Tower of Hanoi
It is said that at the time of creation , there were placed in one of
those incredible temples at Hanoi in Indo-China (Vietnam) some 64 golden
washers or disk, no two of the same size, all set on one of three golden
neddles; and the priesthood of the temple were busy moving the disks ,
one at a time , to any one of the needles, subject always to the condition
that no disk be placed above a smaller disk.
The priests were aim at arranging all the disk on another one
of the needles and they were pledged both to move one disk every minute
and to make their moves so that the goal would be achieved in the least
number of moves. When the appointed task is completed, there would come
the day of doom for many ,but of reward for the faithful.
Naturally , some of the unfaithful, as they watched the ceaseless
activity at the temple, the shifts day and night, and the sage nodding
of the wise men who direct the labourers ,were much concerned as to just
how soon to expect the judgement day.
We could have aided them considerably, for by assuming that
there are n disks in the problem, we can show that the minimum number of
moves is 2n-1 and a few moments of translating 264-1
minutes into years brings much relief to the most unfaithful.