Enigma 1032: Colonial powers
14 December 2018
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From New Scientist #2188, 29th May 1999
The old colonial powers had simply drawn lines on the map when they established the colonies of Abongo, Ebongo, Ibongo, Obongo and Ubongo. As a result, the map of the five colnies was a rectangle with each colony being a right-angled triangle. Abongo, Ebongo and Ibongo each had the same area. Obongo was bigger and Ubongo was bigger still.
After independence, Abongo, Ebongo and Ibongo united to form a single triangular country, larger than Ubongo.
On an old map of the five colonies, the shorter side was 60 centimetres long.
What was the length of the longer side?
When it was originally published the information that the combined country was the largest was omitted. A correction was published along with Enigma 1043 (along with the reassurance: “All Enigmas are checked to ensure they have a unique answer”). Without this fact there are three possible solutions.