Hosted by The Math Forum## Problem of the Week 1223## The Evil Warden
Alice and Bob are prisoners of warden Charlie. Alice will be brought into Charlie's room on Sunday and shown 5 cards, numbered Bob will then enter the room. Charlie will call out a random target card T. Bob will be allowed to turn over ONE CARD ONLY; and if, and only if, that card is T, the two prisoners are freed. As always, Alice and Bob can plan a strategy before Sunday, and have no means of communication on Sunday. Note that Charlie's two choices — the initial shuffle and the choice of target — are assumed to be purely random. What is the prisoners' best strategy? Express the probability of success as n%, where n is the nearest integer to the actual probability of your strategy. The odds of success seem poor ... Source: Larry Carter, Mark Rickert, and Stan Wagon, who have been working on many variations of this problem. |

March 2016