Two Egg Problem
Suppose that there is a building with 100 floors. You are given 2 identical eggs. The most interesting property of the eggs is that every egg has it’s own “threshold” floor. Let’s call that floor N. What this means is that the egg will not break when dropped from any floor below floor N, but the egg will definitely break from any floor above floor N, including floor N itself.
For example, if the property of the eggs is that N equals 15, those eggs will always break on any floor higher than or equal to the 15th floor, but those eggs will never break on any floor below floor 15. The same holds true for the other egg since they are identical.
These are very strong eggs, because they can be dropped multiple times without breaking as long as they are dropped from floors below their “threshold” floor, floor N. But once an egg is dropped from a floor above it’s threshold floor.
Here is the puzzle: What strategy should be taken in order to minimize the number of egg drops used to find floor N (the threshold floor) for the egg? Also, what is the minimum number of drops for the worst case using this strategy?
Remember that you are given 2 identical eggs which both have the same exact threshold floor.
This interview puzzle has been asked at many major companies like Google, Microsoft, Accenture, and even Hewlett Packard – and it’s a great one to practice your problem solving skills with.
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