2016年4月24日星期日

花山铸六角

六角铸铁
I'我在伦敦度过了一个相当紧张的周五,周六和周日,花了很多时间整理我已故的母亲's apartment and putting stuff for recycling, for charity and for 的rubbish. She basically was a hoarder and never threw anything away..... 永远 !我发现了她收到的每一个生日和圣诞贺卡-不仅是我和我的兄弟,还有任何人。那里'我写给她约会的每封信都可以追溯到1985年,当时我去了爱丁堡大学医学院。一世've found more shoes and handbags than even 的present Mrs S has! hack!哎哟! 是的,亲爱的,我知道你一定要赶上!一个女人需要多少个手提箱和行李箱?还有什么呢're all full! I'我取得了长足的进步,但是 '筛选某人有点令人心碎'一生,对保留的东西和被扔掉的东西如此残酷。我敢't even start on 的photographs - there are 10s of 1000s of them! So I'm 在这里做实验-我'm taking a quick break from sorting to write a post for you! I have no wifi and only my iPad tethered to my mobile phone and using an app that is 不 的most intuitive to use. So 这里 '希望我们能得到一些供您阅读的东西。在那之后,可能会有一个小酒鬼来我这里-我想我've earned it!

哦! 3个新东西!
自从我在博客上发布任何有关Hanayama的新拼图之谜以来已经有一段时间了-主要是因为我没有'最近一个月左右才收到任何消息,一位叫Nic Picot的绅士联系了我,他开了一家新的在线拼图商店,'t 的UK called 花山益智网. Initially he 没有't have 的very newest ones in stock but promised that he would have. So I placed an order and waited. He got back to me a few weeks ago with 的news and a bit of PayPal shifted. Three new toys suddenly came my way and I gleefully posted a picture on my Facebook墙 and 的拼图摄影页面. I 没有'不想放大它们,所以我自己调整自己的步调-我'm still struggling to get anywhere 在 all with 的latest Cast Padlock. I am pleased to say that they were all well worth purchasing and I can vouch for 的efficiency of Nic's site and his honesty. So if you are in 的UK and wanting to 购买 any of 的Hanayama puzzles have a look 在 His site. In North (or even South) America you are probably still best dealing with 拼图大师.

2016年4月17日星期日

In 的Interim.....

Turn 的Plug
This week has also been another rather busy one for me and 不 helped by 的fact that Mrs S went gallivanting back up to Edinburgh to visit her family for a good few days. Now whilst this has decreased 的risk of a hack!哎哟! it has also meant that I have been left a list of chores and some DIY to do. It also means that 的usual household stuff that she takes care of is left for me. This has left me rather short of puzzling time.

But in 的 临时  我收到了一些东西 谢恩  我只是无法抗拒!这是“随手可得”难题,这是他所谓的区间难题之一,即它们填补了他的主要创作之间的空白,并且用他的话来说,并不是要认真对待,而只是一点乐趣。我前一阵子听说过,但以前从未在肉/木中见过。它'这是一件很重的事情,对于"just a bit of fun"它完成精美。显然,Shane最近一直在与许多大师级工匠聊天,并且已获得有关如何完成木制拼图的知识。这个特殊的难题具有他的旧方法并且令人惊叹-洛德(Lord)知道当他尝试一种新的改进方法时会变得多么美丽!我敢肯定,S夫人不会因为这个特殊的难题而在节目中'是相当不寻常的硬件,但它必须与我现在令人尴尬的广泛应用一起放在饭厅的餐具柜中 Hales收集.

2016年4月10日星期日

Mike is a Saviour - Presenting 的Tetris Octagram

上周对我来说是一个非常繁忙的工作,因为我完成了很晚的工作,而且花了很多时间使人费解。最重要的是,现在是我该为我的医院写顾问麻醉师轮值通知的时候了。这是3  独立的花名册雇用27名员工,他们的所有常备要求,一份休假和年假。星期五晚上我下班后,我带着18页A4纸双面打印了所有信息,并确保将各种电子邮件请求转发到我的家庭电子邮件中。这次写轮转报告使我在24英寸iMac上花了整整7个小时,让我筋疲力尽-我处于无法解决任何问题或事后计划博客帖子的状态。最重要的是,今天我可以打电话给自己并且可以随时被呼入-因此出于这个原因 永远感激 to my Hawaiian correspondent, Mike Desilets, for sending me a review during 的week and taking 的pressure off me - he 没有't even know that I would be in need. This means that, 如果我 don't get called in, I can do some of 的DIY that I have been putting off for weeks - "she who must be feared" has been threatening me with another hack!哎哟! 如果我 don't reseal her bathroom this weekend and fix 的mortice lock on 的door too! So without further ado, I hand you over to Mike:

乔纳森·贝琳迪’s 俄罗斯方块八卦. Euro in 的background for scale. Looks small doesn’t it?
AlohaKākou读者,

When you hear that greeting, you can always expect more puzzle talk from 的islands. I’ve been in a writing mood lately and I find that its best to indulge 的urge before it passes. It’当您没有灵感时,很难写。值得庆幸的是,我最近受到一些新难题的启发,其中我’今天要讲。我对史蒂夫(aka)的最后一篇帖子的评论也激发了这篇帖子 盒子和酒),这使我想起了我受人尊敬的编辑兼发行人Kevin(又名The Mad Puzzler(Ed-我是Puzzlemad 一个疯子!还是我?))通常不会收集某些拼图类型—boxes for example (埃德-只是想使自己免于彻底的财务崩溃 )。 I was happy to realize that my post filled a gap in 的blog. Thinking about it a little more, I recalled that packing puzzles also constitute a distinct minority 在 Puzzlemad (Ed-我只是 似乎无法做到)。有包装工 在这个博客上, just 不 非常 many relative to 的abundance that exist. Happily for 的blog, I 非常 recently played with a great 2D packing puzzle that I think is Puzzlemad material.

我给你—the “Tetris Octogram”—designed, made, and sold by 乔纳森 B from his workshop in northern California. This 非常 在 tractive version of 的classic octogram is an original design. I know this because 乔纳森 told me so, and also because I searched high and low for similar designs and found almost 不 hing. The 俄罗斯方块八卦 is, of course, a polyomino packing puzzle, a class which has deep historical roots. Octograms are so named for 的fact that 的packing space measures 8 units on a side. Other than that, there don’似乎没有严格的规定。从设计的角度来看,人们只需选择一组难于包装且美观的多米诺骨牌。乔纳森(Jonathan)为他的难题选择了13种多米诺骨牌,包括1种七聚体,1种六聚体,7种五聚体和4种四聚体。

传统上,五角巨人是此类拼图的最受欢迎作品(并且可以说是多角兽时期最流行的作品),但我认为添加较大的七巧和六边形片断以及朴素的四字琴是一个不错的选择。我什至可以宣称这是一个完全独特的安排。当然,在所有可能的多米诺骨牌组合中,肯定有数百种独特的集合可供选择。我只能说这套特殊的套装在美学和令人费解的角度上都起作用。乔纳森’最初的灵感是一个孩子’的多米诺拼图,他从中画了一些作品。然后,他选择了其余部分以补充这些内容,以便最终设计成为“等比例”。另一个影响是俄罗斯方块,因此得名。拼图中有四个源自俄罗斯方块的碎片,对我们来说也称为tetriminos GenXers(埃德-似乎包括我 )。

Polyomino breakdown for 的Tetris Octogram.
当我第一次考虑购买《俄罗斯方块八方图》时,我被独特的构造和材料所吸引,但’非常关注令人困惑的方面。与博客中出现的许多高度创新和前沿的难题相比,Polyomino包装看起来有些平凡。但是,我必须说,这个难题确实在我身上蔓延。这不容易解决,也不是很难解决。但是解决总是很有趣的。重播价值实际上是无限的。必须有成千上万种可能的解决方案(使解决方案易于管理),但是您几乎不可能花时间来记住其中任何一种。因此,每个游戏基本上都是一个全新的开始。以典型的包装方式,您’只能在解决方案的广度之内,然后必须回溯和重新排列,直到可以创建所需的空间为止。它’这是一个非常令人满意的难题,在挫折感和释放感之间取得了很好的平衡。

My admittedly limited research produced only one other Octogram design available on 的market. This is an 全木八角图 of quite different design (meaning different choice of polyominos) made by 的Kiwis 在 令人费解的世界。他们的版本几乎完全由戊糖和一个孤独的四丁胺组成。至少  分离 programmers have analyzed 的Puzzlingworld Octogram, coming up with 16,146 unique solutions (excluding equivalent orientations). This gives you some idea of 的order of magnitude of 的solving possibilities for 的Tetris Octogram.

The 俄罗斯方块八卦 has its roots in 的octograms of 的late nineteenth century, particularly 的棋盘  puzzles. The objective there was to fit a set of polyominos into an 8 x 8 unit square such that a regular 棋盘 was created. The component squares of 的polyominos alternate red and white. The earliest of these, dating to 的1880s, was 的分段棋盘格 其中包括15个polys:9个pento(其中2个重复),2个tetro(两个都相同),3个三重奏(都相同)和1个多米诺骨牌。这显然是一个 非常 受欢迎且寿命长的客厅(Ed - corrected to 的correct spelling with a U in it!!)拼图,产生了300多种设计(请参见Slocum和Haubrich’的棋盘拼图纲要,或者更好的是,快去吧 这里 )。

3/16英寸铁度。
激光切割机很好,但是我要 等离子体 刀!
As mentioned, 的appearance and materials of 的Tetris Octogram puzzle really pulled me in and ultimately made me hit 的“buy” button. You can see from 的pictures that this is a 非常 substantial puzzle; 的exact antithesis of 的jewel case packer. The packing tray is a 9.5 x 9.5" slab of ¾" oak and 的puzzle pieces are 3/16" thick iron. 乔纳森 cuts 的pieces with a computer controlled 等离子体 cutter (埃德-流口水!)。在计算机上创建多米诺骨牌设计,然后将其送入切纸器。请注意,多米诺骨球非常圆润,使它们手感舒适且易于眼部。他们也很适合托盘—不要太紧,不要太松。总的来说’是现代工艺的绝妙作品。拼图看起来就像在网页上一样真实,这在当今并不总是如此。鉴于其坚固的结构,这个难题也将成为伟大的多代传家宝-我’我很确定它会比我长寿。与我所拥有(和珍惜)的那些更加晦涩难解的难题不同,我相信我那些不知所措的后代会欣赏它并不断将其传递下去。就我自己而言,我打算将这个难题带回家庭湖边小屋(非常谦虚,不要’不要在佛蒙特州(Vermont)弄错主意,然后在it啪作响的壁炉前拿杯暖和的茶玩耍。谢谢乔纳森。

嗯.........?
Only three 俄罗斯方块八卦s have been made to date and I am 的happy owner of number three. 乔纳森 is 不 a 专业益智设计师,他的确在机器上做很多其他事情,所以我问他这是只拍一次的百灵鸟,还是商店里还有更多东西。我很高兴得知他有更多设计的计划, and in more sizes. I’我一定会注意的。太好了 大一和我’我很高兴看到他在这种相当不寻常的媒介中还能提出什么。

You can find 的Tetris Octogram 在 Jonathan’s Etsy store (不幸的是,乔纳森已经停止制作拼图. Price is $88 US (埃德-他  doesn't seem to ship to 的UK unfortunately) 和他 使他们订购(实际上相当快)。这是 便宜,但是你得到一个 非常 设计独特的高品质产品。它是 在我的书中绝对是最有价值的。乔纳森(Jonathan)花了三到四分钱 hours making each puzzle, plus material costs. Do 的math. It’s a good deal. 


Ed - Wow!!! That looks absolutely stunning - whilst I am 不 a huge fan of packing puzzles because I struggle to do them and because there is just too much trial and error involved, this looks perfect. Hopefully someone will convince 乔纳森 to ship outside of 的US so others can enjoy this great looking puzzle. I really will be interested to see what else he comes up with.
Thanks to Mike for letting me off 的hook and for producing yet another stunning review - if you think you can also produce something equally informative then contact me on my 联系页面.


2016年4月3日星期日

去了百慕大......

它是't no holiday!

Bermudaminx - Venus is supposed to be 的easiest!
I've actually been struggling to write a blog post for you this week - I have been busy 在 work and 不 actually been able to concentrate on puzzling 非常 much. Then I caught 的 糊涂的 在星期五,感觉就像地狱。事实上,我感到如此可怕 couldn't even find 的energy to travel down to Birmingham and 在 tend 的22nd Midlands 益智派对 (sob!!) and meet up with all my mates! I must be pretty ill to miss 的chance to meet 的only people who actually understand and even sympathise with my madness!

The only puzzles that I have managed to spend time on have been to try a new sliding piece puzzle designed by 的incredible 拉斯洛·克莫纳(Laszlo Kmolnar) and 不 get anywhere 在 all with it 和 n in desperation to return to a bit of twisty puzzling. I have a bit of a backlog of twisties that I need to get through before I order some more. My friend Martin has recently lost his job with one of 的city councils in England and to try and help support himself, he has set up a 曲折的拼图商店 in 的UK offering 非常 good prices - I wanted to catch up with my backlog before ordering a few extras. If you are 购买ing twisties and you live in 的UK or Europe then have a look 在 what Martin has to offer - he'非常可靠,实际上您可能会从他的身上认识他 YouTube频道.

Quite a long time ago I decided to 购买 的Bermudaminxes 和 y arrived en mass requiring stickering which can only be described as a truly soul destroying process. But eventually I had all eight of them ready to go and even scrambled one:

Eight scary minxes - 的scrambled Mercury has been like that since I got it!
I scrambled 的Mercury which I just picked 在 random and tried to solve it for several weeks but every time I started to make progress, I made a mistake and needed to start again 和 n after a while I realised that I didn'真的不明白我打算怎么做。对我来说太难了!天哪-我已经买了全部8个't cheap! I put them down for a while and promised myself that I would get back to them soon......ahem! it seems to have been nearly 2 years since then. I am slightly ashamed to admit that I have actually carried a couple of them with me every day in my workbag for 的entire time and never gotten around to 在 tempting them. Every time I picked them up I shuddered and put them down again. I know, I know, SHAME on me!

最终,当我意识到我要向马丁订购新清单时,我决定是时候了,信不信由你,我没有't received any new wooden beauties for a while and 的disentanglements that are backlogged in my queue are proving impossible:


I have put these aside for 的moment and have decided to go back to 的Bermudaminxes for a "refreshing change". I got advice from Jamie a while back for which order to begin them and he chose 的Venus as a suitable start point. This may be 的easiest but LORD! my head hurt for quite a lot of 的week and Mrs S exercised 的laser burning stare 和  hack!哎哟! 很多次是由于我每天晚上喃喃自语,大哭大闹和致盲。

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