Interesting Esoterica

Factoring in the Chicken McNugget monoid

Article by Scott Chapman and Christopher O'Neill
  • Published in 2017
  • Added on
Every day, 34 million Chicken McNuggets are sold worldwide. At most McDonalds locations in the United States today, Chicken McNuggets are sold in packs of 4, 6, 10, 20, 40, and 50 pieces. However, shortly after their introduction in 1979 they were sold in packs of 6, 9, and 20. The use of these latter three numbers spawned the so-called Chicken McNugget problem, which asks: "what numbers of Chicken McNuggets can be ordered using only packs with 6, 9, or 20 pieces?" In this paper, we present an accessible introduction to this problem, as well as several related questions whose motivation comes from the theory of non-unique factorization.

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BibTeX entry

@article{FactoringintheChickenMcNuggetmonoid,
	title = {Factoring in the Chicken McNugget monoid},
	abstract = {Every day, 34 million Chicken McNuggets are sold worldwide. At most McDonalds
locations in the United States today, Chicken McNuggets are sold in packs of 4,
6, 10, 20, 40, and 50 pieces. However, shortly after their introduction in 1979
they were sold in packs of 6, 9, and 20. The use of these latter three numbers
spawned the so-called Chicken McNugget problem, which asks: "what numbers of
Chicken McNuggets can be ordered using only packs with 6, 9, or 20 pieces?" In
this paper, we present an accessible introduction to this problem, as well as
several related questions whose motivation comes from the theory of non-unique
factorization.},
	url = {http://arxiv.org/abs/1709.01606v1 http://arxiv.org/pdf/1709.01606v1},
	author = {Scott Chapman and Christopher O'Neill},
	comment = {},
	urldate = {2017-09-06},
	archivePrefix = {arXiv},
	eprint = {1709.01606},
	primaryClass = {math.AC},
	year = 2017,
	collections = {animals,attention-grabbing-titles,easily-explained,unusual-arithmetic}
}