Puzzle of the Day

These are sample final examination questions chosen from several subjects. You may find them interesting.

History: Describe the history of the papacy from its origins to the present day, concentrating especially but not exclusively on the social, political, economic, religious, and philosophical impact on Europe, Asia, America, and Africa. Be brief, concise, and specific.

Medicine: You have been provided with a razor blade, a piece of gauze, and a bottle of scotch. Remove your appendix. Do not suture until your work has been inspected. You have fifteen minutes.

Public Speaking: 2,500 riot-crazed aborigines are storming the room. Calm them. You may use any ancient language except Latin or Greek.

Biology: Create Life. Estimate the differences in subsequent human culture if this form of life had developed 500 million years earlier, with special attention to the probable effects on the English parliamentary system. Prove your thesis. Implicit in this assignment is that the use of any other form of life is not allowed since life must be created, not simply reproduced or modified

Music: Write a piano concerto. Orchestrate it and perform it with flute and drum. You will find a piano under your seat.

Psychology: Based on your knowledge of their works, evaluate the emotional stability, degree of adjustment, and repressed frustrations of each of the following: Alexander of Aphrodisias, Ramses II, Gregory of Nicoa, Hammurabi. Support your evaluations with quotations from each man's work making appropriate references. It is not necessary to translate.

Sociology: Estimate the sociological problems which might accompany the end of the world. Construct an experiment to test your theory. First, prepare an Environmental Impact Statement.

Management Science: Define science. Define management. How do they relate? Why? Create a generalized algorithm to optimize all managerial decisions. Assuming an 1130 CPU supporting 50 terminals, each terminal to activate your algorithm, design the communications interface and all the necessary control programs.

Engineering: The disassembled parts of a high-powered rifle have been placed on your desk. You will also find an instruction manual printed in Swahili. In 10 minutes a hungry Bengal tiger will be admitted to the room. Take whatever action you feel appropriate. Be prepared to justify your decision.

Epistemology: Take a position for or against the truth. Prove the validity of your position.

Physics: Explain the nature of matter. Include in your answer an evaluation of the impact of the development of mathematics on science. Also create matter. The use of any form of energy in not allowed.

Mathematics: Reconstruct the system such that e and PI are whole numbers.

Law: Take a position for or against truth as it relates to justice. If your position is pro, explain the paradox this creates with the U.S. judicial system.

Computer Science I: Under your seat you will find a hex dump of the VAX C compiler load module. Add monitors and concurrency features and verify the correctness of your new compiler.

Computer Science II: Write a compiler in binary for the computer beneath your seat. In this new language write a 100-person multitasking operating system. Make sure there is no way the system can be caused to crash. Write a program that submits one joke per second to the net; every fifth one belonging in ug.jokes. Do not allot more than 30 minutes for this problem.

Electrical Engineering: Under your desk you will find a pile of sand and a grab bag of assorted capacitors from Radio Shack. Design a 16-bit processor system and breadboard a functional prototype.

General Knowledge: Describe in detail. Be brief, objective and specific.


Extra Credit: Define the universe; give three examples.

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Send email to cs153@csif.cs.ucdavis.edu.

Department of Computer Science
University of California at Davis
Davis, CA 95616-8562

Page last modified on 2/21/98