We salute the beloved Rubik's cube -- a toy that's as fun as it is frustrating! In honor of our new Old Bay Rubik's cube (which has the added bonus of letting you solve a Maryland-themed puzzle), we've got a few fascinating facts about this classic brain teaser.
1. The Rubik's cube comes to us from Hungary
The inventor, Ernő Rubik, was a professor of architecture in the mid-1970's. He wanted to create an object that could be turned and manipulated without breaking or falling apart. When he realized the object could be used as a possible, he set about solving it -- and it took him an entire month! In 1975, Rubik patented it as the 'magic cube'.
2. The fastest a Rubik's cube has ever been solved by a person was under 4 seconds
Rubik's cube lovers have gotten a lot faster since Professor Rubik himself first tried it out! As of the time this blog was published, the record for a human being solving a Rubik's cube is 3.47 seconds. Yusheng Du of China set the record in 2018! However, computers are still a lot faster than people at solving Rubik's cubes. A robot can solve a cube in under a second.
3. There are believed to be 43 quintillion permutations that a Rubik's cube can have
Chances are, you've never shuffled a Rubik's cube exactly the same way twice. After all, there are 43,252,003,274,489,856,000 ways to arrange it! (But there's only one way to get it so we can see all of the beautiful Old Bay pictures on ours, so that's the only one that matters to us.)
4. Over 350 million Rubik's cubes have been sold
Clearly, people love the challenge that this toy presents. Even though they were considered a craze of the 80's, they're still a popular brain-teasing toy, and are easy to find at just about any toy store (or, you know, on our website!). Since 328 million people live in the USA, that's enough for each person in the country to get one Rubik's cube, plus a few left over.
5. 'Speedcubing' could be your new indoor hobby!
As summer begins to wind down and we continue social distancing, it's going to be important to find activities that are fun and challenging to do at home -- and boy, speedcubing fits the bill! Simply put, it's training to solve your Rubik's cube as quickly as possible. And pro speedcubers say that anyone can learn to solve the cube! If you're looking for an added challenge, you can try it blindfolded, or with your feet instead of your hands.