Welcome to the online diary of the “London Ziegs,” as they journal their experiences relocating from the balmy climes of sunny Orlando, Florida to the more chaotically cosmopolitan environment of London, UK!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Gift of Frustration

I'm not big on puzzles; while I enjoy racing the kids to complete word-searches upside down on the back of restaurant children's menus, I'm generally not one for crosswords and the like. However, my Mom got me cautiously interested in Sudoku, and I've found the elegant and free iTouch versions (I use this) a good way to kill time on the train.

Therefore, for Christmas Christopher picked me up a paperback of advanced puzzles, and one cold evening I decided to rate myself by picking the very last puzzle in the book (ranked "7 sweat droplets" on their sliding scale). Frustratingly, the logic rules which had led me to an eventual elegant solution in previous puzzles broke down in this case, and I finally ground down to a point where it seemed the only path forward was an iterative brute-force attack (i.e., combinatorial permutations).

Unwilling to admit defeat, but also reluctant to proceed with a manual assault (puzzles are supposed to be fun, not tedious), I compromised by writing a C++ program to solve it for me. As long as I write the program, that counts, right? Anyway, I posted it to my website because, upon reflection, it's been quite awhile since I flowed some source back to the community. Admittedly, this isn't SourceForge, and I doubt the world exactly needed one more Sudoku app, but there you go:

1 comment:

  1. Mark,

    You are a total nerd. Anyway, I wish I could be as cool as you by using const correctness and recursive functions when writing absolutely useless, but fun apps. OK, you are not a nerd. You are totally my hero.

    BTW....Dan D'Agostino wants to know if the Bangers and Mash are any good. Bangers...huhu.