I came across this mesmerizing video today, thanks to Seth Godin.
At least I found it mesmerizing, but my guess is most people won’t. It’s got two things against it – it’s long by YouTube standards, almost 26 minutes, and it’s a video of a guy solving a Sudoku puzzle (but at least the guy has a cool British accent).
The starting grid is shown above; that’s right, just two numbers. But there are some special rules.
Like all sudoku puzzles, there is exactly one correct solution. In a standard puzzle, the goal is to fill in the grid so that each row, column, and three-by-three section contains the numbers 1 through 9, with no repeats. This particular puzzle also mandates that any two cells separated by a “king’s move” or a “knight’s move” in chess rules cannot contain the same digit, and any two orthogonally adjacent cells cannot contain consecutive digits.
Here’s the must-see video solution:
Even non-Sudoku fans have found it riveting. Perhaps you can blame it on the global lockdown, where people are looking for anything to keep them entertained.
And while it certainly takes great skill to solve this puzzle, I’m more impressed with the person who created this, Mitchell Lee.
What motivated Mitchell to come up with the particular rules that he did? How does Mitchell know that those two cells were the only ones that had to be revealed? Is there another combination of two cells that could have been given that would have still enabled the puzzle to be solved? I don’t know the answer to any of these questions; I guess only Mitchell does.
I feel the same way about crossword puzzles. While some puzzles can be quite challenging to solve, I think the real tip of the hat goes to the person who created such a challenging puzzle.
So did you watch the entire video?
If that was too long for you, here’s a shorter video that is also quite mesmerizing. I came across this less than two-minute video thanks to Ray Visotski. I couldn’t wait to find out who the winner was: