Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
12-07-2015, 10:25 AM (This post was last modified: 12-07-2015 10:26 AM by Gerald H.)
Post: #1
 Gerald H Senior Member Posts: 1,459 Joined: May 2014
Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge

http://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/...n-year-old

refers to a German article.

Any solutions using the 42S?
12-07-2015, 11:23 AM
Post: #2
 Marcus von Cube Senior Member Posts: 760 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
(12-07-2015 10:25 AM)Gerald H Wrote:  Any solutions using the 42S?

Not a calculator based solution, just paper and pencil. You should add a poll to the thread so we can see, what the community finds out.

Marcus von Cube
Wehrheim, Germany
http://www.mvcsys.de
http://wp34s.sf.net
http://mvcsys.de/doc/basic-compare.html
12-07-2015, 07:04 PM
Post: #3
 cruff Member Posts: 218 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
Do elves have to make a complete day trip only in one direction, or can they make a half-day distance trip and turn around?
12-07-2015, 07:29 PM
Post: #4
 Marcus von Cube Senior Member Posts: 760 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
(12-07-2015 07:04 PM)cruff Wrote:  Do elves have to make a complete day trip only in one direction, or can they make a half-day distance trip and turn around?
My (probably false) solution lives without half day trips (or even half elves).

Marcus von Cube
Wehrheim, Germany
http://www.mvcsys.de
http://wp34s.sf.net
http://mvcsys.de/doc/basic-compare.html
12-07-2015, 11:11 PM
Post: #5
 BruceH Senior Member Posts: 369 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
It's a trick question - or badly worded :-)

The question asks: "What is the minimum number of elves Waldemar needs to bring with him to complete the trip?"

And the answer is zero because he can have elves come out to meet him, bringing food with them, rather than bring the elves along with him. :-p

(The answer is the same though, just in reverse!)
12-08-2015, 12:35 AM (This post was last modified: 12-08-2015 12:35 AM by cruff.)
Post: #6
 cruff Member Posts: 218 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
(12-07-2015 11:11 PM)BruceH Wrote:  The question asks: "What is the minimum number of elves Waldemar needs to bring with him to complete the trip?"

And the answer is zero because he can have elves come out to meet him, bringing food with them, rather than bring the elves along with him. :-p

Except for this (from the puzzle page):
Quote:Waldemar can only travel with other elves.

This seems to imply that he must have at least one elf along with at all times. Elves must travel in pairs at all times?

I agree, like most puzzles of this type, it is worded loosely enough to make it impossible to determine all of the parameters.
12-08-2015, 04:27 AM (This post was last modified: 12-08-2015 04:43 AM by Bill (Smithville NJ).)
Post: #7
 Bill (Smithville NJ) Senior Member Posts: 444 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
When I read the puzzle, it reminded me of a similar one from the Radio Show Car Talk. Following is link to puzzle:

If you like fairly simple puzzles, Car Talk has had plenty of them over the years. Some are really easy, others take a little more thought. And plenty of them are something that your kids might use to try to stump their parents.

Bill
Smithville, NJ
12-08-2015, 05:01 AM
Post: #8
 Katie Wasserman Super Moderator Posts: 631 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
(12-08-2015 04:27 AM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  When I read the puzzle, it reminded me of a similar one from the Radio Show Car Talk. Following is link to puzzle:

If you like fairly simple puzzles, Car Talk has had plenty of them over the years. Some are really easy, others take a little more thought. And plenty of them are something that your kids might use to try to stump their parents.

I remember hearing this one and thinking wow, they're using harmonic series on this show! Of course, you could solve this nicely on any HP programmable calculator if you didn't know about Euler's constant.

-katie

12-08-2015, 06:47 AM
Post: #9
 walter b On Vacation Posts: 1,957 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
Before claiming its loosely worded you should read the original, don't you?

HTH
d#-/
12-08-2015, 09:50 AM
Post: #10
 Gerald H Senior Member Posts: 1,459 Joined: May 2014
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
(12-08-2015 06:47 AM)walter b Wrote:  Before claiming its loosely worded you should read the original, don't you?

HTH
d#-/

Yes, walter, quibblers will quibble & solvers will get on with the job.

I sometimes wonder why Einstein bothered - he could so easily have said "This matter is very poorly formulated, I'll wait for someone to unequivocally state the problem & then consider a solution".
12-08-2015, 10:24 AM
Post: #11
 Marcus von Cube Senior Member Posts: 760 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: Traditional German Xmas Puzzle: HP 42S Algorithm Challenge
(12-08-2015 12:35 AM)cruff Wrote:  Except for this (from the puzzle page):
Quote:Waldemar can only travel with other elves.

This seems to imply that he must have at least one elf along with at all times. Elves must travel in pairs at all times?

This makes my solution wrong. :-( But I think, I can just double the total number of elves and it works out correctly.

Marcus von Cube
Wehrheim, Germany
http://www.mvcsys.de
http://wp34s.sf.net
http://mvcsys.de/doc/basic-compare.html
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