cover Please do NOT post your answer, but do say if you think you have solved the puzzle and how long it took. Solution on Monday.

Can you move just one digit and make the following equation correct:

101 – 102 = 1

I have produced an ebook containing 101 of the previous Friday Puzzles! It is called PUZZLED and is available for the Kindle (UK here and USA here) and on the iBookstore (UK here in the USA here). You can try 101 of the puzzles for free here.


  1. I’ve got a weasley answer – maybe the same as above – in about 3 minutes that would work if it was – spoiler alert –

    like the houses earlier this week. But still working on getting a more ‘proper’ one.

    1. That works, although it’s not moving the number it’s making it smaller so suspect this is a bollocks puzzle.

  2. I’m certain that this is non-compliant, so I hope that you don’t mind me posting this but if you move one of the lines in the “=” sign across you get 101=102-1

  3. As usual with a Richard Wiseman puzzle there are several possible answers depending on what parts of the question are irrelevant. It becomes fun to watch people argue that “their answer” is better than “your answer” because of the way they have misread the question.

    It is truely often the Blind leading the Sighted.

    In the case of today the puzzle can be solved by moving no digits at all. Just move the symbols which are not forbidden from movement by the puzzle statement. This then being an optimal solution.

    101 = 102 – 1

    1. @H.Janus

      We can see from the timetramps that we were both typing at the same time and we both posted the same Move No Digits solution.

      Richard would have more flexibility in his responders and allow a way to celebrate greater diversity in Thinking Styles if he asked for a range of answers. EG Move zero digits, move one digit, change one digit and so onwards.

      He is often given such a range of responses but that only sets the mona minies off grumbling that their answer was somehow purer that the better ones.

  4. I’ve got a couple but unlike the muppets above, I’m not going to post them. I’m not actually confused by the statement “don’t post your answer”

  5. It’s always worthwhile attempting to solve Richard’s puzzles before loading the comments, as there’s always some muppet with a short memory who’s forgotten the initial instruction by the time they post.

    As for my attempt, I saw a similar puzzle a few weeks ago, so worked it out very quickly. However, when I saw that earlier puzzle, I was stumped until I saw the answer.

    As Chris Tarrant used to say on WWTBAM, “It’s only easy if you know the answer!”

  6. Here are a couple of puzzlers for you:

    1. Move one word to make this sentence correct: “Do post your not answers.”

    2. What curse word can you add to help the idiots above understand?

    1. @Henry

      Some if us have more respect for the internet than to self-censor in the face of censure.

      The internet is a place of discuss. Not a school classroom where the teachers can state “no talking while you write down the only acceptable answers”

      If Richard does not want discussion then he could post his puzzles on Google+1 where no one will see them. If he wants to micromanage the discussion he should set up a private Facebook wall.

      To post openly is to invite open replies. That is the great strength of the internet. To weaken that resolve is not a good sign. It is another step toward being ruled by Godwin;s law,

  7. Lab Rat Experiment #336234 : ask them the same question than a few months ago and look how they react.

  8. As the answer has already been posted by readers who don’t respect the rules, 101 – 102 ≡ 1 without doing anything if you compute the answer in modulo 2 arithmetic. That is 101 ≡ 1 (mod 2), 102 ≡ 0 (mod2) , and 1 ≡ 1 (mod 2). Thus 101 – 102 ≡ 1 (mod 2). Math nerd? Yes, I suppose.

  9. About half a minute. I tried all sorts of combinations and possibilities, and I was just about to give up and read the thread to look for spoilers, when I suddenly noticed what the correct answer would be.

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