try to look for to solve them? There have been quite a few puzzles posted to this site so far that I spent a few minutes ...
5
votes
4answers
3k views

Are you Really Smart

The government has introduced a standardised test to identify dumb people and make them ineligible to apply for any government jobs, a pass in the exam is mandatory for applications in future. It ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Can you help the traveller

A traveller decided to explore a square desert. He started from a point on the edge to point B, travelling perpendicular to the edge of the desert he started on. On reaching B, he then decided to take ...
16
votes
1answer
2k views

Hidden Words in squares

I made up this puzzle, so if you are only keen on answering standard puzzles, I am sorry, I thought its been a dull day for questions so I made up my own Here is a 7 x 7 squares image with 7 8 letter ...
18
votes
6answers
1k views

The Ball Factory Worker

A woman works at a ball factory. She's instructed to open up a ball creation kit composed of one red rubber ball and two strips of digit stickers from $0$ through $9$. She's instructed to do the ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Stranded Nomad Riddle

Background Story A nomad is injured in the desert. And he can't move, but fortunately an oasis is nearby, and he can stay there for enough time until rescue arrives. But the water is a magical water, ...

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