# What Moves Up and Down But Stays Still?

STAIRS

## Explanation:

At first glance, this riddle may seem easy. As humans, we can think of many things that go up and down. However, upon closer examination, the answer becomes less clear. Eyezak the Riddle Robot knows this and challenges us to think deeper. Let’s explore some possible answers and why they don’t fit. Here are a few things that may go up and down:

• Temperature
• Elevator
• Helicopter
• A coin I flipped
• Stairs

### Temperature

Temperature is a common answer. It is evident that temperature can go up and down. We have all experienced hot and cold temperatures. However, it also needs to meet a second criteria: does it move?

This is a tricky question on its own, which may explain why there are riddles about temperature. The answer is that temperature does move, so it cannot be the solution. In order to confirm that the temperature has changed, we need to measure it. This distinction is important because sometimes, when we’re unwell, things may feel hot or cold to us, but they do not actually change in temperature.

Measurement is necessary to determine if a change occurred. When we measure temperature, we need an instrument that either uses a mercury-based indicator or displays a numerical value. In the case of a mercury-based indicator, the mercury physically moves up and down inside a tube. If a number is displayed, the act of that number changing on a screen or analog dial is also considered movement. Therefore, temperature cannot be the answer to this riddle because it does move.

### Elevator

Elevators are incredibly convenient and widely used. They transport us vertically, allowing us to easily move between floors. Yes, they go up and down. However, do they actually move? Unfortunately, they do. When we’re inside an elevator, it physically moves up and down. Although we may not feel the movement, elevators can travel at speeds between five and 22 miles per hour. This speed is similar to that of an average cyclist, except the movement is vertical instead of horizontal. Therefore, elevators do not meet the criteria for Eyezak’s riddle.

### Helicopter

Helicopters are fascinating machines. They can ascend and descend vertically, making them different from planes that require forward motion to climb gradually. Helicopters allow us to rise rapidly without the need for a runway.

But do they move? Yes, they do. When we ride in a helicopter, it transports us from one location to another. Additionally, various parts of the helicopter, such as the blades and the rudder, move independently. Based on these facts, helicopters also fail to answer Eyezak’s riddle. Let’s try flipping a coin instead!

### A Coin I Flipped

Sometimes, flipping a coin is the fairest way to make a decision. To do this, you take a coin, hold it on top of your fisted hand with your thumb underneath, and flick your thumb upwards. When done correctly, the coin rotates and goes up before coming back down into your open hand.

This act of flying up and landing down qualifies as movement. The coin physically changes location as it moves through the air. However, this answer doesn’t satisfy all the criteria of Eyezak’s riddle. We have one more chance to get it right.

### Stairs

Stairs are structures found in houses and buildings that allow us to ascend while walking forward. They consist of sequentially higher steps that form a low slope rise from one floor to another. Although stairs are widely disliked by most people, they still serve their purpose.

When observing stairs from either floor, they always appear stationary, typically without any moving parts. If we choose to “take the stairs,” we are the ones moving, while the stairs themselves remain still. We move under our own power, without any assistance from the stairs. Therefore, stairs emerge as a promising answer to Eyezak’s riddle.

To recap, stairs are used to connect two floors in a building in a mostly vertical manner. Hence, they “go up and down.” Notably, stairs themselves do not physically move, and anyone, including pets, who uses the stairs is moving independently without any assistance from the stairs. Consequently, stairs fulfill both criteria for the riddle’s answer. Eyezak, our Riddle Robot, will certainly be frustrated with us for solving it.

## Background:

Stairs can be known by various names such as “stairs,” “staircase,” “stairwell,” “stairway,” or “flight of stairs.” Their primary purpose is to simplify vertical movement by dividing it into smaller distances called “steps.” Stairs can be found both indoors and outdoors, facilitating the climb between different levels.

For safety reasons, stairs often include additional features such as guardrails, handrails, or decorative banisters to prevent accidents. These safety measures can be functional or purely aesthetic.

Stairs come in different forms, ranging from a straightforward straight staircase connecting two levels to switchback-style stairwells with winders and landings that change direction as they ascend. Spiral staircases require continuous circular movement to reach the top.

Stairs have been used for changing elevations since ancient times. There is evidence of stairs predating early civilizations, such as those found in Ancient Egypt. Stairs have become an integral part of human existence, transcending cultural differences.

We hope you’ve enjoyed learning about stairs. Although the origins of stairs are unrelated to this riddle, they hold the answer. The Riddle Robot Eyezak, Puzzle Master, may not care whether you know these details, but expanding your knowledge today will prepare you for solving future riddles from Eyezak tomorrow.

## Video:

The 5 Ws and H are questions whose answers are considered basic in information gathering or problem solving. 5ws.wiki will best answer all your questions

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