Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Toothpick Perimeter Problem

It is possible to make an area as small as 2 square units (and perhaps smaller?) with 12 toothpicks!  For the solution, click here.


  1. Why not a rhombus, with increasingly acute angles for increasingly smaller area?

  2. Yes, that would produce a 12-perimeter polygon with a tiny area (approaching 0). But in this problem we are restricted to integers only.

  3. The toothpick is a simple instrument with a simple purpose. We might not give it a second thought as we pick one up, free our teeth from discomfort and unsightly food remains, and then casually toss it away. Cinnamon Toothpicks


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