Quandaries and Queries


Here is the original question...........
A computer with an old processor locks up if more than 4 applications are running at the same time.  If the owner has 20 applications stored in his program file, how many different sets of 4 can he run, so that his computer does not lock up?
.................so I am not sure if I should use just the regular Combination formula to solve this or if this is a trick question and the answer is 1 because only 1 set of 4 can run at the same time. Could you give me your opinion please? Thanks so much!


Hi Kelly,

I think that this is a legitimate combinations question and not a "trick question". I am sure that the correct response expected is for you to calculate the number of ways of chosing 4 things from 20 things. You could make it explicit in your answer by saying "He can run any one of the ???? possible combinatiions of 4 applications from the 20 applications he has."



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