Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Sunday, January 15, 2021

Hard to believe than anyone in this day and age would still be enthused by that ’80s puzzling refugee, the Rubik’s Cube. But the fire burns with Speedcubing, a beat-the-clock competition for clicking-and-clacking the colored tiles into their proper solid faces.

To underline the “speed” part of this: Caltech student Leyan Lo just set the world speed record for solving the Cube: 11.13 seconds.

Eleven seconds? I can’t even conceive how that’s possible. A fully mixed-up Cube? How can anyone mentally plot their moves so quickly? I wonder if these Cube models are somehow built for speed. I haven’t touched one of those things in ages, but I seem to remember that the movement when rotating those plastic rows and columns was anything but fluid. Maybe they’re oiled up or something.

I doubt they’re designed around speed, but there are a few shortcuts to a solution, including my old cheat: Peeling the stickers off.

- Costa Tsiokos, Sun 01/15/2006 06:22:40 PM
Category: Pop Culture | Permalink |

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  1. Back in the 80s, I would take my Cube apart, slather a bunch of Vaseline on the insides, put it together, and it would spin much faster. My personal best was about 51 seconds.

    Comment by david — 01/16/2006 @ 02:05:51 AM

  2. Seriously? There’s something not right about combining Vaseline with… well, almost anything, actually. ;)

    Comment by CT — 01/16/2006 @ 08:26:20 PM


    I think I must be attuned to David Letterman’s comedic sensibilities.
    Or, at least, to his writing staff’s. How else to explain why last night’s “Late Show” referenced subjects that I also blogged about in recent days:

    Trackback by Population Statistic — 01/18/2006 @ 04:36:28 PM

  4. Actually, yes, there are speed cubing sets available as well as custom lube for the task.

    I just pry the pieces apart and put them back together.

    Comment by Michael Conlen — 01/18/2006 @ 05:12:09 PM

  5. Based on the judging of websites in the blink of an eye, the brain can judge and make decisions based on visual information very quickly….its just a matter of tapping into that.

    Comment by Jonathan Foley — 01/19/2006 @ 04:00:50 AM

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