March 04, 2003

Okay. I Give up. Tell me how.

Ron Bailey, I was just sitting here actually pretending to do real work when you sent this baffling thingy along and wrecked my state of blissful mindlessness. Alright! Uncle. I'm skunked.

I've done this trick now maybe 20 times, and it's brought up the right symbol every time.... too high a success rate to be random chance. If I just concentrate on a certain symbol without doing the arithmetic, it doesn't work.

I promise to be very impressed with the smarty that can tell me how this works. And magic is not an acceptable answer. And if you would, get back to me here in the next half hour or so, because I don't think I'll be able to sleep until you figure this out for me! This one's got me weirded out big time!

Posted by fred1st at March 4, 2003 08:41 PM | TrackBack

Look at the symbol on 54, and click the button. Voila! It's some sort of math trick (not that I can explain, I hate math, that's why I am a Linux Admin and NOT a developer).
Maybe when my better half wakes up in the morning she can explain it to me (she's the math guru in the family), and I in turn, to ya'll.

Posted by: dave at March 4, 2003 11:46 PM

It's the old 9 trick, 2 digit number (99) , add the two digits (9+9=18), subtract 18 from 99 (99-18=81).. well 81 is 8+1=9 .. 54 is 5+4=9 ..

trying it with 67 (6+7=13, 67-13=54, 5+4=9 doh!)
54 (5+4=9, 54-9=45, 4+5=9)
10 (1+0=1, 10-1=9)

I'll have to agree with you Fred, math gets me weirded out also ...

Posted by: dave at March 4, 2003 11:53 PM

Actually, you should blame Sekimori, she's the one who started the whole thing...

Posted by: ron at March 5, 2003 05:47 AM

Dave from SideDoor gives a more complete demystifying answer in email, as follows:

ok .. first off , you can immediately discount any numbers above 81(82-99). Since all of those numbers added together and subtracted equal 81. 97 9+7=16 97=16=81. and of course discount 0-8.

If you follow the directions, ALL of the numbers you end up with are a 9 number , (9,18,27,36,45,54,63,72,81), now look at the chart and see that all of these numbers have the same symbol. No matter what, if you follow the directions you end up with one of these numbers (if you cheat , well, your mileage may vary).

Jeez, and I thought the old counting multiples of 9 on your two hands was cool .. Hold out your two hands in front of you with your fingers up, drop the finger that is being multiplied by 9 and then read your fingers as the 10's and 1's, starting from the left. (9x4) drop the pointy finger of your left hand, so you have 3 space 6 , 36 woo!

I dreamt about this last night ... darn it! why couldn't I have a nice Schoolhouse Rock dream instead (Conjunction Junction what's your function?).

time to go think of something not as mind boggling, like trying to make Windows and Linux live together on a network.

Posted by: fredf at March 5, 2003 07:58 AM

Well, that's weird. Second time in a week I've seen this one (the other on a spreadsheet being emailed round the office). As mentioned above, all the multiples of 9 have the same symbol, so you can't miss. And the digits of any two digit multiple of nine added together equal nine.
And to multiply any two digit number by eleven, add the two digits together and put the result between those two digits and that's the answer. Like 11 x 16 is 1+6 = 7, gives 176.

My head hurts now, got to lie down :-)

P.S. Love the site, Mr. Floyd

Posted by: woody at March 5, 2003 06:06 PM

your alabama cousin can figure this one out fred. your cabin is too cold. like maybe, about nine degrees.

Posted by: madelyn at March 5, 2003 08:26 PM

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