Puzzles

Try To Solve The Tricky Alien Extinction Riddle

Excited for today's eclipse? Visit our Eclipse 2017 page to explore the science, history, and myths of the event. The Curiosity team will be viewing the eclipse alongside NASA in Carbondale, Illinois. Follow us on Facebook for live videos, trivia, and interviews today!

The alien extinction riddle presented by Presh Talwalkar is for those up for a real challenge. This puzzle has supposedly been presented in technical job interviews. The problem goes as follows: One alien lands on Earth all by itself. Every day after that landing, each alien on Earth undergoes some sort of transformation, which could be any of these four equally likely events: (a) the alien dies, (b) the alien does nothing, (c) the alien replicates itself (2 aliens total), or (d) the alien replicates itself twice (3 aliens total). With bad luck, the alien species might die out quickly. But with better luck, the aliens could survive indefinitely. What is the probability the alien race eventually goes extinct? Scroll down to read the correct answer, or watch the video below to learn how this one is solved.

Can You Solve The Alien Extinction Riddle?

Supposedly, this question has been asked in technical job interviews.

ANSWER

The probability the alien race eventually dies out and goes extinct is 41.4%. To find out how to arrive at this answer, check out the video above.

Can You Solve Google's Car Probability Interview Question?

Another probability problem for you.

Can You Make 4 Triangles From 6 Matches?

Give your brain a break with a slightly easier brain teaser.

If you liked this you'll love our podcast! Check it out on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, search 'curiosity' on your favorite podcast app or add the RSS Feed URL.

Advertisement