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Cool Story of the Day

Cool Story of the Day
So I walk into my last Econ 101 discussion and my nice TA is not there. Instead the Norwegian TA Odgeir (sp?) is there instead. He hates me with a passion. I won’t get into it, but believe me. He’d kill me if he could. Anyways, he makes some jokes, teaches the Solow model and then gives us a quiz. Multiple choice but still challenging – to me at least. At the same time he hands out a sheet with three questions and says if you can answer any one of them you get $40. Answer all three and you get $100.

So I take the quiz and then start answering questions. They are as follows:

1. Johnny Cashless was a good student when he entered UCSB, so good that UCSB granted him a lucrative scholarship. But after 2 years of continuous partying in Isla Vista, his grades had dropped and he lost his scholarship. His parents refused to help him out financially unless he could prove he wasn’t just wasting their money. So Johnny sent this letter home to demonstrate his analytical abilities: “SEND + MORE = MONEY”

Each letter in his equation represents a unique numerical digit, and MONEY is the amount he needs. How much is he asking his parents to send?

2. You have 20 gumballs of which 10 are red and 10 are green. How should you divide the gumballs between 2 bags such that if you randomly choose a bag and randomly choose a piece of gum from that bag, your probability of getting a red gumball is the highest? What is that probability?

3. There are 3 covered baskets: one contains apples, one contains oranges, and one contains both apples and oranges. Someone has carelessly mixed-up the basket labels such that each one is now labeled incorrectly. If you could only draw fruit from one of the baskets, how could you use your finding to correct the basket labels?

I solved #3 in about 3 minutes including writing. He took out his wallet to pay me but realized he handn’t anticipated anyone getting any right so he was out of cash. I guess he didn’t prepare for the genius that is I. Smart and humble, what a great combination! Anyways, there was about a minute left in class and another guy solved #2. He had us follow him outside to the ATM and he came back with 2 new and crips $20 bills for each of us.

If anyone reading this can solve any or all of the three in 20 mins (that’s how much time I had), I’ll give you a prize as well šŸ™‚

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