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Math Help - Explain the Order of this Finite Sequence

  1. #1
    A Plied Mathematician
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    Explain the Order of this Finite Sequence

    Why are these numbers arranged in this fashion? This is a finite sequence, and these are all the numbers in the sequence. No fair googling!

    8, 5, 4, 9, 1, 7, 6, 10, 3, 2.
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    Super Member Failure's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ackbeet View Post
    Why are these numbers arranged in this fashion? This is a finite sequence, and these are all the numbers in the sequence. No fair googling!

    8, 5, 4, 9, 1, 7, 6, 10, 3, 2.
    Instead of just googling you might want to ask The On-Line Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences™ (OEIS™)
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  3. #3
    A Plied Mathematician
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    No fair googling!
    Or looking up the sequence on any table of sequences. (rolls eyes)
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  4. #4
    Junior Member bondesan's Avatar
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    My guess is that they are arranged by its first letter, that is, in alphabetic order. But I can't see why it is finite.
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    Super Member Failure's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bondesan View Post
    My guess is that they are arranged by its first letter, that is, in alphabetic order. But I can't see why it is finite.
    Now, if that's the solution, then I have an answer to claiming that googling is "unfair", since that kind of sequence definition has no mathematical substance at all. So if you ask this in a math forum, you send people off a tangent...
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  6. #6
    A Plied Mathematician
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    Tangents, in this case, are kind of the point. I think it's curious to see what kind of person gets this sequence immediately, and what kind of person doesn't. Often, the mathematical people think too hard about it.
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    Super Member Failure's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ackbeet View Post
    Tangents, in this case, are kind of the point. I think it's curious to see what kind of person gets this sequence immediately, and what kind of person doesn't. Often, the mathematical people think too hard about it.
    Yes, I know, and how unfair it is! By the way, you surely know the story of John von Neumann actually solving a trick question the hard way (by summing an infinite series) but doing it so quickly that people thought he had figured how to do it the easy way.
    Sad to say, I am no John von Neumann.
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  8. #8
    Junior Member bondesan's Avatar
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    I edited this message because I missunderstood the chat and posted a nonsense, hehe.

    There's a similar sequence that I think it only works in portuguese (my mother language), which you must tell what are the next term: 2, 10, 12, 16, 17, 18, 19, ?
    Last edited by bondesan; July 28th 2010 at 05:59 PM.
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