## Did you solve it? Can you outfox the desert island despot?

#### Marlene Breverman stashed this in Puzzle-ing

*You and a friend have been captured on a desert island ruled by a crazed mathematical despot. You will be locked in separate cells in the island’s prison, and then set the following task:*

*Every minute for an hour you will each flip a coin. The flips are simultaneous, and after each flip you will make a prediction as to whether the other person’s flip was heads or tails.*

*So, you both make 60 flips and 60 predictions.*

*The despot rules that he will kill the two of you if on any one of the 60 predictions you are both correct. (In other words, you both flip, both predict the result of the other person’s flip, and are both right). To escape with your lives at least one of you must predict wrongly each time.*

*You are given ten minutes to think up a survival strategy before being taken to the cells. Once you are in the cells you cannot communicate with each other, although you are obviously able to see the results of your own flips.*

*Can you guarantee your survival, and if so, how*

**Stashed in:** Today I Learned, Math!, Awesome

Maybe I am trying to go too fast here, but it seems like if one of you always predicts heads and the other always predicts tails, the predictions will never both be right. Is that it?

You each flip a coin. There are two coins, not one.

Yeah this totally defied my intuition.

Mine too. That's what makes for a good puzzle.

I'm still not sure WHY this works.

Today I learned that coins have a 1 in 6000 chance of landing on their edge on a flat surface, according to science...

**A Penny for Your Thoughts*** (The Twilight Zone; *Season 2 | Episode 16

*"*Gaining telepathic abilities when his coin lands on its edge bank clerk Hector B. Poole learns about the difference between other people's plans and fantasies."

Sounds like a fascinating episode!

10:34 AM Aug 01 2016