Sunday, March 15, 2009

Rubik's cube!

Tweet It!

Mar 15, 2009, Rubik's Cube!

In 1983 a young man, let's call him Graham Parker, as not coincidentally is his real name, walks in to a store and buys a Rubik's Cube.

Wait for the punch line. 26 years later, after serious wrist and back problems due to the pursuit of solving the puzzle, announces triumphantly to the world, via every media outlet imaginable, that he's solved the puzzle.

Triumph? Success over adversity implies surmounting all manner of obstacles, persisting a la Winston Churchill "never, ever give up"

It's a common mantra by sensible people of the world that there's no such thing as get rich quick. Which is patently untrue. People Win Lotto, Inherit, Steal, Share price quadruples, social networking site sells for squillions. More accurately it's extremely rare, more rare than getting run over by a truck in the pursuit of dream!

Which brings me back to the now "famous" for 15 minutes, Mr Parker. undoubtedly he has achieved his goal, which is probably of great relief to his body and sanity. Not wishing to denigrate the achievement, I am perplexed by his Strategy.

Setting and achieving goals, really does make the world go around, but progress would be incredibly ponderous, if every go-getter decided to re-invent the wheel before embarking on their journey.

Shared knowledge is what allows progress to be exponential in its growth. Some mathematician has worked out the number of permutations involved in randomly stumbling on the Rubik solution. 43,252,003,274,489,856,000 (~= 4.32 * 1019). In less simple terms that's roughly Four multiplied by Ten to the power of Nineteen, and then some!

There's more than a couple of "players" on the planet of average intelligence that have completed the puzzle in about a minute. They of course use a different strategy to the above maligned random approach.

Who's ever tried to put together the most simple piece of furniture from Ikea with complete disregard for the instructions, only to see the light after much swearing and shouting? Generally doesn't take 26 years to see the light.

How's your strategy currently working out for you? It's comforting to know that information has never been more accessible, thanks Google, Twitter et al. Yet how many of us still drive around in circles without a map with smug misplaced confidence in our ability to reach our destination?... Eventually

Twitter me or check me out at cheers Kiaran Finn

No comments: