Even odds

January 22, 2012 | arthur charpentier

This evening, I found a nice probabilistic puzzle on "A bag contains 16 billiard balls, some white and some black. You draw two balls at the same time. It is equally likely that the two will be the same color as diff... [Read more...]

Le Monde puzzle [#752]

December 8, 2011 | xi'an

After a loooong break, here is one Le Monde mathematical puzzle I had time to look at, prior to going to Dauphine for a Saturday morning class (in replacement of my R class this week)! The question is as follows: A set of numbers {1,…,N} is such that multiples of 4 ... [Read more...]

Le Monde puzzle [#738]

September 1, 2011 | xi'an

The Friday puzzle in Le Monde this week is about “friendly perfect squares”, namely perfect squares x2__10 and y2__10 with the same number of digits and such that, when drifting all digits of x2 by the same value a (modulo 10), one recovers y2. For instance, 121 is “friend” with 676. Here is ... [Read more...]

Candy branching process

May 5, 2010 | xi'an

The mathematical puzzle in the latest weekend edition of Le Monde is as follows: Two kids are given three boxes of chocolates with a total of 32 pieces. Rather than sharing evenly, they play the following game: Each in turn, they pick one of the three boxes, empty its contents in ... [Read more...]


March 6, 2010 | xi'an

In connection with the Le Monde puzzle of last week, I was looking for an R function that would give me the prime factor decomposition of any integer. Such a function exists within the package schoolmath, developped by Joerg Schlarmann and Josef Wienand. It is called prime.factor and it ... [Read more...]

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