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The many sages (Posted on 2004-04-13) Difficulty: 3 of 5
This is a generalisation of "The three sages"

On a hot summer day, n equally bright philosophers, tired from all that philosophising, were napping in an orchard. A prankster came by, and painted all of their faces black with charcoal.

When the philosophers woke up, they started laughing at the others... until they suddenly realised all of their faces must be black!

How did they come to that conclusion?

See The Solution Submitted by e.g.    
Rating: 2.3636 (11 votes)

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Some Thoughts re: Inductively | Comment 3 of 24 |
(In reply to Inductively by Old Original Oskar!)

You can also start with n=2, since in that case each philosopher, seeing that the other is laughing, would realize his own face was black.
  Posted by Federico Kereki on 2004-04-13 10:51:23

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