Monday, August 4, 2008

3x3 Rubiks Solution

Before reading, you need to understand some notations that I use here. This notation is actually borrowed from the contents of the leaflet found in a 3x3 Rubiks Cube that I bought from Toys R'Us.

[ In addition, I have posted some pictures below, in between the steps. for easier illustration. ]

FTurn the front face clockwise (if you have the cube in your hands so that that face is towards you - this also applies to the turns below).
F'Turn the front face anti-clockwise.
RTurn the right face clockwise.
R'Turn the right face anti-clockwise.
LTurn the left face clockwise.
L'Turn the left face anti-clockwise.
UTurn the top face clockwise.
U'Turn the top face anti-clockwise.

There are 12 steps to solve a 3x3 Rubiks Cube, which are listed as follows. And mind you, one step does NOT mean one movement on the cube!

Step 1:
Make one side same color. Also, make the row nearest to the side same color.
FYI, no specific formula to this. In short, you have to think 3-D!! :-P

Step 2:
Make the center of the 4-sides same color as the row nearest to the side that you fixed in Step 1.

Step 3:
Make one of the center cell in row furthest to the side you fixed in Step 1 same color as the center in Step 2.

Step 4:
Use this formula to make the cell in Step 3 fall in place.
- U’ F’ U F U R U’ R’ (Frontside's top row center cube falling to Frontside's center row rightmost cube location)
- U R U’ R’ U’ F’ U F (Rightside's top row center cube falling to Rightside's center row leftmost cube location)

U = Upside, R = Rightside, L = Leftside, F = Frontside. With prime (‘) counter-clockwise.

Step 5:
Continue step 4 till the row that crosses the center of the 4-sides have the same color.

Step 6:
There must be an L-shape with same color on the Upside. Orientate the L so that the edges of L is pointing Leftside and Backside.
- If there is no L, but an “I”, skip steps 6 and 7. The “I” must be horizontal and pass through the center of the Topside.
- If there is 4 L’s (a cross), skip steps 6-8.
- If there is no L, nor “I”, nor cross, add one additional step 7 to form an L or a “I”.

Step 7:
Use this formula to make a horizontal “I” that passes through the center of the Topside.
- F R U R’ U’ F’

Step 8:
Use the same formula in step 7 to make 4 L’s (a cross).

Step 9:
Make one leg of the cross match its side. Then, use this formula to rotate the other 3 to make the 4 legs of the cross match their sides.
- R U R’ U R U U R’ (counter-clockwise)
- R U U R’ U’ R U’ R’ (clockwise)
- Tip: 2 counter-clockwise = 1 clockwise

Step 10:
Find one corner where the 3 sides of corners have same color with their corresponding sides. If all corners are found to match, skip step 11.

Step 11:
Orientate the corner in step 10 so that it is on your top-right-front. Rotate the other 3 corners to make them match by using the formula:
- U R U’ L’ U R’ U’ L (counter-clockwise)
- L’ U R U’ L U R’ U’ (clockwise)
- Tip: 2 counter-clockwise = 1 clockwise

Step 12:
Use the following to rotate 2 corners at the same time.
The 2 corners must be on your top-right, one front, one back
- L U L’ U L U U L’ R’ U’ R U’ R’ U’ U’ R (front clockwise, back counter-clockwise)
- R’ U U R U R’ U R L U’ U’ L’ U’ L U’ L’ (front counter-clockwise, back clockwise)

P.S. I was caught in action solving the 3x3 cube. :-P


Ann said...

Good post. Maybe now I can get my cube to be of sa,e colour sides again!

Ian Ling said...


Anonymous said...

hmmm...nyamuk is that what you suppose to do in the office?
or just meddling with it to get some insights into what you debugging...

Anonymous said...

this steps are very clear! thankyou, now I can solve my own rubik :)

Unknown said...

tank you because you tell me the formula of rubik's cube . I want you open this link:

visit the ...

Anonymous said...

i always thought ppl had to be a genius to solve the cube.

Andrew.Ang said...

i cannot the first step...

Anonymous said...

nyon.. I get the last wrong cause the 8 step i didn't get a T (this just opinion) , I followed the next step becase it said I can continue to the next (step that make a cross) step after I get an "I" form, but the next step I didn't get a cross but a "fish"...

how will I solve that??

David Chan said...

Aksan: For Step 8, you get a T or a cross? If you get a T instead of a cross, then something is wrong, because by Step 6, all the 6 center pieces from all sides should be in the right place. So, by step 6, you should get either one center piece correct, an "L" crossing the center piece, an "I" crossing the center piece, or a cross (4 L's).

And, can you describe your "fish"? Sending a picture of what you get would help. :-)

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