## Poll

8 votes (38.09%) | |||

4 votes (19.04%) | |||

1 vote (4.76%) | |||

2 votes (9.52%) | |||

No votes (0%) | |||

5 votes (23.8%) | |||

2 votes (9.52%) | |||

4 votes (19.04%) | |||

3 votes (14.28%) | |||

2 votes (9.52%) |

**21 members have voted**

It seems like the yellow face is the hardest part of the puzzle. Hoping to finish it tomorrow.

Quote:gamerfreakI now have the first two layers done. I think I’m at about 1:20 total cube time.

It seems like the yellow face is the hardest part of the puzzle. Hoping to finish it tomorrow.

Congratulations! The yellow face is very algorithmic. Little "common sense" required, but there are three or four algorithms to memorize, depending if you count four moves as one of them.

Direct: https://youtu.be/gFLzvu7x4_k

Quote:WizardCongratulations! The yellow face is very algorithmic. Little "common sense" required, but there are three or four algorithms to memorize, depending if you count four moves as one of them.

I finished the yellow cross this morning, and got 2/4 final corner pieces oriented correctly.

And then in the middle of finishing the final 2 I got a phone call and completely lost my orientation. It looked bad enough that I just remixed cube to have another go of it from the start.

The yellow corners are by far the most stressful part of the puzzle, because after finishing an algorithm to orient a square, other parts will look wrong until the end.

Sorry if I am making this my personal Rubiks diary.

Quote:gamerfreakSorry if I am making this my personal Rubiks diary.

No apologies necessary. I'm happy to have someone to talk to talk to who actually cubes.

Yup, with the yellow corners you can't forget which side is which and have to just have faith it will work out in the end. The yellow center should be on the left so you need to just remember what the top center is (or front, back, or bottom). Of course, with the phone ringing, who thinks of that?

http://magneticcube.com/

They are a bit pricey, compared to regular cubes, but I think they are kind of neat.

Quote:WizardCongratulations! The yellow face is very algorithmic. Little "common sense" required, but there are three or four algorithms to memorize, depending if you count four moves as one of them.

Now that I understand the first 2 layers I can do them rather quickly. With the first 2 it is a few moves for each and they make sense just by looking at it.

I can't figure out the yellow. Obviously watching the videos I can but if I never saw the video I guarantee that I would. Ever have figured it out. You make 8 moves which completely screws up the Cube until the final few moves. How would auto e ever figure that out without help?

Quote:GWAEI can't figure out the yellow. Obviously watching the videos I can but if I never saw the video I guarantee that I would. Ever have figured it out. You make 8 moves which completely screws up the Cube until the final few moves. How would auto e ever figure that out without help?

I didn't even know about this method until recently. In learning these new puzzles a lot of the other videos lead you through this "beginners method." It certainly wasn't what everyone did back in the 80's. I certainly am impressed that anybody figured this out. I'd be happy to give him credit in my videos but I have no idea who to give credit to.

Quote:EdCollinsMike, have you seen these magnetic cubes?

http://magneticcube.com/

They are a bit pricey, compared to regular cubes, but I think they are kind of neat.

Thanks for the suggestion. No, I've never actually seen one. Here is another type that is meant for serious competitive cubers that care about ever 1/100th of a second.

Direct link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DVaqZBhry80

Where to purchase: https://thecubicle.us/gan-356-air-um-p-8332.html

Direct: https://youtu.be/G9mnTXk5484

I did the white cross and then filled in the corners. When I was done I had the white side done and the middle 2 of each side was done. After I do the next sequence I end up with the white side done and the middle done but my top row is off by 2 squares and I can't figure out what I am doing wrong or how to fix it. I watched a few videos and they tell you how to fix it if you have white done and the first row but you are off on the middle row.

I have scrambled it up 4 times and each time I am off on the same pieces. So annoying.

a thread for the rest of us on how to

destroy these creations of Satan..

Also, doesn't every permutation have at least five "mirrors" where the same scramble is conducted with a different starting color on top?

If you don't count the "mirrors", how many unique permutations are there?

infographic from: budnews.hu

Direct: https://youtu.be/O80zsIAEUf4

Good work. One comment:

Near the end, when you're positioning the three corners of the last layer, your algorithm (at about 5:42 of the video),

U R U' L' U R' U' L

swaps the front left, back left, and back right corners in a counter-clockwise direction. You mentioned this in the tutorial. As you also mentioned, this algorithm does not touch the right front corner cube at all.

Assuming the solver wishes to learn another algorithm, you can also rotate those same three corners in a clockwise rotation. The benefit to this, is that 50% of the time a clockwise rotation will be desired over a counter-clockwise rotation, since it will save time. It will position all three of those corners where you want them with just that one algorithm consisting of eight twists. You don't have to repeat it.

(And of course, 50% of the time the counter-clockwise rotation is the best way to go, since it will position those three corners where you want them with just those eight twists.)

Not surprisingly, this clockwise algorithm is simply the exact opposite (and in the reverse order) of the counter-clockwise algorithm you describe:

L' U R U' L U R' U'

(I suspect you know this but did not mention it in the video, to keep things simple.)

Quote:EdCollinsU R U' L' U R' U' L

Thanks. I probably should have thrown that in there quickly. Personally, I only committed U R U' L' U R' U' L to memory and just do it twice if I have to. My philosophy is to minimize memorization and to heck with a fast time.

Working on part 3 of the Ghost Cube today. I keep messing up and having to start over.

Quote:WizardQuote:EdCollinsU R U' L' U R' U' L

Thanks. I probably should have thrown that in there quickly. Personally, I only committed U R U' L' U R' U' L to memory and just do it twice if I have to. My philosophy is to minimize memorization and to heck with a fast time.

Working on part 3 of the Ghost Cube today. I keep messing up and having to start over.

I learned the last layer slightly differen, but don’t do any of the mirror version and end up doing things up to 2 times instead of just once.

Right now I’m working learning f2l. I was doing the middle layer separately

Quote:Ayecarumbainfographic from: budnews.hu

the cube can be assembled into an unsolvable state?

Quote:odiousgambitthe cube can be assembled into an unsolvable state?

Yes. I believe there are 12 different universes of combinations.

Direct: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAu_JaFkdzc

Direct: https://youtu.be/SiJlSUYl6ws

of cubes you have mastered entirely on your own

VS with any form of guidance.

Quote:AyecarumbaI'm curious if the published number of permutations for spots on a 3X3 cube (43 quintillion) takes into account that there are six spots that are always in the correct positions?

Also, doesn't every permutation have at least five "mirrors" where the same scramble is conducted with a different starting color on top?

If you don't count the "mirrors", how many unique permutations are there?

Quote:WizardI go through the calculation of the number of scrambles in my Ask the Wizard column #268.

It appears that the 43 quintillion includes the "mirrors". An example of a "mirror" would be:

1) Start with a solved cube with the red face on top, and the blue face facing you.

2) Turn the top row to the left one face. You still have the red face on top and the bottom two rows are still blue, but the top row is now white.

This is a simple scramble, and counts as one of the permutations. However, doesn't this scramble "mirror" the scramble where you start with the white or yellow or green face facing you, then turned the top row? In fact you can't perform one of these without doing all of them.

Does the 43 quintillion figure take this into account, or is a top row of white with the two rows below blue, considered the same permutation as a top row of green, and the two rows below white? (which is also technically the same as starting with a solved cube, flipping it upside down then turning the bottom row to the right.)

Could this inflated counting be why, even with so many starting scrambled states, every cube can be solved in 20 moves or less?

Here's a video of a robot that was programmed to solve a cube in less than half a second:

For me, the answer to that question would most likely be a percentage of zero.Quote:rainmanl would like to know some sort of ratio/percentage of cubes you have mastered entirely on your own VS with any form of guidance.

I suspect I would not have been able to figure out how to solve the darn thing on my own. The solution is not intuitive, at least not to me. My mind just doesn't work that way.

When I first got the cube, if I remember correctly, I was attempting to solve it one face at a time. From what I now know, I don't believe it can be solved that way.

Quote:rainmanl would like to know some sort of ratio/percentage

of cubes you have mastered entirely on your own

VS with any form of guidance.

I must confess that ratio is probably zero. Some I have solved but couldn't remember how I solved it and couldn't easily repeat the feat. This happened with the X Cube. I can't believe I solved that but have not been able to repeat it. Some easier ones like the Pyraminx I have solved on my own but it was largely educated trial and error.

No, I'm impatient and will jump to a YouTube video after several hours of trying to figure out a puzzle on my own.

Direct: https://youtu.be/yFVrrUxwyZc

Direct: https://youtu.be/4AMz-VQpL14

Regarding the 43+ quintillion possible ways to mix it up...

That number just boggles my mind. It's far, far, FAR more than I ever would have suspected. I mean, the center cubes never move... they are always center cubes. The green center cube is always opposite the blue center cube. The corner cubes are always corner cubes. The edge cubes are always edge cubes.

There just doesn't seem like there would be THAT many ways to scramble the darn thing. Millions and millionsmaybe... possibly even billions... but not 43 quintillion!

But I've seen the math and it all looks correct.

How big is 43 quintillion? There are about 31 million seconds in a year. You would need over a thousand million years assuming you could look at a thousand patterns every second just to see all the possible combinations.

Take your time.Quote:GWAEI have been practicing the 3x3. I can now do the first 2 levels in 2 min 27 sec. I have no idea how to do the 3rd. The algorithm is just too damn long.inwish there was an easy way to memorize ir.

Learn one step at a time.

There is no rush.

Flip the edges: F U R U- R- F-

Orient the edges: R U R- U R U2 R- U

Flip the corners: U R U- L- U R- U- L

Orient the corners: R- D- R D

Quote:GWAEI have been practicing the 3x3. I can now do the first 2 levels in 2 min 27 sec. I have no idea how to do the 3rd. The algorithm is just too damn long.inwish there was an easy way to memorize ir.

I know the last layer requires a lot more memorization and is not very intuitive. The good part is it is broken down into four parts. First, just orient those top edges so yellow is facing up on each one (assuming you started with white on bottom). Part 3 of my Rubik's Cube video explains how to do it -- probably badly.

Quote:DRichWizard, I may have missed this in the thread but did you learn to solve the first cube on your own or did you read about strategies, techniques, and instructions from a different source? I was never able to solve the 3x3 regularly without reading a book about it.

No. Wish I could say I figured it out myself, but I'm too impatient. I now use a different technique, which is known as the "beginner's method." The method from the 80's book is pretty much outdated.

Quote:EdCollinsFlip the edges: F U R U- R- F-

Orient the edges: R U R- U R U2 R- U

Flip the corners: U R U- L- U R- U- L

Orient the corners: R- D- R D

Yup. I do a slightly different alg to orient the top edges, but I think the result is the same.

Yes. (1) I suspect there can be several algorithms to achieve the same result and (2) it also just depends upon how you're holding the cube in your hand. Rotate the cube 90 degrees and the algorithm could be exactly the same, just executed differently.Quote:WizardYup. I do a slightly different alg to orient the top edges, but I think the result is the same.

I'm probably gonna buy one of those $40 or $50 speed cubes with magnets inside, just to see what they are like. Having each rotation "snap" into place (which the magnets help do) is probably really cool.

Quote:EdCollinsWell, I did it. What an idiot I am. I just spent a little more than $90 on a bunch of cubes, over at The Cubicle (https://thecubicle.us/index.php) as if I really needed any more cubes.

Let me know how you like your speed cube. I'm so slow that it wouldn't make much difference in my case but might be nice having a Ferrari of Rubik's Cubes anyway.

For the rest, here is a working link: https://thecubicle.us/index.php

I got my speed down to 1 min 49 sec. Although that was a 1 time deal, most of them are around 2 min 25 sec

In an attempt to accurately answer your question, I just solved the first two rows seven times. To time myself, I used a Rubik's Cube speed timer app that I have on my phone, that I downloaded a couple of years ago, and I still have installed.Quote:GWAEHow long does it take everyone to do the first 2 rows of the 3x3?

I got my speed down to 1 min 49 sec. Although that was a 1 time deal, most of them are around 2 min 25 sec

Note that I use the beginner's method. (Edges on top first, then the corners, then the edges of the middle layer. One of these days I WILL learn an alternate method.)

Here are my times:

1:56, 1:35, 1:17, 1:21, 1:59, 1:35, 1:33

That's an overall average of 1:36, and if you toss out the two best times and toss out the two worst times, that's an average of 1:34.

Eventually I'd like to solve the whole darn cube in under a minute, so I have a long way to go. :)

I'm out of practice, but that average time for the first two layers is probably close to my average from years ago. I don't have any algorithms for that first, top layer. It's all just intuitive. The last layer I can solve faster than the first layer, because my muscle memory kicks in and I don't have to figure anything out. Meaning, when it's time for the last layer, I just see, as quickly as I can, what algorithm needs to be performed next, and then I hold the cube in my hand the appropriate way, and then muscle memory takes over and I do the alg. Then I look again and move to the next algorithm for that last layer.

But there is no muscle memory for me, for that first, top layer. I have to "figure it out" each time, and that takes more time, if that makes sense.

I need to figure out a better middle layer method. Solving that middle layer takes up way too much time for me, for those four simple edges.

Quote:GWAEHow long does it take everyone to do the first 2 rows of the 3x3?

I just did that on three cubes. Took me 2:45, so average of 55 seconds per cube.

Quote:EdCollinsIn an attempt to accurately answer your question, I just solved the first two rows seven times. To time myself, I used a Rubik's Cube speed timer app that I have on my phone, that I downloaded a couple of years ago, and I still have installed.

Note that I use the beginner's method. (Edges on top first, then the corners, then the edges of the middle layer. One of these days I WILL learn an alternate method.)

Here are my times:

1:56, 1:35, 1:17, 1:21, 1:59, 1:35, 1:33

That's an overall average of 1:36, and if you toss out the two best times and toss out the two worst times, that's an average of 1:34.

Eventually I'd like to solve the whole darn cube in under a minute, so I have a long way to go. :)

I'm out of practice, but that average time for the first two layers is probably close to my average from years ago. I don't have any algorithms for that first, top layer. It's all just intuitive. The last layer I can solve faster than the first layer, because my muscle memory kicks in and I don't have to figure anything out. Meaning, when it's time for the last layer, I just see, as quickly as I can, what algorithm needs to be performed next, and then I hold the cube in my hand the appropriate way, and then muscle memory takes over and I do the alg. Then I look again and move to the next algorithm for that last layer.

But there is no muscle memory for me, for that first, top layer. I have to "figure it out" each time, and that takes more time, if that makes sense.

I need to figure out a better middle layer method. Solving that middle layer takes up way too much time for me, for those four simple edges.

It takes me about 1:10 to do the first layer since I have to figure it out. I can do the second layer in about 15 to 20 sec. I am going to watch wizards video right now for the 3rd level to see if I can get it done on my own.

Direct: https://youtu.be/e1DUgGyIDTY

My speedcubes arrived today.Quote:WizardLet me know how you like your speed cube. I'm so slow that it wouldn't make much difference in my case but might be nice having a Ferrari of Rubik's Cubes anyway.

For the rest, here is a working link: https://thecubicle.us/index.php

I purchased a Valk 3 Power M, stickerless (costing $38.99), and a MoYu WeiLong GTS2 M (costing $25.99).

(I also purchased a few other, far less expensive cubes.)

Note that I already owned a bunch of other "speedcubes," but these two cubes have those tiny magnets inside. (The letter "M" in each of their names above stands for "magnet.") In the act of turning a side, the magnets help to "finish the turn" and "click" the side into place. (There is no audible click... but you can definitely feel the side of the cube finish the turn on its own, as the magnets grab it and pull it into place.)

Also note that these are not, by far, the most expensive magnetic cubes available. A GAN 356 SM costs $49.99. A CH Valk 3 M costs $42.99. The Angstrom WuQue M costs $69.99! Wow. That's a lot of money for a 3x3x3 cube! Other Angstrom models go from $51.99 up to $62.99. I'm not even sure how those cubes would be "better" than these two cubes I bought.

Are these expensive cubes with magnets worth it? Hmmmnn... maybe! They are definitely neat. Both of these two new magnetic cubes are very, very nice cubes. Just by picking them up and holding them in your hand and turning them once or twice you can feel the difference in quality. (The analogy that first comes to mind is that of the difference between a Toyota Celica and a Lexus LS, for example. Both vehicles will get you where you want to go, but a Lexus does it with more style.)

The differences are slight, but noticeable. If I put all of my cubes in a pile and closed my eyes, and then picked out one cube after another from the pile, with just a turn or two I could easily pick out each of these two cubes from all of the others.

So yes, for someone who loves cubing and/or someone who collects cubes, and who enjoys solving them regularly, then I'd say spending the additional money for one of these cubes with the magnets inside, to add to your collection, would be worthwhile. Otherwise, the answer is probably no.

The brand of cube you want to stay away from is, ironically, the Rubik's brand. ALL of my other cubes (I now have GuanLongs, ShengShous, Cyclone Boys, SuLongs, Valks, MoYus, GouGuans, etc.) turn far, FAR easier than the Rubik's brand. From what I've read, the reason is because the mechanism inside is slightly different. These other companies have improved upon the initial mechanism, and continue to do so, while Rubik's has not.

I have read that the relatively new Rubik's Speed Cube is a much better cube than the normal Rubik's brand, but I don't have one of those to verify that. (One video I watched of a reviewer said the Rubik's Speed Cube was indeed better than the original... but it was still a piece of crap.) I have just two actual Rubik's brand cubes and both of them turn far, far worse than all of my other cubes. So yes, if you enjoy cubing and are currently using a Rubik's brand, definitely get something else. The $3.99 ShengShou Gem, for example, is a GREAT cube! I especially like the stickerless, TEXTURED sides this cube has. The slight texture on each cube feels better in your hand I think it looks cool. I was so impressed with this cube, at $3.99, and how smooth and effortlessly it turned, that after I received it I bought two more!

Up until recently, I had no idea there were so many different makes of cubes and within each make, so many different models. Amazing.

And no, I doubt as if these two new magnetic cubes will improve my times... but we all like to treat ourselves to something nice now and then. :)

It doesn't surprise me the Rubik's brand is awful. Their conventional cubes are the worst in its price range. They got lazy with their monopoly and the Chinese have justifiably upped the game, much like the Japanese did with cars in the 1970's.

Quote:GWAEI have been practicing the 3x3. I can now do the first 2 levels in 2 min 27 sec. I have no idea how to do the 3rd. The algorithm is just too damn long.inwish there was an easy way to memorize ir.

I always kinda had trouble memorizing the terms or letters for each of the algorithms. The way I learned them is by doing them, step by step, and seeing where each of the pieces moved and how it worked.

Solving it the intermediate way is quite a bit more difficult because instead of like 8-10 algorithms you gotta memorize, there’s like hundreds IIRC. I started doing that, but sorta faded out of it. It takes a lot of time and some commitment to learn those new ones. One positive to it though is many of them are very similar (sorta like how solving for the middle edges in the basic strategy, there are two ways to do it, one if the piece is on top and to the left, and the other which is when the piece is on top but to the right, both algorithms are the same, just backwards’ish).

Quote:WizardThanks for the review Ed! You've convinced me to get a magnetic cube. Can you give me a single brand you would recommend? Cost is not much of an issue with me. I've seen cubing videos that mention magnetic cubes needing lubricant, but I don't get why. I prefer something that requires a minimum of maintenance. I also prefer sticker-less.

It doesn't surprise me the Rubik's brand is awful. Their conventional cubes are the worst in its price range. They got lazy with their monopoly and the Chinese have justifiably upped the game, much like the Japanese did with cars in the 1970's.

I also got my rubiks brand for 4.99 on sale. Cant expect them to be good for that price. They are in it for the kids and rec player. I am actually surprised they haven't made a professional version since there are contests. Maybe they just dont think the money is there to sell a $50 cube.

Ed, have you timed yourself on the old vs new? Curious how it changed your speed, if any.

Nope, I'm not in a position to recommend one. I now just have the two. There's several brands to choose from. I've now ordered cubes from both speedcubeshop.com/ and thecubicle.us and both shipped out my cubes quickly. There's lots of videos available of these magnetic cubes so just spend a little while researching what you might like and go for it.Quote:Wizard... Can you give me a single brand you would recommend? Cost is not much of an issue with me. I've seen cubing videos that mention magnetic cubes needing lubricant, but I don't get why. I prefer something that requires a minimum of maintenance. I also prefer sticker-less.