Monday, October 27th, 2014 | Author: Konrad Voelkel
A classic class of "math problem" is the continuation of integer sequences from a finite sample (usually at the beginning). For example:
To which the solution is often supposed to be 10,12,14, and so on.
The problem, as any mathematician knows, is that there is not the one solution. In fact, given any set of finite numbers one could just talk about the sequence that starts like that and continues with zeroes only, that's a perfectly valid sequence. Of course, one should really figure out the rule behind the finitely many numbers, but there are always many possible choices. The game is not to find any sensible rule, but to find the rule the designer had in mind. It's more about testing your knowledge of culture than an honest test of mathematical ability (or anything else).
But there is a way to fix this.