Solving Einstein’s Riddle

Today’s post doesn’t really have a thing to do with finance, economics, or stocks. I was scrolling through the Business Insider app on my phone during lunch, and came across an article called “Test your skills on this mind-bending riddle that only 2% of the world can solve” with a picture of Albert Einstein next to it. Not a great title, but all I could see was clickbait.

The page presented me with a riddle/puzzle that was allegedly thought of by Einstein during his youth. Consider me skeptical of that legend, but either way, I ended up spending the rest of my lunch break taking a shot at this challenge. After all, who wouldn’t want to be in the top 2% of puzzle solvers in the world?? (That title was such clickbait, it’s not even fair.)

So here is the riddle:

9.8.15 riddle

Let’s get started, but first, a spoiler alert: I was able to solve this, so if you want to try this yourself, scroll back up and click the article’s link.

I first started by trying to draw a few diagrams on some scratch paper. The Brit in the red house was easy enough, as was the Swede who has dogs. But when I saw facts like #4 and #10, I realized that the housing sequence variable would make this a pain to do on scratch paper.

I shifted to Excel, setting up a basic grid. I thought this would be best as whenever I had a match, I could quickly ‘X’ out any other conflicting answers. Then I got into it. The first image basically showed the grid once the initial facts had been applied. Facts such as #4 or #10 were noted and set aside, as I would need more information before I could utilizing them fully. From there, it was just a process of following the clues, double-checking any logic, and working it through all the way to the end:

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Not a bad way to spend a lunch break! If you haven’t seen the answer, or just want to work through a fun puzzle, try it out for yourself!


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