# People are freaking out over what looks like a simple maths problem

Louis Dor
Thursday 24 December 2020 16:18
discover

A maths puzzle has been breaking brains on the internet.

It was posted originally by Randall Jones on Facebook and people in the comments section can't seem to decide what the right answer is...

### Can you work out the answer?

The confusion initially arises from the fact that the additions you are presented with are incorrect.

The obvious solution to the puzzle is then to look as to why, and solve what '8+11='.

Clearly something is missing, and there are two simple solutions to this quandry, which is based in pattern.

## Method One:

The first is that an addition sign features at the end of each line and it runs on, essentially meaning this:

1+4=5
5+2+5=12
12+3+6=21

These all hold true, meaning that by this method...

21+8+11=?

## Method Two:

The second assumes that some multiplication has been missed out, and that the second number on each line is multiplied by the first prior to the addition.

So...

1+(4x1)=5
2+(5x2)=12
3+(6x3)=21

Again, this all holds true, meaning that in this method...

8+(11x8)=?

3+88=?

### ?=96

One of these is more likely to be correct than the other, based on what you noticed about the original photo.

The pattern goes that there is a difference of three between the numbers you are adding, and they increase in value by one every time.

Except when the series jumps from 3+6 to 8=11.

It's probably safe to assume that we've missed a few steps in between, in which case, method one is incorrect.

1+4=5
5+2+5=12
12+3+6=21
21+4+7=32
32+5+8=45
45+6+9=60
60+7+10=77
77+8+11=?

### ?=96

So there you have it. We have slyly returned to Method Two.

Think we're right or wrong? Let us know in the comments and vote in the poll below.