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Good luck...

"Given three containers that hold eight, five, and three quarts respectively, how do you measure out a single quart?"


fill the 8 quart container up 1/8th of the way.

If it is a liquid fill the three quart container twice and pour into the five quart container. You will be left with one quart in the three quart container when the five quart is filled.

Fill the three quart container twice and pour into the five quart container. You will be left with one quart in the three quart container when the five quart is filled.

Fill the 8 then use the 8 to fill the 5, then the 5 to fill the 3. Dump the 3. With the remains of the 5, dump half. Half in an easy eyeball.

I have figured out that I can drink 4 quarts of milk before I throw up. So fill the 5 quart with milk and let me drink until I throw up. What's left is one quart.

Where do you find a 5 quart container? That is seriously an odd measure. Are you sure that it is not really just a gallon container? I mean, who would ever make a 5 quart container?


Ice cream comes in 5 quart containers...

Fill up the 3 quart container, empty it into the 8 quart container. Do this again. Do this a third time, only stop when the 8 quart container is full. What you have left in the 3 quart container will be 1 quart.

Don't even need the 5 quart container.

Let's be serious here. Fill the 3, pour it into the 5, fill the 3 again, pour it into the 8, fill the rest of the 5 with 2 of the 3 in the 8 and then pour that into the 3 and then back into the 5. Pour 2 of the 5 into the 3, then pour all of the 5 back into the 8. Then empty both the 3 and 2 of the 5 that's in the 8 onto the ground, and brush your teeth with the remaining dribble. Try it, it really works!

I didn't look at the other solutions before posting so as not to be influenced in my answer. blt2lst's is along my line but more elegant.

By the way, for future reference, shouldn't this be filed under "Puzzler?"

Ha! Someone reads bulletins on The 'Space :)

I've pondered the semantics of the question entirely too much:

1) Does "hold" mean "can hold" or "is holding", and how would this affect the process?

2) How many answers are there, and how would you prove mathematically that you had the maximum number of answers?

3) If you were raised in a culture that used the metric system and wrongly assumed that "quart" was a measure of mass and not volume, what would be the implications?

4) How would the shape of the containers affect an answer based solely on volumetric calculation?

5) Why am I still thinking about this and is there any way that I could use my contemplation to generate text that would be consumed by the academic industry; in other words, How do I use this to make money?

Evil Jeffy has produced my favorite answer so far:

"Well one could fill the three quart container with pure water vapor to a pressure of 122 psi, and then distill the water in a vacuum completely and theoretically you would end up with one quart, but that is way too much work... I think the math is right, have not taken those classes in a long time..."

is this the same problem that Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson gracefully solve in the third Die Hard film, DIE HARD: WITH A VENGEANCE?

Two 5's minus three 3's. Ha.

throw away the 5 quart. Empty the 8 quart. Fill the 3 quart and dump it into the 8 quart untill the 8 quart is full and you have 1 quart left over


empty the 5
dump the 3 into the 5
fill the 3 with the eight
dump the 3 into the 5 again untill the 5 is full.
You have 1 quart left in the three

Thank ya very much

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