Similar to the 3 guys and a hotel room riddle (does that sound weird?).

Three salesmen went into a hotel to rent a room. The manager stated that he had only one room left, but all three could use it for $30.00 for the night. The three salesmen gave him $10.00 each and went up to their room.

Later, the manager decided that he had charged the salesmen too much so he called the bellhop over, gave him five one-dollar bills, and said: 'Take this $5.00 up to the salesmen and tell them I had charged them too much for the room.' On the way up, the bellhop knew that he could not divide the five one-dollar bills equally so he puts two of the one-dollar bills in his pocket and returned one one-dollar bill to each of the salesmen.

This means that each salesman paid $9.00 for the room. The bellhop kept $2.00. Three times nine is 27 plus two is 29....... The Question: What happened to the extra dollar? Dun dun dun

The arithmetic is easy, the trick/twist is in the way it was asked.

The three people paid $27 for a $25 room. The bellhop pocketed the $2 difference. $30 isn't in the picture anymore, it's supposed to be $27 - $2 to get $25, not $27 + $2 to try and figure out $30.

Anyways, I'm in the 288 camp. Based on the way it's written, 48 is in the numerator, 2 is in the denominator, and (9+3) is what you multiply that fraction by instead of 48 as the numerator and 2(9+3) being in the denominator.

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You have $48 that need to be divided two groups with 12 people each (12 people because there are 9 guys and 3 girls).

That's $2 per person, not $288.

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48÷2(9+3)=?
Is of the form A÷B(C+D) where a,b,c,d are elements of integers. When in doubt in mathematics break it down to the axioms. Lets look at a field axiom which is known to exist in this field.

A÷B(C+D) => A÷(BC+DA) this is true since the field is closed under the distributive property
So 48÷(2*9+2*3) => 48÷(24)

÷ is the worse notation to use. I am surprised elementary students are still using it, but then again maybe it is just america, since I know many other countries teach finite set theory in lieu of the more direct computations.

You have $48 that need to be divided two groups with 12 people each (12 people because there are 9 guys and 3 girls).

That's $2 per person, not $288.

The word problem you just wrote would be expressed 48÷[2(9+3)]. x(y) is an abbreviation for x * y, so the equation as originally expressed would be 48÷2*(9+3).

Do the parenthetical first because parenthesis override rank, and you have 48÷2*12. Note this is not the same as 48÷(2*12), which would indeed be 2. Division and multiplication are the same rank, so you operate from left to right. 48÷2*12=24*12=288

A more accurate word problem would be you gave $48 each to 12 people (9 guys and 3 girls), and they had to then divide into stacks of $2 each. How many stacks of money do you have? 288 stacks (24 stacks per person, times 12 people), of $2 each.

Clearly the answer is 288, but apparently there are some people who insist the answer is 2. This has turned into some long debates on some forums. What say you, CL?

Another forum I frequent was the first to post it.... thread was 2500+ posts in 6 hours and then it got locked, only to cause hundreds of threads to be started about it. It quickly spread to other forums and if you google it you will find pages and pages of results from other forums now debating it

Quote:

Originally Posted by dunnojack

let's just make it gotdamn simple and be done with it.

(48/2)(9+3).

syntax is dumb. Use more parentheses to avoid confusion.

Another forum I frequent was the first to post it.... thread was 2500+ posts in 6 hours and then it got locked, only to cause hundreds of threads to be started about it. It quickly spread to other forums and if you google it you will find pages and pages of results from other forums now debating it