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  • 69 votes cast
Jun
25
comment When is the “Taxman Game” winnable?
@TonyK: Yes, that's right. I pick 2. Taxman gets 1. I win.
Jun
25
comment When is the “Taxman Game” winnable?
@AmyB: It is there: "So when none of the numbers in the list have any divisors that have not been taken, I take them all."
Jun
25
awarded  Commentator
Jun
25
comment When is the “Taxman Game” winnable?
@AmyB: because at the end of the game the Taxman gets any numbers that have no remaining divisors and after you've picked 3 there are no divisors of 2 left so it goes to the Taxman.
Jun
25
comment When is the “Taxman Game” winnable?
@TonyK: Winnable as in the player score is higher than the Taxman's. For 3, if you pick 3 then the Taxman gets 1 as a divisor but that leaves 2 and you can't pick 2 as it has no remaining divisor. Thus you and the Taxman both get a score of 3 for a draw not a win.
Jun
25
awarded  Student
Jun
25
asked When is the “Taxman Game” winnable?
Jun
11
comment Express 99 2/3% as a fraction? No calculator
Bang on. This is the way to solve it. It's sad this has got downvotes.
Jun
11
comment Express 99 2/3% as a fraction? No calculator
This is by far the best answer so far. The appropriate way to deal with multiple choice arithmetic answers is to use approximation, anything else is long-winded and painfully slow.
Sep
24
awarded  Autobiographer
Jun
30
comment Subtraction of a negative number
Not sure why this got downvoted, I think it cuts to the chase rather neatly.
May
20
awarded  Peer Pressure
May
19
awarded  Editor
Apr
28
comment A function such that $f(f(n)) = -n$?
Signed integers are not actually stored with a sign bit on any modern computer. Instead the MSB is treated as a negative value (a method called Two's complement). This gives much easier implementation of basic arithmetic and has only one representation of zero.
Apr
28
comment A function such that $f(f(n)) = -n$?
@Seth: Numbers in computers are stored in Two's complement. 31-bits are as you would expect and the highest bit means $-2^{32}$. The method you describe is One's complement and it is not used as it gives two representations of zero.
Apr
28
comment A function such that $f(f(n)) = -n$?
@TomCollinge: I think you mean $[-2^{31}, 2^{31})$. The lowest representable number in 32-bit twos complement is -$2^{31}$ and the highest is $2^{31}-1$.
Jan
30
awarded  Yearling
Aug
21
answered math fallacy problem: $-1= (-1)^3 = (-1)^{6/2} = \sqrt{(-1)^6}= 1$?
Aug
6
comment What would have been our number system if humans had more than 10 fingers? Try to solve this puzzle.
The next interesting question is: what we can we conclude from this information about Martians? The first natural conclusion is that Martians cannot be symmetrical about any number of axes other than thirteen- since 13 is prime - unless, that is, they have a single fingered appendage, which would have to be located along the axis of symmetry.
May
3
awarded  Critic