Ask The Wizard #378
Amy, Barbara, and Chrissy decide to play a game of tag. They all start in the same place on an open field. Their running speeds, in feet per minute, are:
- Amy: 500
- Barbara: 400
- Chrissy: 300
Amy is appointed to be "it" first. Barbara and Chrissy take off, in opposite directions, which they both maintain, while Amy does a one-minute countdown.
Who should Amy go after first, to minimize the total time required to tag both Barbara and Chrissy? For extra credit, what is the time required both ways?
She should go after Chrissy first. Here is the time required both ways:Barbara first: 7.5 minutes
Chrissy first: 6 minutes
You have ten icosahedrons, with sides numbered 1 to 20 and roll all of them. What is the mean roll on the die with the highest roll?
The following table shows the number of combinations for any given total. The formula for that is simply n^10 - (n-1)^10. The other two columns show the probability and contribution to the return. The lower right cell shows an average of 18.640276.
I don't know of any formula for the answer that doesn't require a summation sign. If you do, let me know.