Question: Give at least 4 numbers in the range of 1 to 10.

Answer 1: 3, 5

Answer 2: 4, 5, 6, 20

Answer 3, 7, 7, 7, 7

Answer 4: 3, 4, 5, 6

Answer 5: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Answer 1 is incorrect, because there are less than 4 numbers.

Answer 2 is incorrect, because not all numbers are in the range of 1 to 10

Answer 3 is correct (the question does not specify that the numbers need to be unique)

Answer 4 is correct

Answer 5 is correct

But, is answer 4 ‘more correct’ than answer 3? And is answer 5 ‘more correct’ than answer 5?

### Like this:

Like Loading...

*Related*

Software developers will pick option 4 so that they don’t have to think about the edge cases or “lawyering” the requirements. Software testers will pick 3 or 5 specifically in order to test those same edge cases. It’s kind of like the Robustness principle.

I would assume that only answer four is correct, as specified by the syntax in the question: “give at least 4 numbers.” Response number three merely repeats one number four times – an amusing response but a lazy one too.

And yes, response number five is fine too, but unnecessary.

1 2 3 4 20 : correct? I’d say yes, you’d say no (cf your answer to 2). Depends on where you put parentheses in your question.

Indeed, mathematically it is common to assume that you should only give answers that conform to the question, and nothing ‘extra’.

But in everyday human life, such a question could be interpreted differently. People would be interested in obtaining 4 objects that meet their criteria, but if they get a whole box, with a lot of useless objects, but it still contains 4 or more of the objects they are looking for, that is fine.

Although… If someone is looking for 4 working lightbulbs, and you give them a box of 100, and you say: “At least 4 of them work, but I don’t know which ones”, I don’t think they’d be very happy 🙂

Btw one could argue removing ‘at least’ wouldnt change the question. Tis all a matter of interpreting human language into strict computer like rules.

Very interesting . Let me formulate the problem in set theory or linear equation:

Set Theory:

{n1,n2,n3,n4}is a subset of {1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10}

where n1={{1}.{2},{3},……….{10}} so absolutely 3,4,5 are correct.

Linear Equation:

F(x ,Y,z,a )>=4<=10 where F(x),F(y),F(z),F(a)=1….10 …doesn't make sense.

I think formulating the algorithm is challenging than human interpretation. The human language semantics needs further scientific inquiries to map the logical concepts to language semantics.