Monday, October 24, 2005

47. 4 4s

When I was in 8th grade my math teacher, Mr. Chernofsky, gave up a puzzle to find all the integers 0 to 100 using 4 4s. In 9th grade, my math teacher, Mr. Greenfield, gave us the same puzzle. I have been playing with it for years on and off. I have also been presenting it to classes of mine to play with.
Well, this year, the students try an approach that never occurred to me to try when I first saw this problem, back in 1976. They looked on line. Sure enough, we found a website that shows ways to get them all. Some of their methods are really quite nasty, though, including the gamma function. (Is gamma of 4 equal to 6 or to 120? I don’t remember which) She will add in new methods, though and give credit. Now we need to find new ways to get them.
I am NOT posting the URL.

I can get '0'!
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