Elementary puzzle from the physicist Landau: only genius and fool will answer correctly

Lev Landau was a great Soviet theoretical physicist as well as a Nobel Prize winner. From 1955 to 1968, the scientist lectured at the Moscow State University, and was also a regular member of the introductory commission, which determined whether the student was worthy to continue his education within the walls of the university. Rumor has it that Landau asked a rather extravagant question for future graduate students ...


The physicist suggested that the applicants continue the sequence of letters "p", "d", "t", "h", "p". The most amazing thing is that Landau did not take part in the postgraduate study with anyone who easily solved this problem with him, being sure that the respondent is either a genius or an idiot. And you could continue the sequence and guess why the great scientist refused the unhappy ones, who managed to answer the question correctly? You can check yourself and find the correct answer below the photo.


Photo source: pixabay.com

This sequence is formed by the first letters in the composition of numbers: “p” (times), “d” (two), “t” (three), and so on. Consequently, it was not difficult for an applicant who understood the principle to continue the series. With genius, everything is clear. But why could the right person be an idiot? Everything is very simple. The fact is that it is children who most quickly cope with such tasks because of the more developed figurative thinking at an early age. Consequently, an adult who immediately guessed the sequence could not be a genius at all, but with a child's level of development.