# Solving a rubik's via a method or not?

#### cubingpc

##### Member
Hi Cubers,

I'm recently getting into cubing again. After failing many years ago, I want to try again...

One thing I'd like to ask is - did you guys start off by using methods / algorithms - or did you use purely your intellect to work it out.

Right now I'm trying to cube, but not sure how to solve. I have no methods and am just trying to work it out myself.

What would you suggest when starting out? To learn a method, or to work it out totally yourself?

Many thanks.

#### Owen Morrison

##### Member
You need to have algorithms to be able to solve a cube, so unless you think you can make those up(most people can't) then you should learn the beginners method. here is a good tutorial:
After you learn this, you should try to learn CFOP(friedrich) method. Once you average around 20 seconds you should try out other methods like Roux or ZZ. Then you take the one you like best and go from there.

#### kubesolver

Actually Rubik's cube is an amazing puzzle to solve. If you like figuring out things on your own and don't mind wasting few days or weeks I'd suggest to not search for an existing method.

I learned from an online tutorial and the chance to figure it out myself is gone.

However if your goal is to become a speed cuber as your presence on this forum suggests and you want to be fast and soon then you should use all resources available. You can get to 10s without coming up with anything new yourself.

#### Mike Hughey

##### Super Moderator
Staff member
I figured it out on my own back in 1981, and I'm really glad I did. The only help I had was that I had skimmed the Scientific American article about it before I had ever picked up a cube. It told me about the idea of algorithms, and mentioned that there were sets of repetitive moves that would solve just a few pieces and leave the rest unchanged. I went out and bought a cube, but left it solved for a week, trying out sequences of repetitive moves looking for some algorithms. Once I had a few, I scrambled it, and it took another week for me to solve it. It was really worth it for me.

#### WarriorCatCuber

##### Member
According to Tony Fischer, anyone who is willing to put in the time and effort can figure it out. Most people on this forum learned it online, but if you think it would be fun for you, go ahead and try to figure it out ! However, getting world class with your own method would me impossible. I would recommend solving it with a tutorial, and when that is mastered, pick a better method with the first link in my signature !

#### cubingpc

##### Member
So, it appears as though the satisfaction brought from one being able to solve a cube themselves unaided - would be really cool. However, to achieve it seems almost impossible for the average person. Yes, I'd like to improve my speed in the long term, but I wanna test my braincells first.

For those who initially solved it themselves, was it merely a case of trial and error at first? Or did you have some super duper spatial awareness.

#### Pyjam

I've started in the 80's when there was no method published, at least in France.
What you have to understand is how to permute 3 corners only, or 3 edges only.
That's all you need to know to solve the cube.
Try some sequences that seems remarkable to you. There is a good chance you will rediscovered some well known basic algorithms.
You'll be very proud of you.
Have fun.

#### Etotheipi

##### Member
You need to have algorithms to be able to solve a cube,
*cough* commutators *cough*

#### Owen Morrison

##### Member
*cough* commutators *cough*
uhm... commutators are algorithms... you can just kinda make them up based on the case. correct me if I am wrong tho.

#### GAN 356 X

##### Member
I learnt from my dad when I was 7 or 8, and because of my age obviously didn't;t figure it out myself. If you like working things out, sure, give it a go, but most people seem to learn off a tutorial

#### Etotheipi

##### Member
uhm... commutators are algorithms... you can just kinda make them up based on the case. correct me if I am wrong tho.
Commutators are intuitive, where as algorithms are memorised sequences. Some algs are commutators, but commutators aren't algs.

#### Mike Hughey

##### Super Moderator
Staff member
Really it doesn't take much brain power at all to come up with some useful algorithms. Just try some sequences of repetitive moves turning only 2 or 3 faces in a memorable pattern until you get back to a position that's close to what you started with. This is really easy to follow on a solved cube. Some sequences will just bring you back to the solved cube without anything useful in between. But many others that you can just stumble on by trying things (and obviously remembering what you did, so it can be useful) will just move a few pieces while leaving the rest of the cube alone. It was by doing that sort of experimentation that I found just enough algorithms that I was able to eventually solve the cube on my own.

#### ImmolatedMarmoset

##### Member
So, it appears as though the satisfaction brought from one being able to solve a cube themselves unaided - would be really cool. However, to achieve it seems almost impossible for the average person. Yes, I'd like to improve my speed in the long term, but I wanna test my braincells first.

For those who initially solved it themselves, was it merely a case of trial and error at first? Or did you have some super duper spatial awareness.
I learned off of a tutorial, but the important thing to understand is that the cube is practically impossible to solve by just randomly turning. The important aspect is that there are certain ways you can switch only the pieces of the cube that you want to. After you have that figured out, you should be able to apply that all over the cube to solve it.

#### Old Tom

##### Member
I figured it out on my own back in 1981, and I'm really glad I did. The only help I had was that I had skimmed the Scientific American article about it before I had ever picked up a cube. It told me about the idea of algorithms, and mentioned that there were sets of repetitive moves that would solve just a few pieces and leave the rest unchanged. I went out and bought a cube, but left it solved for a week, trying out sequences of repetitive moves looking for some algorithms. Once I had a few, I scrambled it, and it took another week for me to solve it. It was really worth it for me.
Same here. 1981, inspired by that Martin Gardner article in Scientific American.The ideas of commutators and conjugation. Looked for sequences of moves that would shift only a few pieces, latched into the concept that these moves could be reversed and also combined with simple shifts. Wrote those moves down, so in essence created my own algs. That way, I solved it myself but it took a few hundred repetitive moves. So, “I did it.” So, I was then free to appropriate algs from others (found in David Singmaster’s treatise), and got it down to about 100 moves, LBL, no more than six algs needed. But not intuitive, have to memorize those algs.

Flash forward, no, crawl forward to 2018, 37 years later and at 80 years old, learned intuitive F2L but not all those last layer algs. Now also doing blindfold by the OP method, so back to 400 move solutions!

It’s all been fun!

#### Tony Fisher

##### Member
So, it appears as though the satisfaction brought from one being able to solve a cube themselves unaided - would be really cool. However, to achieve it seems almost impossible for the average person. Yes, I'd like to improve my speed in the long term, but I wanna test my braincells first.

For those who initially solved it themselves, was it merely a case of trial and error at first? Or did you have some super duper spatial awareness.
Imagine you are locked in a room for a month with a Rubik's Cube, pencil and paper. If you haven't solved it by the end of the month something terrible will happen to you. What would you do? It really focuses the mind. Once you have learnt a method another person has created then it's hard to go back so I urge you to spend some time on this. If you want it enough you will do it. It can only help you later when learning a fast method since you will understand what the moves do rather than blindly repeat them. Here is my video explaining how I made up my own solution. It's not a tutorial for that method though by watching it and asking questions here you are reducing your achievement slightly should you succeed.

#### WarriorCatCuber

##### Member
Imagine you are locked in a room for a month with a Rubik's Cube, pencil and paper. If you haven't solved it by the end of the month something terrible will happen to you. What would you do?
I would say : Oof! Thank god I learnt to solve it beforehand!

#### dudefaceguy

##### Member
I started out learning Petrus method, but I got annoyed that I had to learn 2 algorithms and switched to Heise. I actually recommend Heise as a beginnner method, especially if you are not too concerned about speessolving and just want to know how to solve a cube every once in a while. Once you learn it, you really can't forget it since there are no algorithms to memorize (or forget). It’s also a lot of fun because it’s a series of small puzzles rather than just recognizing cases and applying memorized algorithms.

It seems confusing at first because the first step is hard to understand, but you can just do Petrus until you get to F2L-minus-one and then follow Heise from there. The benefit from doing Heise mismatched squares is not very significant, especially for a beginner. Doing the full method as a “linear fewest moves” method is a lot of fun though.

Basically, do Petrus for the first two layers (minus one pair) and beginner Heise for the last layer.

#### WarriorCatCuber

##### Member
I started out learning Petrus method, but I got annoyed that I had to learn 2 algorithms and switched to Heise. I actually recommend Heise as a beginnner method, especially if you are not too concerned about speessolving and just want to know how to solve a cube every once in a while. Once you learn it, you really can't forget it since there are no algorithms to memorize (or forget). It’s also a lot of fun because it’s a series of small puzzles rather than just recognizing cases and applying memorized algorithms.

It seems confusing at first because the first step is hard to understand, but you can just do Petrus until you get to F2L-minus-one and then follow Heise from there. The benefit from doing Heise mismatched squares is not very significant, especially for a beginner. Doing the full method as a “linear fewest moves” method is a lot of fun though.

Basically, do Petrus for the first two layers (minus one pair) and beginner Heise for the last layer.
The squares are the easy part XD it's the rest people like me don't understand.

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