dan's math@home - problem of the week - archives
Problem Archives page 1
Problems Only. For answers & winners click here.
 
1-10 . 11-20 . 21-30 . 31-40 . 41-50 . 51-60 . 61-70 . 71-80 . 81-90 . 91-100
101-110 . 111-120 . 121-130 . 131-140 . 141-150 . 151+ . prob index
 
1- The Most Divisors
2 - Trains versus Fly!
3 - Unit fractions 1/n
4 - The Census Taker
5 - Square root probs
6- Buying house nos.
7 - Name that pattern!
8 - Clink wine glasses
9 - Strange Powers !!
10- Odd & Abundant?
 
Problem #1 - Posted Friday, November 21, 1997
The Most Divisors (back to top)
A divisor of a positive whole number n is a whole number that divides evenly into n
(with no remainder).What integer from 1 through 1000 has the most divisors?
To win you must prove it and explain your method.
 
Problem #2 - Posted Friday, November 28, 1997
Trains versus Fly (back to top)
Two trains are 2 miles apart and are traveling towards each other on the same
track, each train going 30 mph. A fly going 60 mph starts at the nose of one train,
flies toward the other train, and upon reaching the second train immediately turns
around and flies back towards the first train. The fly buzzes back and forth until all
three collide. How far did the fly fly?
 
Problem #3 - Posted Sunday, December 7, 1997
Unit Fraction Problems (back to top)
A unit fraction is of the form 1 / n (where n = whole no. >= 1.)
a) Starting with 1 / 1 , then 1 / 2 , 1 / 3 , etc., how many unit fractions
does it take to add up to more than pi ?
b) Express 3 / 23 as the sum of two unit fractions; 3 / 23 = 1 / a + 1 / b .
c) Write 5 / 4 as the sum of distinct unit fractions. Fine print . . .
The winner in part c) will be the one using the smallest number of fractions.
In case of a tie, the winner is the one with the "smallest biggest denominator."
 
Problem #4 - Posted Thursday, December 18, 1997
The Census Taker Problem (back to top)
A census-taker rings Mr. Simpson's bell and asks how many children he has.
"Three daughters," he replies.
"And how old are they, in whole numbers?" asks the census-taker.
"Well, I'll tell you this: the product of their ages is 72, and the sum of their ages is my house number."
"But that isn't enough information!" complains the census taker.
"Okay, my oldest daughter (in years) likes chocolate milk," replies Mr. Simpson.
With that, the census-taker nods and writes down the three ages.
How old are the Simpson girls, and how did the census-taker figure it out?
Include a full explanation!
Problem #5 - Posted Monday, December 29, 1997
A Tree-o of Square Root Problems (back to top)
Let Sqrt(x) or -/x denote the (positive) square root of x,
as in Sqrt(100) = -/100 = 10.
Also x ^ 2 will mean x squared, as in 10 ^ 2 = 10 * 10 = 100.
 
1) . . If: Sqrt(m) + Sqrt(n) = 13 , and m and n differ by 65,
what is the largest possible value of m ?
2) . . Notice that the equation x^2 - 3 = 0 has a solution x = Sqrt(3).
Find a polynomial equation in x, with integer coefficients, having
x = Sqrt(3) + Sqrt(5) as a solution.
3) . . What is a really good fraction approximation for Sqrt(17),
and why? Generalize your answer if possible to Sqrt(n^2 + 1).
 
Problem #6 - Posted Wednesday, January 7, 1998
New Year, More House Numbers! (back to top)
The people living on Sesame Street all decide to buy new house numbers,
so they line up at the store in order of their addresses: 1, 2, 3, . . . .
If the store has 100 of each digit, what is the first address that
won't be able to buy its house numbers?
 
Problem #7 - Posted Friday, January 23, 1998
Patterns and Sequences (back to top)
a) 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, _?_
b) 2, 3, 5, 7, 11, _?_
c) 3, 3, 5, 4, 4, 3, 5, 5, 4, _?_
d) 1, 3, 7, 15, 31, _?_
e) 1, 4, 27, 256, 3125, _?_
f) 1, 2, 6, 24, 120, 720, _?_
g) 1, 2, 6, 30, 210, _?_
 
What number comes next in each sequence? Give reasons!
 
Problem #8 - Posted Friday, January 30, 1998
Clinking Wine Glasses (back to top)
When I have wine with a few people and we clink glasses and say "salud", I can always
tell if everyone has "clinked" with everyone else, because I know math! Let's assume
each person clinks each other person exactly once. If there are 2 people, there is one
"clink." If there are 3 people, there are 3 clinks.
8a. How many clinks are there for 4, 5, 6, . . . 10 people?
8b. How many people were there if I heard 903 clinks?
8c. What is the formula for the quantity : c(n) = number of clinks for a group of n people ?
 
Problem #9 - Posted Sunday, February 15, 1998
Strange Powers (back to top)
The expression b ^ n means b to the power n.
9a) If 3 ^ a = 4 and 4 ^ b = 8, what is 9 ^ (a - b) ?
9b) Can you find numbers a =/= b such that a ^ b = b ^ a ?
9c) If a $ b means a ^ b - b ^ a , what is 4 $ 6 ?
9d) Is 2 $ (3 $ 4) the same as (2 $ 3) $ 4 ?
 
 
Problem #10 - Posted Saturday, February 28, 1998
Odd and Abundant? (back to top)
A natural number is abundant if its proper divisors (not including itself) add up to more than
the number. (12 is abundant because the divisors of 12 are 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 12, and 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 6 = 16 > 12.)
Note 6 = 1 + 2 + 3 ; 6 is called perfect; 15 is deficient (not abundant or perfect): 1 + 3 + 5 = 9 < 15.
What is the smallest odd abundant number? Prove your answer and spell out your thinking.
Hint: Numbers like 12 = 2 * 2 * 3 . that have lots of small prime factors, tend to be abundant.
 
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Problem Archive Index
 
Probs & answers . 1-10 . 11-20 . 21-30 . 31-40 . 41-50 . 51-60 . 61-70 . 71-80 . 81-90
Problems only . . . 1-10 . 11-20 . 21-30 . 31-40 . 41-50 . 51-60 . 61-70 . 71-80 . 81-90
 
Probs & answers . . . 91-100 . 101-110 . 111-120 . 121-130 . 131-140 . 141-150 . 151+
Problems only . . . . . 91-100 . 101-110 . 111-120 . 121-130 . 131-140 . 141-150 . 151+
 
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