Google hires the best of the best, we know this. If you want a rewarding and lucrative career at this firm, you’ve gotta jump through a few hoops and prove your worth first. These are Google’s job interview questions. Can you answer them?

We’ve included the answers too, so don’t worry if you need a little helping hand!

Here are the questions

1. You have just found a man in the desert. He is alone and dead with nothing but a match in his hand. How, and why, did he die?

2. You have two jars - a 5 L one and a 3 L one. You have an unlimited supply of water - measure out 4 L exactly.

3. Your family has just built a house and all sides of that house are south looking. Suddenly a bear appears outside - what colour is it?

4. A doctor gave 4 pills to a patient: 2 pills of each type that cannot be told apart from each other. The patient should take the pills in two stages: 1 pill of each type in the morning and the same in the evening. If he breaks the dose or does not take pills, the patient will die. The pills happen to become mixed. How does he get his treatment and survive?

5. There are 8 round billiard balls in front of you. One of them weighs more than the others, but only slightly more. How many weightings on the scales does one need to work out the ball’s weight without using actual weights?

Stumped? Here are the answers. 

1. This question is a clever one because it tests how good you are at recreating events and scenarios in your head. The answer is that the man died of a fall. He fell out of a plane which lost altitude, so the crash was inevitable. There were only a few parachutes, fewer than there were passengers. The passengers drew matches and this man happened to get the short match. He jumped without a parachute, hence his death.

2. You’d fill the 5 L jar and use that to fill up the 3 L jar. You would then empty the latter. Next you would take the 5 L jar and pour the remaining 2 L into the 3 L jar. Then you would fill the 5 L jar again and pour the 1 L into the 3 L jar until it’s full. Phew!

3. The bear would be white, as only in the North Pole can all the walls of a building face south.

Are you getting these right so far?

4. This question obviously begs the question - why can the patient not ask for new pills? Or get a new doctor, for that matter, as this one sounds rubbish! However maybe the doctor has disappeared, or kidnapped, who knows? However, as this is life-or-death, the patient much divide each pill in half and take the halves each morning and evening. Simple.

5. The correct answer is two weighings. All the balls are to be divided into groups: two three-ball groups and two balls in the third group. First of all you would weigh both three-ball groups. If one outweighs the other, take any two balls out and weigh them between themselves. Then if equal, the third ball is the one you need. So if first weighing showed both groups as being equal, weigh the two remaining balls again — one will be heavier.

Could you have answered Google’s job interview questions correctly?

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