Quickest Route

 The Problem :

Bertie Wooster is a worried man. He was sitting quietly at (0, 0) by the side of the pool, which occupies the space -1 £ x £ 4, 0 £ y £ 2, when he heard that Madeline Bassett (who, you will recall, thinks that “the stars are God’s daisy-chain”) has broken off her engagement to Gussie Fink-Nottle, and is looking for him. He needs a pretty stiff brandy and soda as soon as he can get it. Fortunately, Jeeves has just brought out a tray of drinks and put it down on a table at (3, 3). 

                                   

Bertie could   

(i) amble around the pool to Jeeves, via (4, 0)

(ii) ditto, via (-1, 0)

(iii) splash straight across the pool to (0, 2) and then amble over to Jeeves

(iv) make a bee-line straight for Jeeves, along y = x, ambling or splashing as appropriate.  

He can amble twice as fast as he can splash ...

Should he adopt plan (i), (ii), (iii) or (iv)? Or is there maybe a still better plan?

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Last modified: June 18, 2007