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How Many Watermelons?

How Many Watermelons?

A graphic shows several watermelons which have been cut into halves and three-quarters. We are asked to determine how many watermelons are in the picture.

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How Many Watermelons?

The graphic has been seen in heavy social media circulation in February 2016, and includes a caption that reads:

99% will fail this, how many water melons are here?

how many watermelons

Despite obvious grammatical problems, the meme has elicited a measure of debate among social media users.

It seems obvious that the “99%” statistic was probably manufactured and only included as click-bait, as there are multiple interpretations of the graphic which lead to different answers. The wide variety of responses shows that there is no single answer with a 99% consensus (right or wrong).

Below are the three most popular answers, in no particular order:

If you think the answer is 8 watermelons

Some readers have pointed out that the meme asks how many watermelons you see, not how many whole watermelons. This logic has led some readers to suggest the only possible answer is 8, consisting of four halves and four three-quarter melons. It has been noted that the meme doesn’t state that partial melons need to be added together. Thus, 8 (partial) watermelons could be the answer.

5 watermelons

If you think the answer is 6 watermelons

Another theory is to examine how many melons it would have taken to create this image. In that case, the answer would be 6. This is achieved by adding the four three-quarter melons to two full melons which were cut in half to create the four halves.

6 watermelons

If you think the answer is 5 watermelons

Another possible solution is to fit the available pieces into a mathematical equation. In this case, we have four three-quarter melons plus four half melons, which could be represented mathematically as:

(4 x .75) + (4 x .5) = 5

5 watermelons

Bottom Line

Although we suspect this graphic may have been created as click-bait, it does pose an interesting question that has several possible solutions, depending on how the problem is approached.

Which answer to you think is most correct?

For the record, the first answer I came up with here was 5.

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  • Samuel Abernathy

    I count 8…says nothing bout being full or pieces

  • Gerallt Bath

    Actually,
    I have a new theory. There are 0 watermelons. This was posted 10 months
    ago, and if you cut the watermelons, and leave them like that for so
    long, they go bad anyways

  • Gerallt Bath

    I originally got 5, then 6, but then looked at the cutouts and positioning and decided on 8, and maybe 9, if there is an inverted one
    in middle…because everything in square, is inversion of everything
    outside.

  • Cary Smith

    5 if you are looking for whole ones…

  • Alex

    There are 0 watermelons because watermelon is one word and the question is how many water melons are there

  • jokuvain9000

    8 or 0. Who asked you to do puzzle with those watermelons? Human mind is easily tricked.

  • pam s

    I Counted 4 to.

  • Stephen

    I believe the answer is 2. For two reasons: a) when someone refers to watermelons they logically think that there are whole watermelons, like “Let’s go pick up some watermelon..” or “can you tell me how many watermelons are for sale at the supermarket?” and then b) the question asks “How many watermelons?” referring to the picture. It doesn’t ask “how much watermelon is here” or “how many full watermelons can you make here” because it never qualifies the use of a tool (like a knife) nor the option to divide them. Our minds are drawn automatically to optimize the sections to form a whole watermelon. But if that were the case, you would see the question as perhaps, “How many whole watermelons can you make with the right tool”? Then by all means, optimize it all. So my logic says that you only can make two whole watermelons out of this picture–the halves. If your mom asked you to pick these up and asked you to get watermelons (as in whole) and did not specify a number, what would you do? lol

    • [GS]Roachy

      I actually had this discussion on Facebook with another individual, on one of these same meme’s (although spelled properly on that one, at least..)

      And his logic on it, was actually almost identical to yours, in that “It asks watermelons which implies a whole melon”.

      Well, based on HIS logic, I was able to determine that the correct answer is actually ZERO (again, if going by his/your logic). Since if you look carefully, none of those halves actually match up. Which means there actually isn’t any whole watermelons in the picture at all.

      I would also gather, that this was/is the authors impression on it when they first made the meme, as well. Hence also making the “99% will get this wrong” comment, entirely accurate.

  • Jessica Monks

    no such thing as water melons but if you want to talk watermelons give me a call.

  • Betty Houbion

    Phewy! 0 Why? It asked about water melons, not watermelons, which do not exist.

  • LaTryce Parker

    3. If you use two of the halves to make quarters you can complete two watermelons. Then you are left with two halves= the last full watermelon… 3

    • jesterday

      3 no question.

    • PD

      Wait 2 halfs to make whole you would have 4 wholes?

  • Eric

    I believe the answer is 4. The four pieces that appear to be halves are actually quarters. If they were halves they would not stand up the way they are pictured, but quarters would. This also means they would have had to have come from a fifth watermelon since the lines are perpindicular to how they would be if cut from the three-quarter watermelons in the picture. So the answer could still be 5, but 5 was the most common answer in the post I saw which would mean that 99% are not wrong, and that’s why I say the answer is 4.

    • Tim Goral

      I hadn’t considered that, but you may be on to something. The only flaw to your argument is that all the watermelons appear to be cut at the stem point. So for one of the quarter pieces to fit correctly, wouldn’t its stripes have to go the opposite way?

      • Eric

        I suppose that depends on the shape of the watermelon. If the watermelons are perfect spheres it wouldn’t matter.

      • Marmar

        They can’t be quarters because light comes under the edges that should be on the table.

    • Another good theory.

    • Stephen

      Interesting. But what we don’t see is what may be under the watermelon to make it stand like it is. If the question somehow stated that or we had a side view picture of the arrangement I could see where you might be able to validate that.

    • Chris

      Cant be look at the markings on the sides

    • brianelete

      look at the shadows man, its 5

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@accroya

James White specializes in internet hoaxes, travel, product reviews, and social media.

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