Congrats to Tom and Ray and the Car Talk staff for the Two-String Puzzler. I couldn’t solve it. I did figure out how to get the string to burn for 1/2 hour, but couldn’t figure out how to get 15 minutes. When Tom and Ray gave the answer, I said to myself “You stupid!” for not seeing how to do it. … lol … I must say it was a pretty good solution to a pretty good puzzler.
I tried both waking and sleeping. Waking produced the method to get 30 minutes. But not 15 minutes. I put my brain on the 15 minute problem in the background, during sleep. This almost always works; but the most my apparently inferior brain could come up with after 8 hours of sleeping on it was this: Make a pendulum with one of the strings, tying the lighter on the end of the string for the weight. Then burning the other string to calibrate the pendulum. Close, but definitely no cigar
Anyway, thanks to everybody there at Car Talk for some great Puzzler amusement.