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Explain cubing topics as if you were talking to a non-cuber

Matt11111

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So in the past few weeks, I've had a handful of people ask me whether magnetic cubes are allowed in competition or if they're considered cheating or whatever. I basically said that there's never been a level playing field in competitions since people bring their own cubes from home, so the quality of the puzzles people used varied wildly even before the advent of magnets. The same way you wouldn't tell someone using, like, a MoYu AoLong in 2014 "hey buddy you can't use that cube, little Timmy is using a Rubik's brand so we're gonna have to ask you to get another cube" at a competition, you wouldn't say "sorry, Jimmy hasn't magnetized his cube so no one's allowed to use magnets at this competition."

But that got me thinking. How would you guys explain cubing topics like this to a non-cuber if you were asked these questions? This basically works like those games that flooded the off topic forum back in the day (yikes my bad fellas). I'll start by giving a topic to explain, and then the next person would talk about it as if they were talking to someone who doesn't cube, then they'd also leave a prompt for the next person. So let's get this started.

Next: Why a 9x9 isn't technically any harder than a 7x7
 

PetrusQuber

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Explaining that you use algorithms and intuition rather than working out how to actually 'solve' the cube
So the cube has 54 stickers, yeah? I solve them by turning faces and matching up, say, red to red, green to green, etc, without help. But once I get to the 6th side, I can’t really do it without help, as any turn that’s isn’t on the last side will break what I’ve done up. So I use sequences of memorised moves which do certain things on the cube to solve the last side. If I get stuck on any other side, I can also use those sequences of moves to help me out, knowing what they do, and what they don’t do.
I know, so wrong
Explain why parity happens on even layered cubes.
 
Last edited:

White KB

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Well, you see Jimmy, parity happens because as you're twisting and twisting the cube, say a 4x4, and what happens is you start solving the outer pieces. Why you get parity, little Jimmy, is because there are internal pieces that make up for it. For example, on a 3x3 we have a thing called the "H" permutation which takes all the edges on one layer (not "side") and moves them around 180 degrees. In fact, what's actually happening is the algorithm is switching two pairs of two edges each, making four pieces you move around. On a 4x4, parity is the same, except one of the pairs of "edges" is visible and one isn't. Therefore, Jimmy, you should understand fully why parity happens on a 4x4, 6x6, 8x8, etc. OK?
I don't get it.
*sigh* At least I tried...
 

kubesolver

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Next: Why a 9x9 isn't technically any harder than a 7x7

So nxn cubing is like cooking.

2x2 is like Cooking for yourself. It's relatively easy.
3x3 is like Cooking for your family. Kinda similar but requires more skill and knowledge.
4x4 is like Cooking Christmas dinner for you and your extended family. You need to know much more and be better in logistics of cooking.
5x5 is like Cooking in a little restaurant. You need to know much much more about a lot of things, how to handle multitasking, delegating some work etc.
6x6+ Once you know how to make a dinner for 100 people you also know how to make a dinner for 1000 people. It just takes more time and resources.


Next: Can't you just cheat to win a competition?
 

Tabe

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Next: Why a 9x9 isn't technically any harder than a 7x7

So nxn cubing is like cooking.

2x2 is like Cooking for yourself. It's relatively easy.
3x3 is like Cooking for your family. Kinda similar but requires more skill and knowledge.
4x4 is like Cooking Christmas dinner for you and your extended family. You need to know much more and be better in logistics of cooking.
5x5 is like Cooking in a little restaurant. You need to know much much more about a lot of things, how to handle multitasking, delegating some work etc.
6x6+ Once you know how to make a dinner for 100 people you also know how to make a dinner for 1000 people. It just takes more time and resources.
This went a totally different direction than I would have but the analogy works. Well done.
 
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Next: Why a 9x9 isn't technically any harder than a 7x7

So nxn cubing is like cooking.

2x2 is like Cooking for yourself. It's relatively easy.
3x3 is like Cooking for your family. Kinda similar but requires more skill and knowledge.
4x4 is like Cooking Christmas dinner for you and your extended family. You need to know much more and be better in logistics of cooking.
5x5 is like Cooking in a little restaurant. You need to know much much more about a lot of things, how to handle multitasking, delegating some work etc.
6x6+ Once you know how to make a dinner for 100 people you also know how to make a dinner for 1000 people. It just takes more time and resources.


Next: Can't you just cheat to win a competition?
Well you see little Timmy, in our organization we have a thing called rules. Have you heard of rules befor? Little Timmy: No my mom doesn’t have any. Me: Well Timmy, you see cheating is not something that is particularly favored and it’s against the rules. If you cheat, you will be disgraced and shamed. For example take Nazar Lenyshen. He cheated in a comp and this is what happened to his profile:1576091702294.png
as you see Timmy, if you cheat shame will be brought to you forever.
Next: Why are there different puzzles if it was only meant to be the 3x3?
 

GAN 356 X

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Well you see little Timmy, in our organization we have a thing called rules. Have you heard of rules befor? Little Timmy: No my mom doesn’t have any. Me: Well Timmy, you see cheating is not something that is particularly favored and it’s against the rules. If you cheat, you will be disgraced and shamed. For example take Nazar Lenyshen. He cheated in a comp and this is what happened to his profile:View attachment 11096
as you see Timmy, if you cheat shame will be brought to you forever.
Next: Why are there different puzzles if it was only meant to be the 3x3?
See here Jimmy, theres different puzzles to make for more diversity. If there was only 3x3 it would be pretty boring, and having lots fo other cubes makes it a lot funner.


Timmy: I don't get it

Next person: Why looking up a solution to a cube is not cheating (this drives me mad)
 
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Well you see little Timmy, in our organization we have a thing called rules. Have you heard of rules befor? Little Timmy: No my mom doesn’t have any. Me: Well Timmy, you see cheating is not something that is particularly favored and it’s against the rules. If you cheat, you will be disgraced and shamed. For example take Nazar Lenyshen. He cheated in a comp and this is what happened to his profile:View attachment 11096
as you see Timmy, if you cheat shame will be brought to you forever.
Next: Why are there different puzzles if it was only meant to be the 3x3?
Who is that?
 

Etotheipi

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Next: Why are there different puzzles if it was only meant to be the 3x3?
Well, Rubik's brand wanted more money, so they made 2x2, 4x4, and 5x5, and then some people chopped those up and made things like 2x2x4s, and then the ball had started rolling, and lots of puzzles started being designed.

EDIT:I didn't see Gan 356 X's post, sorry. =P
 

ProStar

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Next person: Why looking up a solution to a cube is not cheating (this drives me mad)
Since a rubiks cube has a lot of pieces, it has a bunch of ways it can be arranged. If you were to just turn the sides, it would be impossible to solve it by random, as it would take about 1.3 trillion years, which is much too long. It's also not cheating because even if I know how to solve it, I have to do different things every time. I only learned the steps, not a bunch of turns you can do over and over to solve it automatically.

Next: Why peeling the stickers off is cheating
 

Matt11111

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Since a rubiks cube has a lot of pieces, it has a bunch of ways it can be arranged. If you were to just turn the sides, it would be impossible to solve it by random, as it would take about 1.3 trillion years, which is much too long. It's also not cheating because even if I know how to solve it, I have to do different things every time. I only learned the steps, not a bunch of turns you can do over and over to solve it automatically.

Next: Why peeling the stickers off is cheating
I guess it's not the worst kind of cheating in the world. It's kinda like how some people will modify video games or use overpowered features just for the fun of it in single player experiences. Personally I love bumping up players' attributes to the maximum level in sports games to see what crazy numbers you can put up in a season with them. So just peeling the stickers off and having a solved cube is sort of like that kind of cheating.

But then saying you solved the Rubik's Cube when you really just rearranged the stickers is like going online in Mario Kart with an infinite blue shell or bullet mod enabled. The same way you don't improve as a player by enabling those mods (even if your rating would say otherwise), you aren't exhibiting any sort of skill when you do that with a cube. One time I went to a concert at my school, and before it started I was solving my 7x7. Once I was done, a guy behind me said "Our daughter just solved her first Rubik's Cube." And then he proceeded to say they actually peeled off the stickers. Conglaturation, you did nothing. This conversation is over. That's probably one of my biggest pet peeves, people who act like they accomplished something when the "solution" they came up with really isn't that clever at all.

Next: Why do you have to memorize the cube before putting on the blindfold?
 
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