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Xternity – Solving program for the Eternity-puzzle


In the Eternity puzzle were launched on the market. A prize of 1 mio. £ would be awarded to the one who could solve it within a year. Me (or rather my computer) had to give it a try. Therefore I developed a program based on chaos- and evolutiontheory to solve the puzzle. The program was coded in QuickBasic (QBasic) and ran under DOS. The Eternity-puzzle consists of 209 different polygonic bricks. See more about the Eternity-puzzle here.

My program "Xternity" was based on a theory where each single brick was considered as an individual constantly wanting to fit as good as possible into the suroundings (the puzzle). The greater part of the bircks circumference that lays besides a nabour brick or the edge of the puzzle, the better it fits. In this way chaos theory was used to describe a number of simple instincts / rules of the bricks making them cooperate to solve the puzzle.

My computer worked every night in about a month trying to solve the puzzle. It peaked at about 90 % of the bricks placed, but two english professors in mathematics solved the puzzle first and won the 1 mio. £. I stopped the process after that.

If you would like to try the program please feel free to download all nessesary files (and the source code) here.
The program is started by running "Xternity.exe". It takes offset when I stopped the solving process. "Bricedit.exe" is used for viewing / creating / editing each brick in the puzzle.

For more information about this project, or a quote for a similar project, please fell free to contact Allan Krogh Jensen.