The question: "10 friends wish to establish secure communications between themselves using asymmetric-key cryptography. How many keys need to be known by each user?" was posed by my teacher. He says 10 keys are needed. I say only 2 keys are needed. As long as they have copies of the same keypair (keypair=2 keys, a public and a private), they don't need more than two. Why in the WORLD would you need more than a public key and a private key?
I have already seen a few questions of this type by googling. Turns out this kind of question never specifies that the people of the group must be able to talk individually to each other. Nevertheless, the student must always assume they want to talk individually and secretly. That makes no sense to me, but that's reality. Ie: In public key cryptography, how many keys are required for secure communication between n parties?
In other words, in criptography, when they say communication between N entities, it is not actually communication between N entities, it's more like N private communications between each of the N entities.