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 Guess my Number (Posted on 2004-12-20)
The Mad Hatter poured Alice another cup of tea and set the teapot down.

"May I please have one of those biscuits?" asked Alice rather timedly, rather taken aback by the sight of her present company.

"A biscuit?? Oh, I don't know. Those are the March Hare's special un-birthday biscuits, don't you know. Can she have a biscuit, March ?" asked the Hatter.

"A biscuit?? One of mine? Hurmph. Ok, I'm thinking of an integer from one to three (inclusive). If you get it, you can have a biscuit. If not, I'm afraid you'll just have to leave" said the March Hare, leaning back.

"Oh goodness, I don't know" said Alice worriedly. "Couldn't I just get a hint?"

"Oh, all right..." the March Hare sighed. "You get to ask me one yes-or-no question, that's all"

Alice thought for a moment, then smiled, knowing exactly what to ask.

 See The Solution Submitted by Sam Rating: 3.7647 (17 votes)

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 Independent solution | Comment 4 of 32 |

Alice puts her right hand behind her back.  She asks, "Is the number four less than the number of fingers up on my right hand, or is it a two?"  (This question is asked as a yes-or-no question, not a which-is-it question.)

If the number is 3, the March Hare will say, "No."  If the number is a 2, he will say, "Yes."  If it is a 1, he will say "I don't know."

For those who think that yes-or-no questions must always have yes-or-no answers, take a look at the first question Alice asks: "May I please have one of those biscuits?"  Notice that the Mad Hatter says neither yes nor no!

 Posted by Tristan on 2004-12-20 16:28:09

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