The island where eye color can kill you.
February 15, 2008 7:47 AM Subscribe
A mindbending logic puzzle.
posted by languagehat (390 comments total)
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A thousand people on the island, 900 brown-eyed and 100 blue-eyed; anyone who learns their own eye color must kill themself the next day; a visitor mentions that there is a blue-eyed person on the island; what happens? Nothing, you say, because they already know that? Wrong. Further details at the Terry Tao post linked above, but don't scroll down below the boxed description unless you want hints and/or spoilers.
I'm not normally one for logic puzzles, but this one baffled and fascinated me to the point that I couldn't get my work done, so I thought I'd wreck your lives as well. If you want a complete spoiler, it's explained at the Wikipedia article on common knowledge
. I note that some of the commenters at the Terry Tao post are remarkably stupid. (Via Avva
; Terry's blog previously on MeFi in this post