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suzer22
Suzer22  (Level: 165.6 - Posts: 1982)
Thu, 28th Sep '06 10:19 AM

MATH OR SEMANTICS?

My son brought home a logic problem of math (in the form of a crossword puzzle). One of the clues is this:

Given that it is now 1939...

"Age of Ted, Father Dunk's son, who is twice the age of his sister Mary in 1945."

Do they want to know the age Ted will be in 1945, when he is twice Mary's age?
Or do they want to know his age NOW, based on the fact that in '45 he will be (would have been) twice her age.
Or does it mean to imply that in 1945 Ted will be twice what Mary's age is now??
Or does it ask for Ted's age in 1945 since he is twice Mary's age NOW?
Could they possibly mean that Mary is Father Dunk's sister and not Ted's sister??? (oh, no , they couldn't mean that because another clue is "Age of Mary, Father Dunk's daughter.")

I don't yet know Mary's age, so I am not asking for help with the math...just the English!

What's the consensus?

kaufman
Kaufman  (Level: 257.0 - Posts: 3936)
Thu, 28th Sep '06 10:27 AM

My gut feeling, and only that, is: How old is Ted now, in 1939, given that that value is twice Mary's 1945 age?

missashlee
Missashlee  (Level: 125.6 - Posts: 543)
Thu, 28th Sep '06 2:29 PM

Suzer, that's a poser....

If you just move the phrase "in 1945" in this way:

"Age of Ted, Father Dunk's son, who in 1945 is twice the age of his sister Mary."

Then I would pick your second choice. But where it is now, Kaufman's choice makes sense.

I think it's just poor semantics. Kinda like the news headline "Sisters Reunited After 18 Years at Checkout Counter"

Good luck on the puzzle, your son may have to try a few possibilities to 'logically' arrive at the expected answer!

- Jeanne

tuzilla
Tuzilla  (Level: 134.1 - Posts: 3778)
Thu, 28th Sep '06 5:07 PM

I see the key as the first phrase...Given it is "now" 1939 (1), and Age of Ted (2), as the (1) condition and (2)question. The rest is information toward solving it.

Solve Mary's age in 1945
Multiply it by 2
Subtract 6
(Ignore the fact that birthdays v. the current date could still alter the answer)


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