Re: Riddles (was: Lateral Thinking)

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Mon Jan 08 2001 - 15:59:26 MST

I started thinking of it along mathematical lines, for example, box A
and B are sets which together, for instance, represent the set of all
integers, where box A is all odd integers and box B is all even
integers. You could also do this with the set of all primes divvied by
(n^2)-1 and (n^2)+1 primes. In both of these solutions, you have 'keys'
in each box which open up the answer in the other box, with one box
being 'larger' than the other.

Harvey Newstrom wrote:
> > >> of is ... well, it's just dumb -- you had two keys to one of the boxes?
> >
> >>Of course. How else would I get two locked boxes each containing the
> >>other's key in the first place?
> >
> >This is a *flabbergastingly* uninteresting `solution'. Why not just say you
> >used a teleport machine? Why not say that the keys were tailored paramecia
> >(one older than the other) that oozed this way and that? Why not say both
> >locks opened with the same key? Several other proffered solutions
> >(including both of mine) strike me as far truer to the spirit of the puzzle
> >than this fudge.
> >
> >Damien Broderick
> That's why I like to develop more than one answer to riddles. Often
> better answers are found than the original.
> My solution would be this:
> Each box would be a networked unix box. The contents inside would be
> encrypted e-mail files. The keys are public/private encryption keys
> (like PGP). The contents of each box can only be unlocked with the
> key from the other box.
> --
> Harvey Newstrom <>

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