With a talent for puzzles and problem solving, twelve-year-old Rupert Hindmarch’s passion for Rubik’s cubes shows no sign of abating
Rupert, a Year 7 student at Richmond School & Sixth Form College, has been interested in riddles and puzzles since he was six-years old and the Rubik’s cube was the perfect fit for him. As soon as Covid restrictions allow, he is planning to take part in World Cube Association (WCA) competitions to test his wits against fellow enthusiasts.
Over the years, Rupert has built up an extensive and diverse collection of 35 puzzles, with his largest Rubik’s Cube being a 9×9 combination which has 486 individual pieces, and his smallest being a 3×3 format. His fastest time is now under 20 seconds and he is working to improve this all the time.
Rupert said: “I enjoy WCA and non-WCA puzzles. Some of my favourite puzzles are not cubes. I really love the pyraminx which, as the name hints at, is a pyramid, as well as a megaminx that is a dodecahedron. There’s even a cube called the gear cube, it’s a 3×3 but the pieces are gears that spin when you turn it. I get such a buzz and feeling of accomplishment when I solve a puzzle, it is incredibly satisfying.”
The magic cube was invented in 1974 by Hungarian architecture professor Erno Rubik and was relaunched as the Rubik’s Cube in 1980. Rupert’s top tips for those wishing to solve the Rubik’s cube is to think of it as individual pieces rather than sides. Randomly turning it doesn’t work as the cube has 43 quintillion, 252 quadrillion, 3 trillion, 274 billion, 489 million, 856 thousand variations so you would never solve it.
Rupert really enjoys the challenge of understanding the algorithms of the Rubik’s cube and, as you would expect, his favourite subject is Maths which he is already planning to study at A-level.
Jenna Potter, Headteacher said: “I am in awe of Rupert’s ability to work out these puzzles which frustrate most people as they toil over them for hours! To watch him twist and turn the cube so deftly and quickly is fascinating. I found out about Rupert’s talent when I was interviewing all our Year 7s to find out how they are settling in at Richmond School, and I was amazed about his enthusiasm for puzzles when I asked him about his interests and hobbies outside of school. This clearly ties in with his obvious ability in and passion for maths. I can’t wait to hear how he does in the competitions and I have no doubt that with his analytical, mathematical and curious mind he will hold his own against the other problem solvers.”