A Rubik’s Cube has 3 pieces wide, so it is called 3×3 Rubik’s Cube. The Rubik’s Cube record is only 5.55 seconds. There are other well-known cubes with more pieces per side as 4×4 and 5×5 cubes. The number of parts and the number of moves needed to solve them increase, also increasing the number of seconds required to solve them (22 and 48 seconds, respectively).
A few years ago they managed to create the first 6×6 and 7×7 Rubik’s cubes. And some time later they became official categories in Rubik’s Cube competitions. Their records are 1:40 and 2:38, respectively.
All these cubes are small, even tiny, compared with 17×17 Rubik’s Cube, the most complicated Rubik’s cube in the world. With 1734 stickers, it is not easy to solve. However, Kenneth Brandon has been able to solve it in 7 and a half hours!!
Rubik’s Cube is one of the most popular puzzles in the world because of its apparent simplicity, but also because of the great complexity it hides. It is a small cube of colors with a clear objective: “a single color in each face”. It is so simple that anyone can try.
However, after a while with a Rubik’s cube in your hands, you realize that it is something much more complex. One of the ways that we can understand its complexity is by calculating the number of possible combinations of a Rubik’s cube. That is, the number of different ways you can place the pieces.
In total, a Rubik’s cube has 43,252,003,274,489,856,000 possible combinations. This is a huge number. Although we are so used to seeing large numbers that we are not aware of how big it is. To understand it better, I have created an infographic in which I compare the number of possible combinations of a Rubik’s cube with the number of seconds the universe has since the Big Bang:
Hope you like it and it has helped you to understand better the true magnitude of the number of combinations of a Rubik’s Cube.
By the way, we have to divide the number of combinations Rubik Cube into 12 because it is impossible to perform several operations:
Change the orientation of an edge (2 possibilities) without altering the rest of the cube.
Change the orientation of a corner (3 possibilities) without altering the rest of the cube.
Swap the position of only two edges without also swapping two corners (and vice versa).
With all these combinations… are you still arguing that you once solved the Rubik’s Cube by chance? Better take a look at our Rubik’s Cube solutions and solve it by yourself.
Years ago, most of the websites used strange notation to show how to solve a Rubik’s Cube. And, nowadays, a lot of the websites are still using them.
One of the worst things about notations is that you have to learn something before learning how to solve the Rubik’s Cube. As a consequence, many people think that solving the cube is something to difficult for them.
Did you know that it took Erno Rubik, the creator of the Rubik’s Cube, more than one month to solve its own creation? In fact, we was not even sure if there was a method to solve it.
But for me, it was a code I myself had invented! Yet I could not read it.
It may seem surprising, but keep in mind that this website did not exist, hehe. Seriously, you have to put yourself in his shoes. Once he creates the Cube, he spends every day trying to solve it. No one had ever solved it. In fact, no one had attempted to solve it. Day after day, without achieving any progress most the days, must be exhausting.
Is like when you decide to go home after a nice walk in which you have seen many lovely sights. I decided it was time to go home, let us put the cubes back in order. And it was at that moment that I came face to face with the Big Challenge: What is the way home?
The Cube is an imitation of life itself – or even an improvement on life. The problems of puzzles are very near the problems of life, our whole life is solving puzzles. If you are hungry, you have to find something to eat. But everyday problems are very mixed – they’re not clear. The Cube’s problem depends just on you. You can solve it independently. But to find happiness in life, you’re not independent. That’s the only big difference.