Tuesday, June 10, 2008


I am in need of your help! When the children are in bed, Kent and I... (this is not going where you might think--go sing a hymn!) ...usually play a game or work out a Sudoku puzzle. I've been working on the following one for almost a week and am stuck. To my credit--since this is my blog, I can give myself credit--I filled in 19 digits pretty quickly, but I can't get the next one. I do have the answer, but I really don't want to look at it until a few of you confirm that it is indeed the printer who messed up the puzzle and not me. (Again, it's my blog...)

I don't usually give up on puzzles so easily, but when I couldn't figure out this one, I began working on a Rubik's Cube in my spare minutes (waiting for the train to pass or for the kids to pick out their library books). I let one of my children, who shall remain anonymous to protect the innocent, have a try at it and she cheated by removing and replacing the stickers until she had one side "completed". I took it as a new challenge to figure out where the stickers should have been, but I must have messed that up because now I can't solve the cube. Not that I ever could before, but now I have a good reason for it!

If you do solve the puzzle, at least pretend like it was difficult for you too. (And then give me a little clue about the ah-ha digit, please.)

Disclaimer: I've just puzzled for 90 minutes about how to get a table from Excel or Word into this blog. I lost that puzzle too! So, here's a very rough version of the Sudoku. (My spreadsheet version is much prettier; wish you could see it.)

_ _ _ | _ 2 _ | _ _ _

4 _ 5 | _ _ _ | _ _ _

_ 3 _ | 4 _ 5 | _ _ 6

_ _ _ | 9 _ _ | 4 _ 2

_ 4 _ | 7 _ _ | _ _ _

6 _ _ | _ _ _ | 9 _ 7

_ 9 1 | _ 3 _ | _ _ 8

_ 6 _ | 1 9 _ | _ 2 5

_ _ _ | 8 5 _ | _ 4 _


Our family said...

I forgot to post earlier but I wanted to make sure you were aware that you have my full support in your blogging endeavors...

Heck, anything to keep one more person from scrapbooking seems like a good thing to me...


Min said...

I would really love to help you with this thing, but I'd rather eat dry, burnt toast. Best of luck!!

- Mindy S

mindy said...

sudoku makes my mind hurt. okay, maybe it doesn't, but I'm afraid it would if I spent any time on it. sorry about the rubik's cube. if you get a new one, David can show you some tricks on how to solve it. he's great at puzzles.

David said...

Ok, as you know these things typically have more than one solution...the solution I came up with is:




If you took another path than I did this may not be of any help. However, if we did take a similar path then perhaps it will help you get un-stuck.

- David G

Alena said...

As far as I can tell, you eventually get to the point where you have to take a guess on one and see where it leads you. You probably already do it a lot, but check for numbers that line up and although you don't know exactly which square in the block of 9 numbers, by knowing that it is limited to a particular row or column, you can often eliminate another possibility in another block of 9.

Alena said...

BTW, I thought Sudoku puzzles were only supposed to have one possible answer set, but I got totally different numbers than David, and when it got down to the last few, they could be reversed and still turn out ok. Maybe that's why this one has been so hard for you.

Mary said...

This is the first Sudoku I've ever had to hypothesize a number to see how it affected the rest of the puzzle. Until now, I have always found a way that it HAD to work. So I took Alena's advice and put a number in one place to see how it would work out. I was able to solve the puzzle and got a different answer than David's and the printed solution. I think I liked it better when there was one possible answer. But maybe I can learn a life's lesson from this: There isn't always one right answer; just be creative and try different things. (Like changing the stickers around on a Rubik's cube!)

Carrie said...

Mary! It's so fun to read all about your cute family. There is a really good article on how to solve Sudoku puzzles by Michael Mepham at http://www.sudoku.org.uk/PDF/Solving_Sudoku.pdf

It's almost as much fun to read as it is to figure out a real Sudoku puzzle. And, it has turned me into one of the most arogant Sudoku puzzlers you've ever met. There isn't a puzzle I can't solve! :)

ps. Girls Camp isn't the same without you. :)