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The prisoners and the beans (Posted on 2005-11-27) Difficulty: 3 of 5
Five prisoners are going to take beans from a bag with 100 beans. They will do it one prisoner at a time, and only once each. No communication is allowed between them, but they can count the beans left in the bag. All prisoners who end with the largest and the smallest number of beans will die.

Who is most likely to survive?

Assume:
1. they are all smart people.
2. they will try to survive first and then try to kill more people.
3. they do not need to take out all the 100 beans.

See The Solution Submitted by pcbouhid    
Rating: 3.8000 (15 votes)

Comments: ( Back to comment list | You must be logged in to post comments.)
middle guy | Comment 6 of 38 |

mathematically, if you calculate the probabilities and the number of combinations of beans, the middle guy will have the greatest chance of survival, hence he is the most likely to survive in my opinion. furthermore, after 2 people, assuming they took different amounts, he is in the best position to save himself and kill the last two, with the last guy mostly at the mercy of first four.

Even though the theory that all will die is the most likely situation.


  Posted by marc on 2005-11-28 07:59:23
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