Advanced Math/Question


Hello! My name is Kay, and I am writing from Synechron, Inc. In hopes of branding the company to College students, I am thinking of creative ways to create a buzz on campus- specifically the Computer Science and Math majors. An idea I came up with is to auction off a prize to those who solve a complex trivial Math question on campus.
This question may not be the typical one you get from this site but it is worth a try!

Would you perhaps know of any good Math problems for this? I can definitely do a quick google, but that would give those students searching the internet an advantage :-)

Any help would be appreciated!

Thank you,
Kay Huynh
Lead Campus Recruiter

lets make a deal
lets make a deal  

This is a great question. I'm a little confused, though, about your phrase "complex trivial". These terms are usually considered as basically opposite. Perhaps you mean something that looks complex but us actually "trivial", in which case consider:

Question: If sinθ1+sinθ2+sinθ3=3, find cosθ1+cosθ2+cosθ3.

Answer:   This is sort of a clever question. Since, for any θ, sinθ ≤ 1, the only way for sinθ1 + sinθ2 + sinθ3 = 3 is if θ1 = θ2 = θ3 = π/2, which means that cosθ1 = cosθ2 = cosθ3 = cos(π/2) = 0, or

cosθ1 + cosθ2 + cosθ3 = 0.

A seemingly simple but actually somewhat hard question is the Monte Hall or Let's Make a Deal Problem. It has, however, become very popularized and so is googleable. Fun, though. I have written this up but in a pdf format which All Experts doesn't support (its multiple pages and so is a hassle to convert to jpg). It is however on my website

A real honest-to-god math problem has to do with calculating whether the skydiver Felix Baumgartner actually fell fast enough to break the sound barrier in his famous stunt in 2012. This is also on my website. It has a little physics in it that you could just provide so that it becomes more of a pure math problem.

Let me know what you think.

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randy patton


college mathematics, applied math, advanced calculus, complex analysis, linear and abstract algebra, probability theory, signal processing, undergraduate physics, physical oceanography


26 years as a professional scientist conducting academic quality research on mostly classified projects involving math/physics modeling and simulation, data analysis and signal processing, instrument development; often ocean related

J. Physical Oceanography, 1984 "A Numerical Model for Low-Frequency Equatorial Dynamics", with M. Cane

M.S. MIT Physical Oceanography, B.S. UC Berkeley Applied Math

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