Water and Wine

I'll admit that the puzzles that appear here are easy for me to pull together for your enjoyment: I don't make them up. They're the lazy girl's blog post. The low-hanging fruit. You'll see more of them when I'm busy. When I don't have time to do a proper post about (a) what I'm reading*, (b) atheism, (c) language, or (d) funny stuff, I'll give you a puzzle to hold your interest. I want you to stay with me!

So, without further ado:

You have a glass of water and a glass of wine. Both glasses contain the same volume of their respective liquids. Take a teaspoon of the water and add it to the wine, then take a teaspoon of the wine and add it to the water.

Question: Is there now more water in the wine glass or vice-versa? Can you give a simple explanation for your answer?

* Harry Potter book 7, I'm afraid. All of creation is reading this at present. My cousin told me of a recent spoken word performance she attended: the performer simply took a seat, paged to the end of the latest Harry Potter, and read the last 4 pages aloud. He was booed.


Mr. Kite said...

This classic "mixture" problem was first introduced to me in a class I was taking called "Quantitative Models of Business Decision Making." Sounds impressive doesn't it?

For those who do not know the answer, can they assume that the teaspoon of water poured into the wine has had sufficient time to completely diffuse (mix) into the wine?

fiona-h said...

ooh - nice curriculum you had there :-)

WRT your question: that should be irrelevant

Uri Kalish said...

Cool riddle! Very counter-intuitive.

The Brain said...

the glass of wine should have more water than the other way round because when a spoon of wine is put into the glass of water, a bit of the water comes back with it, thereby reducing the amount of wine.

fiona-h said...

Glad to see the old posts are still being read from time to time. Thanks for your reply!

In fact, the substances will be equally pure after the transfer.

The answer is the same regardless of the number of transfers, as long as the volume of the two glasses is identical afterwards.

See the wiki page for more info http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wine/water_mixing_problem