Math CentralQuandaries & Queries


Question from Pedro, a student:

I was given this word question an was somewhat confused can u help me understand.
An ice cream vendor sells 15 flavors of ice cream and u want to sample at least
4 different types. how many different combinations of ice cream would u be able
to sample?

Hi Pedro,

I think the problem is this. You go to the vendor and order 4 different types. How many different choices do you have? That is how many ways can you choose 4 flavors from 15 flavors?



What you did corresponds to the problem

"...She spent most of the money on jewellery, keeping a quarter. Then she bought a digital camera, keeping 2/3 of the remaining money."

See the difference?

A way to make this more intuitive: think of really extreme proportions. Suppose she had spent 99% of her money on a camera and had $2 left: what would you do to find what she started with? Now do exactly the same thing with the numbers you were given.

Good Hunting!

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