April 15, 2014

How to become a Speed Cuber? | Part 1

06:30 Posted by Durga swaroop Perla No comments
Rubik's Cube, introduced in 80's (late 70's) is the most popular puzzle ever made. It has been sold an estimated 350 million pieces as of 2009 and its growing at an incredible rate. So, more than ever in the history of cubing, lots and lots of people are aspiring to become speed cubers. This article is dedicated to all those people wishing them the very best.

So,What is Speed Cubing?
http://durgaswaroop.blogspot.in/2014/04/how-to-become-speed-cuber-part-1.html

 Speed Cubing or Speed solving is solving the Rubik's cube or any other similar puzzles quickly, as fast as possible. So, how fast are we taking about? To give you a perspective of the actual speed, here are the world records in a few categories.
3x3x3 cube - 5.55 secs
4x4x4 cube - 24.66 secs
2x2x2 cube  - 0.69 secs
5x5x5 cube - 50.50 secs

So, if you are a beginner or a person who has just started learning the cube, these may scare you a bit. But you don't need to worry. It is just a matter of the sheer amount of practice you do. This post should be able to help you with almost everything related to speed cubing.
This article is written so that it can help even the person who just just started learning to solve a cube. In other words it covers A-Z of cubing. Starting from How to solve? to finally participating in the Cubing events and ultimately being a world champion !


Where to start?

If you are a beginner, this is one of the questions you might have. Where to start? Which cube to start with?
There are a lot of cubes you can have, but to begin your journey in the speed cubing, you need to start with either a 2x2 cube or a 3x3 cube (Original Rubik's Cube). From them, you can move on to the other puzzles.
If you already have a cube with you, then that is fine but you are planning to buy one, then its better to buy a Competition grade cube rather than the cubes in the regular stores. These will help you with speed and timing. Normally these are not sold in stores, they have to be ordered online. A few famous brands of Cubes are, Rubik's, Dayan, MoYu, V-Cube, Shengshou among many others. If you want to see which is better for you, then you can look-up some reviews of those cubes online. (Links at the end of the article)

How to Solve the Cube?
After you've decided which one to begin with, you need to learn to solve it. And, again there are two ways in which you can solve. First, Keep trying, try to see where each piece goes with different moves and depending on that try to solve the cube. This is a completely intuitive process and obviously as you can expect takes a long long time. Secondly, if you are too lazy or you want to start solving it right away and don't want to waste so much time, you can learn it online. There a lot of websites and youtube videos dedicated to this. So, you won't have any trouble learning and you can easily learn it under a day!

There are many methods in which you can solve a cube.
1. Fridrich's Method  (also called CFOP method)
2. Roux Method
3. ZZ Method
4. Lars-Petrus Method

Among all the above mentioned methods, Fridrich's method is the most popular among speed cubers and usually most beginners start with this. The other methods are not quite as popular as the Fridrich's, but they do have a large audience. Each method has its own pros and cons compared to the others but it is up to you, the cuber to decide on which method to follow. Again, for more information about the methods you can do a quick search.

Usually when you first start, the best thing would be start with the beginners method (which is usually the CFOP) and then after you master that, move on to more advanced steps. It is always better to stick with one method from the beginning, because it'll take a lot of time to switch completely to the new method. You can still learn other methods to know their up's and down's, but using the new method to solve the cube would be a different thing.
Each method, though aimed at the same thing, solving the cube, have some fundamental differences. So, to be able to start speed solving with a new method, you have to understand these and hence it is really time consuming. But one thing you can do is to look at all the methods and probably try to create a hybrid, Unified method of solving that takes in the benefits of all of these methods and share it with the Cubing community.

After you have learnt the beginners method, we can move on to the more advanced things and concerns. But that will be a completely different article. So, wait for part-2 of this article, which will be out pretty soon.

A few important links:
Buying a cube : You can buy some great cubes here.
More important information in Part-2. So, Subscribe to the blog (Get free updates! on the right) and stay tuned. You can also let us know about your experiences with various solving methods in the comments.You can also suggest the things we should add to this article and things to be included in the next article.
Second part here.
Thanks for visiting.
 As always have a Happy reading !

Image attribution:
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Rubik%27s_cube.svg
Created by: Booyabazooka

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