Why is the Rubiks Cube So Popular
The Rubiks cube is a popular mechanical puzzle renowned worldwide. Erno Rubik, a Hungarian architecture professor and sculptor invented the 3D combination puzzle in 1974, and it was initially known as the Magic Cube.
The intellectually challenging iconic toy is accessible to people from all cultures, and its popularity has endured for many reasons. Let’s explore why the Rubiks cube is so popular.
A Piece of Art
One of the fundamental reasons more than 400 million Rubiks cubes have sold worldwide since 1980 is its design which features simplicity, form, and beauty. It’s more than a puzzle or toy and is instead a piece of art. The cube is part of a permanent collection at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Erno developed the movable art piece for his students in architecture, and the cube did things the world had never seen before. It turned and twisted without breaking, and the color stickers gave it its iconic look.
The Rubik’s cube quickly captured everyone’s attention and instantaneously became an international sensation. It was appealing to youngsters and adults, and everyone wanted one.
International Toy Fairs
Different international toy fairs have displayed the Rubiks cube since its invention. In 1979 it was demonstrated in Paris, London, and New York and spotted by toy specialist Tom Kremer who immediately saw the potential and power of the Rubiks cube.
A vision to commercialize and sell the cube worldwide soon developed, and Tom Kremer negotiated a worldwide distribution license. The Ideal Toy Company came on board and changed the name from Magic Cube to Rubiks Cube.
The newer cubes were half the weight of the earlier models, which made solving times much faster. The company launched the Rubiks cube globally in 1980, and the rest is history.
By 1981 the Rubiks cube had become a worldwide craze, and it was notorious for being unsolvable. While some were frustrated and stumped with their Rubiks cubes, others set speed records.
From 1982 annual international Rubiks championships started being held where people competed to see who would solve the Rubiks cube the fastest. Budapest hosted the first championship, with the inaugural winner solving the Rubiks cube in 22.95 seconds.
These championships are now held worldwide and are the perfect place for cubers to show off their speed. In 2018, Yushen Du from China set the world record for the fastest solve at 3.47 seconds!
It Improves Memory
Solving the Rubiks cube requires plenty of practice to get the desired result in the minimum average time, which helps improve your muscle memory. Whether you’re using algorithms or coming up with your unique solution for the puzzle, your muscle memory is guaranteed to benefit.
All training strategies require muscle memory, and the process creates maximum efficiency for your brain’s motor and memory systems. You have to memorize each step sequentially, and any misstep or mistake can lead to the wrong allocation of blocks on the cube.
Therefore, your brain trains to map out and memorize all your steps in advance to successfully solve the challenge.
Improves Problem Solving Skills
Life is all about solving problems, and the Rubiks cube provides suitable practice for solving them. The foundation of solving the Rubiks cube is breaking down a complex issue and solving each part separately.
With thousands of combinations, turns, and twists, you can think of the Rubiks cube as a mini-universe. You’re required to focus on how each twist and section will impact your next move.
The Rubiks cube will train you to see patterns and help you become better in mathematics, learning a new language, or facing everyday challenges head-on.
Many people train all year round to solve the Rubiks cube in the shortest time possible. You must learn to turn and twist layers in under a few seconds, and this requires incredible eye-hand coordination and sharper reflexes.
You can quickly identify items, read, and notice colors and patterns with quick reflexes. It’s an excellent skill for people of all ages and those with agility, dexterity, or joint degeneration problems.
Enhancing Configuration and Concentration
Lots of focus is necessary to solve the Rubiks Cube. Some take hours, others days and even months. It’s easy to get distracted in this digital age where we consume a lot of visual content with flashy lights and loud noises.
The Rubiks cube teaches [people to be in the moment and concentrate on the task at hand. The Rubiks cube constantly activates your brain to make adjustments and identify new opportunities for achieving the goal in less time.
Thousands of Books
Since its invention, the Rubiks cube has inspired thousands of books from different authors across the globe. Some are how-to books or beginner guides that focus on how to solve the puzzle, while others focus on the history, culture, and theory of cubing.
Such books have increased the cube’s popularity, with the most influential one being David Singmaster’s Note’s on Rubik’s Cube Magic, published in 1979. It had the first mathematical analysis of the Rubiks cube.
The Rubiks cube is iconic, and it has inspired and featured in various films since its invention. You can see it in movies like Spice girls, Armageddon, The Amazing Spiderman, Wall-E, The Machinist, and Being John Malkovich.
It has also inspired the description of other objects like modern buildings through not so much the looks but the interlocking complexity of the Rubiks cube. The famous fashion brand Chanel even released a purse called Corbis resembling the Rubiks cube!
The Rubiks cube has played a vital role in teaching kids different sets of skills in education throughout the years. These include problem-solving, concentration, memory, agility, and mathematics. It generally benefits all the cognitive functionalities of your mind and keeps it healthy.
In 2008 an educational program launched in the US to incorporate learning to solve the Rubiks cube in the school curriculum. Teachers can use it as a manipulative tool to teach 21st Century skills!
With the above mentioned points in mind, it’s evident why and how the Rubiks cube has become so popular over the years!