Archive for February 23, 2015

Can I Get Your Digits?

Saw this on a t-shirt recently: Consider the number

1234567891011121314151617181920

obtained by writing the numbers from 1 to 20 in order side-by-side.

What’s the greatest number that can be obtained by crossing out 20 digits?

If a fetching lady or handsome gent catches your fancy by solving that problem, you might want to ask her or him…

How can I know so many digits of π and so few digits of your phone number?

And if he or she still hasn’t taken leave of you, then you could really press your luck with the following:

1. Ask your new friend to write down a number with four or more digits.

459,163

1. Then, have your friend add the digits.

4 + 5 + 9 + 1 + 6 + 3 = 28

1. Subtract the sum from the original number.

459,163 – 28 = 459,135

1. Have your friend cross out one of the digits, and then read the remaining number aloud to you.

45,935

1. Then, miraculously announce the missing digit.

1

The secret to the trick? Simple. Just add the digits of the number that your friend reads aloud, and then figure out what number must be added to get the sum to a multiple of 9. Above, the digits of the number 45,935 have a sum of 26, which is 1 less than a multiple of 9, so the removed digit is 1.