Most people have touched a Rubik’s Cube at some point or another and most probably tossed it aside after awhile, the blocks approximately as disordered as when they received the cube. Of course, plenty of people know an algorithm to solve the cube and some can even do it behind their backs in a matter of seconds. I am not either of those…I can usually solve one side and part of another, but I have never solved one out-right…I don’t know the algorithm.
I remember when I went to the Knoxville World’s Fair in 1982…the Hungary Pavilion had a large Rubik’s cube as a major focal point of its display. I think 1982 was probably at the height of the Rubik’s cube craze, and it’s inventor, Ernő Rubik is Hungarian. I am pretty sure that’s about the time that I got my first cube. Some people knew the tricks to solve it, but I was 10 or so and without the Internet, there were no real shortcuts. Many of my friends had Rubik’s Cubes and none of us, as far as I know, ever solved them on our own when we were in school. A few people peeled the stickers to solve their cubes and a few people threw them in the river I suppose. Mrs. Donato, one of our elementary lunch ladies knew how to solve the cube so some kids let her solve them during lunch. I am sure my old cube is at my parents’ house somewhere, still unsolved.
Anyhow, back to now…Isaac and some of his buddies are into cool stuff…ciphering and figuring and, of course, puzzles and games and stuff like that. The other night, Isaac brought a Rubik’s Cube home to solve. One of his buddies learned one of the algorithms to solve it and Isaac was busy learning as well. Of course, being into things like that, he dedicated a fair amount of brain time to learning the tricks that night and can solve it on his own now. Honestly, as a kid stuck in 1982 (apparently), I was amazed that someone in my own house could solve the Rubik’s cube!