Math word problem, can you solve?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by JosephVK, Mar 16, 2016.

  1. JosephVK

    JosephVK Member

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    so someone on my local forum posted this simple math word problem and has turned into a great debate. one guy answer to it and his reasoning to me is 100% true but I wont tell what it is yet as I want to hear your guys' responses to it.

    all I will say is read it very carefully and think


    "if Sue runs around the track twice and John runs around the track four times

    more than Sue, how many times does John run around the track?"



    the kid answered 8, the teacher said it was 6.

    what say you?
     
  2. IMNaughty

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    From a pure math perspective, the answer would be 8 (2 x 4). The ambiguous statement of times in this case can allow either interpretation.

    The important question to ask here is,

    Did Sue appreciate the sweat that John worked up trying to impress her by running so much faster than she did?
     
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  3. HotForHoney

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    6 would be how many MORE laps....was a word missing?
     
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  4. 10_3XL

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    The problem lies in the vague wording ("...four times more than Sue.") in the question.

    It could mean - if you were to write this as a mathematical statement - either to add four or to multiply by four. It's dependant on how you choose to interpret that "four times more."

    I'd say the answer is 6.

    Why? Because when I read that statement: "
    John runs around the track four times more than Sue" my brain doesn't kick into Math Mode; I read it in English Mode. So the "four times more" automatically flip-flops to being "four more times." Because it's like you're keeping mental count -- Sue runs one time; two times. John runs one time, two times (add "four times more"), three times, four times, five times, six times...

    I think that flip is what happens with most people who read that word problem. As though that's the intended meaning that most people would have if speaking and made that statement.
    Like, "Oh yeah, Susan ran around the track twice!"
    "Really? Well, John ran around the track four times more than Susan did!"
    See there? Even with that exchange it's vague as to what the "four times more" means! As IMNaughty said - it's totally ambiguous.

    Did any of that make sense? I'm having trouble putting this intelligibly without going on at ridiculous length. :confused:
     
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  5. IMNaughty

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    Made sense to me
     
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  6. HotForHoney

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    "It was at midnight"
     
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  7. Dog_E_Ryder

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    10x got it right, the way the problem is written, leaves a possibility of two clear answers. So technically 6 or 8 would be correct....as well maybe just 2.

    If you figure in the possibility that if Sue had a killer ass, John most likely just ran just 2, the same amount of laps after Sue left the track. This leaving him no real reason to keep running. With that said he added the additional lap story down at the local bar after telling his buds about Sue's hot ass and how he would like to ride that thing like a drunken monkey, and then noticed Betty, who is his wife's best friend listening in on the conversation and contrived the story about running 8 laps to make it sound like he was there running for the workout, as well as asking the guys if they saw "It's incredible show" last night with that drunk monkey on it. As he looked out of the corner of his eyes to notice if Betty was buying it or not.

    Ah yes fun with numbers. :p
     
    #7 Dog_E_Ryder, Mar 17, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016
  8. JosephVK

    JosephVK Member

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    10_3XL definitely got it right, well that didn't take long at all lol it got into more of a debate on the other forum. here is a copy and paste from the one guys post on the other forum which basically just says exactly what 10_3xl says.

    it wasn't a complicated word problem but still was interesting how a simple word problem sparked thoughts and debate on the other forums.


    Sue = 2 laps



    John = four times MORE than Sue. That is, 2(Sue) and four times MORE which is + 4. So 2 + 4 = 6



    Four TIMES AS MANY is multiplication. Same as 2 TIMES 4 or 2 x 4 which equals 8.



    OR Four times as many as 1 is 4. AND Four times as many as 2 is 8.



    MORE means add. TIMES means multiply. The question is trying to trick you by putting the words MORE and TIMES together.
     
  9. CLE32793

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    This is why men can't find the damned g-spot. Lmao
     
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  10. IMNaughty

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    That's because we are told it's 2 inches in, and when we talk to women we find out that <-------> is a foot according to their ex's
     
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  11. 10_3XL

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    Sure, I can't find it - but at least you know I'll be able to give a lengthy explanation as to why (and how it's somehow your fault) that I can't. :p
     
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  12. CLE32793

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    Lmao, yes, that is true word man!! :p :D