I hate being stumped. Hate it.
My best friend is, by far, one of the single most intelligent people I know. When bored he likes to be thrown five one-digit numbers, and one two-digit number. The goal of the “game” is to use the four basic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division) on the five numbers to achieve a final answer of the two-digit number. To do this, players must go through the numbers, in order, without creating any quantities (grouping numbers into parentheses). Over the years he has sometimes been stuck but never stumped. Last night, during a round of margaritas, he finally declared this one Unsolvable… I submit this “unsolvable” problem to you.
2, 3, 5, 6, 8
First off, I may have mispoke: the numebers DO NOT have to stay in order. Next, Oolong and I are interested in the number of permutations of numbers and operations (and Oolong, they do not have to stay in that order). Also, Swap found us some answers with some brute-force and this intensely pleases me! Thanks!!! I won't reveal it for those still interested but message one of us if you want it. Great responses and help. Thanks all.
Our mutual friend, a chemical engineer, swears it’s an easy solve if he’s allowed exponents… he’s not. eien_meru solved this easily using quantities and also says we’re stumped with our restrictive rules. I hate being stumped.