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Old 2005-12-30, 13:31   #1
Numbers
 
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Default The Chicken farmer from Minsk

There is a chicken farmer in Minsk. He has a smallholding with a few chickens on it, and both he and the chickens are having a nice life. One day, a big international company decide to lay a fibre-optic cable all around the world, and its path goes right across the chicken farm. After the cable has been laid, the farmer notices some strange behaviour in his chickens. The chickens on one side of the cable will not cross over to the other side, and vice-versa. This causes some problems for the chickens, many of whom find that their mates are on the other side of the cable. And it causes some problems for the farmer, who has to put out two sets of feed each day, and provide another set of chicken houses. So the farmer writes to the Company and asks if he can stick some posts in the ground and lift the cable 1ft off the ground so that the chickens can walk underneath. The Company writes back that for technical reasons this can't be done just on his farm but has to be done all along the whole length of the cable, and this would be too expensive. So the farmer writes back that if the Company will provide the sticks, he will pay for the extra cable. Assuming that the cable cost $1 per foot (and that the world is a sphere), how much did the farmer have to pay?
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Old 2005-12-30, 13:43   #2
xilman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Numbers
There is a chicken farmer in Minsk. He has a smallholding with a few chickens on it, and both he and the chickens are having a nice life. One day, a big international company decide to lay a fibre-optic cable all around the world, and its path goes right across the chicken farm. After the cable has been laid, the farmer notices some strange behaviour in his chickens. The chickens on one side of the cable will not cross over to the other side, and vice-versa. This causes some problems for the chickens, many of whom find that their mates are on the other side of the cable. And it causes some problems for the farmer, who has to put out two sets of feed each day, and provide another set of chicken houses. So the farmer writes to the Company and asks if he can stick some posts in the ground and lift the cable 1ft off the ground so that the chickens can walk underneath. The Company writes back that for technical reasons this can't be done just on his farm but has to be done all along the whole length of the cable, and this would be too expensive. So the farmer writes back that if the Company will provide the sticks, he will pay for the extra cable. Assuming that the cable cost $1 per foot (and that the world is a sphere), how much did the farmer have to pay?
The additional radius is 1 foot so the additional circumference is 2\pi feet.
At $1 per foot, this comes to a little over $6.28.


Paul
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Old 2005-12-30, 13:46   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman
The additional radius is 1 foot so the additional circumference is 2\pi feet.
At $1 per foot, this comes to a little over $6.28.


Paul
who's to say that they can use the same fibers once moved above ground? (I know that's the point of the riddle though
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Old 2005-12-30, 13:52   #4
Numbers
 
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I thnik their was a tpyo in yuor awnser.

Shurely yuo meen 2*pi?
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Old 2005-12-30, 14:08   #5
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d00d not if your useing tex!

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Old 2005-12-30, 18:11   #6
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[QUOTE=Numbers]I thnik their was a tpyo in yuor awnser.
I thin knot.

And that was not a typo.

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Old 2005-12-31, 07:15   #7
Orgasmic Troll
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what good is a fiber optic cable in one big loop across the world? Is it just a bracelet for the earth?
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Old 2005-12-31, 07:50   #8
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Fiber is worth a lot more then gold...
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Old 2005-12-31, 09:07   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TravisT
what good is a fiber optic cable in one big loop across the world? Is it just a bracelet for the earth?
In a previous thread Wacky gave his views on what makes a good puzzle. One of the things he mentioned was that the solution should not be obvious. Clearly, what is obvious to one person may not be quite so obvious to another, but over christmas I asked several people about the chicken farmer and his cable, and they all asked "Well, how big is the world?" My girlfriend's parents are still debating whether my solution is correct. So, from this point of view I find the question interesting, even though the math is trivial. So, in the same way as you do not need to know how big the world is, you really do not need to know what the cable is for. Unless of course you meant it as a philosophical question, but my own personal view is that we have had more than enough philosophy in the puzzles forum recently and so I won't be taking you up on the challenge.

Another thing Wacky mentioned was the dichotomy that exists between puzzle situations and real-world situations. This thread does not attempt to answer that question either. Please, by all means feel free to pursue either of these ideas in the lounge.
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Old 2005-12-31, 09:22   #10
Orgasmic Troll
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Numbers
In a previous thread Wacky gave his views on what makes a good puzzle. One of the things he mentioned was that the solution should not be obvious. Clearly, what is obvious to one person may not be quite so obvious to another, but over christmas I asked several people about the chicken farmer and his cable, and they all asked "Well, how big is the world?" My girlfriend's parents are still debating whether my solution is correct. So, from this point of view I find the question interesting, even though the math is trivial. So, in the same way as you do not need to know how big the world is, you really do not need to know what the cable is for. Unless of course you meant it as a philosophical question, but my own personal view is that we have had more than enough philosophy in the puzzles forum recently and so I won't be taking you up on the challenge.

Another thing Wacky mentioned was the dichotomy that exists between puzzle situations and real-world situations. This thread does not attempt to answer that question either. Please, by all means feel free to pursue either of these ideas in the lounge.
I've seen this puzzle presented in different ways, usually comparing between one small circle (like a corral) being expanded a meter in each direction and then a much much larger one being expanded a meter in each direction as well and hilarity ensues.

also, if they are raising the fiber 1 foot off the ground, then the amount of fiber needed depends on how far the posts are that lift it off the ground and the flexibility of the rope, since the rope will be forming catenary arches between each post.

Are we raising the fiber so that the minimum point is 1ft? Then we have to figure out how far to raise it at each post so that the sag is 1 ft away from the ground at its lowest point.

I think the problem is that a lot of people here have seen the same problems over and over, we've found the standard solution and we're trying to spice it up
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Old 2005-12-31, 10:07   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TravisT
I think the problem is that a lot of people here have seen the same problems over and over, we've found the standard solution and we're trying to spice it up
No TravisT, I think the real problem is that I take anything in the least bit negative very much to heart. I am too quick to take umbrage and too slow at seeing it from the other guy's side of the fence.

Your point about catenary arches reminded me of this puzzle from Wacky. Definitely not a standard solution, but you have to scroll down to post 32 to get Wacky's follow-up to really appreciate it.

Thanks,

Numbers.
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