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Inheritance Envelopes (Posted on 2004-12-24) Difficulty: 3 of 5
A wealthy man had three sons all of whom were quite good at math and logic. To get a share of his inheritance each had to correctly determine a positive integer which he had chosen. He told them that the number had four different non-zero decimal digits, in ascending order.

He prepared three sealed envelopes each of which contained a number. The first contained the product of the four digits, the second contained the sum of the squares of the four digits, the third contained the sum of the product of the first two digits and the product of the last two digits, and the envelopes were clearly marked as such. He showed the three envelopes to the three sons and had them each take one at random. Each one saw the number inside his envelope but didn't see the number inside the other two envelopes.

The sons were stationed at three different computers so that they couldn't communicate with one another (but were linked to the father's computer). After one hour they could submit a number or decline. Anyone who submitted a wrong answer would be eliminated and get nothing. If one or more submitted the correct answer they would each receive a share of the inheritance, and the contest would end with the others getting nothing. If no one submitted the correct answer they would be instructed to work on the problem for another hour. The process would repeat as often as necessary. Each of the sons decided not to submit an answer unless they sure it was correct.

At the end of the first hour no one had submitted an answer. At the end of the second hour no one had submitted an answer. At the end of the third hour no one had submitted an answer. At the end of the fourth hour all three of them submitted the correct answer!

Can you determine the number?

See The Solution Submitted by Jim    
Rating: 3.5000 (4 votes)

Comments: ( Back to comment list | You must be logged in to post comments.)
answer Comment 4 of 4 |
The required number is 3479.
  Posted by K Sengupta on 2008-02-08 05:53:19
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