Brain Teasers 1 & 2

I was exchanging brainteasers with a colleague at work today and decided that I would start posting some here… just as a fun (sometimes frustrating) pastime to keep those gears turning.

Please don’t spoil this by posting answers via comments.

The following two are from my friend Julia.

  1. An individual goes up a hill at 20mph. At what speed will he have to come down the hill to double his average speed for the entire trip?
  2. You have a balance scale and a bar that is 40 inches long and 40 pounds heavy. Every 1 inch increment of the bar weighs 1 pound. You are allowed to cut the bar 3 times. Where would you cut the bar in order to measure every integer from 1 to 40 using the balance scale?

      7 Responses to “Brain Teasers 1 & 2”

      1. 1 jainik February 12, 2007 at 3:51 pm

        I hope you’re planning to give hints for #1 soon.

      2. 2 seema February 12, 2007 at 8:21 pm

        Hint for #1 below – DON’T READ IF YOU DON’T WANT A HINT.
        The average of two numbers is simply the sum of those two numbers divided by two. Average speed, however, is a rate and cannot be calculated this way.

      3. 3 Deepak February 19, 2007 at 7:36 am

        How do I send you the answers if not through comments? :-)

      4. 4 seema February 19, 2007 at 9:06 pm

        Hi Deepak,

        If you need affirmation that your answers are correct, you can email me :


      5. 5 Shripriya February 22, 2007 at 3:17 am

        I think you need a password protected way that users can get the answer on your site… can you just whip that up please? ;)

      6. 6 Elliot February 23, 2007 at 9:10 am

        Seema — If we can’t prove our mental muscle through posting answers in the comments, we at least need a leaderboard or something to track successful teaster-solvers.

        I need incentive damn it … :)

      7. 7 Gift Basket Club August 8, 2007 at 10:12 am

        Great website, nice tips, thanks for sharing

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