1997 AIME Problems/Problem 10
Every card in a deck has a picture of one shape - circle, square, or triangle, which is painted in one of the three colors - red, blue, or green. Furthermore, each color is applied in one of three shades - light, medium, or dark. The deck has 27 cards, with every shape-color-shade combination represented. A set of three cards from the deck is called complementary if all of the following statements are true:
i. Either each of the three cards has a different shape or all three of the card have the same shape.
ii. Either each of the three cards has a different color or all three of the cards have the same color.
iii. Either each of the three cards has a different shade or all three of the cards have the same shade.
How many different complementary three-card sets are there?
We call these three types of complementary sets respectively. What we are trying to find is
We know this is equivalent to
Now, . Obviously, and are the same. Thus, we have
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