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Steven Klee

SIMUW 2010 klees@math.washington.edu

July 20, 2010

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Introduction

SET is a fun and exciting card game that is full of rich mathematical structures. We will explore some of these structures today. Let’s start with a description of the game itself. SET is a card game with 81 cards in a deck. Each card has four features: • A shape: oval, squiggle, or diamond • A color : red, green, or purple • A number of shapes: one, two or three • A shading: empty, striped, or solid The purpose of the game is to ﬁnd sets of cards among a collection of cards that have been laid out on the table. A set consists of three cards with the property that each card’s features, considered one at a time, are either the same on each card or all diﬀerent on each card. Exercise 1.1 Show that given two cards C1 and C2 , there is a unique card C3 such that {C1 , C2 , C3 } is a set.

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3 Answer the following questions with your group. re-shuﬄe the deck.2 How many sets are there in the 81 card deck? Exercise 1. 2 . How many sets are there among those 12 cards? (Don’t remove or replace sets once you see them!) After you have found all possible sets.Exercise 1. Each time. 2. and repeat this experiment ﬁve times. 1. keep track of the number of cards left on the table at the end of the game. record the number of sets. Lay out 12 cards from the deck of cards at your table. Play two games of SET as a group.

if you take 26 sets during the course of the game. it is impossible to have three cards left on the table at the end of the game. what is the expected number of sets among them? Exercise 1.Exercise 1. (Equivalently.) 3 .5 Show that if you play a game of SET. the remaining three cards also form a set.4 If you lay 12 cards on the table at random.

1. We deﬁne addition on Zn by deﬁning i ⊕ j to be the remainder of i + j upon division by n. n − 1}.1 Write out the addition and multiplication tables for Z2 . ⊕ 0 1 0 1 ⊗ 0 0 1 1 ⊕ 0 1 2 0 1 2 ⊗ 0 0 1 2 1 2 ⊕ 0 1 2 3 0 1 2 3 ⊗ 0 0 1 2 3 1 2 3 4 . Exercise 2.2 2. . we deﬁne multiplication on Zn by deﬁning i ⊗ j to be the remainder of i × j upon division by n. Similarly.1 Time Out Modular Arithmetic Consider the set of numbers Zn = {0. and Z4 . . . Z3 . .

. a2 . . .2. . bd ) are points in Zd . . b2 . We can think of each element of Zd as a point in a d-dimensional world. ad ) : ai ∈ Z}. What is {x ∈ Z2 : a · x = 0}? 2. . What are the possible values of a · x as x ranges over Z2 ? 3. . . What are the possible values of b · x as x ranges over Z3 ? 5 . 4) ∈ Z3 . . . . . . . bd ) = (a1 + b1 . . ad ) and b = (b1 . . . a2 . . If a = (a1 . . . let Zd = {(a1 .2 Let a = (1. . . the dot product of a and b is a · b = a1 b1 + a2 b2 + · · · + ad bd . 6. What is {x ∈ Z3 : b · x = 2}? 4. 2) ∈ Z2 and b = (2.2 Geometry in the Integer Lattice For a ﬁxed integer d. 1. ad ) + (b1 . Exercise 2. ad + bd ). and we can deﬁne a group structure on Zd by component-wise addition: (a1 . . .

0) = Exercise 2.2. H(a. 3 1. 1. If a and b are points in Zd . 0) = 4. Exercise 2. 2. . 3 6 . 1) = {x ∈ Zd : a · x = 1} 3 H(a. 2) for a = (1. 1. . 2.4 Let a be a vector in Zd other than (0. (1. Consider the following sets: 3 H(a. 0). 1. 1. and H(a. 1. (1. 1). 0) · (2.3 Finite Geometry and Modular Arithmetic Let Zd be the group of points (a1 . 1. 0) for b = (1. 2. . 0. . 3 • Compute H(a. 2. . (1. 1) ∈ Z3 . a2 . 1) − (2. 2. . 2) ∈ Z2 . 0) + (2. 1) = 3. 0. and addition is performed 3 component-wise in Z3 . 0) · (1. 0). 1. 0. (1. we can still take the dot product a · b 3 by a · x = a1 ⊗ x 1 ⊕ a2 ⊗ x 2 ⊕ · · · ⊕ ad ⊗ x d . ad ) where each xi ∈ Z3 . . 2.3 Perform the following computations in Z4 . 1. 3 • Compute H(b. 2) = {x ∈ Zd : a · x = 2}. 0) = {x ∈ Zd : a · x = 0} 3 H(a. 2. 1) = 2. .

1)| = |H(a. 0)| = |H(a. i) are there that contain both x and y. Show that there are 3 2 −1 distinct sets 3 H(a. a must be nonzero). Show that H(a.1 in mind! As before.6 Fix two points x and y in Zd . i) = H(2a. Exercise 2. 2 ⊗ i) for any nonzero a ∈ Zd .5 Use the notation H(a. Show that |H(a.Exercise 2. 2) = Zd . Show that H(a. 3 2.5. 1. 3 3. d−1 7 . i) from the previous problem. 1) ∪ H(a. 2)|. 0) ∪ H(a. (Keep Exercise 2.

x2 .. y4 ). x4 ). y = (y1 .1 say in this new language? 8 . 3 where 0 if the shape is an oval s = 1 if the shape is a squiggle 2 if the shape is a diamond 0 if the color is red c = 1 if the color is green 2 if the color is purple 0 if there are 3 shapes n = 1 if there is 1 shape 2 if there are 2 shapes 0 if the ﬁlling is empty f = 1 if the ﬁlling is striped 2 if the ﬁlling is solid Exercise 3. y2 . Using Exercise 1. f ) ∈ Z4 . z = (z1 . What does Exercise 1.5 as motivation. y.. we associate each SET card to a vector (s. y3 . x3 . z4 ) correspond to a set? Exercise 3. z2 . n. when do three 3 points x = (x1 . c.1 Under the correspondence of SET cards to points in Z4 .2 Let’s say that three points x.3 I thought we were learning about SET. z form a line if their corresponding SET cards form a set. z3 .

Exercise 3.4 What is the maximal number of cards you can choose from the red ovals with the property that no three of them form a set? Justify your answer. Exercise 3. 9 . We can associate each of these cards to a point in Z2 .3 Let’s restrict our attention to the nine cards in the SET deck that are red ovals. Draw all possible lines 3 among these nine points.

there must be a set. and (ii) among any 21 cards in the SET deck.5 What is the maximal number of red cards that can be chosen with the property that no three of them form a set? Exercise 3. 3 Exercise 3.Let’s expand our attention to all 27 red cards now. 10 . We can associate each card to a point in Z3 .6 (Hard!) Show that (i) there exists a collection of 20 cards in the SET deck with the property that no three of them form a set.

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