Friday, 20 November 2009

Friday Puzzles #24

In the last couple of days, I’ve engaged in a discussion on Thomas Snyder’s blog about the subtleties, nuances and differences between computer-generated sudoku puzzles, and human created puzzles; in particular if there is a line to be drawn, and just how blurred it might be. If you are interested in that sort of thing, some fascinating things are discussed.

Inevitably, I’ve taken a bit of inspiration from that and I’ve made a sudoku puzzle for this week, all by myself! I’ve used a slightly infamous pattern – which if a computer generator was left to its own devices to find would probably give you something turned up to 11 (again) – but perhaps said computer generator could be programmed to a certain set of rules, and perhaps it could put out a puzzle with a similar difficulty level without taking an hour and a half to do so.

Either way, I’d like to think that you, dearest reader and most loyal of solvers, might feel something of a human touch in this puzzle. Enjoy.
    #029 Sudoku – rated easy
All puzzles © Tom Collyer 2009


  1. Nice, I don’t like sudoku enough to usually bother with them but I was dying to see if there was a 5 in the top left and bottom right bits where the pattern implied there should be.

    PS Thanks for the last two Nurikabe, I’m assuming that was especially for me after I complained at your lateness. Counting to 43 as a bit challenging for my liking though. :p

  2. Aren’t I the most awful tease? You just have to love toying with people’s expectations of what ought to be.

    Re the nurikabe, last week’s at worst you only needed to count the 25 island. When faced with lots of counting I normally group things in multiples of 5 or 10 so I thought that wasn’t too unfair – especially as getting the deductions at the top were a little tricky, and even more especially since this time the end is as it ought be!

  3. 1:46. The solution flowed the way this pattern should (and how my “Four Square” in the kids division was meant to in 2008 at the Silicon Valley Puzzle Day before I learned kids don’t spot naked singles). I greatly enjoyed our discussion of construction this week.

  4. Maybe it’s just as well kids don’t spot naked singles! (the sudoku technical lingo always makes me chuckle).

    Initially, I didn’t really want to get too involved with thinking about the mechanical intricacies of what it actually is that makes a puzzle actually tick as I thought it’d spoil something of the fun involved in solving. However (without wanting to do any of the work myself) I’d be interested to see a study into the analysis of a few given patterns. Although I’m sure the actual logic is quite complicated, it’d seem natural that geometry ought to induce certain restrictions – how that compares to interactions in the permutation of numbers would seem to be the quantity you might want to try and measure.


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