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Do you like logic puzzles?

This sign, posted at the construction site on Causeway street just east of North Station / The Garden, offers arriving truck drivers a chance to test their logic skills. Astute observers will note that it allows, for example, 1 concrete truck and 500 delivery trucks.

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I'm a little puzzled about how "post an article" works, as this is the first time I tried it. Can anyone else see this? (I assume there is some editorial process that prevents random people such as me from stuffing the front page with random items....)

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People will see it in the Recent Items tracker. Adam can elevate it to the front page if he chooses.

You have to have “Post story” privileges to post directly to the front page. Only Adam and a few select people have that posting level.

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I was looking for some button that had the effect of "submit this to Adam for possible publication," and I was surprised to find a "post article" button, and then I was trying to figure out what said button actually did....

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i think adamg should have a page detailing the article submission process.

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If you click on the link for posting a new page, it has a brief (maybe too brief) description of what you'll be posting.

Granted, if you can't see the one that lets you post to the front page, you wouldn't know you're missing it on the page you do see.

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"500 delivery trucks" does not appear on the sign. It says "Max 1 concrete truck when any delivery trucks present". That means "when even one delivery truck is present," not "when any number of delivery trucks are present." The next line says only 2 delivery trucks are allowed when there aren't any concrete trucks. Not so difficult. The maximum of trucks is 2; one of each type, or 2 of one type.

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I think this is probably the intention, but the way I read it is you *could* have three trucks: Two delivery trucks arrive with no other trucks of any kind in sight, so they enter. A concrete truck arrives and is allowed to enter, but no other trucks of any kind (delivery or concrete) can enter. However, I believe then the only options are for a delivery truck to depart (but can't be replaced until the concrete truck leaves) or the concrete truck leaves and can be replaced by another concrete truck only.

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The sign specifies the maximum number of concrete trucks when there are no delivery trucks, the maximum number of concrete trucks when there are delivery trucks present, and the maximum number of delivery trucks when there are no concrete trucks present. They did not specify the maximum number of delivery trucks when there are concrete trucks, so there must be no limit.

OK, so no one actually believes there is no limit, but your interpretation is certainly not the only reasonable one, so there is at least some ambiguity. If there were only supposed to be two trucks max, in configurations of 2C 0D, 1C 1D, or 0C 2D, why didn't they just say "two trucks max"? The rules as written appear to allow 0C 2D that then becomes 1C 2D when a concrete truck shows up. They probably meant to have a symmetrical rule about 1D when >0C, but ran out of space, but they could also have meant 2D is always allowed and they just confused themselves when typing up the sign.

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It's a joke about a bad sign

Going back to OP, I thought the same as your comment's title and automatically assumed this posting might just have been from Adam. Wouldn't even have thought to check the byline.

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Two trucks maximum may be the intent, and a reasonable person might infer that that's what the sign is intended to express, but nevertheless it does not do so. The only restriction stated on the number of delivery trucks is in the case when there are no concrete trucks present. One concrete truck and any number of delivery trucks, including 500 or 5 million, may violate the spirit of the sign, but not the rule.

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Two trucks maximum may be the intent, and a reasonable person might infer that that's what the sign is intended to express, but nevertheless it does not do so.

Furthermore, a principle of interpreting rules is that, if there is an obvious simple formulation that corresponds to a reasonable person's interpretation of the rule, but the rule drafter chose a more convoluted formulation, then that's evidence that it was intentional. I.e., if the rule writer had meant "two trucks maximum," then he or she would have said so, but since he or she chose not to say so, we must assume that the more convoluted, loophole-filled rule was deliberately chosen.

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The next line says only 2 delivery trucks are allowed when there aren't any concrete trucks.

And how many delivery trucks are allowed when there is one concrete truck?

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I just imagine there being 500 delivery trucks and 1 concrete truck and then the concrete truck is done and moving out and suddenly 500 delivery truck drivers are fighting over which two get to stay.

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prevent the concrete truck from leaving.

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Somehow I just completely missed it!

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Once you get a concrete truck in the yard, the sign intends not to put a cap on delivery trucks because the concrete truck can require multiple delivery trucks to deliver water, fuel, more concrete, or whatever in order to finish the job.

In other words, heads will roll if anyone interferes with a concrete truck already in the yard so forget about the 2 truck cap in that instance.

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This is a structural issue with the weight of the trucks - if too many, they'll end up in the unfinished garage below.

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every time I see that. Why not "max two trucks"?

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Why not? Only reason I can think of is they were afraid people would think it included pickup trucks or something.

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Well, the sign could really be simplified to "MAX 2 trucks of any type at any time".

As is, you couldn't have 500 delivery trucks on site because rule #3 would prohibit that. You could say there's no rule against adding delivery trucks when there's 1 concrete truck on site but that's stretching it.

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You could say there's no rule against adding delivery trucks when there's 1 concrete truck on site but that's stretching it.

One of the principles of interpreting regulations is to show the rulemakers the respect of assuming that they meant the rule to say exactly what it says.

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One thing we know for certain: The delivery trucks aren't delivering produce, since there are no superfluous apostrophes on the sign.

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But which one pulls into the train station first?

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i love this. i'm an electrical engineer and i have taken a course on boolean logic.

bool truck_access_rules(num_concrete_trucks, num_delivery_trucks)
{
if((num_concrete_trucks < 2) && (num_delivery_trucks == 0))
return 1;
else if((num_concrete_trucks == 0) && (num_delivery_trucks > 0))
return 1;
else if((num_delivery_trucks < 2) && (num_concrete_trucks == 0))
return 1;
else
return 0;
}

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Concrete trucks rule ! Ques why?

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reminds me of this:
http://www.bombmanual.com/

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I would prerfer:

  • The upper limit of the number of delivery and concrete trucks, in any combination, shall be the number two
  • The number shall not be three, nor shall it be one
  • Four and zero are right out
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A: "Zero...one...three..."

B: "Two, sir."

A: "Two..."

*BOOM*

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What about the goat, the bale of hay, and the wolf?

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Can you start Monday?

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is something other than a delivery or a concrete truck?

Like a food truck?

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this is how computer software can go horribly wrong.

Imagine a completely computerized site with a computer controlled gate granting access to driverless trucks that are loaded and unloaded by robots ...

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i believe thats what contributes to fatalities like this:
http://www.city-data.com/forum/51407092-post144.html

or the boeing 737-max-8 crashes where the computer corrected for the pilot throttling too high at a certain speed or altitude ?

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