SILVER

Six Sided Madness: Solving the Rubik Cube

I found the Rubik's Cube frustrating to solve, so I researched "the fastest way to solve the Rubik's Cube" and I tested 3 different methods. Solving the Rubik's Cube helps your brain problem solve.
Daya Thusoo
Grade 5

Hypothesis

Question: What is the fastest way to solve the Rubik’s Cube?

Hypothesis: I will be able to solve the Rubik's Cube in the fastest time using the Daisy Method.

Why Daisy:

I think Daisy Method is easiest because after you set it up it is almost fully completed.

 

Research

Step1: Go to science buddies on the internet.

Step2: I found 3 links to websites that gave different strategies on solving the Rubik’s Cube.

 - Layer Method.

- 2x2 Method version 1.

- 2x2 Method version 2.

Step3: I google “the easiest way to solve a Rubik’s Cube”

  • I found lots of Layer Methods. (same)
  • I found a new method (Daisy Method) and some variations of it.

Step4: I chose the Layer method because it is the most common in my research.

I chose the 2x2 Method (version 2) because it is the second most common and it is used for speed cubing.

I chose the Daisy Method because it seemed the most easy.

What is the Problem:

The Rubik’s Cube is really hard to solve and it's frustrating.

Why is this important:

  • If you can solve the Rubik’s Cube then it shows you are good at solving problems that are hard.
  • The Rubik’s Cube helps you think in different ways.
  • Thinking in different ways helps get more strategies to solve hard problems.
  • The Rubik’s Cube helps keep the brain active.

How the Rubik’s Cube helps thinking:

  • It can improve reflexes.
  • It can improve problem solving.
  • It can improve patience because it takes a long time to solve.
  • It can improve concentration and configuration because you have to focus and organize the cube.

What is a Rubik’s Cube: 

  • A Rubik’s Cube is a 3x3 cube that has 6 sides.
  • A puzzle where you try to twist and turn, so that all squares on each side are the same colour.

Variables

Independent Variable: 3 different methods to solve a Rubik’s Cube.

Dependent Variable: How much time each method takes to solve the Rubik’s Cube. How much is completed.

Controlled Variables: 

  • (Me) the same person trying to solve the Rubik’s Cube. (3 by 3)
  • Same person to mix up the Rubik’s Cube.
  • Same Rubik's Cube.

Procedure

Methods

Daisy Method:

  1. Set it up so that the edges on one side is one colour and the corners are a different colour.(the middle is the colour of the corners.)
  2. On the opposite side do the opposite colours.*colour pairs are:white/yellow,red/orange,green/blue.
  3. Solve the cube.

2x2 Method:

  1. Build a 2x2 corner.
  2. Expand to 2x2x3.
  3. Twist the edges.
  4. Finish 2 layers.
  5. Position the corners.
  6. Twist the corners.
  7. Position the edges.

Layer Method:

  1. Do each side/layer.
  2. Complete 1 side, then another, then another….
  3. Complete sides 1 by 1.

Procedure

  1. I decided to do each method 10 times , to a maximum of 30 minutes per try. I did about 1-4 try’s a day.
  2. I made sure the Rubik’s Cube was mixed up by the same person before every try. It was my dad. I made sure it was always the same Rubik’s Cube.
  3. I took notes on how long it took me to solve the cube. I took notes on how many sides were completed. I took notes on how I felt.
  4. Analyzing my information: I used a scale of 1-6

1=1 side of the same colour. 

2=2 sides of the same colour.

3= 3 sides of the same colour.

4=4 sides of the same colour.

5= 5 sides of the same colour.

6= 6 sides of the same colour.

               

Observations

  • Daisy Method is really hard to set up, but is really easy to solve the Rubik’s Cube once you set it up.
  • 2x2 Method is very similar to the Layer Method, because you set a side up and solve it like the Layer Method.
  • I felt very happy doing the Daisy Method because I got to solve the full cube.
  • I felt frustrated with the Layer Method because I got stuck in loops. I found that I kept repeating the same thing over and over again.
  • I felt that when I was more frustrated, I was more determined.
  • Outside this experiment, I find myself trying to solve the Rubik’s Cube with the Layer Method. Even though it was the most frustrating. I did this because it is the least complicated method.
  • So far with unlimited time I have only got 2 sides with the Layer Method. But I'm less frustrated.

 

Analysis

Sides Completed Table

Number

Layer Method

2x2 Method

Daisy Method

1

1

1

6

2

1

1

6

3

1

1

6

4

1

1

6

5

1

1

6

6

1

2

6

7

1

1

6

8

1

1

6

9

1

1

6

10

1

1

6

Average                                          1                                      1.1                                   6

 

How I got the Average

 

Layer Method

2x2 Method 

Daisy Method

 

Amount of Time Used Table:

Number 

Layer Method

Daisy Method 

2x2 Method

1

30

3

30

2

30

2

30

3

30

1

30

4

30

1

30

5

30

1

30

6

30

1

30

7

30

0.5

30

8

30

0.5

30

9

30

0.5

30

10

30

1

30

Average:                       30                            1.15                             30

How I Got the Average 

 

Layer Method

Daisy Method

2x2 Method

Analysis:

  • I got all 6 sides on the Daisy Method because it is almost completed.

  • I could not get it set up this way. I tried for 40 minutes, but I could not do it. So I used tape to mark it so that it was set up in the Daisy Method. Once I did that, I had an Average time of 1.15 minutes. 1.15 minutes = 69 seconds.

Discussion:  

How I can make things better:

  • I can use more time.
  • I can use more strategies.
  • I can start with a 2 by 2 cube and work my way up to a 3 by 3 cube.
  • I can do more tries.

Conclusion

My hypothesis was mostly incorrect because I could not set up the Daisy Method and I had to use tape. I had an Average of 1.15 minutes. While this is really good, the cube is not actually complete. So in the end  the 2x2 Method is the best method.   

The 2x2 Method is the best method because the average number of sides is 1.1. It is also the 2x2 Method because it is hard to set up the Daisy Method.

 

Application

  • I can teach people (under the age of 18) to problem solve. 
  • I can help people be less frustrated when they are working on a Rubik’s Cube.
  • I can teach seniors to keep their brain active, which will help more clear thinking.
  • I can try this project with different puzzles in order to give people different options.

Sources Of Error

  • I should have done more research on setting up the Daisy Method
  • I should have tried to solve the Rubik’s Cube earlier in the day, so that I was not tired

Citations

  1. Definition of Rubik's cube | Dictionary.com. (n.d.). www.dictionary.com. https://dictionary.com/browse/rubik-s-cube#:~:text=a%20puzzle%20consisting%20of%20a,cube%20a%20sing
  2. What's the fastest way to solve Rubik's cube? | Science project. (2007, January 19). Science Buddies. https://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project-ideas/math_p023/pure-mathematics/what-is-the-fastest-way-to-solve-rubiks-cube
  3. Bem, N. N. (2020, November 16). 5 benefits of learning how to solve a Rubik’s cube. Goodnet. https://www.goodnet.org/articles/5-benefits-learning-how-to-solve-rubiks-cube
  4. Wikihow. (2019, September 5). How to solve a Rubik's Cube with the layer by layer method [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zErPmd6mIg
  5. Richardson, N. (2013, December 30). How to solve a 3x3x3 Rubik's Cube: easiest tutorial [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rmnSpUgOvyI
  6.  Petrus, L. (2014, May 14). Rubik's cube solution - Petrus method. Lars Petrus Portal. https://lar5.com/cube/

Acknowledgement

I would like to thank my mom and my dad for helping me with my science fair project.