## Thursday, January 5, 2012

### Math Puzzle: The Missing Sign

In performing simple arithmetic operations, a sign is required between two numbers to show what action is intended...you've seen the plus symbol, the minus symbol, the multiplication symbol and the division symbol.

What follows is a quick Braintenance puzzle, designed to help you make use of several of your mental abilities simultaneously. The principal ability most of us default to is a very rapid trial and error -- when this is done with extreme speed by a computer, it is termed "brute force." Yet this brute force, when exercised in Humans (most of our readers are Humans, some are likely aliens monitoring our internet activity from their home planet, as they plan to conquer us -- but let's not get distracted), improves in terms of its speed. It is like Dran-o for the Brain-o.

Find the missing signs which are all represented below as the letter "n" in the following simple equations. I'll have answers for you within the next two days. You have plenty of time. Put away the crossword and Sudoku, and give this exercise a whack. Have at it, then:

A) 9 n 3 n 3 = 30

B) 7 n 5 n 3 = 9

C) 12 n 3 n 1 = 5

Have fun. By the way, are you doing mathematics, arithmetic or something else. It might be time to take a run at Google or Wikipedia...

Douglas E Castle for BRAINTENANCE.

Notice: This article appears courtesy of The International Lingovation Foundation, Division Of  Numerical Disciplines.