Tech by VICE

Watch This Rubik’s Cube Solve Itself

A ball of servos covered in a Rubik’s Cube can run a simple program to solve itself.

by Matthew Gault
Sep 24 2018, 1:54pm

Humanity conquered the Rubik’s Cube long ago, and we’ve spent the almost 40 years since its initial release in 1980 attempting to dominate it. The current world record for solving the puzzle stands at 4.22 seconds and robots can do it less than half a second. But those are external forces acting on the cube. The next level is designing a Rubik’s Cube that solves itself. That’s exactly what Human Controller, a maker from Japan, has done.

Human Controller’s self-solving Rubik’s Cube looks like magic, but it’s actually a simple program running on a little ball of servos he’s built the Rubik’s Cube around. All Rubik’s Cube solutions are a simple program—follow that program and solve the cube. As the other robots have demonstrated, it’s easy to design a program to solve one of these things. But when you put that program inside of the Cube itself, it looks like magic.

Follow Human Controller’s design of the self-solving Rubik’s Cube, including the program he used, here.