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Who’s Studying What and Where? A New Puzzle


I have four friends working on their philosophy dissertations. Each dissertation is on a different philosopher and each friend lives in a different city. Recently I wrote to each friend to inquire how their work is coming. Finally one friend responded. But as philosophers are apt to do, she forgot to sign the letter. What’s worse, she didn’t even put a return address on it. Here is the letter:

Hey Dan,

I’ve been working very hard on my dissertation and finally have three chapters. This passage inspired the topics for my chapters, “Thus I draw from the absurd three consequences, which are my revolt, my freedom, and my passion.” Each chapter focuses on a consequence he draws from the absurd!

Haven’t had much sleep, but we will have to talk soon. Hope you are well.

Now I can’t blame her for being forgetful. I am too! Otherwise, I’d be able to figure out who sent this, where she lives, and who her dissertation is on. Here are somethings I do remember:

1. Katy lives east of Denver.
2. Teresa lives west of Milwaukee and is studying some 20th century philosopher.
3. The one in Denver is not studying Derrida.
4. The ones east of Denver are writing on philosophers who were not alive in the 20th century.
5. The one who is studying Aristotle either lives in Boston or is Teresa.
6. The one writing on Derrida is either from Milwaukee or is Abigail.
7. Sophia lives in Boston.
8. One of them is writing on Boethius, but she is not the one who lives in Los Angeles.

Who wrote me the letter, where is she from, and who is she writing her dissertation on? Also, match the remaining friends with their cities and dissertation topics. Good Luck!

A Smullyan Puzzle from Jim Henson’s Labyrinth


While trying to navigate her way through the Labyrinth, Sarah finds two doors protected by two different guards.  The guards inform Sarah that one door leads to the castle at the center of the labyrinth while the other leads to… dah-dah-doom… certain death!  The guards explain that she can only ask one guard one yes-or-no question.  Furthermore, one of the guards always tells the truth and the other always lies.  What should she ask the guard in order to know which door to choose?

Be the first to answer correctly and win the prize of selecting the next philosoraptor theme!

[UPDATE] Congrats to Andy V, who quickly dispatched of the riddle.  If you were lost in a labryrinth haunted by David Bowie, you’d want Andy to be your guide!  I am awaiting a theme from him.

Here is the clip from the movie.

Brain teaser, with prize

Help! I can’t remember the name of the dog we just rescued! Be the first to figure it out, and post in the comments and you win a prize.

My wife and I went to the rescue shelter to find a dog to add to our family. We saw five dogs at the pound, here are their names: Hercules, Max, Dexter, Jean-Paul and Thor.

1. Two of the dogs are French Bulldogs and three are Boston Terriers.
2. Two of the dogs are puppies, the other three are full-grown adults.
3. Hercules and Max are the same age.
4. Jean-Paul and Thor are of the same breed.
5. Either Dexter or Thor is a puppy, but not both.
6. Max and Dexter are different breeds from one another.
7. We decided to rescue the French Bulldog puppy.

What’s the name of our dog?

Be the first to respond with the correct answer and you win a prize! The prize is… You get to pick the philosophic theme for my next “Philosoraptor.” I will come up with some sort of caption relating to the theme and then dedicate it to you!
(What did you expect, cash?)

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