March 13, 2007

Can you reason?

My wife recently wanted to get a logic puzzle for her classroom, just a little something for the kids to mull over. In her Googling she found "The Zebra Puzzle" (quite often referred to as "Who owns the zebra?"). You can Google it and wikipedia it if you wish to cheat, but for those out to sharpen their minds here are the clues we were given.

Supposedly only 1-2% of the population can figure this puzzle out. I doubt that is valid, but for what it's worth we figured it out in less than a half hour of joint work while watching Futurama.


  • There are five houses.
  • Each house has its own unique color.
  • All house owners are of different nationalities.
  • They all have different pets.
  • They all drink different drinks.
  • They all smoke different cigarettes.
  • The English man lives in the red house.
  • The Swede has a dog.
  • The Dane drinks tea.
  • The green house is on the left side of the white house.
  • They drink coffee in the green house.
  • The man who smokes Pall Mall has birds.
  • In the yellow house they smoke Dunhill.
  • In the middle house they drink milk.
  • The Norwegian lives in the first house.
  • The man who smokes Blend lives in the house next to the house with cats.
  • In the house next to the house where they have a horse, they smoke Dunhill.
  • The man who smokes Blue Master drinks beer.
  • The German smokes Prince.
  • The Norwegian lives next to the blue house.
  • They drink water in the house next to the house where they smoke Blend.

So, who owns the Zebra?



Until next time,


1 comment:

Dave Nicolette said...

Sometimes I like to solve problems by redefining the frame of reference such that the problem disappears. With that in mind, here's my solution to the zebra problem: No one owns the zebra, because zebras are free.

Solved in 0.004 seconds. Could have been faster, had I been watching Futurama at the time (because of the intellectual boost it gives you).