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Dr. Watson and German secret Club

  1. Mar 12, 2006 #1
    Dr. Watson is going to pay a visit to a secret club in Germany. There is a bouncer at the door, that will only let people woh have the correct passwords in.

    Dr. Watson is clever so he listens to what a couple of people are saying to get in.

    Bouncer: 18
    Person 1: 9
    ---------------
    Bouncer: 16
    Person 2: 8
    --------------

    When Dr. Watson goes up to the bouncer and the bouncer says:
    14. Dr. Watson replies with confidence: 7

    The bouncer slaps Dr. Watson over the head and tells him that that was the wrong password. What should Dr. Watson have said to be let in?

    Hint: Think German
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 13, 2006 #2
    Hm. I think I need more hints.

    If it was in England or the US, I'd guess maybe he should have said '9', since you could say that it's the number of letters in the word, plus 1 (18 has 8 letters, so 9 is correct, and 16 has 7 letters, so 8 would be correct, and 14 does NOT have 6 letters, so 7 is NOT correct). And of course the german spellings of 18, 16, and 14 all have 8 letters.

    Does the bouncer say "eighteen"? Or "achtzehn"? Likewise, does the first admittee say "nine", "nein", or "neun"? If "nein", then what does the 2nd admittee say? (dunno how to search for a phonetic comparision of the equivalent of "eight" in German).

    DaveE
     
  4. Mar 13, 2006 #3
    Dr. Watson is trying to gain access to German club. That is all the hints you will get.
     
  5. Mar 20, 2006 #4
    So, any answer to this? I know *I've* given up.

    DaveE
     
  6. Mar 20, 2006 #5
    Solution in invisible color:

    The secret code is to say the german number that half the number of the german word for what the bouncer said:

    18 - Achtzehn = 8 letters
    9 - Neun = 4 letters


    16 - Sechzehn = 8 letters
    8 - Acht = 4 letters

    14 - Vierzehn = 8 letters
    7 - Sieben = 6 letters

    Answer: Watson should have told the bouncer any german letter that has 4 letters.

    Hint: It is all about German.
     
  7. Mar 21, 2006 #6
    Oh. Ok.

    In the future, I might try this example with English spellings, since they offer a few more examples with differing letters:

    12 = twelve = 6 letters, half is 6 = six = 3 letters
    18 = eighteen = 8 letters, half is 9 = nine = 4 letters
    20 = twenty = 6 letters, half is 10 = ten = 3 letters

    It's still kind of silly that you can answer *anything* with a certain number of letters-- might be better if you had it be the closest number to half of the given number with half the letters of the given number, and prefer higher. Hence:

    ---------------

    Watson overhears:
    Bouncer: 18
    Person1: 9

    Bouncer: 12
    Person2: 6

    Bouncer: 20
    Person3: 10

    Bouncer: 14
    Watson (thinking divide by 2): 7 (NO! should've said 9)

    Further hints, as needed:

    Bouncer: 24
    Person4: 8

    Bouncer: 30
    Person5: 10

    Bouncer: 42
    Watson (thinking now divide by 3): 14 (NO! should've said 9 again!)

    DaveE
     
  8. Mar 21, 2006 #7
    That is an entirly different brani teaser :) Feel free to post that in a alone topic if you wish.
     
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