jpatokal
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 Sep24 awarded Autobiographer Sep13 awarded Yearling Mar5 awarded Self-Learner Nov7 awarded Popular Question Oct21 answered How many ways to merge N companies into one big company: Bell or Catalan? Oct17 awarded Scholar Oct17 accepted How many ways to merge N companies into one big company: Bell or Catalan? Oct16 comment How many ways to merge N companies into one big company: Bell or Catalan? Interesting, but Brian M. Scott's answer, particularly the parallel to phylogenetic trees, seems more convincing. Can you spot a flaw in his argument... or in yours? Oct15 awarded Supporter Oct15 comment How many ways to merge N companies into one big company: Bell or Catalan? As stated in the question, you need to substract one, because you're starting from one of the possible states. Oct15 comment How many ways to merge N companies into one big company: Bell or Catalan? Presumably the intention is that each step has to merge at least one company with another, and that once merged companies can no longer be broken up. Oct15 awarded Student Oct15 comment How many ways to merge N companies into one big company: Bell or Catalan? Yes, my understanding is that you can take multiple steps, and you can merge as many as you like (including all) in a single step. So for N=3, the valid ways to merge them would be A,B,C -> (AB,C | AC,B | BC,A) -> ABC plus A,B,C -> ABC, for a total of 4 paths. Oct15 asked How many ways to merge N companies into one big company: Bell or Catalan? Oct13 awarded Teacher Oct13 answered How many lines can be equidistant from 3 points?