Insomnia Log

This is what keeps me awake at night???

Who needs sleep? (well you’re never gonna get it)
Who needs sleep? (tell me what’s that for)
Who needs sleep? (be happy with what you’re getting,
There’s a guy who’s been awake since the second world war)

-- words and music by Steven Page & Ed Robertson

Location: Boulder, Colorado, United States

Everything you need to know about me can be found in my posts

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

He Killed Sudoku! You Bastard!

I don't usually write about myself in this forum. After all, a blog is not supposed to be about yourself, it's supposed to be about what you think about everybody else. And everything you need to know about me you should be able to learn by reading between the lines of my posts.

But here's something you need to know. I'm a bit obsessive. I don't do anything half way.

A while back, I started noticing this new type of puzzle in the daily newspaper, called sudoku. I tried one and eventually figured it out.

Well, it turns out that there are some rules you can follow and come up with the solution to any but the most difficult of these puzzles. I would find myself doing the puzzle and getting bored because it was becoming mechanical. Not to mention my hands getting tired from writing and erasing all those numbers.

Unsolved SudokuThen my wife bought me a book of sudoku puzzles. I didn't want to write all over the book (see, you're learning all kinds of things about me), so I thought of putting the puzzle on my computer. My sore hands were feeling better all the time.

Ready to SolveThe next thing I knew, I was creating an Excel spreadsheet to do the mechanical parts of solving the puzzle. I was writing little procedures to perform each of the little rules I'd come up with.

The Easy StuffWell, it happened. I ended up with a spreadsheet on which I could enter the original set of numbers, click a button, and after a while (maybe 20 seconds for an easy puzzle, another 2 minutes for the really hard ones) the solution would be presented to me.

All Done!So here's the dilemma. Solving the puzzle is just not fun anymore and it's not a challenge. I knew this would happen before I started, but I did it anyway. Ok, it's kind of cool watching the numbers fill in automatically. But I'm getting impatient.

I know, maybe I need a faster computer, so I can solve sudoku puzzles in just a few seconds. Yeah, that'll do it. I think I'll order one tomorrow.

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