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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • There are a total of 24 solutions to the puzzle. These 24 solutions are comprised of 10 unique integers. If you do not consider the reverse of an integer unique, there are 5 unique integers. No matter which way you slice this - there is no way to get to "six integers" unless the spec is incomplete.
    • I'm sure they won't publish a correction.

      Note that the spec says to find a 3-digit number which satisfies the criteria, not the 3-digit number. That there are multiple such numbers, and you could've found a different one, doesn't violate the spec.

      Once you've done what it says, you will have 3 3-digit numbers, plus their reverses. That's 6 integers.

      Yes, other people could validly come up with a different set of 6 integers. So what? There's nothing in the spec prohibiting that! As others have noted

      • I guess I won't be looking into New Scienties afterall

        Having worked on interesting puzzles like this as long as I can remember, as well as knowing many people who have the same interest - this is the type of puzzle no one likes to work on.

        A simple foot note that says: While multiple preliminary solutions are possible, the max and min will always be the same.

        Would have gone a long way to making others and myself happier that our solutions were correct.

        By the way - you have read into the spec.

        Once you've done what it says, you will have 3 3-digit numbers, plus their reverses. That's 6 integers.

        That's not what the spec has said, that's how you have interpreted it. That's probably the correct interpretation - but certainly not the only one.

        I rather enjoy puzzles where the solution hinges upon realizing the spec doesn't say something the reader assumes it does - but it is painfully obvious once the solution is known.

        In any event, I have no interest in getting New Scientist if the puzzles are presented consistently this way.
        • They're not usually this unclear. I think it's just a fluke, but I'd have to work through some others to be sure.