Getting students to solve problems is what Computer Science is all about! I do like to set students difficult (challenging) puzzles to see if they can work out a solution. This puzzle is one that I just came across and it took me about 5-10 minutes to solve it so I would think that students should be able to solve it too within a similar timeframe. The objective is to arrange the pegs (numbers 1-8) such that no consecutive number touches on any connecting line. For example number 1 cannot connect with number 2; number 2 cannot connect with 3 or 1; number 5 cannot connect with 4 or 6; etc. The board layout is on the right: |

For example, this example (below) would not be a correct solution as 1 connects to 2; 2 connects to 3 and 1 etc.

The idea for this conundrum came from Martin Gardner's book: The Colossal Book of Short Puzzles and Problems, 2006. Gardner wrote, “This perplexing digit problem, inventor unknown, was passed on to me by L. Vosburg Lyons of New York City (February 1962). There is only one solution but if you try to find it without a logical procedure the task will be difficult. A digital computer running through all possible permutations of the digits finds 40,320 different arrangements possible.”

Apparently there are actually four solutions but each one of those is a mirror of the one true solution.

Contact me for my solution if you need it by either emailing me, tweeting me, or leaving a comment on this blogpost. A little bit of logical thinking should enable most people to solve this puzzle quite quickly

Apparently there are actually four solutions but each one of those is a mirror of the one true solution.

Contact me for my solution if you need it by either emailing me, tweeting me, or leaving a comment on this blogpost. A little bit of logical thinking should enable most people to solve this puzzle quite quickly