View Question
 Question
 Subject: Riddle Category: Miscellaneous Asked by: aj9989-ga List Price: \$2.00 Posted: 09 May 2006 23:07 PDT Expires: 08 Jun 2006 23:07 PDT Question ID: 727192
 ```A drawer contains a number of red and blue socks. If I pull two out at random, then their chance of being a red pair is one half and their chance of being a blue pair is one twelfth. How many socks are in the drawer? How many of each color?```
 Subject: Re: Riddle Answered By: denco-ga on 10 May 2006 00:01 PDT Rated:
 ```Howdy aj9989-ga, Bryan (probonopublico-ga) speaks a certain truth in his comment, as there are an odd number of red and blue socks in the drawer. One of "Ken's Puzzle of the Week" has the solution to your riddle. http://www.ken.duisenberg.com/potw/archive/arch00/000228sol.html "85 red, 35 blue" The above page also provides the formula that we need to prove this. "... We have to find a and b integers representing respectively the numbers of red and blue socks such as: a*(a-1)/(a+b)*(a+b-1) = p (1) b*(b-1)/(a+b)*(a+b-1) = q (2) ..." If we take the first formula for the red socks, we get: 85*84/120*119 = 7140/14280 = 1/2 We can then apply the second formula to prove the blue socks solution: 35*34/120*119 = 1190/14280 = 1/12 If you need any clarification, please feel free to ask. Search strategy: Google search on: red blue socks drawer ://www.google.com/search?q=red+blue+socks+drawer Looking Forward, denco-ga - Google Answers Researcher```

 Subject: Re: Riddle From: probonopublico-ga on 09 May 2006 23:25 PDT
 `This is impossible to answer because there is always at least one sock missing.`
 Subject: Re: Riddle From: denco-ga on 10 May 2006 11:47 PDT
 ```Thanks for the 5 star rating and tip, aj9989-ga. Looking Forward, denco-ga - Google Answers Researcher```