M i n d s p O r T Weighing Pros And Cones
E4 Speaking of cones ( which we weren’t, but will in a mo’), I once decided to give my city’s law keepers a run for their money by stealing one in the dead of night while returning from a party, when lo and behold, I got trapped by a cop who materialised suddenly like ectoplasm on the sidewalk. Luckily, moolah quickly traded pockets and everybody walked away, none the sadder for the day’s end. But I stray…
You have an ordinary pan balance and four types of solid shapes — spheres, cubes, cylinders and cones. Now, ( a) 2 cylinders + 1 sphere balance 2 cones + 3 cubes; ( b) 6 spheres balance 1 cone + 1 cylinder + 1 cube; ( c) 1 cylinder + 1 cone balance 2 spheres + 1 cube. Then you put 4 cones on one pan and the question turns out to be: which solids do you have to put on the other pan to restore balance? Also, what is the least number of solids you can use?
DEAR MS ( The question was on solving a door problem in a hotel that had a common toilet between two adjacent rooms, meaning, when one guest entered, he locked both doors, but when he exited, he sometimes forgot to open the other door as well! — MS)
Door- To- Door- HANDLES DEPT: If the doors open outwards, then make a rope with two hooks to reach between the two door handles. When inside the toilet, hook the two doors together. You can’t get out if you forget to unhook the rope.
— Saifuddin Khomosi, saif_ sfk@ hotmail. com