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INPUT-OUTPUT – The most time consuming section of reasoning!

    reasoning

    First trick! Avoid these questions as much as possible – not because they are difficult, but because they are heavily time-consuming. And time seems to be of prime importance in all those competitive exams we are dealing with here.

     

    It has been noticed that more and more competitive examinations are asking such problems on input and output. The problems can be generated in the form of instructions given by a teacher to his students, peculiar arrangements of letters, words or alphabets following mathematical rules or grammatical rules etc. Although they may look complex at the first sight, they are not so tough. Only factor in that they are time-consuming and hence are killers! So, here is an article with some source references from web to handle such problems if you are genuinely interested. You can also register here and fine more mock tests/materials on this topic.

     

    What is this all about?

    Generally one is asked to imagine that there is some kind of computer or Machine which follows a certain protocol to perform specific kind of actions in each step to produce a desired output. In these types of questions an input is given which consists of either words or numbers. You will be told that this machine rearranges this input in a particular fashion. Your aim is to find the rule followed by the machine in rearranging the input. Then you have to apply this rule to the questions given and find the answers. Finding the rule followed by the machine is the key task. Once you find the rule, it’s quite easy to solve the questions.

    Guideline to approach.

    STEP 1: First check the output of the step it’s asking about because without knowing what is final result it doesn’t make any sense of moving ahead.

    STEP 2: Check the input step.

    STEP 3: Check the previous steps to output step to find out how the output is really coming out. (In many cases this step 3 might not be required)

     

    A word of caution!

    If in the question Nth step is given and output of any of its previous steps is asked, then the answer would be “Can not be determined”. That means if output of 4th step is given and you are asked about 2nd or 3rd step, then you simply choose the option of “Can not be determined”.

     

    So to say, there is hardly any specific trick for these types of questions. Some laid out strategies and most of the time it’s about striking you in the exam hall.

    Let us discuss further with some specific examples:

    EXAMPLES:

    (1) Follow the dictionary!Arrange according to the dictionary.

     

    Input: is of am do can

    Step I: am is of do can

    Step II: am can is of do

    Step III: am can do is of

     

    Here `am’, the 1st word that we will find in a dictionary from the given input, is placed in the 1st position in Step I. Then `can’, the second letter in the dictionary, is placed in the 2nd position and the process continues till the whole input of words are arranged. In the same manner as they will appear in the dictionary.

     

    (2) Total number of letters - Arranging the words according to the increasing or decreasing order of the total number of letters of each word.

     

    Input : He never lie always

    Step I: Always He never lie

    Step II: Always never He lie

    Step III: Always never lie He

     

    Here the word with the larger number of letters is placed first, ie `always’, then the word `never’ and so on till the word with least number of letters is placed last.

     

    (3) I don’t find any arrangement – Simply number the words of the input and check the pattern.

     

    Input: is to before go back on

    (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6)

    Step I: go is to before back on

    (4) (1) (2) (3) (5) (6)

    Step II: is go to before back on

    (1) (4) (2) (3) (5) (6)

    Step III: is before go to back on

    (1) (3) (4) (2) (5) (6)

    and so on …………..

     

    Were the 4th word is brought to the 1st place and the nearest word to it is interchanged. This process is continued.

     

    (4) Let’s play with numbers – Arrangement of Numbers

     

    Input: 15 28 27 39 12 6

    Step I: 6 12 15 28 27 39

    Step II: 6 12 28 15 27 39

    Step III: 6 12 28 15 27 39

    Step IV: 6 12 28 39 15 27

    Step V: 6 12 28 39 27 15

     

    Here, 1st the even numbers are arranged in the ascending order while the odd numbers are

    arranged in the descending order after the arrangement of even numbers.

     

    SOME PROBLEMS FROM PREVIOUS YEAR PAPERS: (UCO Bank Question)

     

    Input : lived 18 a 12 once 93 upon 32 time 46 wolf

    Step I : a lived 18 12 once 93 upon 32 46 time wolf

    Step II : a once 18 12 93 upon 32 46 lived time wolf

    Step III : a once upon 18 12 93 32 46 lived time wolf

    Step IV : a once upon 93 18 12 32 46 lived time wolf

    Step V : a once upon 93 46 18 12 32 lived time wolf

    Step VI : a once upon 93 46 32 18 12 lived time wolf

     

    What do we do? We directly check the last step i.e. Step VI

    (a)    We cross-check it for dictionary words pattern in increasing or decreasing order first. No! it’s not any of those patterns. But there is some peculiarity about dictionary type pattern here. Let’s move on and if we find none, we will come back.

    (b)   We cross-check for number of letters. Whether an increasing or decreasing pattern is followed? No again! Move on.

    (c)    In this step we were supposed to number them. But this is the final survival way if nothing works out. Go back to step (a).

    After watching the number series, one thing should be clear that the pattern before and after the series COULD be different. So let’s check it out.

    The pattern before the number series is: a once upon

    While the pattern after the series is: lived time wolf

    Now the dictionary pattern seems evident once again i.e. in the pattern before the series, i.e. ‘a once upon’, increasing order of dictionary words is there while in the pattern after the series i.e. ‘lived time wolf’, also increasing order of dictionary words follow.

     

    Now what differentiates both the sides?

    Generally VOWELS are the most common thing that comes to mind and that’s what the case here. ‘a once upon’ starts with vowels while ‘lived time wolf’ starts with consonant.

     

    SOLVED EXAMPLES:

     

    Directions (1-5): Study the following information to answer the given questions:

    A  word and number arrangement machine when given an input line of words  rearranges them following a particular rule. The following is an illustration of input and rearrangement.

    (Corporation Bank PO 2011)

     

    Input: age road own wire tire ink  pen uni dice eat

    Step I : Uni age road own wire    tire ink pen eat dice

    Step II :  Uni Own age road wire    tire ink eat pen dice

    Step III :  Uni own ink age wire tire   eat road pen dice

    Step IV: Uni own ink eat age wire tire  road pen dice

    And stepfour is the last step of the rearrangement

    As  per the rules followed in the above steps, find out in each of the  following questions the appropriate steps for the given input.

     

    Input for the questions

    Input:  gem stat ace cast omit fan rate uncut era input

    1. Which of the following would be the final arrangement?

    a) Cast gem fan rate stat uncut   omit input era ace

    b) Uncut omit input era ace cast  fan gem rate stat

    c) Uncut omit input era ace stat   rate gem fan cast

    d) Uncut omit input era ace stat   fan gem rate cast

    e) None

     

    2. In Step III, which of the following word would be at 6th position from the left?

    a)rate b)ace c)stat d)gem e) None

     

    3. Which step number would be the following output?

    Uncut omit gem stat ace rate era input fan cast

    a)    II  b) III c)  V d)  IV  e) None

     

    4.  In step IV of the rearrangement, if omit is related to era and rate is  related to fan in a certain way, to which of the following would ace be  related to, following the same pattern?

    a)rate b)input c)stat d)gem e) None

     

    5. Which of the following would be step VII?

    a) Uncut omit input era ace stat rate gem fan cast.

    b) Uncut omit input era ace rate stat fan gem cast.

    c) Uncut omit input era ace cast fan gem rate stat.

    d) Uncut omit input era stat ace rate gem fan cast.

    e) There will be no such step as the input gets rearranged before step VII.

     

    Answers  with Explanations: After careful analysis of the given input and  various steps of rearrangement, it is evident that two words are  rearranged in each step. The words starting with vowels are rearranged  from the left in the reverse alphabetical order and words starting with  consonants are arranged from the right in alphabetical order.

    Input : gem stat ace cast omit fan rate uncut era input

    Step I : uncut gem stat ace omit    fan rate era input cast

    Step II : uncut omit gem stat ace    rate era input fan cast

    Step III : uncut omit input stat ace    rate era gem fan cast

    Step IV : uncut omit input era stat    ace rate gem fan cast

    Step V : uncut omit input era ace    stat rate gem fan stat

     

    1. (c) Option (c) is the final    arrangement

    2. (a) The word ‘rate’ is at sixth place  from the left in the Step III

    3. (a) It is Step II

    4. (d) There is one word between   ‘omit’ and ‘era’. Therefore ‘ace’  would be related to ‘gem’.

    5. (e) Step IV is the last Step.

     

    Directions (6-10): Study the following information carefully and answer the questions which follow:

     

    A word and number arrangement machine when given an input line of words and numbers rearranges them following a particular rule.  Following is an illustration of input and the rearrangement. (United  Bank of India PO-2010)

    Input : flight 37 delay an 53 87    hour 19 by 46

    Step I : 87 flight 37 delay 53 hour   19 by 46 an

    Step II : 87 53 flight 37 delay hour   19 46 by an

    Step III : 87 53 46 flight 37 hour 19   delay by an

    Step IV : 87 53 46 37 hour 19 flight   delay by an

    Step V : 87 53 46 37 19 hour flight    delay by an

    Step V is the last step of the arrangement of the above input as the intended rearrangement is obtained. As per the rules followed in the above steps, answer the following questions based upon the input: 24cross 82 road 93 safe 13 jam halt 46

     

    6. Which of the following would be the second step after the rearrangement?

    a) 93 82 46 24 13 safe road jam halt cross

    b) 93 82 46 24 road safe 13 jam halt cross

    c) 93 82 24 road safe 13 jam 46 halt cross

    d) 93 24 82 road safe 13 jam halt 46 cross

    e)  None of these

     

    7.  Which of the following would be the final arrangement?

    a) 93 82 46 24 13 safe road jam halt cross

    b) 93  82   46  13   24  safe   road  jam   halt  cross

    c) 13 24 46 82 93 safe road jam halt cross

    d) 93 82 46 24 13 cross halt jam road safe

    e) safe  road  jam  halt  cross 93  82  46  24  13

     

    8. Which of the following will be step VI of the above input?

    a) 93 24 82 road safe 13 jam halt 46 cross

    b) 93 82 24 road safe 13 jam 46 halt cross

    c) 93 82 46 24 road safe 13 jam halt cross

    d) 93 82 46 24 13 safe road jam halt cross

    e) There will be no such step as it gets arranged before StepVI

     

    9. In step III, which of the following would be the third word/number from the left?

    a) safe b) 46 c)13 d) road e) None

     

    10. Which step would be the following Output?

    93 24 82 road safe 13 jam halt 46 cross

    a) I    b)  II   c)  III   d)  IV  e)  V

     

    Answers:

    6) c, 7) a, 8) e, 9) b, 10) a

     

    Directions (11-15): Study the following information carefully to answer the given questions:

    A word and number arrangement machine when given an input line of words and numbers rearranges them following a particular rule.  The following is an illustration of input and the rearrangement. (Central Bank of India PO-2010)

     

    Input : why is 25 bigger than 14   but smaller than 32

    Step I : than 14 why is 25 bigger    but smaller than 32

    Step II : than 14 is 25 why bigger     but smaller than 32

    Step III : than 14 is 25 than 32 why   bigger but smaller

    Step IV : than 14 is 25 than 32 why   smaller bigger but

    Step V  : than 14 is 25 than 32 why   smaller but bigger

    Step V is the last step of the arrangement of the above input as the intended rearrangement is obtained. As per the rules followed in the above steps, indicate the answer in each of the following questions with respect to the appropriate step for the given input.

     

    Input for the questions: any number less than 30 and more than 20 does not equal 40

     

    11. Which step number would be the following output?

    than 20 any number less than 30 and more does not equal 40

    a) III b)  IV c)  V d)  VI e)  None

     

    12.  How many steps would be needed to complete the arrangement?

    a) X b) VIII c) IX d) VII e)  None

     

    13. Which of the following would be step IV?

    a) than 20 than 30 equal 40 any number less and more does not

    b) than 20 any number less than 30 and more does not equal 40

    c) 20 30  40 than than equal number any less and more does not

    d) 20 than 30 than 40 equal number any less and more does not

    e)  None of these

     

    14. Which of the following would be the step II?

    a) 20 than 30 than any number less and more does not equal 40

    b) than 20 than 30 equal 40 any number less and more does not

    c) than 20 than 30 any number less and more does not equal 40

    d) than 20 than 30 any number less and more does not 40 equal

    e)  None of these.

     

    15. Which word/number would be on 8th position from left side in step V?

    a)any b)not c)40 d)number e)  none

     

    Answers with Explanations:

    First of all the numbers and their preceding letters are arranged. The numbers are arranged in ascending order. Then, the words are arranged in alphabetical but in reverse order.

    Input: any number less than 30 and more than20 does not equal 40

    Step I: than 20 any number less than 30 and more does not equal 40

    Step II: than 20 than 30 any num-ber less and more does not equal 40

    Step III: than 20 than 30 equal 40 any number less and more does not

    Step IV: than 20 than 30 equal 40 number any less and more does not

    Step V: than 20 than 30 equal 40 number not any less and more does

    Step VI: than 20 than 30 equal 40  number not more any less and does

    Step VII: than 20 than 30 equal 40 number not more less any and does

    Step VIII: than 20 than 30 equal 40 number not more less does any

    and Step VIII is the last Step

    11. e) It is Step I.

    12. b) Eight steps would be required  to complete the arrangement.

    13. e) There is no such option.

    14. c) Option (c) is step III.

    15. b) The word ‘not’ would be on 8th position from left in Step V.

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