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 A four-way division (Posted on 2002-06-12)
Four friends are gathered at a pub. They have in front of them two 8-pint trankards full of beer, and an empty 3-pint mug.

Since they are still sober, they quickly calculate that they have 16 pints for the four of them, which comes out to an even 4 pints per person.

Can they divide the beer equally with the containers they have available?

 See The Solution Submitted by levik Rating: 3.7500 (8 votes)

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 solution (w/ caveat) | Comment 4 of 13 |

So this solution assumes that you have clear containers and are sober enough to fill two containers to the same level.

We'll label the tankards A & B and the mug M. First use the mug to give everyone 3 pints as follows:

A -> M : drink
B -> M : drink
A -> M : drink
B -> M : drink

At this point, everyone has had 3 pints and A & B each have two pints remaining.

- Pour A into M and top off with the beer from B. M now contains 3 pints and B contains 1.

- Fill A to the same level as B. drink.

- Take the remaining two pints in M, and fill both A & B to the same level. drink.

Stagger home and question the wisdom of a pub with such strange, and scarce glassware.

-M
 Posted by Matt on 2002-06-12 12:56:27

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