Monday, August 25, 2014

HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 5 FINAL (PLL)

Finally! Last part is here. After this, you can now solve a Rubik's Cube! :)

Permutation of the Last Layer (PLL) part is still very easy. You just need to memorize two algorithms! Here's a little surprise for you, one of them is Fish (or Fish')! The other one is called the corner swap. What it does is swap corners.

When doing PLL, the first thing we need to solve is the corners. What you need first to find is if there is a where were there are two corners of the same color.
After finding one, face that side of the cube, rotate the cube so that you are facing the left adjacent side, then do a corner swap.

Corner Swap: R U' L' U R' U' L

What if you didn't find one? Just do a corner swap anywhere. If you do it right, it will lead you back to a Fish'. To be faster, just ditch the L because Fish' starts with an L'. Less moves, faster time.

After all the corners are in place, there can be two possible outcomes. We'll first tackle the the easier one.
Notice that there is a face completely solved already. Face that side, then rotate the cube 180 degrees. What you need to do then is look for the edge piece missing. If it is on the left side, do a Fish' since Fish' starts with L'. If it is on the right side, do a Fish since Fish starts with R. The key here is to understand the patterns so that you can easily memorize.

Green is on the right.                 Green is on the left.

Fish works here.                       Fish' works here.

Again, what if there is no complete side? Easy. Do fish anywhere. It shall bring you to the algorithms above.

Any fish. All kinds of fish.

That is all what you need to know about solving a Rubik's Cube! Easy, huh? With simple and easy to memorize algorithms, you can now solve a Rubik's Cube!

If you enjoyed my tutorials, leave a comment down below! Tell me what to write next! :) Any suggestions on how to improve my writing is welcome. Have a nice day playing with your Rubik's Cube!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

HOW TO: Rubik's Cube part 4 (OLL)

First half of last layer, coming up!

Orientation of the Last Layer (OLL) is the process of solving the last layer in which all the pieces of the top part will be of the same color.

After OLL is done

In this part of the tutorial, what I will be showing you is the top view, the side opposite of the base layer. As to what side of the cube you need to face when performing the algorithms, look at the image below.

Do the algorithm facing the side pointed by the arrow.

There are a lot of algorithms to memorize in OLL. The first one is called the 9-12. We call it 9-12 because it looks as if the hands of the clock are pointed to the 9 and 12. Take note that at this point, we don't need to mind the corners yet. As long as the edges appear like that in the images, you should do the 9-12 move. The name is pretty easy to remember too!

9-12: F U R U' R' F'

Another OLL to solve for the edges in called a straight line. And as you've guessed it, it is because there is a straight line!

Straight Line: F R U R' U' F'

The last one is called the dot. No need to explain why. The algorithm here is to either a 9-12 or a straight line. If you do either one of them, the resulting problem will be the other one! Try it for you to see.

Do either a Straight Line or A 9-12

Corner time! Meet your best friend, Fish. However, do not be fooled! Fish has a twin, and we will call him Fish Prime. To as why they are named fish, you know why. To easily remember what side of the cube to perform a Fish or a Fish' (read as Fish Prime), look for the yellow corner pointing to the head of the fish. I'm having a hard time in finding an easier to explanation so please look at the examples to easily understand.

Fish: R U R' U R U2 R'

Fish': L' U' L U' L' U'2 L

These fishes will be your friend through the rest of the OLL tutorials!

Tanks. Who doesn't love tanks? However, there's two of them.

Either a Fish or Fish' will do.

I suggest doing it on the side of your dominant hand to be much faster.

In the tank (let's call it tank away), if the yellow pieces are not pointing with the bazooka, do a Fish or Fish' on the side without the yellow.

Either do a Fish here or...

do a Fish Prime here.

I again suggest doing it with your dominant hand.

Eight, eight, eight, eight. Eight. Like the tank away, do a Fish or a Fish' on the side without the yellow.

Fish swimming area.

Territory of Fish'.

Last one is a cross! Two variants here again.

If it swims, it works. Fish or Fish' represent!

We'll call this one a wheelbarrow. I don't know for sure why it is called that but that's what they call it. The pattern of tank away or eight doesn't apply here. This time, perform a fish to where the yellow is. Take note that do this only on the face where there is a single yellow corner piece.

Fishy fish fish.

Fish' your way here if this is your dominant hand.

And that is it! It is quite a lot but you only need to perform a fish or a fish' here. What you need to memorize is to where to perform it. Easy I would say. Practice is the best way to memorize! Muscles memorize algorithms better than the mind.

Let me know if you are following this tutorial! Comment down below if you have any suggestion on how to improve my blog or writing! :)

HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 3 (Middle Layer)

First layer done! Time for middle layer!

The cube you are working on should look like this before starting to solve for the middle layer. It should be easy by now and I wish that you can solve the first layer in less than a minute. Remember that I am using white as base in my examples.

The next step is to find the piece that you want to put in and align it with the center piece of the same color as show in the example below. Notice that the green side of an edge piece is lined up with the green center plate. If the edge piece is flipped, you should align it with the other center piece, as show with the orange one.
 When performing the algorithms for placing the edge tiles in the middle layer, the side you are facing must be where the center piece and the edge piece are of the same color as shown below.

U R U' R' U' F' U F

This move will put the top edge piece to the right.

U' L' U L U F U' F'

This move will put the top edge piece to the left.

If you did the moves correctly, then it should look like this.
Pretty easy. But what if the edge piece is in its place but is inverted? Do either of the steps above and the piece wrongly place will go back to the top layer. And then put it back there again, this time oriented right.
If everything goes well, the cube should now look like this.
Congratulations! You are now done with the second layer! Be sure to practice because the third layer is the most complicated of all. Master the first two layers first! Please put a comment if you have any comments or suggestions! Tell me if you are following this tutorial. It is an honor to teach everyone of you. :)

PART 4: HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 4 (OLL)

Saturday, August 23, 2014

HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 2 (First Layer)

Now that you know how a cube operates (by trying to solve on your own) and how to read algorithms, it is time to learn how to solve the first layer!

Solving the first layer involves two parts : one is creating a cross on the base and second is adding the corners of the cube.

First thing to do is make a cross on any side of cube. Pick a color that you would like to represent your base. I like mine white. It is up to you but when you want to engage in speed cubing, try to use only one color as your base. Your hands and your eyes will be accustomed to the color and will be easier for you to notice the patterns. A cross is something like the image below.

Notice that the other side of the white edge tiles align properly to the center plates. You can try to solve first a cross then adjust them one by one but it will take a lot of time. It will be easier for you to solve the cross with the colors aligned so you don't have to adjust them anymore. For this part, I cannot give any algorithms because it depends on how your cube is scrambled.

Second part is putting on the corners.

First thing to do is to find the corner piece you want to put in and align that corner piece to where you want to put it, as show in the image below.
As you can see in the example, the corner piece needs to be put in that position. Notice how the green side of the corner piece is next to the green center piece. Also notice that at the white tile is not on the top layer, but at the side of the green one. To solve this, face the green side of the cube and the algorithm should be:

R U R'

Pretty easy right? The same can be done on the left side also while facing the green side.

L' U' L 

 But what if the white tile is on the top layer? Do these algorithms then realign it and it will be pretty easy to solve:

R U2 R'                                           L' U'2 L

Last thing is that what if the corner piece is in the first layer? What you need to do with it is to perform either R U R' or L' U' L depending on what side you are facing.
Do these steps in all the first layer corners and you will be ready for the second layer! Be sure to practice first the first layer so that you will be absolutely ready when the second layer tutorials come out! :)

Let me know in the comments any suggestions or questions! I'll try my best to answer them. Tell me also if you are following my blog! Thank you so much. :))

PART 3: HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 3 (Middle Layer)

Friday, August 22, 2014

HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 1 (Notation)

Before learning, we need a way to tell you what part of the cube to move.

A way to tell you how to move the cube is by way of notations. In this part of the lesson, I will only tell you about the notations needed.
  • L - means to move the left part of the cube clockwise.
  • R - means to move the right part of the cube clockwise.
  • U - means to move the up part of the cube clockwise.
  • D - means to move the down part of the cube clockwise.
  • F - means to move the front part of the cube clockwise.
  • B - means to move the back part of the cube clockwise.
Notice that these moves are all on the clockwise direction. If the algorithm (the solution to a problem in the cube) requires a counter-clockwise direction, it will be noted with an apostrophe and read as prime. For example, R' is read as prime and it means that you need to move the right part of the cube in the counter-clockwise direction.

If the algorithm has a number 2 in it, it means that you need to do the move twice.

An example would be the clockwise fish move, as seen in the image below.
R U R' U R U2 R'

This part of the Rubik's cube solution is the second to the last part. It is called the Orientation of the Last Layer (OLL). We won't discuss it for now but we'll get there. 

These are the basic notations in solving a Rubik's cube. There are more in the advanced solutions. That will be added next time if the tutorials reach there. For now, start familiarizing yourself in the notations. Let me know in the comments if you are following the how to's. :)

PART 2: HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 2 (First Layer)

Thursday, August 21, 2014

HOW TO: Rubik's Cube 3x3x3 Intro

Learning to solve a 3x3x3 is a lot easier than one might think.

little background: I started learning how to solve a Rubik's cube back in high school. I had a friend who is into speed cubing and luckily, he was kind enough to teach me how to solve. But prior to this, I know how to solve the first two layers of the cube with the help of my brother. He was a (kind of) bad teacher. When teaching me, all he said at first is to solve the first layer all on my own. I did learn eventually up to the first two layers, but it was the result of my hard work.

As a challenge to you, I want first to solve the first the first layer all by yourself. I will be back in a while to teach you what I know about Rubik's cubes.

PART 1: HOW TO: Rubik's Cube Part 1 (Notation)