2 = 1

Are you tired of solving all these simple maths “problems” that are flooding the Internet? Here is a bit more challenging problem.

However, fear not my friend! No University or advanced Maths skills are required. Just primary (elementary) Maths needed. Have fun!

Step 1

Let’s begin with something really simple to warm up:

a = 1 and b = 1

Therefore, we can write this as:

a = b

Step 2

Now, we can multiply both sides of equation with a. This, as we know from algebra, doesn’t affect the result (i.e. both side are still equal):

a * a = a * b

we can also write this as a squared, i.e.

a² = a * b

Step 3

Next, we can subtract from both sides the same value. Let’s take away b squared:

a² - b² = (a * b) - b²

Step 4

Left hand side of the equation is equal to: (a — b) * (a + b) while the right hand side we can rewrite as b * (a — b)

(a - b) * (a + b) = b * (a - b) 

Step 5

We are almost there. Let’s just divide equally both sides by (a — b) which will leave:

a + b = b

Grand Finale

Going back to Step 1 we know that a = b and therefore:

b + b = b

which is the same as

2 * b = b

which if we reduce both sides by dividing b will get us in the end:

2 = 1

Can you explain this!? Please leave a comment below but don’t spoil it for others.

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