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Deceptively Easy Math Problem Has the Internet Stumped

Remember math class? Yeah, us too. We weren’t such huge fans of those brain teasers our teachers would spring on us when we least expected it — usually in the form of a pop quiz. But as much as we despised those “Train A and Train B” story problems, we’re so glad that we never received the latest viral “IQ Test” on any of our assignments.

At first glance, this math puzzle looks deceptively easy. In line one, we’re feeling pretty confident about where this is going. But by line two, we’re starting to get a little confused. Clearly, this is supposed to be more than simple addition, but what? Multiplication? Is there a secret riddle?

Apparently, the last line’s answer is supposed to be 96. (Say what?!) According to the math whizzes out there, the secret to figuring this one out is using the A + (A X B) equation. So the first line would be 1 X (4 X 1), giving us 5. Following that same equation all the way through, that means that the final line leaves us with the equation of 8 + (8 X 11), giving us that final answer of 96. Phew!

If you’re as confused now as we were a few minutes ago, this helpful video cleared things up for us:

Did that question leave you scratching your head? If so, you’re definitely not alone; the original poster of the problem claimed that only one out of a thousand people would be able to solve it. So in other words, if you needed a little help with this one, you’re in good company. Even better news: You don’t need to return to the dreaded pencil sharpener in your high school math class. But if you were able to find the answer on the first try, give yourself a big pat on the back! (And maybe talk to your fellow math geniuses about coming up with simpler riddles.)

Next, see some of the craziest and funniest Japanese game shows that’ll make you so glad you’re not participating:

h/t My Modern Met

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