LATERAL THINKING… ! A jargon in Management rarely actually practised!! Alas
There was this quiz in our departmental Newsletter:-
Distribute 100 pigeons in 15 cages. Only odd number of pigeons can be in each cage and no cage can go empty i.e. must have pigeons.
Now to save time I will also give the answer because I am not here to ask u a quiz here. But you can yourself also test for fun.
The Right answer accepted by the QUIZMASTER is that it cannot be distributed.
The mathematical explanation was also given as follows:
What we all know is:
a) Sum Total of Even Number Times of Even Numbers is always Even
For example 2+4+6+8 sums to be 20
b) Sum Total of Odd Number Times of Even Numbers is always Even too
For example 2+4+6 sums to be 12
c) Sum Total of Even Number Times of Odd Numbers is also Even
For example 1+3+5+7 sums to be 16
d) But Sum Total of Odd Number Times of Odd Numbers is always Odd
For example 1+3+5 sums to be 9
The given conditions in question are as follows:
o No of Cages = 15 (Odd number)
o No of Pigeons = 100 (Even Number)
o 100 Pigeons are to be distributed among 15 Cages
o But Each Cage can contain only Odd Number of Pigeon (like 1, 3, 5 etc.) and Even Numbers (like 2, 4, 6 etc.) and Zero are not allowed
Therefore, odd numbers of Pigeons (like 1, 3, 5 etc.) are to be distributed in each cage thus filling up 15 Cages (Odd Number). Looking at the statement (d) above which says that Sum Total of Odd Number Times of Odd Numbers is always Odd or in other words, Odd No of Pigeon (like 1,3,5 etc.), if distributed among Odd Number of Cages (15 here), will always result in Odd Number.
Answer is that 100 being Even Number cannot be distributed fully in 15 Cages under given conditions (Max 99 can be!!).
But I had given my answer like this
I knew that we CANNOT DISTRIBUTE 100 pigeons in 15 cages by the GIVEN CONSTRAINTS…
The question asked me to DISTRIBUTE 100 pigeons in 15 cages… I knew it cannot be done.. yet I thought it has to be done.. so how?
I put 7 pigeons in 14 cages so 7 x 14 = 98
Balance left 2
I made the 15TH cage LARGER and put the 14th cage (or any other cage) which was smaller with its own 7 pigeons inside this 15th larger cage along with 2 more pigeons.
So for all Purposes (LOGICALLY/ TECHNICALLY/ LEGALLY) I got a 15th cage with 9 pigeons since the contents of 15th cage is contents of 14th cage+ its own separate contents = 9 which is also ODD and the 14th cage still contained 7 pigeons which is also odd.
Of course I could have put 9 pigeons in 14th cage and put it inside 15th cage too.
Tell me how did I NOT satisfy the GIVEN conditions in the QUIZ?
How is this Solution not acceptable by the QUIZMASTER?
I was wondering.. and then suddenly realized this is what is WRONG in OUR Society. We all have Pre-Conceived Notions of the RESULTS/ ANSWERS to our Problems and Questions.
Our minds are blocked.. so we do not see the endless POSSIBILITIES …
And also one more thing.. because it is Quizmater who asked the Question.. so only that answer will be RIGHT which will be MATCHING the answer in his QUIZ BOOK.
Do we not have “QUIZ MASTERS” in our lives around us at office or outside? These Quizmasters will NEVER allow YOU to think differently.. nor will ACCEPT your DIFFERENT THOUGHTS.. even if they really do not have any counter… except that.. “No my ans is right” !!
I mean one QUIZ shows so much ABOUT OUR LIVES !! Does it not?
We have QUIZ MASTERS all around us in do we not- Those who are higher up or in Authority or In power governing over us and managing us and directing us.. and what not… So many QUIZ MASTERS!!
So what is then Lateral Thinking?? I give it a different name