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Data Sufficiency Trap ?

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Data Sufficiency Trap ? [#permalink] New post 11 Oct 2004, 04:05
Hey there,

In the Courses>Quantitative Section>Data Sufficiency, the following example is posted :-

Example 1. Triangle ABC has one angle equal to 90 degrees and AB equal to 5 inches, what is the area of ABC?

(1) BC = 4
(2) AC = 12

The issue that is subsequently discussed is whether each statement is sufficient to answer the question and about the possibility of 3-4-5 or 5-12-13 triangles i.e a different solution per statement both right in themselves, but both don't talk simultaneously about the same triangle.

My question is : Aren't we making an unwarranted assumption based on "nice numbers" combinations ?

We directly consider AB=5 as the hypotenuse and then assume that BC=4 is one of the non-hypotenuse sides and arrive at the convenient conclusion that it must be a 3-4-5 triangle. What if AB=5 given is one of the non-hypotenuse sides and BC=4 is another non hypotenuse side ?

Image

And similarly for the other triangle - it could be 5-12-13 but it also could be 5-10.909-12. So in this case the answer would have to be an E right ?

I think I may be missing something major otherwise it just doesn's seem to make sense to me....

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 [#permalink] New post 11 Oct 2004, 18:55
I agree, this problem is not of good quality and the sides do not refer to the same triangle. If we know that the length of a right triangle are 4, 5 and 12, then the angle opposite 12 must be the right angle as there cannot be another angle greater than 90 degree if one angle of 90 degree already exist. However 4^2 + 5^2 does not = 12^2, thus this question is not really valid... where did you get this anyway?...
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 [#permalink] New post 12 Oct 2004, 01:16
I think by knowing all you cant solve the problem ..4 sq + 5 sq not equal to 12 sq.

It you use any one of the side the you don’t know the which angle A or B or C is 90 degree, B’coz in two case the area is ½*5*4 and in one case it is ½ *3*4

So we can’t answer the probs.

I blv ans is E..
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Where I got it from.... [#permalink] New post 12 Oct 2004, 08:06
I got the question from the course resources on this site.

http://www.gmatclub.com/content/courses/quantitative/ds.php

There's another DS problem that is wrongly solved as well. See my other post.

http://www.gmatclub.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=10603
Where I got it from....   [#permalink] 12 Oct 2004, 08:06
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