### Brain Teasers

# Ironic Utensils

Cryptography
In Cryptography teasers, a phrase or expressions has been encoded in some way (frequently by replacing letters with other letters). You need to figure out the encoding method and then decode the message to find the answer.

"It's like ten thousand spoons, when all you need is a knife." That isn't ironic (even though Alanis Morissette thinks so), but it is a little bit too much, don't you think? You only have eight spoons; can you make them equal a knife?

Make the following equation correct by replacing each letter with a digit (0 through 9). Each digit can only be represented by one letter, and every occurrence of that letter must use the same digit. There are no leading zeros.

SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON = KNIFE

Make the following equation correct by replacing each letter with a digit (0 through 9). Each digit can only be represented by one letter, and every occurrence of that letter must use the same digit. There are no leading zeros.

SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON + SPOON = KNIFE

### Hint

Start by looking at possible values for S and then P and K. You will need trial-and-error to figure out O, but there are not many possibilities to consider.### Answer

S=1, P=2, O=3, N=8, K=9, I=7, F=0, and E=4.SPOON = 12338

KNIFE = 98704

How to solve:

S can't be 2 or more, because then K would be greater than 9. Since there are no leading zeros, S=1.

If P is 3 or more, then the "carry" digit would be 2 or more, but this would make K greater than 9. Therefore, P must be either 0 or 2.

Assume P=0, which makes K=8. You then need to use trial-and-error, but there is really only one letter to figure out, O; the rest are all part of the answer. Here is every possibility:

If O=2, then N=1, but this makes E=K=8.

If O=3, then N=2, but this makes E=I=6.

If O=4, then N=3, but this makes E=O=4.

If O=5, then N=4, but this makes I=N=4.

If O=6, then N=5, but this makes E=P=0.

If O=7, then N=6, but this makes E=K=8.

If O=9, then N=7, but this makes F=N=7.

So P=2, which makes K=9. Also, O must be less than 5, otherwise K would be greater than 9. Here is every possibility:

If O=0, then N=6, but this makes I=O=0.

If O=3, then N=8, which works!

If O=4, then N=9, but this makes K=N=9.

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