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#41 Lost in space

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Posted 06 March 2008 - 01:55 PM

Me thinks the wreckage will be the deciding factor.
I'll walk!
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#42 Buzzkill



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Posted 13 March 2008 - 09:11 PM

You are assuming that the track between New York and Boston is a straight line, and since this is not stipulated, we must assume that the puzzle uses a real train track which exists between New York and Boston. It also doesn't stipulate which country this is in, however, there are no direct trains between New York, UK and Boston, UK the only other country wih both a "New York" and a "Boston" (you need to change trains several times there); therefore again, we must assume that the puzzle is concerned with the rail route between New York - Penn Station, NY and Boston - South Station, MA as serviced by Amtrak - Acela Express whose route is:

Boston - South Station, MA
Boston - Back Bay, MA
Westwood - Route 128 Station, MA
Providence, RI
New London, CT
New Haven, CT
Stamford, CT
New York - Penn Station, NY

For those of you already thinking "Didn't he read the rest of this thread!! i mean honestly... IT DOESN'T MATTER!! Duh!" I will gladly silence your jibber jabber.

Since the track is not a straight line, and consists of at least 2 seperate tracks (one for each direction) along its entire length, there could concievibly be a point along the track that when passing one train is infact closer than the other.

Any idiot who can read a map will tell you that the general direction of a train from Boston to New York is South (if they are more versed in the ways of directional representation, they may say South-West, or better still South-South-West) and it is a distinct possibility that the trian track will weave its way around large obsticles (normally geological) such as hills. if the general direction of the track is south, there maybe a point when the direction of the track actually runs east, or west, or north depending on the obstical it may be avoiding.

Looking at Fig 1 (an illustration only, this may not actually exist!!), you will see clearly that if the trains meet at point A, it will be the south bound train which is closer to New York (think of there being two tracks along the line drawn) but when the track bends east to avoid an obstical, at point B, then it is the North bound train that would be closer to New York. (this is important whether the trains "Pass" or over-lap as someone mentioned, or if they "meet" nose to nose).

Fig 2 shows the basic route, however, it doesn't show all the small twists and turns.

For the answer given by the puzzle setter to be true, then the route would have to be a straight line, which simply is not the case.

NOW.. I have done this rant, someone else can try and work out which train really is closer, even though it will be a matter of meters. (if you want to attempt this you will need: The total length of rail track between the 2 cities note: south bound may be a few meters shorter, the distance between the north bound and south bound tracks, the exact route in at least 1 in 10,000 format, and some kicking algebra skillz.) Good luck.

As an aside (not picking silly holes etc..), i like this puzzle, its a good one.

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#43 jword


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Posted 14 March 2008 - 01:24 AM

There is no train service between N York U.K and Boston U.K . New York U.K is only a small village , however When the mailman leaves Ancaster, the next nearest township, and heads for New York U.K he travels at twice the speed of the potatoe merchant leaving N York U.K heading for Bostons U.K market . When they both meet together for a pint at the Dumbrain Inn , which of them is the furthest from London U.K
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#44 FlyngRyn



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Posted 14 March 2008 - 04:24 PM

I'm not really sure who you are talking about, but if it was me, and I upset you, then I am VERY SORRY!!!.....


Hold on, I think I,,,,, (<TWITCH TWITCH>)

Ahhhh, There it is......


Actually dude, you weren't really rude until you said this...

Cloud9ine was the rude one in what he said below:

no you're not.. The moron came and posted right after you!!

Just because someone didn't catch it right away doesn't make them a moron...

I love how pissed some poeple get when they miss the point of a question. These are riddles, you are going to miss the point...A LOT, unless you google before you post or heard it before. Yes you are going to get made fun of, so what, its all in good fun. You have a lot of very intelligent people here, all exploring thought and the process of thought. Just enjoy the ride, engage in spirited debate, and take a punch every now and then.
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Posted 19 March 2008 - 10:31 PM

You know, when you sit at work all day and work on these puzzles and then all of a sudden one like this comes along it makes it really hard not to just push right through with math and try to find a solution. It's like johan santana throwing 2 fastballs at you and then hitting you with a mean circle change. Good one rookie1. You got me swinging.
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#46 rookie1ja


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Posted 19 March 2008 - 11:19 PM

You know, when you sit at work all day and work on these puzzles and then all of a sudden one like this comes along it makes it really hard not to just push right through with math and try to find a solution. It's like johan santana throwing 2 fastballs at you and then hitting you with a mean circle change. Good one rookie1. You got me swinging.

that's exactly how I hoped it would work ;)
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#47 bwmeekin


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Posted 23 March 2008 - 05:59 PM

both ther both at the same place
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#48 dixonts



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Posted 18 May 2008 - 11:03 PM

This is my first time to this forum and I am completely blown away lol

I read the riddle and the answer came to me almost immediately. I do see how one might be thrown off initially by the unecessary time and speed variables - which is the goal of these variables.

I thought "Either you can say they are the same distance if you mean the conductors of the trains OR if the trains are multiple cars, perhaps the NY train." I stopped thinking about it at that point.

My brain just hurts from reading further! :lol:

This has been highly amusing! The confusion that ensued is proof of how good this riddle is! :P
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#49 OstermanA



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Posted 29 May 2008 - 02:21 PM

There's also the point too that if the first train is traveling at an average speed something like mach 3.5, the trains could meet inside New York city limits... which adds another layer of messed-up-ness to the whole affair. (This assumes a 215 mile trip, which if completed in five minutes is 2580 miles an hour, where the speed of sound is usually in the vicinity of 740 mph. Note that these numbers are all rough approximations.)

On a side note, most of you who care already know this, but the Speed of Sound is a variable that depends on all sorts of stuff, pressure, humidity, temperature, wind speed, etc. It's usually around 740 mph though it doesn't have to be.

Edited by OstermanA, 29 May 2008 - 02:23 PM.

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#50 Writersblock


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Posted 06 June 2008 - 07:02 PM

Just for the record:

There are no substantial "S" bends on the rail between NYC and Boston Mass such that the Boston train would be closer per the discusion above.



Peace my brotheren.
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