• NEW! FREE Beat The GMAT Quizzes
    NEW! FREE Beat The GMAT Quizzes
    NEW! FREE Beat The GMAT Quizzes
    Hundreds of Questions Highly Detailed Reporting Expert Explanations TAKE A FREE GMAT QUIZ
  • 7 CATs FREE!
    If you earn 100 Forum Points

    Engage in the Beat The GMAT forums to earn
    100 points for $49 worth of Veritas practice GMATs FREE

    Veritas Prep
    VERITAS PRACTICE GMAT EXAMS
    Earn 10 Points Per Post
    Earn 10 Points Per Thanks
    Earn 10 Points Per Upvote
    REDEEM NOW

OG #132

This topic has 2 expert replies and 2 member replies

OG #132

Post
A company that ships boxes to a total of 12 distribution centers uses color coding to identify each center. If either a single color or a pair of two different colors is chosen to represent each center and if each center is uniquely represented by that choice of one or 2 colors, what is the minimum # of colors needed for the coding? (assume that the order of the colors in a pair does not matter)

A. 4
B. 5
C. 6
D. 12
E. 24

  • +1 Upvote Post
  • Quote
  • Flag
Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
16 Mar 2007
Posted:
26 messages
Post
Hi there

Tere are 2 ways to solve this question.

As I first saw this q. I knew that it tests the use of combinations, but I used a little bit different app. Itlooked faster to me.
I looked at the ansers and started to backsolve. I marked colors w/numbers: 1, 2, 3, 4,...
So, in A - we have 4 combinations w/one color and 6 combinations w/2 colors(12, 13, 14, 23, 24, 34) => 4 + 6=10<12 NOT enough

B - 5 comb. w/ one color and 10 comb. w/2 colors (12, 13, 14, 15, 23, 24, 25, 34, 35, 45) => 5+10=15>12 MORE than enough


Later I saw the 2nd app. through use of combination formula.
Ok, so in A we have 4 colors so we need 8 comb. of two colors (12-4). 4!/2!(4-2)!=6<8. We need more colors. If we use 5 color we would need (12-5) 7 comb. of 2 colors => 5!/2!(5-2)!=10>7

So, B is the answer

  • +1 Upvote Post
  • Quote
  • Flag
Legendary Member Default Avatar
Joined
27 Mar 2007
Posted:
559 messages
Followed by:
2 members
Upvotes:
5
Post
Is the answer 5?

  • +1 Upvote Post
  • Quote
  • Flag
Post
jc114 wrote:
A company that ships boxes to a total of 12 distribution centers uses color coding to identify each center. If either a single color or a pair of two different colors is chosen to represent each center and if each center is uniquely represented by that choice of one or 2 colors, what is the minimum # of colors needed for the coding? (assume that the order of the colors in a pair does not matter)

A. 4
B. 5
C. 6
D. 12
E. 24
Since we have only 12 distribution centers, we know we will need fewer than 12 different colors to identify them.

Let’s say we have 4 different colors; then 4C1 = 4 centers can be identified by one color, and 4C2 = 6 centers can be identified by two different colors. So a total of 4 + 6 = 10 centers can be identified.

We see that if we have only 4 different colors, we don’t have enough ID codes to assign to the 12 centers. Therefore, we need one more color.

If we have 5 different colors, then 5C1 = 5 centers can be identified by one color, and 5C2 = 10 centers can be identified by two different colors. So a total of 5 + 10 = 15 centers can be identified.

We see that if we have 5 different colors, we have more than enough ID codes to assign to the 12 centers.

Answer: B

_________________

Scott Woodbury-Stewart
Founder and CEO
scott@targettestprep.com



See why Target Test Prep is rated 5 out of 5 stars on BEAT the GMAT. Read our reviews

  • +1 Upvote Post
  • Quote
  • Flag

GMAT/MBA Expert

Post
jc114 wrote:
A company that ships boxes to a total of 12 distribution centers uses color coding to identify each center. If either a single color or a pair of two different colors is chosen to represent each center and if each center is uniquely represented by that choice of one or 2 colors, what is the minimum # of colors needed for the coding? (assume that the order of the colors in a pair does not matter)

A. 4
B. 5
C. 6
D. 12
E. 24
We need to be able to create AT LEAST 12 codes (to represent the 12 countries).

Let's test the options.
Can we get 12 or more color codes with 4 colors?
Let's see . . .

1-color codes = 4 (since there are 4 colors)
2-color codes = We need to choose 2 colors from 4. This can be accomplished in 4C2 ways (using combinations). 4C2 = 6
So, using 4 colors, the total number of color codes we can create = 4 + 6 = 10
We want to create AT LEAST 12 color codes, so we can eliminate answer choice A.

Aside: If anyone is interested, here's a video on calculating combinations (like 4C2) in your head: http://www.gmatprepnow.com/module/gmat-counting?id=789

Can we get 12 or more color codes with 5 colors?
1-color codes = 5 (since there are 5 colors)
2-color codes = We need to choose 2 colors from 5. This can be accomplished in 5C2 ways (using combinations). 5C2 = 10
So, using 5 colors, the total number of color codes we can create = 5 + 10 = 15
Perfect!

The answer is 5 (B)

Cheers,
Brent

_________________
Brent Hanneson – Creator of GMATPrepNow.com
Use my video course along with Beat The GMAT's free 60-Day Study Guide

Sign up for free Question of the Day emails
And check out all of these free resources

  • +1 Upvote Post
  • Quote
  • Flag
GMAT Prep Now's comprehensive video course can be used in conjunction with Beat The GMAT’s FREE 60-Day Study Guide and reach your target score in 2 months!
  • The Princeton Review
    FREE GMAT Exam
    Know how you'd score today for $0

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    The Princeton Review
  • PrepScholar GMAT
    5 Day FREE Trial
    Study Smarter, Not Harder

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    PrepScholar GMAT
  • Veritas Prep
    Free Veritas GMAT Class
    Experience Lesson 1 Live Free

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Veritas Prep
  • e-gmat Exclusive Offer
    Get 300+ Practice Questions
    25 Video lessons and 6 Webinars for FREE

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    e-gmat Exclusive Offer
  • Economist Test Prep
    Free Trial & Practice Exam
    BEAT THE GMAT EXCLUSIVE

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Economist Test Prep
  • Target Test Prep
    5-Day Free Trial
    5-day free, full-access trial TTP Quant

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Target Test Prep
  • Magoosh
    Magoosh
    Study with Magoosh GMAT prep

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Magoosh
  • Varsity Tutors
    Award-winning private GMAT tutoring
    Register now and save up to $200

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Varsity Tutors
  • Kaplan Test Prep
    Free Practice Test & Review
    How would you score if you took the GMAT

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Kaplan Test Prep
  • EMPOWERgmat Slider
    1 Hour Free
    BEAT THE GMAT EXCLUSIVE

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    EMPOWERgmat Slider

Top First Responders*

1 Brent@GMATPrepNow 39 first replies
2 Ian Stewart 37 first replies
3 Jay@ManhattanReview 32 first replies
4 GMATGuruNY 26 first replies
5 Scott@TargetTestPrep 15 first replies
* Only counts replies to topics started in last 30 days
See More Top Beat The GMAT Members

Most Active Experts

1 image description Scott@TargetTestPrep

Target Test Prep

199 posts
2 image description Max@Math Revolution

Math Revolution

90 posts
3 image description Brent@GMATPrepNow

GMAT Prep Now Teacher

71 posts
4 image description GMATGuruNY

The Princeton Review Teacher

45 posts
5 image description Ian Stewart

GMATiX Teacher

43 posts
See More Top Beat The GMAT Experts