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HOW DID IT HAPPEN???

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A man runs a mile south, a mile west, and a mile north... and ends up back where he started!

How did it happen?

The North Pole

The Obvious Answer was the north pole, if you looked. Duh. Who knows how many times this problem has been redone.

But the real riddle is...

There are actually an infinite number of answers for where the man could have started from.Explain.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

You dont, but here is an answer. Try being who knows what distance from the south pole, run south 1 mi, and then run west 1 mi, in a circle around the south pole, and run north back to where you started! :P

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Edited by new guest
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Posted · Report post

well, north pole did not come to mind, but i thought of an island 1mile in diameter
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For the south pole solution:

Let's say there's a latitude (a circle around the earth running east-west) that's exactly 1 mile in circumference. In other words, a point shortly north of the south pole that is 1 mile around the earth. If you start on any of the infinite points that are 1 mile north of that special latitude, then you can go 1 mile south and then 1 mile west to go all the way around the earth, then 1 mile north to be back where you started ;D

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Posted · Report post

For the south pole solution:

Let's say there's a latitude (a circle around the earth running east-west) that's exactly 1 mile in circumference. In other words, a point shortly north of the south pole that is 1 mile around the earth. If you start on any of the infinite points that are 1 mile north of that special latitude, then you can go 1 mile south and then 1 mile west to go all the way around the earth, then 1 mile north to be back where you started ;D

The latitude is 89º 59.68´ . and of course 1 mile north of that is 89º 58.68´ south :o

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Posted · Report post

I should correct my last , the latitude is in fact 89º 59.84´ and corresponding 89º 58.84´ ( I was using full diameter to calculate instead of radius)

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how many times can people argue about the same answer??

rotating treadmill, duh...

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Posted · Report post

:o Why all the comlecation? whay not just end up in the west? LOL :P
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Posted · Report post

its baseball he started from 1 st base

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Posted · Report post

Simple. He was at the North Pole.

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Posted · Report post

Wat about south pole?

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Posted (edited) · Report post

has to be north pole....but it says infinite places of start point.

Edited by Ray Kovecses
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Posted · Report post

Assumin that he only ran and didnt get anything else it has to be the north poll becase anywhere else he would have to go east in order to get back to where he started.

Had he gotten a help from something else there is infact an infinate possibity of where he started

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I THINK HE STARTED AT THE NORTH POLE AND RAN SOUTH 1 MILE AND THEN WEST THEN NORTH BACK TO THE POLE AND THERE IS AN INFINITE NUMBER OF STARTING DIRECTIONS IF HE WAS TO MOVE THE SMALLEST DISTANCE POSSIBLE FACING SLIGHTLY WEST FROM THE PREVIOUSLY FACING POSITION TO THEN START AGAIN HEADING SOUTH THEN WEST THEN NORTH AND OVER AND OVER FOR ETERNITY SINCE IT WOULD BE AN INFINITE NUMBER OF STARTS.

IF HE WAS TO START 1 MILE NORTH OF THE SOUTH POLE THEN WHEN HE GO TTO THE SOUTH POLE TO GO WEST HE WOULD BE PIVOTING ON ONE FOOT DIRECTLY OVER THE POLE AND SPINNING WITH THE OTHER FOOT FOR ONE MILE AND HE WOULD QUICKLY BE STANDING IN A BIG PUDDLE ON THE SNOW OR ICE BECAUSE HIS SHOE OR BOOT THAT WAS PIVOTING OVER THE SAME SPOT ON THE POLE WHILE TRAVELING WEST WOULD HEAT UP FROM THE CONSTANT FRICTION IN THE SAME SPOT FOR THE ENTIRE MILE...

I DUNNO THE NORTH POLE SOUNDS RIGHT TO ME THO!

I DONT HAVE TIME TO MAKE A DIAGRAM TO BETTER EXPLAIN RIGHT NOW, SORRY

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HERES HOW I THINK IT WOULD LOOK, MAYBE MY PICS WILL SHOW BETTER THAN MY WORDS CAN DESCRIBE

MILE_S_W_N.bmp

post-9880-1219539667_thumbjpg

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FOR SOME REASON IT ONLY ADDED ONE OF MY DIAGRAMS, HERES THE OTHER

post-9880-1219539818_thumbjpg

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Posted (edited) · Report post

One solution is the N. Pole. All the rest are near the S Pole, one mile north of any of the whole fraction laps, as stated.

The treadmill is bogus, your not actually running any distance, you're just running in place.

Edited by Geneass
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One solution is the N. Pole. All the rest are near the S Pole, one mile north of any of the whole fraction laps, as stated.

The treadmill is bogus, your not actually running any distance, you're just running in place.

I STILL DONT GET THE 1 MILE N OF THE S POLE THING, CUZ ONCE U GO SOUTH TO THE SOUTH POLE THEN YOU CANT GO WEST AT THE EXACT PINPOINT OF THE SOUTH POLE ???

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I STILL DONT GET THE 1 MILE N OF THE S POLE THING, CUZ ONCE U GO SOUTH TO THE SOUTH POLE THEN YOU CANT GO WEST AT THE EXACT PINPOINT OF THE SOUTH POLE ???

The starting point is always greater than one mile north of the south pole.

Without a formula, the concept is that you walk west one mile and are back at the point where you began walking west. You have followed a circular path one or multiple times to return to the same point. You then turn north and return to the starting point. The starting points are literally infinite in number. The closer to the south pole you start, the more westward circles you will make. The key is that each circular path is a whole fraction of one mile i.e. 1/2 mi., 1/23 mi. etc. You may circle once or one hundred times, the key is that you walk exactly one mile west.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

but couldn't he have also ended up in a place with the same name as the place he started???? or am i just unknowingly ignorant to something??? :huh:

Edited by sherace
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Posted · Report post

but couldn't he have also ended up in a place with the same name as the place he started???? or am i just unknowingly ignorant to something??? :huh:

It wouldn't be the exact place - you could make another site called brainden, but it isn't the same as this one.

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I think there are in fact at least infinite squared solutions....

(and near infinite cubed) :-)

Assuming good the journey could be started on any paralell what is one mile north

of the circle that is (1/N) miles lenght (1/2, 1/3, 1/4 and so on...) so the western

leg takes a whole number of laps around the south pole, there are infinite paralells

from the journey could be started, and on each one of them, there are an infinite

number of points from which start... So here we have infinite circles multiplied by

infinite points on each circle (infinite squared)

And as the number of worlds in the universe is near infinite, multiply that for the

number of worlds where that can happen, and we're close to infinite cubed starting

points...

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Posted · Report post

He Could of ran on a treadmill

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He could have started a bit above a mile north of the S. Pole and ran south. Once he ran south he runs west around the Earth so he ends up in the same spot. and then goes north ending in the sam spot he started. He could have also started a little to the left or a little more to the left, etc etc, resulting in infinite starting points.

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Posted · Report post

planets / moons have a Nth pole ?

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I think everyone is trying to get to technical wit the original problem when obviously all it is, is that he started on the north pole.

Because the earth id a sphere it wouldn't really matter how far west or east he ran. as long as he ran the exact same distance south and north than he would end up back at his starting point, the north pole.

post-13648-1234151883.jpg

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