Beach Day by Rodger Bliss
February 2024

Never Ending Glass

I have a glass of water. I pour it into a bigger glass and it fills completely to the top. I pour that same amount of water into a third even bigger glass of water and it fills to the top, and I repeat this process again three more times, with the glasses getting bigger each time. How is this possible? The RiddleDude has several possible scenarios to explain this. How many can you come up with?

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7 guesses to Never Ending Glass

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  • Nanao Ise

    …Maybe one answer could be that the glasses get bigger, but there is something already inside them?

    As in, if you start with an 8-ounce glass and pour into a 10-ounce glass, there is already two ounces of liquid (or some other substance, and or including a thicker glass bottom) inside?

  • Dude

    That would be one of the answers, Nanao Ise.

    The glasses were not empty. They each had enough water in them to make up the difference.

    My other answer, however, involves completely empty glasses. Keep trying.

  • Boesner

    I think about shot glasses. not all shot glasses are the same, there are tall ones and short ones, but they all equal the same volume of liquid. The difference is, the bottom of the glass, some are groved so that you can put your finger in the bottom. So, that would make the glass the same amout of volume yet a different size glass. I hope I explained myself correctly

  • Dude

    That is close enough to be correct, Boesner.

    In our scenerio, the glasses are getting bigger in height but smaller in width.

    Any other answers out there?

  • Isnt it obvious?

    Is the glass getting wider but shorter?

  • Dude

    Wider but shorter works if you consider “shorter” to be bigger.

  • Crabman

    Another possible answer is that although the container gets bigger the inside that contains the liquid stays the same size. It can get taller and wider as the walls/bottom get thicker but can only hold the same volume. This is similar to the shot glass example.

    More abstract: Its in a pressurized room and the pressure starts really (really, really, really) high then is lowered the appropriate amount each time you fill the container so the same liquid mass fills larger and larger volumes. Granted were talking pretty significant pressure changes and very small volume changes. Liquids are not not easy to compress.