Q1. Identify the mathematicians whose names are given below as anagrams. Accents and punctuation marks such as hyphens are omitted, and spellings are taken from the MacTutor History of Mathematics website http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/
Q2. A ship is at anchor in a harbour. A spectator sees a ladder dangling from her deck. The bottom four rungs of the ladder are submerged, each rung is two centimetres wide and the rungs are eleven centimetres apart. The tide is rising by eighteen centimetres per hour. After two hours, how many rungs will be submerged?
Q3. For Spanish, Russian or Hebrew, it’s 1. For German, it’s 7. For French, it’s 14. What is it for English?
Q4. How many people is "Twice two pairs of twins"?
Q5. Each integer from 1 to 10^10 (ten billion) is written out in full (for example 211 would be "two hundred eleven" and 1042 would be "one thousand forty two" - the word "and" is not used), and the numbers are then listed in alphabetical order (ignoring spaces and hyphens). What is the first odd number to appear in the list?
Q6. The Ruritanian National Library contains more books than any single book on its shelves contains words. No two of its books contain the same number of words. Can you say how many words are contained in one of its books?
Q7. A maths lecturer has a collection of eighteenth-century mathematical pornography in two bookcases in a room 9 by 12 feet (a foot is an archaic unit of measure about 30cm long). Bookcase AB is 8.5 feet long and bookcase CD is 4.5 feet long. The bookcases are positioned centrally on each wall and are one inch from the wall, as shown in the diagram.
Some students are going to visit the lecturer and she wishes to protect the students from the books and vice versa. The lecturer decides that the best way to do this is to turn around the two bookcases so that each is in its starting position but with the ends reversed so that the books are all facing the wall. The bookcases are so heavy that the only way to move them is to keep one end on the floor as a pivot while the other end is swung in a circular arc. The bookcases are so narrow that for the purpose of this problem we can consider them as straight line segments. What is the minimum number of swings required to reverse the two bookcases?
(For more about eighteenth-century mathematical pornography, see Patricia Fara's recent Gresham College lecture.)
Q8. The number 2 to the power 29 has nine digits, all different: which digit is missing? (Calculator not required.)
Q9. What is the 99th digit to the right of the decimal point in the decimal expansion of (1+√2) to the power 500? (Calculator not required.) (In case this isn't displayed correctly by your browser, the expression is (1+sqrt(2))^500, where sqrt(2) means the positive square root of 2.
Q10. Here are two messages enciphered using substitution ciphers. What do they say?
a) PREEZ LAEDHKPFH FSO AFYYZ SRT ZRFE!
b) RIFFY SRPWUZQIU! OWURWVM YAE I MAAX RALWXIY!