Grandpa’s Magic Square Puzzle

When I was a boy, my grandfather used to give me puzzles for me to solve. The following puzzle is one of them. A magic square is an arrangement of numbers from 1 to n2 in an n2 matrix in which each number should only occur once. Every row, column, and diagonal of a magic […]

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Learn A Basic Number Theorem Through Playing Cards

The following is a simple activity for learning a simple number theory concept. This is based on the procedure described by Martin Gardner in Time Travel and Other Mathematical Bewilderments (1988). All you need for this is a pack of cards. First, remove all the cards of one suit (e.g. all the spades). Afterwards, arrange the […]

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Zero Sum And Difference Game

Consider this group of squares: 1237892 + 5619452 + 6428642 – 2428682 – 7619432 – 3237872 = 0 When looking at the calculation above, it seems that it’s not a big deal. Although the six large squares yield zero after the calculation, it is not really that peculiar. But, try to remove the hundred thousands place or the left-most digit of […]

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The Curious Collatz Conjecture

Select any whole number greater than zero then perform the following operation: If the number is even, divide it by 2. If the number is odd, multiply it by 3 and add 1. It’s said that if you continue to repeatedly apply the process, you’d always end up at 1. This is the premise of […]

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Pun Of The Weak: Math Booths

I went to a math conference, and they had booths set up for several different branches of mathematics so students could learn about them. Unfortunately, the topology booth was closed, the algebra booth was way out in a field, and although I could get arbitrarily close to the analysis booth, I couldn’t touch it. The […]

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20 Excuses For Not Doing Your Math Homework

This is a list I made quite some time ago. Might as well publish it here. 1. Even Galileo didn’t know calculus, so why should I? 2. When I tried to reach my textbook, I could only reach half the distance, then when I tried to reach it again, I could only reach half of […]

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Happy New Year 2018! (And Mathematical Facts About 2018)

This numerical coincidence that I found is quite poetic. The way I see it, 20170 signifies the end of 2017. This is followed by a countdown which concludes with an exclamation welcoming 2018. Is this a sign of a good year ahead? Who knows. It’s difficult to rely on numbers to answer this kind of question. After […]

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An Ingenious Match Puzzle

Lay out six matches in the way depicted in the illustration. The objective is to shift one match without displacing the others so that the resulting arrangement would represent an arithmetical fraction equal to 1. You are not allowed to move the match forming the horizontal fraction bar. 

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