Questions tagged [optimization]

A puzzle where you have to optimize a certain objective function (maximize profit, minimize cost). There should ideally be a provable best answer, to avoid making the puzzle into an [open-ended] game.

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Is there a move-efficient way to rotate the center pieces on the Octo-Star?

I'm looking for a more efficient algorithm to rotate the center column of the Octo-Star puzzle 45 degrees. The situation below occurs when four properly-oriented edges are next to each other, ...
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14 votes
0 answers

Qubes: Oh, For the Love Of

TL;DR: This is a mixture between a tribute/spin-off puzzle and an attempt at a new puzzle type, greatly inspired by the notorious arcade game, Q*bert, published originally by Gottlieb Amusement Games. ...
8 votes
0 answers

What is the longest Wordle game?

If you play Wordle in hard mode, with unlimited guesses, then you must solve any puzzle eventually. This is true because there are only a finite number of valid five-letter words, and it is not ...
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8 votes
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Doubling the cube with rational Meccano strips

In three monographs published in 2006, 2008 and 2014 Gerard 't Hooft considered "Meccano mathematics": how to construct specified distances and regular polygons by a rigid system of ideal ...
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7 votes
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What's the best path through a garden that maximises the ground you can reach but minimises the steps taken?

I'm messing around with this toy problem I came up with. Say you have a yard that's 16 x 16 feet. Each square foot of the grid can either be a paving square for the path or a soil square for plants. A ...
6 votes
2 answers

The Median Game - For Money

Inspired by this interesting puzzle which was quickly solved. Five friends play a simple game with the following rules: Players play consecutively one after the other. Each player must call out a ...
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4 votes
0 answers

Mr. Bean's Ridiculous Way to Work

If you saw Mr. Bean as a kid, or ever, you know how crazy and unbelievable he is. In this scenario, Mr. Bean lives in the bottom left house and works for the school at the left, but he always takes ...
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2 votes
0 answers

Shortest Algorithm to flip 2 edges on a Rubik's cube

I'm looking for the shortest algorithm to flip 2 edges without rearranging any other pieces location or orientation. For example, flipping the Top-Front edge and the Top-Right edge. My current best is ...
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0 votes
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Is Connect X a solved game?

Connect 4 is known to be a solved game. After Connect 4 is Excellent, Connect 3 is Great being trivialised by @Trenin, I am introducing the final puzzle I wanted to share to puzzling.SE :) Connect X, ...
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Disguising a Rubik's Cube rotation

I'm wondering if there's a way to disguise the total rotation of a Rubik's Cube? For example, if I wanted to rotate the (solved) cube I could obviously just apply a 90 degree yaw rotation. However, I ...