Count the rings
Citibank loves to send junk e-mails.Â Today I got one telling me, “There’s a safer way to handle your account,” and it included the picture below.Â Nothing else referred to safety or information security, so I assume the “safe handling” is some kind of cute joke.
Citibank says this “tree,” which almost certainly is now dead, will do wondrous things for all of us.Â If only I agree to switch to paperless statements, Citibank will go right ahead and plant a “tree” like the one in this person’s hand.
Well, that’s not so novel, I thought, but look what the tree does.Â “To put things in perspective, over a 50-year lifetime, one tree will generate $31,250 worth of oxygen, recycle $37,500 worth of water, and control $31,250 worth of soil erosion.”Â It adds up to exactly $100,000.
Are they serious???Â First of all, if they are, I would be getting out of the banking business and right into the tree-owning business.Â Also, how much does oxygen cost these days?Â I should call down to the local Praxair, I bet you can get a whole ton of it for thirty-one thousand.Â Maybe they don’t know about this tree-sprig racket yet.Â Â Should I be trusting this bank with my credit rating?
P.S. Nobody told me how much CO2 Citibank’s paperless data centers put out.
Ok forget about trees. Lets talk about something important.. GNOMES
By the way, Bill had a nanny who had several GNOMES.
One hundred garden gnomes are stolen from their homes by an evil wizard. The wizard tells them he is going to line them all up in a row and place a red or blue hat on each of their heads. They wont be able to see the color of their own hats or anyoneâ€™s behind them but they will be able to see the hats of the gnomes in front of them.
The wizard will start at the back of the line and asks each gnome to guess the color of his own hat. Each gnome may answer only red or blue. If he gives the wrong answer he will be forced to live with Bill Cash for the rest of eternity. If he answers correctly he will be get to live on Bill Cashâ€™s mothersâ€™ palatial five acre estate and be transported by mail jeeps to various parts of the yard.
All of the gnomes will be able to hear the answers of the gnomes behind them but they will not know if they were led off to Bills home (wrong answer) or if they answered correctly.
The gnomes are allowed to agree on a strategy beforehand but after being lined up they cannot communicate in any way except red or blue.
What strategy should the gnomes use to maximize the total number of gnome that will be set free?