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For the last five years, the XYZ Courier Company has made

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Re: good question [#permalink] New post 26 Jul 2011, 04:44
fluke wrote:
pkmme wrote:
For the last five years, the XYZ Courier Company has made regular delivery trips between Town A and Town B. The average time taken by the company’s drivers to drive the round trip between the two towns, excluding the time taken for loading, unloading, and delivery, over that period has been 80 minutes. John, a driver for XYZ, needs to make a personal trip between the two towns; he figures that he should allow approximately 80 minutes for the round trip.

Which of the following, if true, does not call John’s conclusion into question?

a) The route between Town A and Town B has been plagued by increasing congestion over the last five years, as the area's population has doubled during that time.

b) Most of XYZ’s courier vehicles are heavy trucks, for which speed limits are lower than for passenger vehicles.

c) Many of the packages carried by XYZ between Town A and Town B are large, high-security packages, for which the processes of loading, unloading, and delivery can take up to half the length of the trip itself.

d) John will make his personal trip at an hour when XYZ does not make delivery trips.

e) Before a freeway was built between Town A and Town B two years ago, the only routes between the two towns were state highways with multiple traffic lights and reduced-speed downtown zones.

Can someone explain what exactly is the question calls for?


Calls into question means Weakens an argument. Doesn't call into question is the opposite- Strengthens.

Question type: WeakensX

John thinks it would take him 80 minutes for the entire trip. All but one of the options prove his thinking wrong and here's how:

a) The route between Town A and Town B has been plagued by increasing congestion over the last five years, as the area's population has doubled during that time.
>>>It gives a reason to suspect that the present state of road will cause him more time.
Just a hypothetical scenario:
5 years back-> No congestion-> Speed 130 mph
Now-> Congestion-> Speed 30 mph
Average-> 80 mph
Thus, average speed for last five years is not a good basis to judge the travel time today. Weakens.

b) Most of XYZ’s courier vehicles are heavy trucks, for which speed limits are lower than for passenger vehicles.
>>>John will be traveling in a passenger car and can potentially travel faster because of less restriction. The travel time can thus be significantly lower.

c) Many of the packages carried by XYZ between Town A and Town B are large, high-security packages, for which the processes of loading, unloading, and delivery can take up to half the length of the trip itself.
>>> average time was calculated "excluding the time taken for loading, unloading, and delivery, over that period has been 80 minutes." Thus, this doesn't weaken his guess.

d) John will make his personal trip at an hour when XYZ does not make delivery trips.
Night times; free road. Faster travel time compared to the travel time during the day when the delivery happens.

Sorry for the stupid question but how can we assume that delivery happens only during the day time or any other time at which the company XYZ doesn't make delivery trips the traffic would be less - Could you please explain?

e) Before a freeway was built between Town A and Town B two years ago, the only routes between the two towns were state highways with multiple traffic lights and reduced-speed downtown zones.
2 years back-> bad speed-> maybe 50
Now->110 mph
John can make the trip more quickly.
Weaken

Ans: "C"

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Re: good question [#permalink] New post 26 Jul 2011, 09:13
UtterNonsense wrote:
d) John will make his personal trip at an hour when XYZ does not make delivery trips.
Night times; free road. Faster travel time compared to the travel time during the day when the delivery happens.

Sorry for the stupid question but how can we assume that delivery happens only during the day time or any other time at which the company XYZ doesn't make delivery trips the traffic would be less - Could you please explain?


No we can't assume so. I just presented this hypothetical scenario to instantiate what the statement is trying to convey.

A more generalized interpretation would be:

Because John makes the trip at an hour different from usual delivery hour, the traffic condition may be different, affecting his commuting time.
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Re: good question [#permalink] New post 26 Jul 2011, 09:44
fluke wrote:
UtterNonsense wrote:
d) John will make his personal trip at an hour when XYZ does not make delivery trips.
Night times; free road. Faster travel time compared to the travel time during the day when the delivery happens.

Sorry for the stupid question but how can we assume that delivery happens only during the day time or any other time at which the company XYZ doesn't make delivery trips the traffic would be less - Could you please explain?


No we can't assume so. I just presented this hypothetical scenario to instantiate what the statement is trying to convey.

A more generalized interpretation would be:

Because John makes the trip at an hour different from usual delivery hour, the traffic condition may be different, affecting his commuting time.


Aaah... that rings the bell. Thanks!
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Re: XYZ Courier [#permalink] New post 27 Jul 2011, 11:57
C. As this time is already accounted for it has no effect on the estimation.
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Re: XYZ Courier [#permalink] New post 07 Aug 2011, 02:09
"C" for me
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Re: XYX Courier Company [#permalink] New post 12 Aug 2011, 04:50

The official answer explanation is as below:
Quote:
John assumes that his round-trip driving time between the two towns will be similar to XYZ’s average time, over the last five years, for the same round trip. Therefore, John’s conclusion will be weakened by (a) any systematic difference between John’s personal trip and XYZ’s company trips, or (b) any reason why the five-year average is not representative of the time currently required to drive between the two towns.

(A) If this statement is true, then the five-year average commute time will not be representative of the current commute time, since the increasing congestion will have raised the current commute time to a level greater than the five-year average.

(B)If most of XYZ’s courier vehicles are subject to speed limits lower than those for commuter automobiles, then the courier vehicles’ commute time will probably be longer than John’s commute time in his personal vehicle.

(C) Correct
The cited round-trip time specifically excludes the time required for loading, unloading, and delivery, so the length of time taken by these tasks is irrelevant to the conclusion at hand.

(D) Since traffic patterns are highly dependent upon the time of day, the given 80-minute average cannot necessarily be expected to hold at times when XYZ does not make deliveries.

(E) If this statement is true, then, for the first three years of the five-year period in question, the transit time between the two towns would have been much longer than that for the last two years of the period (and thus the current time). Therefore, in this case, the five-year average will not be representative of the current time.

The correct answer is C.


I got two points here :
1.I understand that we need to pick a choice that has got no effect on the conclusion. So, it has got nothing to do whether an option that strengthems or weakens the conclusion. The right explanation should read as marked above instead of weakened , it should use "affected"

2. I found the question ambiguous in that there is no way to tell from the q. stem if John will use his own personal vehicle or the company truck. So,this clouded my reasoning.

But I guess the way to deal with this kind of complex stuff like this is to take a simplistic approach and then attack the choices.


Thanks.
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Re: XYX Courier Company [#permalink] New post 12 Aug 2011, 05:14
Got E at first try :( but C souds right as in does not matter to the conclusion!
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Re: XYZ Courier [#permalink] New post 16 Aug 2011, 08:21
C from me, for the reason we are asked to weaken the conclusion of John, if something is true

Conclusion : John should allow approximately 80 minutes for the round trip.

Premise: company’s drivers to drive the round trip between the two towns is 80 mins. ( excluding the time taken for loading, unloading, and delivery)

A: out of queston
B: Out of scope : condition seems good but can be argued in multiple ways both (true and false)
C: Correct: for the reason, if we assume that if the premise is changed this can weaken the conclusion of John. ( excluding the time taken for loading, unloading, and delivery)
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Re: XYX Courier Company [#permalink] New post 19 Aug 2011, 11:55
metallicafan wrote:
+1 C

However, I think this question is not well constructed. The argument should mention that the average is based on the 5-years period.


Had the same issue. Even though I chose C eventually, the average-definition is rather vague
Re: XYX Courier Company   [#permalink] 19 Aug 2011, 11:55
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