A certain riddle has perplexed internet users far and wide, leaving them arguing over the answer.

You may have heard of the ‘how many animals went to the river’ riddle and you may have even attempted to answer the ‘Mr and Mrs Smith’ dilemma which is plaguing people on Facebook.

The next riddle to ripple through the UK public while they sit at home twiddling their thumbs in isolation is the  ‘Door Number Fitter Riddle’.

People are quickly growing tired of jotting down the numbers 1-100 to make sense of it… so let HITC explain.

What is the Door Number Fitter Riddle?

The riddle reads:

In a new hotel containing 100 rooms, Tom was hired to paint the numbers from 1-100 on the doors. How many times will Tom have to paint the number 8?

What is the answer?

The most popular answer is 20. Many people have been guessing anywhere from 9 to 19, but the widely considered correct answer is 20.

There is one other possible answer due to the nature of this being a ‘riddle’ but here’s an explanation on why the most likely answer is 20.

How to solve the Door Number Fitter Riddle

To solve the Door Number Fitter Riddle you have to first think of the number 8 as the second digit in a number. This appears ten times between 0 and 100:

1. – 8

2. – 18

3. – 28

4. – 38

5. – 48

6. – 58

7. – 68

8. – 78

9. – 88

10. – 98

 

Now you have to think of the number 8 as the first digit in a number this also appears ten times between 0 and 100:

11. – 80

12. – 81

13. – 82

14. – 83

15. – 84

16. – 85

17. – 86

18. – 87

19. – 88 (now counted for twice, as the first digit in 88 and also as the second digit)

20. – 89

Therefore the answer is 20. 

An alternative answer

There is an alternative answer, which is one.  

The answer one is strongly argued by some on the basis that the questions asks specifically “how many times will Tom have to paint the number 8?”.

Some argue that other than painting the number 8 following painting 1,2,3,4,5,6,7, the rest of the time he paints the number is not specifically painting the solo number 8. These people argue that painting 18 is painting the number 18 and it is different to painting the number 8.

In particular, if our imaginary painter was joining the numbers together in a wavy font, then he would be joining the 1 and 8 when painting 18, and the same applies for the numbers 28, 38 etc.

So there you have it, there are two pretty concrete answers but both dependant on your interpretation of ‘the number 8’.

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