A playable Google Doodle today celebrates the 40th anniversary of the Rubik’s Cube. The Doodle looks exactly like the physical Rubik’s cube, with nine squares on six sides with six different colors.
Emo Rubik, a Hungarian architect, invented the Rubik’s Cube in 1974 by hand carving “cubelets” he then assembled. It took him one month to solve the puzzle, determined that his creation had to be solvable. Ideal Toy Company licensed the puzzle and it became the biggest-selling toy of all time.
When you arrive on Google’s home page, rather than Google’s logo or colors, you’ll see the Rubik’s Cube. Click on it and the puzzle will enlarge so you can begin solving it yourself.
You can move the cubes horizontally or vertically, just as you do with a physical Rubik’s Cube. Every Rubik’s Cube is solveable in 20 moves or less, and a ticker in the corner keeps of how many moves you have taken in an attempt to solve the puzzle.
Stuck? Need some help? Here’s a video of how one person solved it:
Rubik’s Cube popularity peaked in the 1980s. However, there are still yearly world competitions. The world’s record for speed-solving the puzzle is 5.55 seconds, set in March 2013 by Mats Valk, while a robot has a record-setting time of 3.25 seconds.
“As everyone knows (right??), there are 519 quintillion permutations for the Rubik’s cube, so May 19 seemed like a fine day to celebrate its 40th anniversary,” according to a post by Richard The on the Official Google Blog. “To kick things off, we’re using some of our favorite web technologies (HTML5 and Three.js among others) to bring the cube to the world in the form of one of our most technically ambitious doodles yet.”