Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Prisoner Execution Puzzle

This is a prison break puzzle , but this time attributed to a corrupt officer riddling his prisoners.

Once at a prison , a corrupt officer comes to three prisoners and tells them that they will be executed tomorrow. Stunned at it, the three prisoners asks for mercy. At this the officer replies he will let go two of them chosen at random if the three of them pays him their earnings. Now he lets them decide what they wanted to do. They all agreed and told him they will pay him after an hour as they need to collect their earnings.
One of the prisoner, A now sneaks out and asks the officer to tell him who will be executed. But the officer didn't because he could loose the money of that very prisoner. After too much begging by prisoner he tells him that prisoner B will be freed. At this the prisoner is even more bewildered, he thought previously he had 1/3 chances of being executed but now its increased from 1/3 to 1/2.

Now you have got to tell him whether or not to give his earnings to the officer for what he knows his chances of execution has increased?
Why didn't the officer kept quiet, didn't he just increased his chances of decreasing the bribe?
Now that all depends on you.

11 comments:

  1. in my opinion,prisoner A should give his earnings to the officer even though his chance of being executed is increased.the reason being,if he givs his earnings,he has 1/2 chance of surviving,but if he does not.... he will surely be executed.

    The officer was corrupt, and he knew thar if he told A that B will be freed, then maybe A will plead for mercy and will agree to giving more bribe to the officer when he is freed from the prison.

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  2. definity he's brainy...he's very sure 2 get money 4m al

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  3. he's definity brainy...he's sure f gettin d amount am al

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  4. Exactly.... I agree with NAMRATA. He was corrupt n greedy. So, at d very 1st instance he demanded earnings from all 3 so as to give chance of being freed to any 2 of dem.

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  5. as it seems the decision has already been taken. One of them has to be executed not even the inspector can change it.
    He is just making money out of the situation ..

    @ Namrata... they are paying all their earnings. they dont have much more to give after being freed!!

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  6. isnt it that the probability still remains 1/3??

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  7. The officer acted really smart by telling A that B will be let off.
    Altough now A knows about this, B is still unaware of his fortune.
    Also the probability of A's execution has increased from 1/3 to 1/2. So now not only A will pay his earnings to the officer, but also compel B & C to pay the money.

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  8. Surely witty officer.
    Now, not only A will pay his money, but also compel B & C into paying it, because the probability of A's execution has increased from 1/3 to 1/2.

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  9. Surely witty officer.
    Now, not only A will pay the money but also convince B & C to pay it, because the probability of A's execution has increased from 1/3 to 1/2.

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  10. why would A ask B and C to pay more ??
    if the officer gets to choose the person to kill, and he kills the least bidder then A would convince C and B to pay less.
    if the officer gets to choose the person to kill, and he kills any1 at random , then it makes no difference at all how much A pays

    if the officer has already decided to leave B and he kills the least bidder then A would convince C to pay less.
    if the officer has already decided to leave B and he kills any1 at random then again it dosent make a diff.

    if A realizes that the officer being greedy is playing with him , then again he shud pay less. so again the total bribe redues

    if A realizes that the officer could have figured out that A could have realized that he was playing with him , then i dont know :)

    i dont understand why shud he urge B C to pay more in any case ??

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  11. I think he will pay since his chance of getting executed before he knew was 33.33%...Now since he knows that B will go free his chance of getting executed still remains 33.33% but the chance of C getting executed just rose to 66.66%.. (though i seriously doubt A will understand this if he is a prisoner but would still pay the officer since it his best bet against execution and has nothing to lose if he dies :) )

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